Hi everybody! Let’s see, in recent weeks we’ve done ’84, ’88 and ’86…so naturally, you know where I’m headed. Let’s take a look at the charts during the week of June 26, 1982!
10. The Other Woman – Ray Parker, Jr. Amazon iTunes
9. Love’s Been A little Bit Hard On Me – Juice Newton Amazon iTunes
8. Let It Whip – Dazz Band Amazon iTunes
7. Crimson and Clover – Joan Jett & the Blackhearts Amazon iTunes
6. Hurts So Good – John Cougar Amazon iTunes
5. Always On My Mind – Willie Nelson Amazon iTunes
4. Heat Of The Moment – Asia Amazon iTunes
3. Rosanna – Toto Amazon iTunes
2. Don’t You Want Me – Human League Amazon iTunes
1. Ebony And Ivory – Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder Amazon iTunes
Before we delve into these ten tasty treats, let’s just look at these tracks as a whole, shall we? In June of 1982, we certainly had our share of different genres occupying the top of the charts: you’ve got R&B, funk, country, pop, hard rock, and good ol’ rock & roll. (Which is which, of course, is another story.) Okay, let’s dig in!
10. The Other Woman – Ray Parker, Jr. (download)
Now, if you are anywhere near my age (30), the first thing you’re probably going to ask yourself is: "the
‘I Want A New Drug’ ‘Ghostbusters guy’ had other successful songs?" Yes, Virginia, Ray Parker, Jr. did have other songs; eight Top 40 solo songs, as a matter of fact – and that doesn’t include the five he had as part of Raydio! "I Want A New Drug" "Ghostbusters" just happened to be his most successful. Here are some other useless facts about him: he played guitar on Talking Book and Innervisions, toured with Stevie Wonder’s band, and also wrote and recorded his own version of New Edition’s "Mr. Telephone Man."
Although it’s no
"I Want A New Drug" "Ghostbusters," I do like "The Other Woman." It’s a nice slab of funky rock. And you have to love the man’s vocal: this guy is trying his damndest to sound like a sex god. I get this kind of voice when I first wake up in the morning, or when I speak very quietly into the phone. I wouldn’t be surprised if this song was recorded while he was chillin’ in bed. Awwww, shucks!
9. Love’s Been A Little Bit Hard On Me – Juice Newton
Yeah, I ripped on ol’ Juice a few months ago, although it was really more an assault against "Angel Of The Morning" than anything else. And quick tangent – I never thought I’d say this, but I found a version of that song that I didn’t hate. It’s by Girlyman, one of my favorite groups. (One of their CD covers sits on the right-hand side of this website.) It’s bootleg quality, but the harmonies are beautiful enough that I actually thought about taking back the bad things I said about the song. Almost.
Girlyman – Angel Of The Morning (live) (download)
But anyway, back to Newton and this song. I don’t really want to like it, but I do. It reminds me of about three other songs, none of which I can remember at this point in time. It’s a little bit rock, a little bit country, and a little bit ’80s, courtesy of that synthesizer in the opening riff. Why do I feel like somewhere in America, right now, at least 15 people are line-dancing to this song?
Hey, you know what? This song could be used in a Viagra commercial. Either as the "before" OR the "after," if you think about it. (Thank you! I’ll be here all week! Try the veal!)
Here’s the video for "Love’s Been A Little Bit Hard On Me." I was going to play "Count The Douchebags!" with this video ("One! One douchebag! Ah, ah, ah!"), but I actually wound up enjoying the plot, in which a d-bag suitor continually beats the crap out of Juice. It’s like a precursor to O.J. Simpson in The Naked Gun movies, except I’m pretty sure this Juice doesn’t wind up murdering anybody. Anyway, by the end of the video (especially when they recap her various accidents), I was completely smitten.[youtube]EPlRcoYj32c[/youtube]
8. Let It Whip – Dazz Band (download)
So when I first saw this title, I was perplexed. I was almost positive I’d never heard this song before. Of course, within 15 seconds, not only did I know exactly what song it was, but I was pushed out of my chair by some unexplainable force. This force caused me to run back and forth across the apartment and shake my groove thing, shake my groove thing, yeah yeah. I hope it does the same for you. (By the way, did Michael Jackson steal this drum track for "Beat It?")
7. Crimson and Clover – Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
Can somebody tell me what people thought of Joan Jett back in 1982? She had three songs in the top 20 in that year, and all three were covers. First was "I Love Rock & Roll" – yes, it’s a cover, originally by The Arrows (thank you, Coverville, for that piece of education) then this song, originally by Tommy James & The Shondells, and then, "Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)" by Gary Glitter (yes, Gary Glitter, and no, I will not go there). I’m not saying anything bad about Joan Jett – I think she fucking rocks, and undoubtedly puts her stamp on any song that she performs, cover or no, but does anybody remember what kind of legitimacy she had at this point? I know she was 3 years out of her work with The Runaways, but that’s all I know (or care to look up).
6. Hurts So Good – John Cougar
"Sometimes love don’t feel like it should." Hey, another Viagra commercial! (Thank you! Tip your waitress!)
5. Always On My Mind – Willie Nelson
I like Willie Nelson as much as the next guy (and personally, I don’t think anybody really likes Willie as much as they claim they do), but I don’t care for "Always On My Mind" very much. Not this version, not Elvis’ version, either. Admittedly, I haven’t heard Brenda Lee’s version or BB King’s version. I do like the Pet Shop Boys’ cover, only because I like everything from the Pet Shop Boys. I know it won boatloads of awards and was a huge hit for Willie, but I’m just not feelin’ it. And I certainly regret the day I found Bon Jovi singing it with Willie Nelson. Can we just not mention the words "Bon Jovi" and "country" for the rest of the week? Thanks. Anyway, I’d like to think that Wilie recorded this on the one day he didn’t smoke weed.
4. Heat Of The Moment – Asia
I’m only going to say this once: I don’t care about Asia. So if there are any Asia fans reading this, don’t try to convince me. You already have me listening to mellow music that’s quickly making the hair fall out of my chest, and ELO is next on the list. Don’t hand me no lines, and keep your Asia to yourself.
I’ll confess that I barely knew this song before I heard it featured in The 40 Year-Old Virgin. I mean, I love that the opening sounds vaguely Outfield-ish to me and they actually name check the year 1982 in the song, but I give the rest of the song a meh. The chorus doesn’t kick in nearly as hard as it should. And it fades out! BOO! My friend Len really likes Asia, and is probably disappointed in me, but then again, I don’t think Len has read this blog in ages, so fuck you, Len, and I hate your new haircut.
care know what Asia is up to these days, but Jeff checked in on Geoffrey Downes and John Wetton a couple of years ago. Those poor saps. (And let this be a lesson to you: thar’s gold in them Jefito archives.)
3. Rosanna – Toto (download)
This has got to be one of the best songs of the decade. I will never – ever – ever – get sick of "Rosanna." I know it’s overplayed. I know you’ve heard it a million times. I know you’re sick of seeing them chase Cynthia Rhodes (who, by the way, is still very hot – damn you, Richard Marx) on the other side of the chain-link fence in the video. You should get over it and just relish in "Rosanna." I know you have it. Download it again.
The musicianship on this song is just unparalleled: Bobby Kimball’s soaring vocal, high enough to ensure that I will never be able to cover it, David Paich’s multiple keyboard solos (yes, the sounds he chose are cheesy now, but they RAWKED in 1982), and, behind it all, the late, great Jeff Porcaro’s steady, rollicking drums. This song – especially the instrumental in the middle – is flawless. It deserved every Grammy it won (including Record of the Year, Best Vocal Arrangement For Two Or More Voices, and Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocal, which I had no idea was a category but was probably created just for this awesome song).
Yes, the song was written by David Paich for Rosanna Arquette, even though he wasn’t the one dating her – that honor went to Steve Porcaro (not Steve Lukather, as has been erroneously reported for years). You didn’t think it as Bobby Kimball, did you? Have you seen the video?[youtube]CTafzJl-DTo[/youtube]
Kimball, by the way, looks like a thinner version of one of those "that guy" actors from sitcoms in the ’80s and ’90s, but I can’t figure out who the hell it is. Please, for the love of God, help me. Robert, I’m thinking this is your territory.
"Rosanna," of course, inspired one of the best of the Yacht Rock series. Check it out.
One other question for you guys: what is the low voice saying at 3:31?
2. Don’t You Want Me – Human League
Damn you, Human League, from keeping "Rosanna" from hitting #1! (And while we’re at it, damn you too, Survivor, for the same crime.) In researching Human League, I was intrigued to find out the following facts:
– "Don’t You Want Me" was a hit in 1982. I know this is relatively obvious, but it sounds like a later ’80s hit to me, just like "I Ran." ("It was ahead of its time," Mike recently said about "I Ran," at which point I hung up the phone);
– One member was purely responsible for "onstage slides and films";
– After the massive (and misogynistic?) success of "Don’t You Want Me," the band had a few other hits, but at one point, refused to promote a follow-up album because "we thought we were so popular we didn’t have to";
– Despite the odds being against them, came back with the hit song "Human" in 1986;
– Hey, we’ve performed this song! Mike sings lead, because obviously he wasn’t going to sing the female part. That honor, of course, goes to yours truly.
1. Ebony And Ivory – Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder
Shhhh! Maybe if we don’t talk about it, we can pretend it didn’t exist! Actually, I think I’m coming around the bend on this one: I’ve hated it for years, but now I want to perform it. I’ll be Stevie or Paul. It doesn’t matter to me.
Here’s the awkward video, featuring Stevie effectively humping a huge black piano key and multiple Paul McCartneys playing all the instruments. Seriously, how many times has Paul used this fucking convention in his videos?[youtube]sssqBjaTzOU[/youtube]
Wikipedia actually does have an interesting story about "Ebony And Ivory:"
The lyrics have long been thought to have been written by McCartney alone, but in a biography of McCartney written by Barry Miles it was revealed how Wonder contributed to the majority of the "bookends" or rhymes, and also came up with the song’s distinctive melody. McCartney claimed in the book that Wonder was afraid of how successful a tune with such a bold racial message would be if it was known that it had an African-American writer, and so pleaded for McCartney to take credit.
Hmm. That doesn’t sound like Stevie Wonder to me, but if it’s in print, it must be true.
Wouldja look at that? The end of another fun-filled week here on CHART ATTACK! Have a great weekend and see you soon! Thanks for reading!