Tag Archives: Laura Branigan

Top 40 Songs This Week: August 27, 1983 – Songs 30-21

Welcome back to this weeks Top 40 Countdown! If you missed the first 10 songs, you can go back and check them out. At the time of this countdown, I was about to enter my teen years. My 13th birthday was less than a week away. I would get my very own little black & white TV. It didn’t matter that I did not have cable on it. It was my very own TV, and I loved it.

What were you doing at this time in 1983? Now let’s Return to the week ending August 27, 1983, and continue the countdown.

[If you’d like to see the YouTube video of the song, you can click on the song title. If you’d like to purchase or listen to the song on Amazon, you can click on the album cover]


30. “Far From Over” by Frank Stallone

Oh, hell yeah! Great way to start today’s countdown! If I thought there were a such thing as a guilty pleasure, this would be one of mine. This is also one of many cases where a song from a movie was better than the movie itself. See, even in the ’80s we had crappy remakes and sequels. It’s not a new thing. The difference is that today’s movies don’t have awesome music like this!

29. “Dead Giveaway” by Shalamar


Before Shalamar went “Dancing in the Sheets” with Footloose, they had a hit with this song from their album, The Look, which was the last one to feature Jody Watley as part of the group.

28. “(She’s) Sexy + 17” by The Stray Cats


27. “How Am I Supposed To Live Without You” by Laura Branigan


I love Laura Branigan. She has a beautiful voice, and she was beautiful, period. I was so sad when she died in 2004. But, every time I hear this song, all that comes to mind is somebody coming to our school, before prom season, to explain the dangers of drunk driving. The speaker was talking about how his brother died in a drunk driving accident, and this song played for us. It was so sad, it made me want to drink.

26. “Making Love Out of Nothing At All” by Air Supply


A lot of Air Supply songs sound the same to me. There’s nothing wrong with that. But, there are some exceptions and this is one of them. And there is a good reason for this. It was written by Jim Steinman. Steinman wrote all of Meat Loaf’s biggest hits. There is another non-Meat Loaf Jim Steinman song coming up on this week’s countdown. And I love that one too. “Making Love Out of Nothing At All” is one of those ballads that I never got sick of.

25. “Rock of Ages” by Def Leppard


Gunter glieben glauchen globen
And so began my love affair of rock music. And I have not looked back since. Def Leppard was a great band from the beginning, and they just kept getting better and better. They are still incredible in concert, and even released new studio album a couple of years ago. And unlike a certain contemporary of theirs who still puts out albums, and who shall remain nameless, Def Leppard can still rock your face off!

24. “Promises, Promises” by Naked Eyes


We can’t have an early ’80s countdown without a British New Wave band! This was Naked Eyes’ second hit, reaching up to #11.

23. “After the Fall” by Journey


Very underrated Journey song, off of the Frontiers album. I don’t even remember seeing this video on MTV.

22. “Flashdance…What A Feeling” by Irene Cara


One of my crushes! I love Irene Cara! She has several other great songs besides this and “Fame”. But, both “Flashdance…What A Feeling” and “Fame” still get me pumped up.

21. “Human Touch” by Rick Springfield


This is my favorite Rick Springfield song. My mom had the Living in Oz album (on vinyl of course), and I always listened to this song. Great way to finish things today!


That wraps up today’s list of songs. This is an awesome week of great music! Come back tomorrow as we check out the next 10 songs.

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Top 40 Songs This Week – September 25, 1982: Songs 30-21

Hi Everybody! Welcome back to this week’s Top 40 Countdown. Today, we will cover songs 30-21. If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31.
Ah, 1982! What a great time for music! These 10 songs alone have such diversity that we definitely don’t see in today’s countdowns, and may never see again. Today, there is some rock, country, pop, funk, R&B, and flat-out classic ’80s.
Now, let’s Return to the week ending September 25, 1982, and continue the countdown.

30. “Make Believe” by Toto

Make Believe by TotoThis was the second single from the multi-platinum album Toto IV, which also contained the smash hits “Africa” and “Rosanna“. There are a few different theories of where the band name originated. In the early ’80s, band members told the press that the band was named after the dog in The Wizard of Oz. There was also a joke that the name came from Bobby Kimball’s “true” last name, Toteaux. The last theory is that after the completion of the first album, the band and record were still unnamed. David Hungate, after seeing the name Toto on the demo tapes (which Jeff Porcaro wrote in order to distinguish their own demo tapes from other bands’ in the studio), explained to the group that the words “In Toto” in Latin translated to “all-encompassing.” Because the band members played on so many different records and many different musical genres, they adopted the name “Toto” as their own.

29. “Voyeur” by Kim Carnes

The title track from Kim Carnes’ 1982 album received a nomination for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance at the 1983 Grammy Awards. To me, this sounds a lot like Carnes’ smash hit, “Bette Davis Eyes“.

28. “Never Been in Love” by Randy Meisner

Randy Meisner was a founding member of the Eagles, who sang backup on “Take It to the Limit“.

27. “Break It To Me Gently” by Juice Newton

indexNow, we’ll get to some country music. If a country song were to enter the Top 40 today, it would be a re-recorded pop version of the original version. But, back in the good ole days, the songs made it on the countdown in its original version. This song earned Juice Newton the Grammy Award for Best Country Vocal Performance, Female.

26. “Gloria” by Laura Branigan

This smash hit by Laura Branigan, which I still love, is actually a cover. The original version was an international hit, performed in Italian, by Umberto Tozzi. I’m actually digging his version as well!

25. “Jump To It” by Aretha Franklin

This fun song was produced by Luther Vandross, and features Vandross and Cissy Houston (yes, Whitney’s mom) on backing vocals.

24. “Big Fun” by Kool and the Gang

Time to get funky! I love the horns and the vocals and harmonies in this song.

23. “Hot in the City” by Billy Idol

This song peaked right here at #23. But, if you remember this song from later in the decade, you are either from the U.K., where this song was re-released in 1987, or you are one of the few people that watched the 21 Jump Street spinoff, Booker. This song was the theme song for Booker, which was supposed to launch Richard Grieco into super-stardom. Oh well. We’ll always have If Looks Could Kill anyway.

22. “What’s Forever For” by Michael Martin Murphey

And now we go back to Country music. This song was Murphey’s first of two number ones on the country chart.

21. “I Ran (So Far Away) by A Flock Of Seagulls

Today, we close out with some classic ’80s New Wave. I was never really much of a New Wave fan back then. However, I am embracing it now. Unfortunately, now that I’m older, I don’t think I can quite pull of the Mike Score hairdo from back in the day:


Well, that wraps up today’s list of songs. We’ll continue the countdown tomorrow. Have you had any favorite songs, pleasant surprises, or “I never want to hear that song again” moments? Please let me know.

One Hit Wonders: After the Fire

Der Kommissar by After the Fire

by Robert Mishou

In 1981, I had just moved to Frankfurt, Germany and, at first, my radio was my best friend. There was one American radio station who played Casey Kasem’s American Top 40 every Sunday from 2-6 in the afternoon. I listened to that show religiously, but also experimented with some German radio stations. During one of these forays, I heard a song with one of the coolest guitar riffs I had heard. The song was completely in German so I could not understand a word, but I did pick up on the artist: Falco. Fast forward to 1983 and I hear that guitar riff again, only this time I could understand the lyrics. After the Fire covered (and translated) Falco’s song and hit #5 on the AT 40 with “Der Kommissar.” My wife, who is a high school German and Spanish teacher, tells me that the translations is not bad, understanding that they had to change things to have it make sense in English. A ‘kommissar’ is a police chief or government officer and in this song he is on the trail of a couple who is constantly trying to escape his notice. The lyric that remains in German, “Alles klar, Herr Kommissar?” is translated into “Everything OK, officer?” They know he is chasing them and they are feigning innocence. When you watch the video look for the waiter – that’s Falco! This song has legs. Not only is it recorded in German by Falco and in an English translation by After the Fire, but the music is also used by Laura Branigan in her song “Deep in the Dark” (yes, I am a closet Branigan fan). Of course, we all know that Falco will have his own hit “<a href="http://” target=”_blank”>Rock Me Amadeus” in just a few years – can I count him as a One Hit Wonder for that song? I am including links to Falco’s German version, After the Fire’s English version, and Branigan’s song that uses the music.

After the Fire

Falco

Laura Branigan

Top 40 Songs This Week – May 28, 1983: Songs 10-1

Welcome back as we continue the countdown! If you missed the previous articles, you can check out songs 40-31, 30-21, and 20-11. Well, this has been an incredible week of music – especially the previous 10 songs. And now we have reached the top 10, which has some more classic music I think you’ll enjoy. So, let’s Return to the week ending May 28, 1983, and find out what were the biggest hits that week.

10. “Straight From the Heart” by Bryan Adams

This is a great way to start the Top 10! Bryan Adams’ big breakthrough single is still one of my favorites by him.

9. “My Love” by Lionel Richie

This awesome ballad was the third single released off Richie’s self-titled debut solo album. Kenny Rogers also provided backing vocals on this track.

8. “Time (Clock Of the Heart)” by Culture Club

Next up is another song from a debut album of an ’80s powerhouse. This song was the second single released from Culture Club’s Kissing to Be Clever album (after “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me“). This song is one of my favorite Culture Club songs.

7. “Solitaire” by Laura Branigan

Easily my favorite Branigan tune! I love all her music, but this is #1 for me. What an incredible talent she was. I was so upset when she died on August 26, 2004. This song was the lead single from the Branigan 2 album. This debuted on the charts the same week her breakthrough hit, “Gloria“, dropped off the charts.

6. “Little Red Corvette” by Prince

And the hits keep on rolling! This single off of Prince’s 1999 album was his first to break the top 10. This is one of my favorite Prince songs.

5. “She Blinded Me With Science” by Thomas Dolby

Once again, we have another classic ’80s tune. This was Thomas Dolby’s only top 40 hit in the U.S. It peaked right here at #5. One more thing before we move on to the next song. Science!

4. “Overkill” by Men At Work

Men At Work were extremely hot in the early ’80s. This was in the heart of their big run. The second single from their second album, Cargo, would peak at #3.

3. “Beat It” by Michael Jackson

I think everybody here may have possibly heard of this song, maybe. We all know that Eddie Van Halen famously plays the guitar solo here. But, you may not know this fun fact: there were a few members of Toto who played on this song – Steve Lukather (guitar, bass guitar), Steve Porcaro (synthesizer), and Jeff Porcaro (drums).


Now it’s the part of the countdown where we see what was topping the other charts this week:

Topping the Country charts was the legendary Merle Haggard with “You Take Me For Granted”

The #1 Rock song was “She’s a Beauty” by The Tubes

The best R&B song was “Save the Overtime (For Me)” by Gladys Knight and the Pips

The #1 Adult Contemporary song was “My Love” by Lionel Richie

The #1 album was (yep, you guessed it) Thriller

And the #1 Dance song is also our #2 song

2. “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie

This song was my introduction to David Bowie. Bowie has always reinvented himself. This was during his pop period. I liked this song a lot, and there are so many great songs on the Let’s Dance album, that I like even more.

1. “Flashdance…What a Feeling” by Irene Cara

We have now arrived at the #1 song this week. And what a way to end! My big ’80s crush – Irene Cara. This is her signature song, but she has so many other great ones that get overlooked. I love her voice and music. Even though this song gets all the airplay, I still love it.


Well that wraps up this week’s countdown. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I have. I’m going to try to keep this going next week by Returning to the year that The Empire Strikes Back came out. Then the following week – the week the new Star Wars movie is coming out – we are going to Return to (yes we’re going there) 1977! So, that’s something to look forward to. In the meantime, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

Top 40 Songs This Week – June 18, 1983: Songs 40-31


Hey Gang! Welcome to a new week of some Top 40 music! This week we will be checking out a Top 40 from 1983. At this time in 1983, I was just finishing up 7th grade, and getting ready for my last year of junior high school. A month from now, I would be going on one of my best childhood vacations. We went to Colorado to go see my grandparents for their 50th anniversary. That side of my family is scattered all over the country, so it’s always a great time when we all get together. We stayed with my aunt and uncle and 2 cousins. We had a blast! In addition to visiting my grandparents, we took several day trips, and hung out at a pool with a giant diving board. In between, when we were hanging out at the house, if Rocky III wasn’t on, then it was Six Pack, or The Who’s “final” concert. Those three shows seemed to be in heavy rotation on HBO at that time. We were constantly quoting Rocky III. Then the main event of the trip was my grandparents’ 50th anniversary party. All of my aunts and uncles, and most of my cousins were there, and it’s a time that I will always remember fondly.
As far as the music goes, that last remnants of ’70s music was gone, and we were beginning to start the classic ’80s sound. So, I personally think this is going to be a fun week of music. Now, let’s Return to the week ending June 18, 1983, and begin the countdown.

40. “No Time For Talk” by Christopher Cross

I did not remember this song at all. But, there is no mistaking which decade this song is from. The keyboards at the beginning, and a sax solo in the middle give it that classic ’80s sound.
Christopher Cross had an incredible debut in 1980. He followed that up with 1983’s Another Page. That album included his smash hit “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)“. It also had the song, “Think of Laura“, which was for the daytime soap opera General Hospital. I really enjoyed this song, “No Time for Talk”. It was a pleasant surprise for me, and a great way to begin the countdown.

39. “1999” by Prince

I’m so glad I’ve been able to finally find some Prince videos! This isn’t on YouTube, and it’s a little slower to load, but it’s worth it! I really enjoy Prince’s early work. This song was originally released in 1982. But, it did not crack the top 40. Then after “Little Red Corvette” came out, he gained many fans. So, “1999” was re-released and finally became a big hit, peaking at #12.

38. “The Closer You Get” by Alabama

Alabama was my gateway into country music. Throughout the ’80s, I hated country music – with the exceptions of Alabama and Kenny Rogers, and maybe a handful of songs. When I was in the Navy, almost everybody seemed to be a country music fan. It drove me crazy, and everybody was trying to get me to like it. But, we did find some common ground in the form of Alabama. The music is great, and their harmonies are just incredible. I eventually became a country music fan in the ’90s when rock and pop music were really sucking.
In the country music world, it seems like every song Alabama released became a number hit. “The Closer You Get” was no exception. I still like this one a lot.

37. “Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)” by The Eurythmics

I do like The Eurythmics, but I did get sick of this song. It was always on MTV in those early days. This is not one of my favorites by them, but it is one of their signature songs.

36. “Stand Back” by Stevie Nicks

This was the first time I had seen Stevie Nicks, and I’ve been hooked ever since! Stevie Nicks was hugely successful with Fleetwood Mac, and helped send them into the stratosphere of success. But, she has had just as successful solo career. In the early days of MTV, this is one of the songs that helped launch that career.

35. “Don’t Pay the Ferryman” by Chris DeBurgh

download This is the second surprise of the day. Due to his smash hit, “Lady in Red“, I always that of Chris DeBurgh as an easy listening/lite rock staple. But, this song rocks! I mean there’s no confusing this with Metallica, but this song still rocks pretty good.

34. “She Works Hard for the Money” by Donna Summer

Donna Summer stepped away from disco, and released this MTV staple which would become one of her signature songs.

33. “Roll Me Away” by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band

This is really good soulful song by Bob Seger. And one thing it has going for it is that it’s not the heavily overplayed “Old Time Rock and Roll” or “Like a Rock.”

32. “Is There Something I Should Know” by Duran Duran

Fans of the podcast, Stuck in the ’80s, are very familiar with this song as it is the theme for their PPTMN segment (Please Please Tell Me Now). “Is There Something I Should Know?” was Duran Duran’s first #1 hit in the U.K. It was also a big hit in the U.S., peaking at #4. Duran Duran is just a flat-out classic ’80s band. And this song has that classic, unique Duran Duran ’80s sound.

31. “Solitaire” by Laura Branigan

I cannot give Laura Branigan enough praise. I love all of her music, and she has an incredible voice. I think she is so underrated. This song was always one of my favorites by her. This song was the follow-up to “Gloria“, and became Branigan’s second consecutive Top Ten hit. I love these songs that start off low, and build up as the song goes on until the singer is really belting it out. It is done so well in this song.


Well, that wraps up today’s list of songs. What do you think so far? Where were you at this time in 1983?
We’ll be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.

Remember That Song – 5/7/13

Can you name the artist and song:

Your mama can’t solve your problems
When’s daddy ever gonna get home
So you did your little move and cried
In the middle of a suicide


Last Song: “I Found Someone” by Laura Branigan and Cher

Great job Jim and @Queenofthe80s!!

Like your words that once rang true
Just like the love I thought I found in you
And I remember the thunder
Talkin’ ’bout that Fire in your eyes

Remember That Song: 12/10/12

Can you name the artist and song:

I could feel at the time
There was no way of knowing
Fallen leaves in the night
Who can say where they’re blowing


Last Song: “Solitaire” by Laura Branigan:

You knew I loved you knew I always would be there
You just did what you wanted you didn’t care

Remember That Song: 12/7/12

Can you name the artist and song:

You knew I loved you knew I always would be there
You just did what you wanted you didn’t care


Last Song: “Sometimes a Fantasy” by Billy Joel

Great job J-Dub (@Dubsism)!

I didn’t want to do it but I got too lonely
I had to call you up in the middle of the night

Remember That Song? – 12/20/11

Can you name the artist and song:

He wasn’t looking for a pretty face
She wasn’t searching for the latest style
He didn’t want someone who walked straight off the TV
She needed someone with an interior smile


If everybody wants you
Why isn’t anybody calling?
You don’t have to answer
Leave them hanging on the line