Peeps’ Friday ’80s Flashbacks

It’s Friday and the traditional weekend is approaching.  I say that because my weekend, and vacation, started Wednesday.  Let’s flashback to the 1980s with three of my favorites.  One, you’ll definitely know, one will jog your memory, and one, you probably missed back then.

“Forever Your Girl” — Paula Abdul

Before she was a reality show loony bird, Paula Abdul was a choreographer for Janet Jackson and chart-topping pop star.  I remember buying her first 12″ dance single in 1988.  “Knocked Out” only made it #41 on the Billboard Hot 100, but it was a club hit.  The follow-up single only reached #88.  However, she became a household name with her third release from the album, “Forever Your Girl”.

“Straight Up” reached #1 on the Hot 100 and that started a run of eight consecutive Top Ten songs.  Of those eight, six reached #1 (In addition to “Straight Up”, there was “Forever Your Girl”, “Cold Hearted”, “Opposites Attract”, “Rush Rush”, and “The Promise of A New Day”.

Abdul’s last Top 40 hit on the Hot 100 was “My Love Is For Real” in 1995.  It reached #28.  Paula would go one to have 11 Top 40 hits with 8 of those hitting the Top Ten.

My selection today is the title track for her first album that reached the top of the charts in 1989.  It spent two weeks at #1 and the video was directed by David Fincher and starred a very young Elijah Wood and Trevor Wright, who went on to star in one of my favorite movies, “Shelter”.


“Ain’t Even Done With The Night” — John Cougar

This Indiana rocker hit the music scene with the name John Cougar and Johnny Cougar, but as he became a star, he changed it to John Cougar Mellencamp, and eventually, in 1991, he took back his real name and dropped the Cougar from his act.

I saw him in concert in the 1980s in Carbondale, Illinois, and he was fantastic.

John, as a I’ll call him today, had a total of 22 Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100.  His first hit, “I Need A Lover” peaked at #28 in 1979 and he scored his last hit in 1996 with “Key West Intermezzo” and I admit by that time I was only listening to dance and country, so I don’t remember that one.

However, he hit it big in 1982 with his album, “American Fool” and the first two releases, the #2 “Hurts So Good” and the #1 smash, “Jack & Diane”.  That would be his only #1 song.

My selection today is a song that only reached #17 in 1981, but I still love “Ain’t Even Done With the Night” and it helped me transition over to pop music from country.  The album title, “Nothin’ Matters and What If It Did” is awesome!  (And, look at that baby face and he was 28!)

“Chain Reaction”  — Diana Ross

Diana Ross is one of the most successful artists in the history of music.  As a solo artist and as a member of  The Supremes, she hit the Top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100 a total of 52 times.  Of those hits, 30 hit the Top Ten, and she has a total of 18 #1 songs.

Her first hit with The Supremes was in 1963 and the last #1 was “Someday We’ll Be Together”.  As a solo artist, her first release reached #20 on the Billboard Hot 100.

However, her second solo hit, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” would become the first of six solo #1 songs.  That would be followed by “Touch Me In The Morning”, “Theme from Mahogany”, “Love Hangover”, “Upside Down”, and Endless Love” with Lionel Richie.

As a solo artist, Diana had 27  Top 40 songs and 12 of those reached the Top Ten.

My selection today, “Chain Reaction” is my favorite Diana Ross song.  It was a huge failure in the U.S.  It only reached #66 in two chart tries on the Billboard Hot 100, although it did reach #7 on the Billboard Dance Chart.  Bit, it did top the charts in the U.K. and Australia.

Have a great weekend!


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