Friday, February 07, 2014

Friday 80s Flashback for February 7, 2014

[Magic] -- As I am visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, I figured magic -- or songs about magic -- was a good theme for this week's flashback. Now, as there was no Harry Potter back in the 80s, none of these songs are about him or his movie franchise. These songs either have magic in the title, or they refer to something as being magical. What made the sorcerous cut this week? You can read and hear more after the break. 

Flashback #1"You know darned well when you cast your spell | You will get your way when you hypnotize with your eyes | A heart of stone can turn to clay."

Folk rock duo, America, recorded "You Can Do Magic" for their 1982 album, View from the Ground. The duo's 10th studio album, View was something of a comeback for a band whose chart presence had dwindled over a period of five years. The video for "You Can Do Magic" features a five piece playing the song and some close up card tricks, so all the magic had to be performed by the song itself. And it worked: "You Can Do Magic" hit #8 on the Billboard singles chart and #5 on the Adult Contemporary chart. I still love this song, but then I'm a sucker for nonsense lyrics like "Doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo. Doo, doo, doo, doo, doo."

Flashback #2"I heat up, I can't cool down | You got me spinnin'  |  'Round and 'round."

In 1982, Steve Miller released his 12th studio album, Abracadabra. The album charted in the top 10 for at least seven countries including the U.S. The album's title track was the first single, and it was a worldwide hit. Also, the hairstyles featured in this video popular in my hometown from 1972 through 2002.  

Flashback #3"I see you under the midnight | Love darts in your eyes | How far can you take it
Til you realize | There's magic in your eyes."

The Cars released five albums, one album per year, from 1978 to 1982. Following the 1982 tour, the band took a break to pursue solo projects. They reunited two years later for their most successful album: Heartbeat City (1984). This album yielded five American Top 40 singles, including the rather magical "Magic," the second single released May 7. 1984. Magic peaked at #12 on the Bilboard Hot 100 and #1 on Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks. The video was shot at the Hilton family house in Beverly Hills and it features a number of outlandish characters and seemingly "magical" feats such as Ric Ocasik walking on water (across the swimming pool). 

Bonus Flashback"Take my hand, walk with me | Love you do will always be."

What's that? A bonus flashback this week? Well, as I missed posting last week, I figured all you 80s-philes deserved a bonus. Now, if you've heard of Mick Smiley, you might know he performed bass with Billy Idol and penned the Lita Ford hit, “Kiss me deadly.” However, he also wrote and recorded a solo record, "Magic." And a version of that song was used in the Ghostbusters movie. The soundtrack version is shorter and primarily instrumental, so you really should give the original a listen. It's a true gem and a classic. 

That's all until next time. Dedicated 80s-philes can find more flashbacks in the archives. As always, your comments are welcome on today's, or any other, flashback post. And if you like what I'm doing here, please share the link with your friends. If, however, you don't like the flashback, feel free to share it with your enemies.

And if you are on Twitter, and feel so inclined, please +K my influence in Music on @klout.

I'll see you in seven!

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