Friday, March 06, 2015

Friday 80s Flashback for March 6, 2015

[This week in 1982] -- Earlier this year, I said I was going to use chart activity from 1981 and 1987 because their calendars are dead ringers for 2015. Unfortunately, chart activity is often slow to change. Top songs often hold onto their peak positions for multiple consecutive weeks. So, even though I've bounced between two years, and even take a few breaks to feature certain albums' release dates, I'm in a rut as to the top three songs at this point in both 1981 and 1987. I supposed I could just feature songs that aren't in the top three just yet, but then I might be robbing from my future posts. So, my other option is to just go with another year even though its dates won't line up exactly with 2015. A year like ... 1982. March 6 was a Saturday in 1982, and therefore a day when chart results were posted. What songs were topping the Billboard Hot 100 on that day? Read and hear more after the break! 

Flashback #1"So come an' take your time an' dance with me."

In November 1981, Joan Jett released her second studio album, I Love Rock 'n' Roll. The first Joan Jett album to feature her backing band, The Blackhearts, I Love Rock 'n' Roll is her most successful record to date. It has sold over 10 million copies and has been certified at least Platinum in both the US and Canada. And it was home to our first Flashback of the day: "I Love Rock 'n' Roll." Originally written and recorded by Arrows in 1975, "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" has been covered by several artists, but it is most associated with Joan Jett. Jett first recorded the song in 1979 and released it as a B-side. In 1981, she re-recorded it with her new band and released it as a single in January 1982. On March 6, it jumped from #9 to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. It would eventually peak at #1. It also reached #1 on the US Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks and #31 on the US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play charts. Jett's version of the song was likely boasted by its black-and-white music video which got heavy rotation on the fledgling MTV network.  

Flashback #2"Lying beside you, here in the dark | Feeling your heartbeat with mine."

We'll slow things down a bit for Flashback #2 which just happened to be the #2 song on the Billboard Hot 100 this week in 1982. In fact, #2 was its peak position, and it held onto it for six consecutive weeks (this being its second week in that position). It's also pretty much the model for the 80s power ballad: Journey's "Open Arms." It was released as the sixth single from the band's 1981 album, Escape (or E5C4P3). "Open Arms" hit the charts in January 1982 and spent a total of 18 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. And I'm pretty sure it was played every Friday night for slow dances at Youth Centers and school dances across the country for a few years after it left the charts. 

Flashback #3"Does she walk? Does she talk? Does she come complete? | My homeroom homeroom angel. Always pulled me from my seat."

At the dawn of the 80s, blues-ish rockers J. Geils Band moved away from their R&B influences and embraced a more pop-oriented sound. This change paid immediate dividends when their 12th studio album, Freeze Frame (1981), yielded the band's first number one hit which is our final Flashback of the day. This song, a possibly auto-biographical story of a man who is shocked when he learns that his high school crush was photographed for the pages of a men's magazine, peaked at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 that same year and spent three of its 25 weeks in that top position. It also reached #1 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart in 1982. A music video featuring an octet of dancing Molly Stewarts -- you know, female high schoolers -- probably helped the song's popularity. By the way, they really were students (of the girls' dance school on the floor above where the video was shot). Enjoy "Centerfold"!

Once again, I remind you that the rule of three applies when doing Flashbacks. As I've made my three offerings, that's all till next week. 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!

No comments: