1985 – A Great Year For Music!

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Yesterday, I noted that Nancy Wilson and Cameron Crowe were separating after twenty years of marriage, and coupled my post with the Phil Collins song “Doesn’t Anybody Stay Together Anymore”. That song was featured on the HUGE PC album “No Jacket Required” which came out in 1985. Just by coincidence, I’m learning to play the guitar bits for “Why Worry” from Dire Straits “Brothers In Arms” album, which yes, also came out in 1985. So I started to wonder, what else came out in 1985. Well, I got to tell you, it’s a pretty damned good list. Here are the top albums of that year (personal faves are bold):

1 BORN IN THE U.S.A. – Bruce Springsteen (Columbia)
2 LIKE A VIRGIN – Madonna (Sire)
3 NO JACKET REQUIRED – Phil Collins (Atlantic)
4 SONGS FROM THE BIG CHAIR – Tears For Fears (Mercury)

5 MAKE IT BIG – Wham! (Columbia)
6 RECKLESS – Bryan Adams (A&M)
7 BROTHERS IN ARMS – Dire Straits (Warner Bros.)
8 AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY – Prince & The Revolution (Paisley Park)

9 PRIVATE DANCER – Tina Turner (Capitol)
10 CENTERFIELD – John Fogerty (Warner Bros.)
11 BEVERLY HILLS COP – Original Soundtrack (MCA)
14 AGENT PROVOCATEUR – Foreigner (Atlantic)
15 CHICAGO 17 (Warner Bros.)
16 DIAMOND LIFE – Sade (Portrait)
17 SCARECROW – John Cougar Mellencamp (Riva)
19 PURPLE RAIN – Prince & The Revolution (Warner Bros.)

20 WE ARE THE WORLD – USA For Africa (Columbia)

Look at the names in the first 20 alone – Sting, Dire Straits, Prince (twice), Madonna, Sade, Fogerty (who would get sued for sounding like himself), Power Station, Foreigner, Mellencamp (in the transition years while ditching the “Cougar” moniker), Chicago, Bryan Adams…. That’s a heavy first twenty!

21 HEART (Capitol)
22 THEATRE OF PAIN – Motley Crue (Elektra)
24 GREATEST HITS, VOLUME I & VOLUME II – Billy Joel (Columbia)
26 MIAMI VICE – Original Television Soundtrack (MCA)
27 IN SQUARE CIRCLE – Stevie Wonder (Tamla)
28 VALOTTE – Julian Lennon (Atlantic)
29 SHE’S SO UNUSUAL – Cyndi Lauper (Portrait)
30 LITTLE CREATURES – Talking Heads (Sire)

31 ARENA – Duran Duran (Capitol)
32 THE FIRM (Atlantic)
33 BE YOURSELF TONIGHT – The Eurythmics (RCA)
34 WHEELS ARE TURNIN’ – REO Speedwagon (Epic)
35 BIG BAM BOOM – Daryl Hall & John Oates (RCA)
36 THE NIGHT I FELL IN LOVE – Luther Vandross (Epic)
37 DREAM INTO ACTION – Howard Jones (Elektra)
38 VOLUME ONE – The Honeydrippers (Es Paranza)
39 HUNTING HIGH AND LOW – A-Ha (Warner Bros.)
40 SHE’S THE BOSS – Mick Jagger (Columbia)
41 SOUTHERN ACCENTS – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers (MCA)
42 VISION QUEST – Original Soundtrack (Geffen)
43 LOVIN’ EVERY MINUTE OF IT – Loverboy (Columbia)
44 CRAZY FROM THE HEAT – David Lee Roth (Warner Bros.)
45 WORLD WIDE LIVE – The Scorpions (Mercury)
46 CAN’T SLOW DOWN – Lionel Richie (Motown)
47 AFTERBURNER – ZZ Top (Warner Bros.)
48 ROCK ME TONIGHT – Freddie Jackson (Capitol)
49 BREAK OUT – The Pointer Sisters (Planet)

Missing from the top 50 list, but huge albums that need to be mentioned were Rush’s “Power Windows”, “REM’s “Fables Of The Reconstruction”, INXS “Listen Like Thieves”, Robert Palmer “Riptide” (featuring “Addicted to Love”), LL Cool J “Radio”,New Order “Low Life”, and “Welcome To The Real World” by Mr Mister. Pete Townsend released “White City”, Squeeze also put out “Cossi Fan Tutti Fruiti” that year. I know I’m leaving something out, but this post is going much longer than I had intended and you have to stop somewhere.

Here is a list of the songs. Yes, some of them are clunkers (“We Built This City” – Starship.. Horrible drek!.. it would be utterly forgettable… if they hadn’t played it to death and got it stuck in our heads like the mind controlling slugs from “Star Trek – Wrath Of Khan“!) or memorable in a bad way (Eddie Murphy, I’m looking your way… “Party All The Time”?????), but there were an awful lot of great tunes from that year:

“Careless Whisper”…..Wham!
“Money For Nothing”…..Dire Straits
“Broken Wings”…..Mr. Mister
“Everybody Wants To Rule The World”…..Tears for Fears
“The Power Of Love”…..Huey Lewis & The News
“Easy Lover”…..Phillip Bailey & Phil Collins
“Everytime You Go Away”…..Paul Young
“Don’t You (Forget About Me):…..Simple Minds
“Take On Me”…..a-ha
“One More Night”…..Phil Collins
“If You Love Somebody Set Them Free”…..Sting
Things Can Only Get Better”…..Howard Jones
“We Don’t Need Another Hero”…..Tina Turner
“We Belong”…..Pat Benatar
“Smooth Operator”…..Sade
“Run To You”…..Bryan Adams
“Obsession”…..Animotion (I’ve done a wee bit of work with Astrid Plain, who lives here in Fresno)
“Some Like It Hot”…..Power Station
“You Belong To The City”…..Glenn Frey
“Would I Lie To You?”…..Eurythmics
“Fortress Around Your Heart”…..Sting
“Born In The U.S.A.”…..Bruce Springsteen
“Voices Carry”…..’Til Tuesday
“California Girls”…..David Lee Roth
“Walking On Sunshine”…..Katrina & The Waves (wonderful happy tune)

A couple of fun instrumentals:

From Beverly Hills Cop – “Axel F”…..Harold Faltermeyer
From Miami Vice – “Miami Vice Theme”…..Jan Hammer

And you even had the strange “One Night In Bangkok” by Murray Head.

Yep. 1985 was a very good year in music!

Note: One interesting thing about that year in music – there was so much good music released, one album and artist after another, that no one song dominated the Billboard 100. Most were never on top for more than two weeks. It looks like the longest to stay number one, for four weeks, was a Lionel Ritchie song “Say You, Say Me”. It’s not a favorite mind you, but there it is. Here is a video compilation of the top songs of 1985.

2 Comments to “1985 – A Great Year For Music!”

  1. By Wesley M., September 24, 2010 @ 9:17 pm

    Of course, Nancy Wilson waits until I’m happily married to separate from Cameron Crowe. Oh well, at least I can still pop “Live at McCabe’s Guitar Shop” into the CD player yet again…

  2. By Sonicfrog, September 24, 2010 @ 9:22 pm

    Ha Ha! And my older bro is moving back to Texas from Washington where she lives. I guess he’ll miss out on the opportunity too!!!

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