80s Song of the Day: Take on Me by a-ha

In the “if at first you don’t succeed” category, Take on Me by a-ha was originally released on October 19, 1984, with And You Tell Me as the B side. But this was not the version – or the accompanying music video – that would become one of the most iconic of the 80s.

The original version peaked at No. 3 in a-ha’s native Norway but failed to achieve success elsewhere. Unhappy with the version, the band re-recorded the song with a new producer – Alan Tarney – and released it again in 1985, with Love Is Reason as the B side. Continue reading

80s Song of the Day: Tonight She Comes by The Cars

Tonight She Comes by The Cars was released on October 14, 1985, with Just What I Needed as the B side. It was a single from the band’s Greatest Hits album. Just What I Needed, which also appeared on the Greatest Hits album, was originally released on May 29, 1978 as the debut single from the band’s self-titled debut album.

Tonight She Comes was the first of two songs to be released as a single from the Greatest Hits album. The second was a remixed version of I’m Not the One, previously recorded for the 1981 album Shake It Up.

The Cars’ fourth Top 10 hit, Tonight She Comes reached No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock charts.

80s Song of the Day: You Keep Me Hangin’ On by Kim Wilde

You Keep Me Hangin’ On by Kim Wilde was released on October 13, 1986, with Loving You as the B side. A cover of the Supremes’ 1966 No. 1 hit, the song was the second single from the studio album Another Step and the first single from the album to be released worldwide.

The song was Wilde’s most successful song in the United States, reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was also a No. 1 hit in Canada and Australia. It reached No. 2 in Wilde’s native Britain.

80s Song of the Day: My Prerogative by Bobby Brown

My Prerogative by Bobby Brown was released October 11, 1988, with My Prerogative (Instrumental) as the B side. It was the second single from Brown’s second studio album Don’t Be Cruel.

The song reached No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts. An international success, it reached the Top 10 in several other countries, including Ireland, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. It was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best R&B Urban Contemporary Single.

80s Song of the Day: Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey

Workin’ hard to get my fill
Everybody wants a thrill
Payin’ anything to roll the dice
Just one more time

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Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey was released on October 6, 1981, with Natural Thing as the B side. It was a single from the band’s seventh studio album Escape.

The song reached No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and sold over a million copies in vinyl. It has re-entered the charts in recent years, notable in 2007 after its use in the last scene of the series finale of The Sopranos. In 2009, it reached No. 6 in the United Kingdom, after failing to break the Top 40 there on its original release. Continue reading

80s Song of the Day: Just Like Heaven by The Cure

And found myself alone, alone
Alone above a raging sea
That stole the only girl I loved
And drowned her deep inside of me

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Just Like Heaven by The Cure was released on October 5, 1987, as the third single from the album Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me. The songs Breathe and Snow in Summer were used as B sides for the 7″ singles.

Before Cure frontman Robert Smith had completed the lyrics, an instrumental version of the song was used as the theme for the French television show Les Enfants du Rock. Continue reading

80s Song of the Day: Out of Touch by Hall & Oates

Reaching out for something to hold
Looking for a love where the climate is cold
Manic moves and drowsy dreams
Or living in the middle between the two extremes

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Out of Touch by Hall & Oates was released on October 4, 1984, with Cold, Dark and Yesterday as the B side. It was the lead single from their album Big Bam Boom.

Out of Touch, Hall & Oates’ last Billboard Hot 100 No. 1, topped the chart for two weeks. It was the duo’s fourteenth consecutive top 40 hit since 1980. Continue reading