Thursday, 1 November 2012

25 Years Ago This Week: November 1, 1987

I just completed my countdown of my favourite songs from 1987, and one of the artists who featured in my top 25 made his debut on the ARIA chart 25 years ago this week.

The pop star your mum approved of: Rick Astley

Yep, it's Rick Astley, who we'd be hearing a lot from in the subsequent 12 months. Aside from the arrival of Rick's future number 1 single, it was a pretty quiet week on the Australian chart, with only two other new entries in the top 50 and nothing else of note to talk about in the Breakers or Single Of The Week sections.

ARIA Top 50 Singles Chart - week ending November 1, 1987

Nevertheless, the three songs we do have to discuss are all reasonably interesting, so without further ado...

New entries
Number 50 "Rock On" by John Justin
Peak: number 50
I almost mentioned this song a few weeks ago when it popped up as a breaker, but then I checked and the cover of the David Essex hit (which had reached number 8 in Australia in 1973) did spend a solitary week in the top 50. A much bigger hit in his hometown of Melbourne, John's version put the rock into "Rock On", a song which was also covered by The Young & The Restless star Michael Damian in 1989. Michael's more traditional version, which was taken from the film Dream A Little Dream (and featured the Coreys - Haim and Feldman, of course - in the music video), reached the other end of the chart in the US, spending a single week at number 1 there.

Number 49 "Die Yuppie Die" by Painters & Dockers
Peak: number 49
If I thought it couldn't get worse than "Nude School", which we saw way back in my first ever blog post, then I was to be sadly mistaken. This cacophony of a song edged its way into the top 50, also spending just one week at this peak position. There are not many concepts more '80s than the yuppie, and this group, named after the shipyard union, clearly didn't like them. Embarrassingly, when I first read the song title at the time, I pronounced it as if it was in German (I'd just started studying the language that year at school, if that's any excuse). It took me ages to realise what the title was actually saying. Anyway, watch the clip if you dare - otherwise, let's move swiftly on.

Number 43 "Never Gonna Give You Up" by Rick Astley
Peak: number 1
Fresh from his five weeks on top of the UK charts, Rick was now taking his bright, young pop sound (well, that of producers Stock Aitken Waterman) around the world. Interestingly - and this is something I only read on another blog earlier this year - when the song first started rising up the British chart, it did not have a music video since Pete Waterman did not want to immediately dispel the assumption that the song's performer was a black soul artist and not a red-haired tea boy from the north of England. The clip, complete with Rick's hand movements and the backing dancer who runs up the wall, would be there from the start as the song commenced its trip to the top in Australia - and the track would go on to spend seven weeks at number 1 across the Christmas and New Year period.

Well, it was short and only partly sweet, but that's it for another week's look back at the Australian chart from 25 years ago. Next week, we have double the number of songs to talk about, including some much better Aussie rock and one of two songs by a big hair metal band to hit the charts in the dying weeks of the year.

Back to: Oct 25, 1987 <<<<<<<<<<<<<  GO  >>>>>>>>>>>>> Forward to: Nov 8, 1987

1 comment:

  1. When I clicked on that third video I got Rick Roll'd! ;P