Tuesday, 30 October 2012

The Best Of 1987 - part 4

JUMP TO: 100-76 II 75-51 II 50-26 II 25-1


I've written about producers Stock Aitken Waterman on a number of occasions already, but 1987 really was the year they took over the charts - not only in the UK, but here in Australia as well. Many of my favourite songs from 1987 were produced by the trio and although I haven't been talking about most of them on this rundown (but linking instead to where I've previously covered the songs), they really did monopolise music.

Rick Astley danced his way to the top of charts around the world in 1987

Key to their success around the world in 1987 was a little record by the name of "Never Gonna Give You Up", which all these years later is still providing the producers and singer Rick Astley with a tidy income - and needless to say, the song appears in my top 25 favourite songs from the year. So, let's get on with the countdown...


Number 25 "The Slightest Touch" by Five Star
With another of their many singles from 1987, it's the criminally overlooked (in this country, anyway) Five Star. My favourite song of theirs, "The Slightest Touch", was remixed from the SIlk & Steel album, and shot to number 4 in the UK, where it would be their final top 10 hit. The siblings' career slowly dwindled until the start of the '90s - and ever since they've staged various comeback attempts and retro festival appearances.




Number 24 "A Trick Of The Night" by Bananarama
Bananarama aren't known for their slow songs, but this single - the final released from the True Confessions album - is among their best. Coming after "Venus" and "More Than Physical" and before the WOW! album, it was their only non-SAW-produced effort in the second half of the decade - but the track did receive a remix by the Hit Factory, which was basically a mash-up of this song and Princess' "Say I'm Your Number One".




Number 23 "I Heard A Rumour" by Bananarama
Previously featured here

Number 22 "Heartache" by Pepsi & Shirlie
Previously featured here

Number 21 "Heart And Soul" by T'Pau
Previously featured here

Number 20 "You Win Again" by Bee Gees
Previously featured here

Number 19 "Get Ready" by Carol Hitchcock
Previously featured here

Number 18 "Say It" by Kids In The Kitchen
Previously featured here

Number 17 "Shake Your Love" by Debbie Gibson
With her second single, Debbie would score another US top 5 hit, her first UK top 10 single and break into the Australian charts in 1988. Even bigger achievements were to come, with the teen star becoming the youngest artist ever to write, produce and perform a US chart-topper when fourth single "Foolish Beat" reached number 1 on the Billboard chart.




Number 16 "Sweet Little Mystery" by Wet Wet Wet
It took me a couple of singles to get into Wet Wet Wet, since I liked (but didn't love) their debut song, "Wishing I Was Lucky" - however, there was no denying the catchiness of this follow-up, which became a favourite of mine when it finally saw the light of day in Australia. Forever now associated with (and, by some, hated for) 1994 mega-hit "Love Is All Around", Wet Wet Wet's best songs came from the period of 1987 to 1992, long before the Four Weddings And A Funeral theme tune came around.




Number 15 "I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)" by George Michael / Aretha Franklin
Bridging the gap from Wham! to Faith, George teamed up with the Queen of Soul for this worldwide smash. Back in 1987, a duet like this was big news - unlike today, when collaborations are the rule rather than the exception. I also seem to remember it being reported that George had to travel to Aretha to shoot the music video since she has a fear of flying. While the song (co-written by one half of Climie Fisher) was another number 1 for George, it also continued the string of hits Aretha had been enjoying since her return to success in the mid-'80s with "Freeway Of Love".




Number 14 "Never Can Say Goodbye" by The Communards
Since "Don't Leave Me This Way" had been such a massive success, it made sense for Jimmy Somerville and Richard Coles to record another high-energy cover version - and they chose this song, previously recorded by The Jackson 5 and Gloria Gaynor. While it did the trick (reaching number 4 in the UK and number 13 in Australia), it also highlighted that the duo's original songs weren't performing anywhere near as well, and the group went their separate ways in 1988, with Jimmy going on to a solo career.




Number 13 "Revolution Love" by Kids In The Kitchen
The second of two tracks in my top 20 for the year by the Aussie band, "Revolution Love" came out as the third single from Terrain in December 1987 but would only limp to number 44 nationally. It was a shame to see a band who'd had a pretty good run with their debut album struggle second time round. The video version of the song (which I assume is also the 7" mix) is different from the album version I have - and I hold out hope that it will one day turn up on iTunes.




Number 12 "Never Gonna Give You Up" by Rick Astley
Here it is: the song that launched Rick Astley's very successful - albeit relatively brief - career. It's also a song that has gained a new lease of life in the last few years thanks to YouTube and "Rickrolling". I'm going to see Rick when he tours Australia in a matter of weeks and I'm looking forward to hearing this performed live. I've got my fingers crossed that he'll a) perform it faithfully and not try to strip it back or turn it into a ballad, and b) do his little shuffling dance from the music video.




Number 11 "La Isla Bonita" by Madonna
Previously featured here

Number 10 "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)" by Whitney Houston
Previously featured here

Number 9 "Love In The First Degree" by Bananarama
My favourite song from the 'Rams for the year, "Love In The First Degree" would also be the last song the original trio would perform live together - with Siobhan leaving the group shortly after their appearance at the BRIT Awards in 1988. The video - and BRITs performance - was pure camp, and Siobhan, seeking a more serious direction, decided to move on from the group. Although Bananarama went on to enjoy more hits (including my all-time favourite song of theirs) and still tour today as a duo, the group was never the same again.




Number 8 "(I've Had) The Time Of My Life" by Bill Medley / Jennifer Warnes
It would be the biggest-selling single of the year in Australia in 1988, but I grabbed my 7" single of the theme from Dirty Dancing as soon as it was released in November 1987. I also saw the film by myself while my family was on holidays in Nelson Bay that summer since my older sisters weren't interested in seeing it. That's just the way I rolled. Buying 7" singles was something I'd only recently started doing since up until that point I'd only ever bought albums. "(I've Had) The Time..." wasn't my very first 7" purchase, though - that song is still to come!




Number 7 "Heaven Is A Place On Earth" by Belinda Carlisle
Proving that her solo success was no one-off, the former Go-Go stormed back with this lead track from her second album - and it would go to number one all over the world, except in Australia, where it would stall at number 2 in early 1988. Released in the dying weeks of 1987, "Heaven Is A Place On Earth" would also be the first of a consistent run of hits for Belinda until 1991. I don't know if I'm making this up (although this site would suggest I'm not), but at the time I seem to remember there being some discussion around this song's intro sounding an awful lot like the opening to Bon Jovi's "You Give Love A Bad Name" - and, as you'd expect, mash-ups of the two tracks can now be found online.




Number 6 "True Faith" by New Order
Previously featured here

Number 5 "Bridge To Your Heart" by Wax
Here we are: the last song I'll talk about on this countdown and the first song I ever bought on 7" single. I'm quite pleased that my first single purchase was a relatively interesting one. Sure, "Bridge To Your Heart" was a hit in Australia (reaching number 17), but it's not like I bought "He's Gonna Step On You Again" or something, so I'm quite proud of my taste as a 12 year old. Wax were Andrew Gold and Graham Gouldman, and they'd previously released another song I liked, "Right Between The Eyes", in 1986 - but the "Oh-oh-oh" refrain of "Bridge To Your Heart" made this a must-have record for me. Sometimes it's the simplest things that are the most effective!




Number 4 "Respectable" by Mel & Kim
Previously featured here

Number 3 "Always On My Mind" by Pet Shop Boys
Previously featured here

Number 2 "It's A Sin" by Pet Shop Boys
Previously featured here and here

Number 1 "Locomotion" by Kylie Minogue
Previously featured here and here


My top 200 for 1987 in full:

1
LOCOMOTION Kylie Minogue
2
IT'S A SIN Pet Shop Boys
3
ALWAYS ON MY MIND Pet Shop Boys
4
RESPECTABLE Mel & Kim
5
BRIDGE TO YOUR HEART Wax
6
TRUE FAITH New Order
7
HEAVEN IS A PLACE ON EARTH Belinda Carlisle
8
(I'VE HAD) THE TIME OF MY LIFE Bill Medley / Jennifer Warnes
9
LOVE IN THE FIRST DEGREE Bananarama
10
I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY (WHO LOVES ME) Whitney Houston
11
LA ISLA BONITA Madonna
12
NEVER GONNA GIVE YOU UP Rick Astley
13
REVOLUTION LOVE Kids In The Kitchen
14
NEVER CAN SAY GOODBYE The Communards
15
I KNEW YOU WERE WAITING (FOR ME) Aretha Franklin / George Michael
16
SWEET LITTLE MYSTERY Wet Wet Wet
17
SHAKE YOUR LOVE Debbie Gibson
18
SAY IT Kids In The Kitchen
19
GET READY Carol Hitchcock
20
YOU WIN AGAIN Bee Gees
21
HEART AND SOUL T'Pau
22
HEARTACHE Pepsi & Shirlie
23
I HEARD A RUMOUR Bananarama
24
A TRICK OF THE NIGHT / STOCK AITKEN WATERMAN MIX Bananarama
25
THE SLIGHTEST TOUCH Five Star
26
ONLY IN MY DREAMS Debbie Gibson
27
POSITIVE REACTION Mandy
28
WHO'S THAT GIRL Madonna
29
F.L.M. Mel & Kim
30
BOOM BOOM (LET'S GO BACK TO MY ROOM) Paul Lekakis
31
GTO Sinitta
32
WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DESERVE THIS Pet Shop Boys / Dusty Springfield
33
FAITH George Michael
34
ELECTRIC BLUE Icehouse
35
LET'S GO Wang Chung
36
TOY BOY Sinitta
37
THE WAY YOU MAKE ME FEEL Michael Jackson
38
LOVE AND DEVOTION Michael Bow
39
SO EMOTIONAL Whitney Houston
40
ALONE Heart
41
SUDDENLY Angry Anderson
42
NOTHING'S GONNA STOP US NOW Starship
43
FLAMES OF PARADISE Jennifer Rush & Elton John
44
SLICE OF HEAVEN Dave Dobbyn with The Herbs
45
I THINK WE'RE ALONE NOW Tiffany
46
LIVIN’ ON A PRAYER Bon Jovi
47
RIGHT ON TRACK Breakfast Club
48
DOWN TO EARTH Curiosity Killed The Cat
49
CALL ME Spagna
50
RUNNING IN THE FAMILY Level 42
51
JUST LIKE HEAVEN The Cure
52
WE CONNECT Stacey Q
53
I JUST CAN'T STOP LOVING YOU Michael Jackson / Siedah Garrett
54
NOTHING'S GONNA STOP ME NOW Samantha Fox
55
SHATTERED DREAMS Johnny Hates Jazz
56
NEVER LET ME DOWN AGAIN Depeche Mode
57
SOMETHING IN MY HOUSE Dead Or Alive
58
THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS a-ha
59
CRITICIZE Alexander O'Neal
60
SHATTERED GLASS Laura Branigan
61
WHY CAN'T I BE YOU? The Cure
62
I WANT YOUR SEX George Michael
63
LEAN ON ME Club Nouveau
64
FASCINATED Company B
65
LOOKING FOR A NEW LOVE Jody Watley
66
MISFIT Curiosity Killed The Cat
67
HER CHARITY Boom Crash Opera
68
HYMN TO HER The Pretenders
69
IF YOU LET ME STAY Terence Trent D'Arby
70
ONE AND ONE (AIN'T I GOOD ENOUGH) Wa Wa Nee
71
HOLD ON Models
72
CAUSING A COMMOTION Madonna
73
SOMEWHERE OUT THERE Linda Ronstadt / James Ingram
74
SAY YOU WILL Foreigner
75
DON'T SHED A TEAR Paul Carrack
76
I SURRENDER (TO THE SPIRIT OF THE NIGHT) Samantha Fox
77
SPOTLIGHT Madonna
78
NEW GROOVE Rockmelons
79
WALKING DOWN YOUR STREET The Bangles
80
YOU I KNOW Jenny Morris
81
DO TO YOU Machinations
82
CRAZY Icehouse
83
MIND OVER MATTER (STOCK AITKEN WATERMAN MIX) / LOVE IN THE SHADOWS (REMIX) E.G. Daily
84
WHEN SMOKEY SINGS ABC
85
WHENEVER YOU’RE READY Five Star
86
HEAD TO TOE Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam
87
THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE Janet Jackson
88
WORLD WHERE YOU LIVE Crowded House
89
GOT MY MIND SET ON YOU George Harrison
90
ANOTHER STEP (CLOSER TO YOU) Kim Wilde / Junior
91
STRANGELOVE Depeche Mode
92
I'LL SAVE YOU ALL MY KISSES Dead Or Alive
93
PLEASE YOURSELF Big Supreme
94
CELEBRATION Dragon
95
WHEN I FALL IN LOVE / MY ARMS KEEP MISSING YOU Rick Astley
96
IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE Erasure
97
I FOUND SOMEONE Cher
98
DIDN'T WE ALMOST HAVE IT ALL Whitney Houston
99
RUN TO PARADISE The Choirboys
100
SOMETHING SO STRONG Crowded House
101
VALERIE Steve Winwood
102
HOLD ME NOW Johnny Logan
103
EVER FALLEN IN LOVE Fine Young Cannibals
104
AMAZING WORLD Venetians
105
THESE TIMES ARE HARD FOR LOVERS John Waite
106
LOVE SOMEBODY Noiseworks
107
SONIC BOOM BOY Westworld
108
TOUCHED BY THE HAND OF GOD New Order
109
ALWAYS DOESN'T MEAN FOREVER Hazell Dean
110
LET’S DANCE Chris Rea
111
CROSS MY BROKEN HEART The Jets
112
SHIP OF FOOLS World Party
113
THE NIGHT YOU MURDERED LOVE ABC
114
BIG LOVE Fleetwood Mac
115
THE RIGHT THING Simply Red
116
NOTHING’S GONNA CHANGE MY LOVE FOR YOU Glenn Medeiros
117
STRONG AS STEEL Five Star
118
MY OBSESSION Icehouse
119
BODY AND SOUL Jenny Morris
120
NEED YOU TONIGHT INXS
121
CITY FLAT Boom Crash Opera
122
MARY’S PRAYER Danny Wilson
123
LIVING IN A BOX Living In A Box
124
LOOKING GOOD DIVING Morgan - McVey
125
WISHING WELL Terence Trent D'Arby
126
LITTLE LIES Fleetwood Mac
127
LASER LIGHT Latin Lover
128
TURN IT UP Michael Davidson
129
BAD Michael Jackson
130
PAPER IN FIRE John Cougar Mellencamp
131
WHENEVER YOU NEED SOMEBODY Rick Astley
132
IN LOVE WITH LOVE (STOCK AITKEN WATERMAN REMIX) Debbie Harry
133
BEDS ARE BURNING Midnight Oil
134
TAKE ME BACK Noiseworks
135
SHOULD’VE KNOWN BETTER Richard Marx
136
DON’T LET’S START They Might Be Giants
137
ROCK THE NIGHT Europe
138
HYPNOTISE ME Wang Chung
139
DO YOU SEE WHAT I SEE Hunters & Collectors
140
RHYMES Rockmelons
141
POUR SOME SUGAR ON ME Def Leppard
142
ROCK STEADY The Whispers
143
WHO FOUND WHO Jellybean featuring Elisa Fiorillo
144
WISHING I WAS LUCKY Wet Wet Wet
145
ALWAYS Atlantic Starr
146
I JUST CAN'T WAIT Mandy
147
RENT Pet Shop Boys
148
WONDERFUL LIFE Black
149
FAKE Alexander O'Neal
150
GOODBYE STRANGER Pepsi & Shirlie
151
DOMINOES Robbie Nevil
152
SHAKEDOWN Bob Seger
153
ANIMAL Def Leppard
154
HOURGLASS Squeeze
155
WANTED The Style Council
156
SOMEDAY Glass Tiger
157
I LOVE MY RADIO Taffy
158
WHEN YOU WALK IN THE ROOM Paul Carrack
159
HOUSE ARREST Krush
160
IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY The Blow Monkeys
161
WILD HORSES Gino Vannelli
162
U GOT THE LOOK Prince / Sheena Easton
163
IT’S IN THE WAY THAT YOU USE IT Eric Clapton
164
FOOLED BY A SMILE Swing Out Sister
165
CATCH The Cure
166
COULD’VE BEEN Tiffany
167
WHAT A NIGHT (PARTY NIGHT) Dolly Dots
168
VICTIM OF LOVE Erasure
169
WILL YOU REMEMBER Eighth Wonder
170
WALK THE DINOSAUR Was (Not Was)
171
RHYTHM IS GONNA GET YOU Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine
172
DIAMONDS Herb Alpert featuring Janet Jackson
173
TO BE WITH YOU AGAIN Level 42
174
LABOUR OF LOVE Hue & Cry
175
WITCH QUEEN Chantoozies
176
EASY LADY Spagna
177
SAY YOU REALLY WANT ME Kim Wilde
178
I DON’T MIND AT ALL Bourgeois Tagg
179
YOU GOT IT ALL The Jets
180
LET'S WAIT A WHILE Janet Jackson
181
DAUGHTERS OF GLORY Black Sorrows
182
SALLY Carmel
183
WE ARE WHAT WE ARE The Other Ones
184
BE THERE The Pointer Sisters
185
CALLING YOUR NAME Geisha
186
SURRENDER Swing Out Sister
187
THE LOOK OF LOVE Madonna
188
ONE FOR THE MOCKINGBIRD Cutting Crew
189
LIES Jonathan Butler
190
JACOB’S LADDER Huey Lewis & The News
191
SOME PEOPLE Cliff Richard
192
WELCOME TO THE WORLD Noiseworks
193
SERIOUS Donna Allen
194
HOOKED ON LOVE Dead Or Alive
195
I DON'T WANT TO BE A HERO Johnny Hates Jazz
196
BEHIND THE MASK Eric Clapton
197
HOLIDAY The Other Ones
198
EVERY LITTLE KISS Bruce Hornsby & The Range
199
THE RIGHT STUFF Bryan Ferry
200
DON’T MEAN NOTHING Richard Marx


On Thursday, I'll carry on my other 1987 recap with a look at the the ARIA chart from 25 years ago this week. Until then...


MY YEAR-END CHARTS
1979 II 1980 II 1981 II 1982 II 1983 II 1984 II 1985 II 1986 II 1987 II 1988 II 1989
1990 II 1991 II 1992 II 1993 II 1994 II 1995 II 1996 II 1997 II 1998 II 1999
2000 II 2001 II 2002 II 2003 II 2004 II 2005 II 2006 II 2007 II 2008 II 2009
2010 II 2011 II 2012 II 2013 II 2014 II 2015 II 2016