Monday, August 4, 2014

The Top 100 R&B Songs of the 80's*: #70-61

We're starting to get into some pretty big R&B hits for the decade.  If we've done our homework right, the songs should be getting better with each day!


Lipps, Inc.

This group was the creation of songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/producer Steven Greenberg.  Cynthia Johnson, who was Miss Black Minnesota U.S.A. of 1976, sang lead on the group's first release.  It didn't make #1, but was a strong #2 for five weeks behind the Isley Brothers' "Don't Say Goodnight" and Jermaine Jackson's "Let's Get Serious".


"Heartbreak Hotel"

This Gary, Indiana group scored six #1 hits on the R&B chart in the 70's.  They didn't get there in the next decade, but they achieved a #2 position for five weeks with this smash.  



"Looking For A New Love"
Jody Watley

The former singer with Shalamar and Goddaughter of Jackie Wilson started her career off with a bang in 1987.  Jody Watley's song held off Prince's "Sign 'O' The Times" to reign on the R&B chart for three weeks at #1, and captured the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.


"Don't Say No Tonight"
Eugene Wilde

This member of the group Life struck out on his own in 1984, and achieved 10 R&B solo hits, including this one.  "Don't Say No Tonight" fought off tough competition from "Caravan Of Love", "Say You, Say Me" and "That's What Friends Are For" to reach #1 for three weeks.


"Shake You Down"
Gregory Abbott

This artist taught English at the University of California before getting a break as a recording artist.  This tasty soul smash went Platinum, and took over at #1 from Cameo's "Word Up".  It remained at the top for two weeks, and sold over two million copies.

"That's What Friends Are For"
Dionne Warwick & Friends

This superstar grouping to raise funds and awareness for AIDS rose to the top for three weeks in 1986, against competition from Lionel Ritchie's "Say You, Say Me", Meli'sa Morgan's smash "Do Me Baby" and Eugene Wilde's big hit "Don't Say No Tonight".


"Word Up"

You can tell the popularity of this song by the fact that it took over from "The Rain" at #1 and held off the great song heard above from Gregory Abbott--"Shake You Down" to post three weeks at #1 on the R&B chart.



Kool and the Gang

This winner from Kool and his gang was up against three R&B smashes:  Lionel Richie's "All Night Long", "Time Will Reveal" from DeBarge, and Patti LaBelle's "If Only You Know".  That traffic jam only allowed "Joanna" to post two weeks at #1.



Ashford & Simpson

Ashford and Simpson are recognized as a great songwriting team, but in 1984, they landed this #1 smash of three weeks, competing against "I Feel For You" and Midnight Star's "Operator".


"What's Love Got To Do With It"
Tina Turner

Although this comeback hit never reached #1, it was a bridesmaid at #2 for five weeks behind great songs like "Let's Hear It For The Boy" and "When Doves Cry".
Join Inside The Rock Era tomorrow for Songs #60-51*.  In the meantime, those ten were so good they might merit listening to again!

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