In December of 86, I was just about to muddle through a grad school finals week for the first time. Checking out the Hot 100 posted at Record Service in Champaign was very much an every week thing for me that fall–what did I see in the bottom half of the chart this time?
91. KBC Band, “It’s Not You, It’s Not Me”
We all like to dunk on Starship, and for good reason: they were the final devolution of a one-time pretty important and pretty good band. They gave Diane Warren her first #1 hit, for heaven’s sake! (Never mind that you might catch me singing along to “We Built This City” every once in a while…)
Anyway, after Paul Kantner departed the scene (taking ‘Jefferson’ with him), he hooked back up with fellow former Airplaners Marty Balin and Jack Casady to record one album. I remember seeing the resulting LP at Record Service and hearing the anthemic “It’s Not You, It’s Not Me” a few times on WPGU. It’s hardly a world-beater, but it’s at least two orders of magnitude better than the almost contemporaneous “Nothing’s Going To Stop Us Now.” Would only get two spots higher.
89. Grace Jones, “I’m Not Perfect (But I’m Perfect for You)”
Model, actress, singer–Jones had a long career with varying degrees of success in these fields. I confess I’m more familiar with “Demolition Man” from binge sessions of MTV in the Transy student center. “I’m Not Perfect” is the third and final time Jones hit the Hot 100 (the other two were back in 77). It would peak at #69 in a few weeks.
73. Debbie Harry, “French Kissin”
The second week in a row here at the blog with an appearance from Harry, whose solo career just never got on track (though who could ever un-see the cover of Koo Koo?) This sorta catchy lead single from Rockbird would climb to #57.
69. Paul Young, “Some People”
Just a year earlier, Young had the world on a string, coming off a series of Top 10 hits in the UK and the #1 “Everytime You Go Away” here in the States. A weak chorus in an otherwise decent, shuffling tune doomed “Some People,” the lead single from his next album Between Two Fires. It would get just four positions higher, and seemed to derail Young’s career–the big hits were much harder to come by for him on both sides of the pond after this.
68. Eurythmics, “Thorn in My Side”
Speaking of acts running out of steam… This follow-up to “Missionary Man” would get no higher, the biggest injustice we’re encountering today. “Thorn in My Side” made #5 in the UK, but it was Annie and Dave’s last Top 10 hit there; folks were just moving on, apparently.
64. The Police, “Don’t Stand So Close to Me ’86”
Even though the boys in the Police had parted ways following the Synchronicity tour, they got back together briefly a couple years later to update one of their earlier hits for a GH album. It was not so easy to be the teacher’s pet a second time, though, as ’86 is already coming down off a #46 high. I think this Godley/Creme vid could have been shot without Andy, Stew, or Gordon having to spin ’round the set at the same time.