Last time I checked in on songs that couldn’t crack the code to get played on AT40, it was all about stuff I hadn’t heard before. We’re pretty much going back to the same well in this episode.
#96. Space, “My Love Is Music”
Nope, it’s not the UK band that struck with “Female of the Species” in 1996–instead it’s a French collective doing ‘space disco,’ already on their third LP. It’s debuting, and would reach #60 in short order.
#95. Liquid Gold, “My Baby’s Baby”
Let’s stay out on the dance floor with another song in its first week, though we’ve moved across the Channel to Northamptonshire. This sextet wound up with a couple of UK Top 10 hits. “My Baby’s Baby” was released only on this side of the Atlantic, would shoot up to #45 by early June and then dive off the chart from that peak position.
#91. The Fabulous Poodles, “Mirror Star”
In my perusal of Stereo Review magazines from this period I’ve seen these Brits featured a time or two; kinda thinking I should do some more investigation. Is this New Wave? I don’t know, but it is a pretty clever meditation on a misfit kid who becomes a rock idol in his bedroom.
#84. Orsa Lia, “I Never Said I Loved You”
Not much out there about Lia (signing to the doomed Infinity label didn’t help); Wikipedia says she’s from Virginia. It’s not a bad little ballad; reminds me of two or three songs from this period (but don’t ask me to try to name them right now). “I Never Said I Love You” was co-written by Hal David and originally recorded by Barbara Mandrell. This would be as high as it would get.
#67. Ian Matthews, “Gimme an Inch”
Penned by Robert Palmer, first appearing on his album Pressure Drop. It’s the lead track from Stealin’ Home and was Matthews’s follow-up single to “Shake It.” Another one that didn’t climb any higher.
#53. Nicolette Larson, “Rhumba Girl”
Shame on me for not learning about this delight until now. “Lotta Love” is one of my absolute faves from the opening months of 1979, and this Jesse Winchester tune is a worthy followup. Somehow only made it to #47.
#49. Ray Stevens, “I Need Your Help Barry Manilow”
We’ll end on a note of levity, one that pretty well hits its target (and I say that as someone who likes plenty of Manilow). I actually did hear this a time or two way back when, and was probably slightly disappointed that it topped out here.