Assembled the songs for this a week ago, but just couldn’t get in the mood to finish it off. Summertime blues, maybe?
Regardless, here are six tunes from the 6/8/85 Hot 100 that couldn’t cross the Rubicon into Casey-land. I was definitely aware of all of them at the time, either via Lexington’s AOR station or album purchase. Let’s rock it out some.
89. Kim Mitchell, “Go for Soda”
Starting off today with a Canadian rocker who’s less than a month away from his 70th birthday. “Patio Lanterns” was the bigger hit in his native land, but south of the border we were much more into this song encouraging us to lay off the beer for a night. It almost made top 10 on the rock chart, but had stalled out at #86 here a week earlier.
85. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, “Make It Better (Forget About Me)”
At the time, new material from Petty qualified as must-buy, and I picked up Southern Accents not long after it was released in late March. “Don’t Come Around Here No More” was plenty good, and I liked “It Ain’t Nothin’ to Me” (even if it was an undisciplined mess). On the whole, though, I was disappointed, and I struggled to hear a second hit single on it. Turns out I was right: this follow-up, even with some swell horn action, limped only to #54, and a few months later “Rebels” (maybe the better song) peaked at #71.
71. Foreigner, “Reaction to Action”
Agent Provocateur had been in my collection since Christmas break, and it was another LP that wound up receiving limited play. The “Check-one-one-one” opening on what became its third single definitely caught my attention when I first heard it, but man, are the lyrics to “Reaction to Action” dumb. I guess they were trying to mine the “Hot Blooded” vein again, but clearly that had been tapped out in 1978. This also reached #54.
69. The Hooters, “All You Zombies”
I don’t care what you say–I like this song. While the biblical references are admittedly strained, Hyman, Bazilian, et. al. wind up making their point. It’s no “And We Danced,” but it’s always a welcome play in my house. Made it to #58.
53. John Fogerty, “Centerfield”
Maybe folks today are surprised that the title track from Fogerty’s comeback-of-the-year album didn’t crack the 40–it fell four slots short of Casey putting it into play.. Thirty-seven years on, it’s certainly the most well-known song of the six in this post; I’m guessing that album sales cut into the potential for a third big hit.
52. Gino Vannelli, “Black Cars”
I have the 45 for this, though I’m thinking I didn’t buy it in ’85. I was glad to hear Vannelli rock it out a little after the much more languid “Living Inside Myself” from four years earlier, even if I’m in the distinct minority based on chart peak (the engine died at #42 for “Black Cars”). It’s always fun to watch for dead technology in videos–look at all those Polaroid cameras…