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The UOGs of the 80s: Part 2: Heaven is a Place on Earth

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Hey everybody. :duck:

 

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Three years ago, I did a rate of a lot of the major girls of the 1980s - well, major, but not Whitney/Madonna/Janet major.

 

I included a LOT of heavyweights, but there are still some left to sort through - let's say we start today?

 

We'll be going in a lot of different directions - Adult Contemporary, Pop/Rock, Country, Rap, R&B, and, my favorite, DANCE.

 

Plus PWL. Can you even believe it?

 

Who's here?

 

VOTES DUE SEPTEMBER 1st.

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Saved for results!

 

Also, rules:

 

Vote on every song; send comments if you like.

 

You can give one score of each:

- 11

- 10.75

- 10.5

- 10.25

 

And only three zeroes. Use them wisely!

 

SONGS

 

After The Love Has Gone

All of Me (Boy Oh Boy)

Angel in the Morning

Another Step (Closer to You) [with Junior]

Back to the Cave

Bad Reputation

Bette Davis Eyes

Black Butterfly

Both to Each Other (Friends and Lovers) [with Eddie Rabbitt]

Boys (Summertime Love)

Breakdance

Break It to Me Gently

Cambodia

Chequered Love

Circle in the Sand

Close My Eyes Forever

Crimson and Clover

Cross My Broken Heart

Do Ya Do Ya (Wanna Please Me)

Do Ya Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)

Don't Fall in Love with a Dreamer (with Kenny Rogers)

Fire in My Heart

Fame

Flashdance (What a Feeling)

God is Amazing

Gloria

Gotta Let Go

Heaven is a Place on Earth

Holding Out for a Hero

How Am I Supposed to Live Without You

Hurt

I Can't Wait

I Don't Believe in Miracles

I Get Weak

I Hate Myself for Loving You

I Love Rock n Roll

I Wanna Have Some Fun

If You Were a Woman (And I Was a Man)

I'll Keep on Loving You

Invisible Hands

It's Gonna Take a Miracle

Kids in America

Kiss Me Deadly

Leave a Light On

Let's Hear It for the Boy

Love's Been a Little Bit Hard on Me

Mad About You

Mi Chico

More Love

Naughty Girls Need Love Too

Never Trust a Stranger

Nothing's Gonna Stop Me Now

Out Here on My Own

Queen of Hearts

Right Back Where We Started From

Say I'm Your Number One

Searchin' (I Gotta Find a Man)

Self-Control

Sexy Girl

Silly

Solitaire

So Macho

The Lucky One

The Sweetest Thing (I've Ever Known)

They Say It's Gonna Rain

Ti Amo

Total Eclipse of the Heart

Touch Me (I Want Your Body)

Toy Boy

Wherever I Go, Whatever I Do

Who's Leaving Who

You Came

You Keep Me Hangin On

 

SPOTIFY PLAYLIST

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Let's start with MAINSTREAM POP.

Guesses as to who will show up?

 

Hint: Our first girl is also an Oscar winner!

 

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Legend Tracy already played (and won!!!) Part One but I'm still here for this though I am not sure who are playing this time.

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Irene Cara. A true Boricua/Cubana/Morena, Irene was born into a close knit community in The Bronx. A childhood pageant altered the course of her life, and she began learning piano by ear. She got a gig on Spanish language TV, which led to appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson; by the age of 12, she was a regular on PBS's The Electric Company. (Imagine a slightly older Sesame Street!) She also booked a tribute concert to the great Duke Ellington, where she performed alongside none other than Primadonna Roberta Flack!

 

She was cast on the 70s soap Love of Life, and this led to a major motion picture - Sparkle. She played the lead! (If you saw the 2012 remake, it's the role Jordin Sparks played.) Her biggest break came, though, with 1980's Fame. She not only played the lead role, but sang the film's two main themes - you may have heard of them.

 

 

 

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Irene got a major boost by being able to perform both songs at the 1981 Academy Awards, and she capped off the year with two Grammy nominations! She was asked to star in the TV version of Fame, but wanted to focus on music instead. (She did book a TV pilot about her life called Irene, but it wasn't picked up.)

 

Her label wanted her to work with Giorgio Moroder, but she was hesitant -she didn't want to invite more comparisons to his legendary muse, primadonna Donna Summer. She relented, which was a wise move - the song they (plus Keith Forsey) wrote together became the biggest hit of her career. Flashdance (What a Feeling), the them to Flashdance, won Irene a Grammy, a Golden Globe, and an Oscar. (Top that Adele!)

 

 

Unfortunately, this was really it for Irene's music career - although she did score one final top ten single a few years later.

 

 

 

Fame

Out Here on My Own

Flashdance (What a Feeling)

Breakdance

 

THESE are the Irene singles you'll be rating.

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Ms. Adkins also achieved that feat with Skyfall. But yaaaaaasssss @ Irene Cara. All her songs are playing are great!

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Paging @supaspaz - it's Kim Carnes her time to shine.

 

Kim's a baby boomer - born in 1945 - and raised in LA. She signed her first publishing deal at the age of 24, and was set to work in camps with emerging stars like Don Henley and Glenn Frey (she could have been an Eagle!) She met a songwriter, Mike Settle, and they formed a parody bubblegum pop group called The Sugar Bears. She also released her first album in 1972 ...

 

... but this is the 80s we're talking about.

 

In 1980, she recorded a duet with then superstar Kenny Rogers. Don't Fall in Love with a Dreamer did the triple and went top ten on the pop, country, and adult contemporary charts - an Olivia oolong!

 

 

After a decade of trying, there was real buzz around Kim! It increased with her take on a Smokey Robinson and the Miracles classic, More Love.

 

 

 

Fun Fact: Smokey was so impressed with her take that he wrote a song for her - but his producers managed to make him keep it for himself.

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Obviously, though, the reason you may know Kim's name is because of her take on an old Jackie Deshannon tune, Bette Davis Eyes. Kim covered the tune, drastically rearranged it, and made it the lead single for her next album.

 

It topped the Hot 100 for nine weeks, and won Kim a Grammy for Record of the Year.

 

 

It also got the great Bette herself to send letters of admiration to everyone involved.

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Kim became a staple of AC radio, launching top ten hits on that format by duetting with the likes of Mr. Rogers, James Ingram, and Barbra Streisand! She also gained a few more Grammys in the rock category with songs like Invisible Hands.

 

 

 

Don't Fall in Love with a Dreamer

More Love

Bette Davis Eyes

Invisible Hands

 

THESE are the Kim Carnes songs you'll be rating.

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1 minute ago, madonnas said:

WAIT

are we getting STACEY Q IN THIS RATE

I'll never tell!

 

Gaynor Hopkins. Sherene Davis. Those names ring a bell?

 

No?

 

How about Bonnie Tyler?

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8 minutes ago, Ace Reject said:

I'll never tell!

 

Gaynor Hopkins. Sherene Davis. Those names ring a bell?

 

No?

 

How about Bonnie Tyler?

YAAAAAS! Total Eclipse of the Heart for the win!

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Oh, Bonnie.

 

Gaynor Hopkins was born in Swensen, Wales, as a coal miner's daughter. She first started singing in church, and, at eighteen, entered a local talent contest. She came in second place, and suddenly - she found her place in the world. She became a background singer, and changed her name - to Sherene Davis.

 

She was playing with her band when she was scouted by a local talent agent who sort of demanded that she change her name again - and thank goodness for that. Bonnie Tyler emerged, Her first single went nowhere, but the second, Lost in France, became a top ten hit in the UK. In 1978, she did it again, scoring a top ten hit in the UK and the US.

 

But this is the 80s were talking about, so let's cut to that!

 

Bonnie's next few albums went nowhere, and she was in a danger zone so to speak. She got new management, and her first request was to meet Jim Steinman - the man behind Meatloaf. He was reluctant at first,  but saw promise in her vocal prowess, and wrote a song for her.

 

We're all thankful for that.

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BRIGHT EYES!!!

 

 

 

Total Eclipse of the Heart went to number one in eight countries, including the US - making her the only Welsh singer to top our charts.

 

She got two Grammy nods, but lost both. She worked with Jim again for a song that would appear on the Footloose soundtrack, Holding Out for a Hero.

 

 

 

Her followup album ... did not do the business, but it gave her one last charting single:

 

 

 

Total Eclipse of the Heart

Holding Out for a Hero

If You Were a Woman (And I Was a Man)

 

THESE are the Bonnie singles you'll be rating!

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Oh, wow. We're already back! Can't wait for "Bette Davis Eyes" and "Total Eclipse of the Heart" to murk the competition like the legends they are.

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And now, a personal favorite of mine - Laura Branigan. Born in upstate New York, Laura attended the American Academy for Dramatic Arts in NYC as a young adult; while working as a waitress, she met a group of aspiring musicians - guitarist Walker Daniels and his wife Sharon Storm, and Chris Van Cleave. Together, they formed Meadow, a take off of the then popular Wings. They released their debut album in 1973, but tragedy struck as just three years later, Walker committed suicide. For the rest of her career, Laura would avoid talking about the band.

 

She took on odd jobs, and one really worked out - she was a backing singer for Leonard Cohen on his 1976 European tour. Upon her return from Europe, she coincidentally met manager Sid Bernstein, who brought her demo to the head of Atlantic Records, Ahmet Ertegun. Weirdly enough, Laura's range - spanning four octaves, in a time when that wasn't prided upon in pop music - stifled her, and it took years to find a direction for her debut. Early on, disco was decided as the main impetus, but by the time the album was released, it was 'dead.' The album's first single reached number 69 on the charts, and the second, an American English interpretation of an Italian love song, was met with a cold reception by radio.

 

Until the dance clubs got a hold of it, that is.

 

 

Gloria peaked at number two, got Laura her first Grammy nomination, and stayed on the charts for nine months - then a record.

 

It is also one of the greatest songs in pop music history.

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By now, the European synthpop sound Gloria helped usher in was dominating radio, Laura's second album, Branigan 2, was a success - aided by lead single Solitaire.

 

 

 

An adaptation of a French tune, Solitaire became Diane Warren's first hit as a songwriter.

 

Thanks Laura. :cm:

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The album also contained a ballad that Laura would take to number twelve, but would become a top ten hit a few years later for Michael Bolton - this happened repeatedly in Laura's career.

 

 

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