Throwback Thursday: The Top 10 Songs From The Summer of 1984 [Video]
I've argued the point here that 1984 may have been one of the greatest years for pop music in American history, and when compiling this list, it kind of confirms my point.
When songs like Night Ranger's 'Sister Christian', ZZ Top's 'Legs' and Scandal's 'The Warrior' can't even come close to cracking the Top Ten Summer Songs list from that year, it had to have been a good summer for tunes.
10. 'Oh Sherrie' -- Steve Perry
Perry's first solo single is still often credited as a Journey song on several compilation discs, However, the musicians backing up Perry on this hit were the same ones backing up Kim Carnes on 'Bette Davis Eyes'. The song was written about Perry's then girlfriend Sherrie Swafford.
9. 'I Can Dream About You' -- Dan Hartman
Written for the movie 'Streets of Fire', Hartman reworked the song and hit the top ten, while the film stiffed at the box office. The video features footage of the movie performance by the fictional group The Dorvels.
8. 'The Reflex' -- Duran Duran
By now the hottest band on the planet, Duran Duran had Chic producer Nile Rogers remix the album version of this song for release as a single because they didn't like how it came out on Seven and the Ragged Tiger, their third LP. The result was a song that stayed at number one for two weeks in late June/Early July 1984.
7. 'Dancing In The Dark' -- Bruce Springsteen
The Boss dropped off his bar band mythology to add synthesizers and electronic drums for a slicker, pop sound. The video launched Courtney Cox of 'Friends' fame into orbit with her take as a girl pulled from the audience to dance with Bruce.
6. 'Let's Hear It For The Boy' -- Deniece Williams
Movie soundtracks dominated the 1984 album charts, and the 'Footloose' soundtrack featured four top twenty singles. This one hit number one in the US in early summer 1984. The tune features background vocals from George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam, who would go on to form the duo Boy Meets Girl.
5. 'Missing You' -- John Waite
The former Babies lead singer had a slow build with this single, as it bubbled in the top ten most of the summer, before shooting to number one in September. The song was written about MTV VJ Nina Blackwood, and had a second life as a country single in 2007 with Alison Kraus perfroming a duet with Waite.
4. 'Ghostbusters' Ray Parker Jr.
Another soundtrack hit, Parker dominated the summer of 1984 with this smash that spent three weeks at the top of the charts in August of 1984. It was nominated at the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Song, but lost to Stevie Wonder's "I Just Called to Say I Love You".
3. 'Against All Odds' -- Phil Collins
Yet another movie song, this ballad was written by Collins while he was touring with Genesis. He reconfigured a song he had written for his first solo album Face Value called 'How Can You Just Sit There'. The result was a huge smash, winning a Grammy Award for best vocal performance.
2. 'What's Love Got Do With It' -- Tina Turner
1984 marked a comeback for the versatile R&B singer, who resurrected her career with the hugely popular Private Dancer album. "What's Love Got To Do With It" gave Turner her first and only U.S. number one. The song received three awards at the 1985 Grammy Awards: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Turner's live performance of the song at the Grammy show was released on the 1994 album Grammy's Greatest Moments.
1. 'When Doves Cry' -- Prince
Prince's sound track album to his film Purple Rain dominated the summer of 1984. 'Doves', the unique lead single form the album spent five weeks at number one. According to the legend, Prince was asked by the director to write a song to match a scene in the film which involved intermingled parental difficulties and a love affair. The next morning, Prince had reportedly composed two songs, one of which was "When Doves Cry". According to Per Nilsen, Prince's biographer, the song was inspired by his relationship with Vanity 6 member Susan Moonsie.
Prince has pulled the original video from YouTube.