The Major’s Top 5 Hits RETRO – 1985

Every Friday night I post the Top 5 of one of my classic hit music charts based on personal preference from either 10, 20, or 30 years ago (rotating each week).

This week I’m going back a little further, as I continue my multiple anniversary weekend. It was exactly 33 years ago (to the date) that I wrote down (via loose-leaf paper, pen and pencil) my very first personal hit music chart in my military dorm room at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire England.

Here’s what the first page of it looked like – chart songs # 20 to # 6:

IMG_3369

Nice variety there, and so here it is – the Top 5 – for the week ending Saturday November 30TH 1985:

  1. “We Built This City” – Starship
  2. “Separate Lives” – Phil Collins & Marilyn Martin
  3. “Part Time Lover” – Stevie Wonder
  4. “Say You, Say Me” – Lionel Richie
  5. “Never” – Heart

I was 18½ years old and a brand new resident in a foreign country when I penned that chart above. It was really the next step in a hobby that began about a dozen years earlier during the mid-1970s when I first discovered and fell in love with Top 40 radio and especially “American Top 40” on Sundays with my idol (at the time) Casey Kasem. I wanted to grow up and be just like him. The Billboard Hot 100 was my bible back then. I began reading and studying it at my local public library.

This paper edition of my personal hit music chart lasted nearly 7 years. Starship’s “We Built This City” was the first of 174 # 1 hits during that time-span. After a 3-year hiatus I began a second edition of this hobby, and it was all-electronic (via Excel spreadsheet) and eventually online and worldwide. That edition lasted for over 14 years. During the Summer of 2006 my chart flipped from Secular pop music to Christian pop music to coincide with the start of my salvation.

So Happy 33RD Anniversary to my very first personal hit music chart. What a hobby of a lifetime !

It’s halftime. I’ll be back on Sunday and Monday with my remaining two blog posts for this weekend. I’ll be celebrating another anniversary come Sunday. Enjoy your Saturday. Thank You for your time.

All rights reserved (c) 2018 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries.

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The Major’s Top 5 Hits RETRO – 1985

Every Friday night I post the Top 5 of one of my classic hit music charts based on personal preference from either 10, 20, or 30 years ago (rotating each week).

But this week it’s a special. I’m going back 33 years to 1985. My chart didn’t exist yet, so here’s the Top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100 – for the week ending Sunday July 28TH 1985:

  1. “Everytime You Go Away” – Paul Young
  2. “Shout” – Tears For Fears
  3. “You Give Good Love” – Whitney Houston
  4. “A View To A Kill” – Duran Duran
  5. “If You Love Somebody Set Them Free” – Sting

33 years ago this weekend was my final weekend of Basic Military Training (BMT) at Lackland AFB (San Antonio) Texas. Back then Air Force Basic Training was 30 weekdays (not including Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays). On the 31ST weekday you were shipped out to either technical school at another base (unless your school was at Lackland), or to your first permanent duty station. My technical school was located at Chanute AFB (Rantoul) Illinois.

The 30TH and final weekday of Basic Training for me and my flightmates was on Friday July 26TH 1985. On Saturday and Sunday we were basically on hold for the weekend with not much to do (“liberty in place”) awaiting the 31ST weekday on Monday July 29TH 1985. Our Training Instructor (T.I.) came in on that Saturday morning and surprisingly started talking nice to us like regular people – unlike the previous 30 weekdays in which he yelled and screamed at us. He told us to enjoy the weekend, listen to the radio, and stay out of trouble until Monday morning. He then left us alone for the rest of the weekend.

So we listened to the T.I.’s radio all weekend – a Top 40 radio station in San Antonio, and we heard all of the greatest hits of the day. We even listened to “American Top 40 With Casey Kasem” on Sunday morning. Further down on the Billboard Hot 100 that weekend were these hits that we heard over and over again in heavy rotation:  “Raspberry Beret” – Prince And The Revolution (# 7), “Sussudio” – Phil Collins (# 13), “Freeway Of Love” – Aretha Franklin (# 19), and “Like A Surgeon” – “Weird Al” Yankovic (# 68).

Early on Monday morning we left the pop music behind, boarded busses, saw Lackland AFB behind us, and proceeded to the next chapter of our new military career.

It’s halftime. I’ll be back on Sunday and Monday with my remaining two blogs for this weekend. Enjoy your Saturday. Make memories of a lifetime !

Saturday Night Retro

Saturday November 06TH 2010
Volume 3 / Number 9 / Edition 106

25 years ago this weekend I flew on an overnight flight from Northern Virginia to London England to arrive at my new home for the next two years – my first permanent duty assignment as a young 18-year-old USAF Airman. I took British Rail from London Heathrow Airport to Reading – and then from Reading to Swindon further west. From Swindon I hired a cab to take me to my new home and workplace at RAF Fairford. During that cab ride on that sunny and cold morning of Sunday November 10TH 1985 I heard the chilling song “Road To Nowhere” by The Talking Heads on the radio. How appropriate.

My first couple of months at RAF Fairford were mostly spent on base either working at the office (as an aircraft maintenance systems analyst / statistician), or living in the dormitory. I lived in the old-style dorm buildings on base – small ones strategically built in a series of rows shortly after World War II. There were no bathrooms in any of the dorm rooms. They were down the hallway – community-style. Our ‘Day Room’ was where we hung out after work to socialize and watch TV and play card games – mostly Uno. There were some fun all-night sessions in that room. Good times and good memories with good buddies at the time. I can still see us all sitting around that big round table in the corner laughing and carrying on at 3 AM in the dead of the British winter. It made it easier for me during that first Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s holiday season away from home in a foreign land.

Shortly after 1986 arrived I got to upgrade to my own 2ND floor room in ‘the new dorm’ – with shared bathrooms in-between each dorm room. I also made my way out of the dorm and began exploring the vast U.K. countryside and historic European continent.

But my U.K. experience all began during those first two memorable months of November and December of 1985. One of the top pop / rock hits on both sides of the Atlantic during those early days and weeks at my new home was this comeback smash from Starship. Here’s “We Built This City” – the # 1 smash on the Billboard Hot 100 exactly 25 years ago this month – and one of my favourite songs of all-time !

Saturday Night Retro

On this 92ND edition of my ‘Saturday Night Retro’ I’m looking back at the Spring of 1985 – just a few months before I turned 18-years-old, graduated from high school, left home, and joined the Air Force – all within a single week !

At home I enjoyed hangin’ out with my 10-year-old brother Danny and our young Manx cat Fluffy. We watched Johnny Carson, David Letterman, and “Saturday Night Live” that I taped overnight on our Betamax videocassette recorder downstairs in our family room. I also enjoyed driving around Langley, McLean, and Tysons Corner Virginia in my beige 1980 Chevy Citation (my first car). It was equipped with a high-quality AM radio !

Back at home (where I actually had an FM stereo) I listened to the Washington D.C. area’s two big Top 40 radio stations – ‘All-Hit-105-WAVA’ and ‘Q-107’. One of the big smash hits during this memorable time of my life as I approached adulthood was this electronic dance smash. It was HUGE all around the world, and I think that they played it at my high school prom. I really don’t know for sure because I never attended my high school prom because I was such an outcast at the time. I was the original ‘All-American Reject’ !

Here’s Animotion – as I kick-off 6 fun-filled weeks of ‘The Awesome ’80s In August International Dance Party’. It’s my “Obsession”:

Saturday Night Retro

TODAY – the fifth of June of 2010 – is my 43RD birthday. You know you try to keep these events a secret from everyone, and yet word still manages to leak out about it. Go figure. LOL !

Perhaps the most memorable birthday of my entire lifetime was exactly 25 years ago on this date in 1985. It’s when I turned 18-years-old. Back then I knew what I was going to do on the following day. I was going to graduate from high school and receive my diploma. And so I did – on June 06TH 1985 at historic DAR Constitution Hall in Washington D.C.

On my 18TH birthday I also knew what I was going to do exactly a week later. I was going to leave home, make my way from suburban Northern Virginia to San Antonio Texas via planes, trains, shuttles, and automobiles, and enter a whole new world. And so I did – on June 12TH 1985 when I arrived at Lackland Air Force Base for Air Force Basic Military Training. It was the most hectic week of my lifetime – turning 18, graduating from high school, and joining the Air Force.

I never imagined 25 years ago that I’d be celebrating my 25TH anniversary with the Air Force this week in 2010, but here I am. I served 8 years on active duty (1985-1993), 2 years on active reserves (1993-1995), 4 years on inactive reserves (1995-1999), and 17 years as a Department Of Defense civilian working for the USAF (1993-now). It’s been a great and rewarding career, and retirement is about 15 years away. I can almost see it from here !

Back during that hectic second week of June of 1985 this memorable song from Tears For Fears was the # 1 pop and rock smash all across the free nation. It’s “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”, and I present it as my 25TH anniversary ‘Retro’ classic flashback:

Saturday Night Retro

It’s a special Friday night edition of the ‘Saturday Night Retro’ !

Back in November and December of 1985 I spent my first two months overseas in The United Kingdom at my first active duty Air Force permanent duty station. As a newly-assigned Airman I lived in one of the old post World War 2 era dormitories on base – rambler style with centralized community bathrooms. In other words you had to leave your room and walk down the hallway to use the toilet, take a shower, shave, wash your hands, and brush your teeth. There was no plumbing within the actual dorm rooms.

In the military a ‘day room’ is essentially a community living room with assorted furniture and a television. Our ‘day room’ in our particular dorm was damaged / unusable / off-limits, so we ‘dorm rats’ gathered together and took over an adjacent dorm’s day room. We met nightly after work to hang out, eat junk food, smoke cigarettes, drink beer (not me), watch British television, play Uno, and pretty much party like it was 1985 (sometimes all night long). Those are some of the greatest memories of my entire military career – from nearly 25 years ago. One of the biggest mistakes that I made early on was to buy my own television set for my dorm room because once I did that I unintentionally removed myself from that day room camaraderie. A few months later I went back over there, and it was never the same as it once was during those first two months. All of my old buddies had moved on – just as I had done.

One of the great Thursday night traditions that began in that day room and continued on during the entire time that I lived in the U.K. (the next two years) was watching “Top Of The Pops” on BBC-1. It aired weekly for over 40 years, and it was essentially their version of our “American Bandstand”. Here’s how a mid-December 1985 episode started at 7 PM GMT. It was one of those episodes that I watched alongside my day room buddies. On that week’s show Amazulu (an all-female British pop band) were in the Top 20 with their vivacious hit at the time “Don’t You Just Know It”.