Ranking #16 singles, U.S. edition: 1987-1991

Uncommitted to these songs, I replayed them with the expected mixed results. Sade’s percolating pleasure “Paradise” remains unassailable, as does Robert Palmer’s unexpectedly poignant Marvin Gaye medley — my intro to both. I must give Stevie Nicks credit for submitting an unrhymed lyric for Rush producer Rupert Hine’s ornamentation: not only did it sneak the phrase “wanton luxury” into a top twenty hit, but “Rooms on Fire” sounds magical — a rehearsal for Rush’s “Ghost of a Chance” three years later, thought the latter lacked the line “Waaal, there is magic all around you/If I do say so myself.” No doubt Aretha ‘n’ Elton’s handlers thought so when they approved their duet.

Finally, I forgot OMD got so far with one of their whiniest numbers.

The Hague

REO Speedwagon – That Ain’t Love
Gerardo – We Want the Funk

Meh

Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark – Dreaming
Keedy – That Ain’t Love
Bad Company – If You Needed Somebody
Aretha Franklin & Elton John – Through the Storm
The Fat Boys & Chubby Checker – The Twist

Sound, Solid

Jude Cole – Baby It’s Tonight
The Rude Boys – Written All Over Your Face
Katrina & The Waves – That’s the Way
Jellybean Featuring Elisa Fiorillo – Who Found Who
Tony Terry – With You

Good to Great

Sade – Paradise
Stevie Nicks – Rooms on Fire
Metallica – Enter Sadman
Stevie B – Love and Emotion
Robert Palmer – Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)/I Want You
Keith Sweat – Make You Sweat
Was (Not Was) – Spy in the House of Love

One thought on “Ranking #16 singles, U.S. edition: 1987-1991

  1. Damn! Was [Not Was} got to #16 with “Spy In The House Of Love??!!!” Since there was no MTV video, my sense of “the charts” by that time was skewed terribly. That’s excellent news, 30+ years later. I remember video taping the band live on many talk shows at the time; burning it up with some radical re-arrangements by their smoking hot band where they played the 12″ mix versions live.

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