Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In Music, August 3rd

On this day in 1985: Tears For Fears started a three week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘Shout’, the duo’s second U.S. #1.

The song was released as the second single from their second studio album, Songs From the Big Chair on November 19, 1984.  “Shout” would become one of the most successful songs of 1985, eventually reaching #1 in multiple countries. It is regarded as one of the most recognizable songs from the mid-eighties.

The song was written in my front room on just a small synthesizer and a drum machine. Initially I only had the chorus, which was very repetitive, like a mantra. I played it to Ian Stanley, our keyboardist, and Chris Hughes the producer. I saw it as a good album track, but they were convinced it would be a hit around the world.— Roland Orzabal

We were halfway through recording ‘Mothers Talk’ when Roland first played us a rough version of a new song he’d been working on. It was then very slow and very simple. I remember saying “this is so simple it should take about five minutes to record.” Weeks later… We were halfway through recording ‘Shout’ when Roland had a birthday party. That evening I asked the four of them separately if they had any thoughts about sleeve notes for the record. Roland said “White text on black paper and say something about arguably the best offering yet.” Curt said “You’re probably the best person to make up some off the wall irrelevant drivel.” Ian said “I don’t like them, I’m not interested.” Manny said “Did you know I used to play drums for ‘Rocky Ricketts and The Jet Pilots of Jive?”— Chris Hughes.

“It concerns protest in as much as it encourages people not to do things without actually questioning them. People act without thinking because that’s just the way things go in society. So it’s a general song, about the way the public accepts any old grief which is thrown at them.”— Curt Smith

Here’s a look at the Top 10 on the U.S. singles chart from this day back in 1985:

1 2 SHOUT –•– Tears For Fears (Mercury)-8 (1 Week at #1) (1)
2 1 EVERYTIME YOU GO AWAY –•– Paul Young (Columbia)-13 (1)
4 3 YOU GIVE GOOD LOVE –•– Whitney Houston (Arista)-13 (3)
5 6 GLORY DAYS –•– Bruce Springsteen (Columbia)-10 (5)
6 9 NEVER SURRENDER –•– Corey Hart (EMI-America)-9 (6)
7 16 POWER OF LOVE –•– Huey Lewis & The News (Chrysalis)-6 (7)
8 8 SENTIMENTAL STREET –•– Night Ranger (MCA / Camel)-11 (8)
9 10 GET IT ON (Bang A Gong) –•– The Power Station (Capitol)-9 (9)
10 14 WHO’S HOLDING DONNA NOW –•– DeBarge (Gordy)-10 (10)

On this day in 1987: Def Leppard released their fourth studio album Hysteria which became their best selling album to date, selling over 20 million copies worldwide. The title of the album was thought up by drummer Rick Allen relating to his experiences during the time of his car accident, and the worldwide media coverage that followed.


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