Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In Music, October 23rd

On this day in 1982: Culture Club were at #1 on the U.K. singles chart with ‘Do You Really Want To Hurt Me’, the group’s first chart topper and the first of 12 U.K. Top 40 hits. The song became a major hit worldwide after their memorable debut performance on Top Of the Pops when they stood in for Shakin’ Stevens who was ill and not able to appear.

“Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” was the third single released in Europe by Culture Club and their debut release in the United States and Canada. The song was picked up by BBC Radio 2 and became a U.K. #1 single for three weeks in October 1982. It entered the American Pop chart the week ending December 4, 1982, and held at #2 for three weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in March and April 1983 (kept from the #1 spot by the massive success of ‘Billie Jean’ by Michael Jackson). The single achieved sales of 900,000 U.S .copies and also hit #1 in Canada. It was also #1 in Australia. It was Culture Club’s first success, after their first two releases, “White Boy” and “I’m Afraid of Me” charted in the U.K. at #114 and #100 respectively. According to Boy George, it was their last chance to get an album deal.

The song rose rapidly on the U.K. charts after the group’s first appearance on Top Of the Pops, which resulted in George’s androgynous style of dress and sexual ambiguity making newspaper headlines. The group were only asked to appear on Top of the Pops the night before the show, after Shakin’ Stevens pulled out.

Here’s what was happening on the U.S. singles chart on this day in 1982:

1 1 JACK & DIANE –•– John Cougar (Riva)-14 (4 weeks at #1) (1)
2 2 WHO CAN IT BE NOW –•– Men At Work (Columbia)-16 (2)
3 3 EYE IN THE SKY –•– The Alan Parsons Project (Arista)-17 (3)
4 6 I KEEP FORGETTIN’ (Every Time You’re Near) –•– Michael McDonald (Warner Brothers)-12 (4)
5 11 UP WHERE WE BELONG Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes (Island)-10 (5)
6 9 HEART ATTACK –•– Olivia Newton-John (MCA)-8 (6)
7 7 SOMEBODY’S BABY –•– Jackson Browne (Asylum)-13 (7)
8 8 YOU CAN DO MAGIC –•– America (Capitol)-13 (8)
9 10 I RAN (So Far Away) –•– A Flock Of Seagulls (Jive)-16 (9)
10 5 ABRACADABRA –•– The Steve Miller Band (Capitol)-22 (1)

11 13 BREAK IT TO ME GENTLY –•– Juice Newton (Capitol)-10 (11)
12 15 GYPSY –•– Fleetwood Mac (Warner Brothers)-8 (12)
13 18 HEARTLIGHT –•– Neil Diamond (Columbia)-7 (13)
14 17 GLORIA –•– Laura Branigan (Atlantic)-16 (14)
15 16 HOLD ON –•– Santana (Columbia)-11 (15)
16 4 HARD TO SAY I’M SORRY –•– Chicago (Full Moon)-21 (1)
17 20 DON’T FIGHT IT –•– Kenny Loggins with Steve Perry (Columbia)-9 (17)
18 14 EYE OF THE TIGER –•– Survivor (Scotti Brothers)-21 (1)
19 19 WHAT’S FOREVER FOR –•– Michael Martin Murphey (Liberty)-14 (19)
20 22 THE ONE YOU LOVE –•– Glenn Frey (Asylum)-10 (20)

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