Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In Music, December 10th

On this day in 1983: Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson started a six week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘Say Say Say’. It was Jackson’s 10th #1 at the time (solo & with The Jacksons) and McCartney’s 29th, (solo and with The Beatles).

It was released in October of 1983 as the lead single from Paul McCartney’s ‘Pipes of Peace’ album. Produced by George Martin, the song was recorded during production of McCartney’s 1982 ‘Tug of War’ album, about a year before the release of “The Girl Is Mine”, the pair’s first duet from Jackson’s 1982 album ‘Thriller.’

After its release in October 1983, “Say Say Say” became Jackson’s seventh top-ten hit inside a year. It was a #1 hit in the United States, Canada, Norway, Sweden and several other countries, reached #2 in the United Kingdom, and peaked within the top ten in Australia, Austria, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Switzerland and over 20 other nations.

The single was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America in December 1983, representing sales of one million copies. The single was promoted with an influential music video directed by Bob Giraldi. The short film centers around two con artists called “Mac and Jack” (played by McCartney and Jackson).

Here’s the complete Top 20 on the U.S. singles chart from this day back in 1983:

1 2 SAY SAY SAY –•– Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson (Columbia)-9 (1 week at #1) (1)
2 1 ALL NIGHT LONG (All Night) –•– Lionel Richie (Motown)-13 (1)
3 3 UPTOWN GIRL –•– Billy Joel (Columbia)-12 (3)
4 5 SAY IT ISN’T SO –•– Daryl Hall & John Oates (RCA)-7 (4)
5 6 LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD –•– Pat Benatar (Chrysalis)-12 (5)
6 4 ISLANDS IN THE STREAM –•Kenny Rogers with Dolly Parton (RCA)-16 (1)
7 11 UNION OF THE SNAKE –•– Duran Duran (Capitol)-6 (7)
8 7 CUM ON FEEL THE NOIZE –•– Quiet Riot (Pasha)-13 (5)
9 9 CRUMBLIN’ DOWN –•– John Cougar Mellencamp (Riva)-9 (9)
10 10 CHURCH OF THE POISON MIND –•– Culture Club (Virgin)-8 (10)

11 14 OWNER OF A LONELY HEART –•– Yes (Atco)-6 (11)
12 16 TWIST OF FATE –•– Olivia Newton-John (MCA)-6 (12)
13 13 WHY ME? –•– Irene Cara (Geffen)-8 (13)
14 15 UNDERCOVER OF THE NIGHT The Rolling Stones (Rolling Stones)-5
15 8 HEART AND SOUL –•– Huey Lewis & The News (Chrysalis)-14 (8)
16 19 SYNCHRONICITY II –•– The Police (A&M)-6 (16)
17 17 IN A BIG COUNTRY –•– Big Country (Mercury)-8 (17)
18 20 MAJOR TOM (Coming Home) –•– Peter Schilling (Elektra)-12 (18)
19 27 BREAK MY STRIDE –•– Matthew Wilder (Private I)-13 (19)
20 12 P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing) –•– Michael Jackson (Epic)-10 (10)

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