Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In 80s Music, May 15th

On this day in 1982: Asia went to #1 on the U.S. album chart with their self-titled debut album. It spent a total of nine weeks at #1 and became the best-selling album in the U.S. for the year 1982. The supergroup included former members of several veteran progressive rock bands, namely bassist/vocalist John Wetton (formerly in Mogul Thrash, Family, King Crimson, Roxy Music, Uriah Heep, U.K. and Wishbone Ash), guitarist Steve Howe (formerly in Yes), keyboardist Geoff Downes (of Yes and The Buggles) and drummer Carl Palmer (formerly in The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Atomic Rooster and Emerson, Lake & Palmer).

Also on this day in 1982: Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney started a seven week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘Ebony And Ivory’. The song gave McCartney his 24th U.S. #1 as a songwriter. The title was inspired by McCartney hearing Spike Milligan say “black notes, white notes, and you need to play the two to make harmony folks!”.

It was the lead single from McCartney’s album ‘Tug Of War.’ Written by McCartney, the song aligns the black and white keys of a piano keyboard with the theme of racial harmony. The single reached number one on both the UK and the U.S. charts and was among the top-selling singles of 1982 in the US. It was ranked the #4 song of the year for 1982 by Billboard Magazine.

Here’s a look at the Top 20 on the U.S. singles chart from this day back in 1982:

1 2 EBONY AND IVORY –•– Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder (Columbia)-6 (1 week at #1) (1)
2 1 CHARIOTS OF FIRE – TITLES –•– Vangelis (Polydor)-23 (1)
3 4 DON’T TALK TO STRANGERS –•– Rick Springfield (RCA)-11 (3)
4 3 I LOVE ROCK ‘N ROLL –•– Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (Boardwalk)-15 (1)
5 6 867-5309/JENNY –•– Tommy Tutone (Columbia)-17 (5)
6 9 I’VE NEVER BEEN TO ME –•– Charlene (Duncan) (Motown)-14 (6)
7 8 ’65 LOVE AFFAIR –•– Paul Davis (Arista)-12 (7)
8 5 FREEZE-FRAME –•– The J. Geils Band (EMI-America)-13 (4)
9 13 THE OTHER WOMAN –•– Ray Parker, Jr. (Arista)-9 (9)
10 10 DID IT IN A MINUTE –•– Daryl Hall and John Oates (RCA)-9 (10)

11 11 GET DOWN ON IT –•– Kool and the Gang (De-Lite)-12 (11)
12 12 THE BEATLES MOVIE MEDLEY –•– The Beatles (Capitol)-8 (12)
13 7 WE GOT THE BEAT –•– The Go-Go’s (I.R.S.)-16 (2)
14 14 ALWAYS ON MY MIND –•– Willie Nelson (Columbia)-11 (14)
15 15 HEAT OF THE MOMENT –•– Asia (Geffen)-5 (15)
16 16 DON’T YOU WANT ME –•– The Human League (A&M)-11 (16)
17 17 GOIN’ DOWN –•– Greg Guidry (Columbia)-14 (17)
18 19 EMPTY GARDEN (Hey Hey Johnny) –•– Elton John (Geffen)-9 (18)
19 22 MAN ON YOUR MIND –•– Little River Band (Capitol)-7 (19)
20 20 HANG FIRE –•– The Rolling Stones (Rolling Stones)-9 (20)

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