Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In 80s Music, May 16th

On this day in 1981: Kim Carnes started a nine week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘Bette Davis Eyes.’

“Bette Davis Eyes” was written and composed by Donna Weiss and Jackie DeShannon in 1974. It was originally recorded by Jackie DeShannon in that year but was made popular by American singer Kim Carnes in 1981 when it spent nine non-consecutive weeks on top of the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The song was #1 for five weeks but was interrupted for one week by the ‘Stars On 45 Medley’ before it returned to the top spot for another four weeks and became Billboard’s biggest hit of 1981. The single also reached #5 on Billboard’s Top Tracks chart and #26 on the Dance charts. It was also a #1 hit in 21 countries. The song won the Grammy Awards for Song of the Year and Record of the Year; it was also ranked #12 on Billboard’s list of the Top 100 songs in the first 50 years of the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Here’s a look at the Top 20 on the U.S. singles chart from this day back in 1981:

1 5 BETTE DAVIS EYES –•– Kim Carnes (EMI-America)-8 (1 week at #1) (1)
2 2 JUST THE TWO OF US –•– Grover Washington, Jr. (with Bill Withers) (Elektra)-14 (2)
3 3 BEING WITH YOU –•– Smokey Robinson (Tamla)-14 (3)
4 4 ANGEL OF THE MORNING –•– Juice Newton (Capitol)-13 (4)
5 1 MORNING TRAIN (Nine To Five) –•– Sheena Easton (EMI-America)-14 (1)
6 7 TAKE IT ON THE RUN –•– REO Speedwagon (Epic)-9 (6)
7 8 LIVING INSIDE MYSELF –•– Gino Vannelli (Arista)-9 (7)
8 9 SUKIYAKI –•– A Taste Of Honey (Capitol)-11 (8)
9 6 KISS ON MY LIST –•– Daryl Hall and John Oates (RCA)-17 (1)
10 12 TOO MUCH TIME ON MY HANDS –•– Styx (A&M)-9 (10)

11 13 WATCHING THE WHEELS –•– John Lennon (Geffen)-8 (11)
12 10 I CAN’T STAND IT –•– Eric Clapton and His Band (RSO)-12 (10)
13 16 SWEETHEART –•– Franke and the Knockouts (Millennium)-11 (13)
14 21 STARS ON 45 MEDLEY — Stars On 45 (Radio Records)-6 (14)
15 20 A WOMAN NEEDS LOVE (Just Like You Do) –•– Ray Parker, Jr. and Raydio (Arista)-11 (15)
16 19 HOW ‘BOUT US –•– Champaign (Columbia)-14 (16)
17 17 AIN’T EVEN DONE WITH THE NIGHT –•– John Cougar (Riva)-16 (17)
18 18 YOU BETTER YOU BET –•– The Who (Warner Brothers)-9 (18)
19 22 I LOVE YOU –•– The Climax Blues Band (Warner Brothers)-13 (19)
20 27 AMERICA –•– Neil Diamond (Capitol)-4 (20)

On this day in 1987: U2 started a three week run at #1 on the U.S. singles chart with ‘With Or Without You’, the group’s first U.S. #1.

It is the third track on their fifth studio album, ‘The Joshua Tree’ and was released as the album’s lead single on March 16, 1987. The song was the group’s most successful single at the time, becoming their first #1 hit in both the United States and Canada by topping the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks and the RPM national singles chart for one week, with a further three weeks at #2.

Here’s a look at the Top 20 on the U.S. singles chart from this day back in 1987:

1 3 WITH OR WITHOUT YOU –•– U2 (Island)-9 (1) (1 Week at #1)
2 2 LOOKING FOR A NEW LOVE –•– Jody Watley (MCA)-11 (2)
3 1 (I Just) DIED IN YOUR ARMS –•– Cutting Crew (Virgin)-11 (1)
4 4 LA ISLA BONITA –•– Madonna (Sire)-9 (4)
5 8 THE LADY IN RED –•– Chris DeBurgh (A&M)-14 (5)
6 7 HEAT OF THE NIGHT –•– Bryan Adams (A&M)-8 (6)
7 9 BIG LOVE –•– Fleetwood Mac (Warner Brothers)-8 (7)
8 14 YOU KEEP ME HANGIN’ ON –•– Kim Wilde (MCA)-8 (8)
9 11 TALK DIRTY TO ME –•– Poison (Enigma)-10 (9)
10 17 ALWAYS –•– Atlantic Starr (Warner Brothers)-8 (10)

11 15 RIGHT ON TRACK –•– Breakfast Club (MCA)-10 (11)
12 18 I KNOW WHAT I LIKE –•– Huey Lewis & The News (Chrysalis)-7 (12)
13 16 NOTHING’S GONNA CHANGE MY LOVE FOR YOU –•– Glenn Medeiros (Amherst)-14 (13)
14 22 WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE –•– Bon Jovi (Mercury)-6 (14)
15 5 DON’T DREAM IT’S OVER –•– Crowded House (Capitol)-18 (2)
16 12 WHAT’S GOING ON –•– Cyndi Lauper (Portrait)-10 (12)
17 6 SIGN ‘O’ THE TIMES –•– Prince (Paisley Park)-11 (3)
18 13 THE FINER THINGS –•– Steve Winwood (Island)-15 (8)
19 29 HEAD TO TOE –•– Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam (Columbia)-6 (19)
20 23 SE LA –•– Lionel Richie (Motown)-8 (20)

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