“Eventually, I just stopped caring about people. Fortunately, by then it was the eighties, and nobody noticed.” -Reverend Lovejoy
Our survey brings us now to 1980. Disco is in its death throes and hip-hop is still another decade away, and rock is starting to make a definite reemergence. A mere 17 songs made it to the top of the charts this year (including a second run by the Pina Colada Song).
Queen - Another One Bites the Dust.
I normally try to avoid slamming artists/songs that have a generally high level of respect that I don’t like, but man, Billy Joel’s “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” is just an awful fucking song. It sounds like someone’s dad is trying to show how hip they are, while wearing a polyester leisure suit. So fucking bad.
Its between “Another one bites the dust” and Pink Floyd for me. I always pick the song that is my own favourite rather than what is considered to be the “best” and those two are fantastic tracks in my opinion.
Damn it, I adore Queen, but I’m going for Pink Floyd here!
That was the year I graduated from HS. I tend to remember the music from that year as being remarkably better than what had been popular in the preceding five years. Looking at that list now makes me realize I was only partially right. In fact, I was mostly wrong. Most of those #1 songs are pieces I actively dislike to the point where I will turn off the music if they play. That leaves the entries by Pink Floyd, Queen, and Blondie. I’m going to go with Pink Floyd because I couldn’t pick one of the Queen songs over the other and “Call Me” is definitely a lesser effort than the other songs.
I was huge Pink Floyd fan but the Wall marked the beginning of the end of the love affair, and I never brought another album after that. “Another Brick…” is not a good song and baffled that it was chosen to be the single let alone walking away with this poll.
I don’t really like any of the others though either.
In the end had to pick between “Call Me” (although perhaps the worst Blondie #1), “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” (despite not liking Joel) or one of the Queen songs (despite hating Queen).
Held my nose and went for Billy Joel but now rather wish I had voted Blondie.
Wow, we’re back to good music at last! (Or maybe it’s just the end of the era of great albums). I think I like just about every song on this list, even “Sailing.” (I haven’t heard the Streisand one, but I’d probably find it quite well made and musical).
So, I had to pick Billy Joel, even though the song (and album it’s from, Glass Houses) is far from my favorite of his…but I had to somehow honor all the really great songs he made in 1977-1979, even though none made it to #1.
ETA: Okay, the one song I know I don’t like is “Do That To Me One More Time.” But that’s just one song, not a dozen like in almost every year previous to this!
I’m proud to say that mine is the first - and likely only - vote for Olivia Newton-John’s “Magic”.
In the end, it was a three way race among that song, “Call Me”, and “Upside Down”. Once again, Blondie nearly managed the win, but I just couldn’t keep the eerie, minor chord melody of “Magic” from insinuating itself, deliciously, in my head.
One final note: While I would’ve loved to vote for John Lennon’s final appearance (for the nonce) at the top of the chart, especially in light of his assassination at the end of this year, I’ve always found “(Just Like) Starting Over” to be a charming, perfectly pleasant little song. And “perfectly pleasant” ain’t enough to win, at least in my book.
Okay, now I can call it “music” without holding my nose. “Another Brick in the Wall” is too pretentious, plus it is blown away by two of my favorite-of-all-times - Diana Ross in Upside Down and the runaway winner - Another One Bites the Dust. My pulse rate doubles with the opening riff, and I am twentyfour again - ripped and ready to kick ass.
This is a better year than a number of recent years, but still not exactly any standout songs here.
“The Wall” always fell apart for me at line 3, where it warns against the dire evils of “dark sarcasm in the classroom.” No, not that! Horrors!!
The best thing about “Another One Bites the Dust,” which took less than a year of overplaying to become tiresome, is Al Yankovic’s “Another One Rides the Bus.” Queen had many songs that were better than this one.
Blondie had a metric ton of better songs than “Call Me,” too. I’d rather they show up on the lists of this period for their lesser songs than not at all, but still.
Ditto Billy Joel and “Still Rock n’ Roll To Me.”
So I went with Lennon (all hail Marx-Lennon!) though it was a tough call. Second choice was Queen’s “Crazy Little Thing Called Love.”
I went with “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” over “Another One Bites The Dust” just because I feel like it holds up to repeated listenings more. I don’t think “Another Brick in the Wall” is a very good song, but I figured Pink Floyd fans would be excited to vote for the band, as they should be.