Billboard #1s for the Week Ending July 6, 1985

This week’s Time Capsule!

Chart Title Act Weeks
Hot 100 Sussudio Phil Collins 1
R & B Rock Me Tonight (For Old Time’s Sake) Freddie Jackson 6
Country She’s A Miracle Exile 1
Adult Contemporary The Search Is Over Survivor 3
Rock If You Love Somebody Set Them Free Sting 2
Album No Jacket Required Phil Collins 7

paul-hardcastle-19-1985This week sees an unusual dance track reach its first peak. Paul Hardcastle was born in London in 1957. He mastered a number of instruments, specializing in keyboards. By 1984, he had a couple of minor hits in the UK, playing synths over techno beats. His breakthrough came with Rain Forest, a dance smash that hit #2 on the US Dance charts, #5 on the R&B charts, and sneaked up to #57 on the Hot 100 in an impressive 18-week run.

The follow-up was a curious combination of techno keyboards and spoken-word sampling. Inspired by a documentary, Hardcastle crafted 19, a track about PTSD and the plight of soldiers returning from Viet Nam. (The title refers to the average age of front line combatants in that war.) Stitching together bits of voiceover from the documentary, Hardcastle created a sort of novelty hit with a social conscience. This week it spends the first of two weeks at the top of the Dance charts while moving from #27 to #21 in its sixth week in the Hot 100. It eventually peaked at #15 and made it to #8 R&B.

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About Robert Hulshof-Schmidt
Freelance writer, researcher, online comic vendor, and project manager. Fan of a wide range of music -- especially folk and 80s pop -- vintage comics, British TV, and LGBT fiction.

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