Billboard #1s for the Week Ending June 21, 1986

This week’s Time Capsule!

Chart Title Act Weeks
Hot 100 On My Own Patti LaBelle and Michael McDonald 2
R & B Nasty Janet Jackson 2
Country Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes The Forester Sisters 1
Adult Contemporary There’ll Be Sad Songs (To Make You Cry) Billy Ocean 1
Rock Invisible Touch Genesis 2
Album Whitney Houston Whitney Houston 13

BerlinBreathGunThis week sees the 80s soundtrack boom ease an LA band onto the charts with their biggest hit. Berlin had released two albums of edgy synth-guitar pop, charting a handful of minor singles. Disco producer extraordinaire Giorgio Moroder produced their one Top 40 hit, No More Words [#23, 1984]. Longtime Moroder collaborator Harold Faltermeyer was working on the score of the movie Top Gun and enlisted his friend, along with lyricist Tom Whitlock, to write some songs for the soundtrack.

Take My Breath Away, written as the love theme, was intended for the Motels. When that failed to materialize, Moroder offered it to Berlin. They quickly recorded the song, and this week it entered the Hot 100 at #97. After a slow climb, it managed to spend one week at #1 in September, Berlin’s only other Top 40 single. The song also took home an Oscar and a Golden Globe, and Moroder considers it one of his finest works.

Hits from movies were nothing new, but the 80s saw a huge spike in cross-selling soundtracks and films. Footloose and Beverly Hills Cop proved the multi-single viability of the modern popular movie, and things took off from there. This week, fully 10% of the Hot 100 comprised soundtrack hits. All but one went Top 10 and all but two prominently featured the movie title on their sleeves and movie clips in their videos. Besides Berlin, the chart featured

Pos. Song Artist Movie Peak
99 Pretty In Pink Psychedelic Furs Pretty In Pink 41
65 Sweet Freedom Michael McDonald Running Scared 7
40 Glory of Love Peter Cetera Karate Kid II 1
38 Modern Woman Billy Joel Ruthless People 10
32 Love Touch Rod Stewart Legal Eagles 6
24 If You Leave OMD Pretty In Pink 4
22 Danger Zone Kenny Loggins Top Gun 2
9 Who’s Johnny? El DeBarge Short Circuit 3
4 Live to Tell Madonna At Close Range 1

It’s interesting to note that Kenny Loggins’ song from Top Gun, also written by Moroder and Whitlock, got edged out of the top spot (by Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer). Loggins benefited from many movie collaborations, with all four of his solo Top 10s featured on soundtracks, including the #1 title smash from Footloose.

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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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