This Week In 1984: March 11, 1984
I'm sure no band ever sets out to be a one-hit wonder. But if you had to be one, then best to have your sole smash single in the '80s.
Why? Well, as we all know, '80s one-hit wonders are far superior to those from any other decade. And with music videos widespread by then, your big hit song - and the crazy fashion that went with it - is preserved for posterity (i.e. regular rotation on Max).
A song that's never far away from being played on Max was still number 1 this week in 1984. "Love Is A Battlefield" by Pat Benatar ruled the roost for a fourth week.
Off The Chart
Peak: number 94
Camp classic #1: if anyone tried to sing this now, they'd be slut-shamed out of the industry. But in 1984, Sinitta's mother's seminal Hi-NRG track was a gay club smash, if not a chart hit.
Number 93 "Only For You" by Louise Tucker
Peak: number 80
"Midnight Blue" had reached the top 30, but this next slice of synthpopera from the mezzo-soprano didn't connect. "Only For You" is based on Ronald Binge's composition "Elizabethan Serenade".
Number 83 "Where's My Man" by Eartha Kitt
Peak: number 70
Camp classic #2: it'd been almost 30 years since her last top 40 hit, "Nothin' For Christmas", and unfortunately for the one-time Catwoman, this seductive song didn't change that.
Number 82 "That's All" by Genesis
Peak: number 62
It was one of their poppiest songs to date, but "That's All" didn't match "Mama" by making the top 50. This was the last we'd see of Genesis until their 1986-87 success. During that period, the actual follow-up to "Mama", "Home By The Sea", would make a belated visit to the chart.
Number 48 "King Of Pain" by The Police
Peak: number 44
As The Police headed off on the hiatus they'd never fully come back from, a fourth and final single from Synchronicity slipped into the top 50. What no one could've known at the time was that "King Of Pain", which was written about Sting's breakup with first wife Frances Tomelty, would be the final new song by the band to make the ARIA chart. Although a peak of number 44 is certainly an anti-climactic way for the reigning biggest band in the world to conclude their chart run, "King Of Pain" did much better than the album's third single, "Synchronicity II", which missed the top 100 in late 1983. Of course, this wasn't quite the last we'd see of The Police in the top 50, with a re-recording of "Don't Stand So Close To Me" charting in 1986 as the band well and truly split.
Number 46 "Baby You're Dynamite" by Cliff Richard
Peak: number 46
Cliff Richard celebrated his 25th anniversary as a recording artist in 1983 and released the appropriately titled Silver album to mark the milestone. Unfortunately, it wasn't the most momentous of occasions from a chart point of view. The album's first single, "Never Say Die (Give A Little Bit More)", had proved to be a fizzler and this follow-up barely made the top 50. It was one of those periods in Cliff's career - like most of the '70s - where he was out of step with what was popular with the Australian record buying public. And although he still had the odd hit single to come, chart success would be more of a novelty - sometimes literally - than as part of a resurgence, like he'd enjoyed between 1979 and 1982.
Number 45 "The Politics Of Dancing" by Re-Flex
Peak: number 12
At the very end of the music video for "The Politics Of Dancing", a caption comes up on the screen saying "to be continued...". Unfortunately for Britain's Re-Flex, their chart career came to an abrupt end following this new wave hit, with no further singles from the album of the same name reaching the top 100. It wasn't for want of trying, with another five songs lifted from The Politics Of Dancing in various parts of the world - songs like "Hurt", "Praying To The Beat" and "Hitline". Did Re-Flex deserve to never have another hit? Well, at least they got as high as number 12 locally. In the UK and the US, "The Politics Of Dancing" was only a minor top 30 success. There's a link to the music video in the song title above and a TV performance below.
Listen to this week's new entries on my Spotify playlist of all the top 50 hits from 1984:
Next week: another quiet week on the ARIA chart, with the arrival of the other version of "The Curly Shuffle" and a single that's not, as I'd hoped, by Lydia from Fame.