WLS Music Survey November 14, 1981

Thirty-five years ago today, our family was spending its eighth week in Tucson after Dad was transferred from Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul, Illinois to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. After we spent our first four weeks living in a tent at the Crazy Horse Campground southeast of Tucson city limits, we had moved into what felt like the Taj Mahal: a 4 bedroom, two bath home on the base that had a backyard as large as the house itself.
After repeatedly playing three cassettes (above) to death at the campground, I was overjoyed to be able to tune in local FM stations KLPX and KWFM on my Soundesign Stereo (model #4764) in the privacy of my own room and enjoy the popular album rock of the day (KLPX) as well as KROQ-ish new wave (KWFM) but I missed the Top 40 of WLS back in Illinois. Turns out, they were playing a lot of the same music I was listening to more than a thousand miles away; at least according to the weekly survey below.
It's a solid Top 40 45 with a great mix of pop, rock, country, and soul hits. Rock was king with Journey, Foreigner, Billy Squier, Stevie Nicks and Rick Springfield each having two singles apiece on the survey. I count almost ten acts who later became Rock and Roll Hall Of Famers and a few more who are on the ballot of nominees this year.

Looking over the Thirty-threes albums chart, two of my tapes were in the Top 3 though I had another six of the albums on vinyl at the time while I recall Dad owning another four so, between us, we had a solid one-third of the albums listed. And check out that Concerts in the Weeks Ahead killer lineup featuring Genesis performing songs from their latest album Abacab on the second of their two nights in the Windy City that very night (November 14th) before AC/DC rolled in on their For Those About To Rock Tour later that week for a three-night stand closely followed by the Rolling Stones on their American Tour 1981 a couple nights later, also a three-night sell-out, to be immediately followed up by a show from the mighty Earth, Wind & Fire touring behind their album, Raise!, which happened to be released on November 14, 1981. And that all went down at the same venue, the Rosemont Horizon.
Rick Springfield was featured on the back of the week's survey with the lyrics to his hit song (written by Sammy Hagar, in case you didn't know) "I've Done Everything For You" as well as being featured in the Bio section. The survey was sponsored by Chicagoland Shell stations who were giving away reproductions of pencil-drawn prints of Chicago Bears players including "Sweetness" himself, the immortal Walter Payton.
The survey scans above and below are my own from a near gem mint condition survey I picked up for a couple of bucks on eBay. Someday soon I hope to have enough cash to buy many more of them. After the full-frontal scan below, I've included a chart comparison with WLS going up against the Billboard and Cashbox one-hundred position charts for the same week. All song titles and artists names in the comparison chart appear exactly as they do on the survey.
45Fire And IcePat Benatar
44Beach Boys MedleyThe Beach Boys8498
43The VoiceMoody Blues8194
42The StrokeBilly Squier
41ElviraOakridge Boys
40Slow HandPointer Sisters
39Theme from Greatest American HeroJoey Scarbury
38Hold On TightElectric Light Orchestra5896
37Share Your Love With MeKenny Rogers3848
36Leather & LaceStevie Nicks2536
35(There's) No Gettin' Over MeRonnie Milsap
34Poor Man's SonSurvivor4457
33The Breakup SongGreg Kihn Band
32Jessie's GirlRick Springfield
31Stop Draggin' My Heart AroundStevie Nicks4577
30Say Goodbye To HollywoodBilly Joel2224
29Queen Of HeartsJuice Newton8050
28Magic PowerTriumph5149
27Here I AmAir Supply714
26Heavy MetalDon Felder10075
25No Time To LoveThe Tarney/Spencer Band
24NicolePoint Blank
23Hard To SayDan Fogelberg2018
22Burnin' For YouBlue Oyster Cult9651
21Sausalito SummernightDiesel2627
20Working In A Coal MineDevo8758
19Don't Stop BelievingJourney2834
18We're In This Love TogetherAl Jarreau1523
17In The DarkBilly Squier6146
16Who's Cryin' NowJourney5325
14No Reply At AllGenesis3235
13When She Was My GirlFour Tops1110
12Step By StepEddie Rabbitt3516
11For Your Eyes OnlySheena Easton165
10Every Little Thing She Does Is MagicThe Police1211
9I've Done Everything For YouRick Springfield89
8PhysicalOlivia Newton-John36
7Waiting For A Girl Like YouForeigner412
6Endless LoveDiana Ross & Lionel Richie213
5The Night OwlsLittle River Band67
4Tryin' To Live My Life Without YouBob Seger58
3Arthur's ThemeChristopher Cross92
2Start Me UpRolling Stones24
1Private EyesHall & Oates11

This is the song I didn't recognize from the survey, number 25 on WLS (after peaking at 24 a few weeks earlier) though it had originally peaked at number 84 on the Hot 100 upon its original release in 1979 and peaked ten positions higher in a brief four-week run again after being re-released in 1981. After listening to the music video, the song's chorus brought it back front and center - loved it back then but have all but forgotten about it and would have sworn it was by another group. Looked it up and I have it on The Greatest Hits Album. Further research revealed that Alan Tarney, who sang and played everything on the song except Spencer's drums, was involved with several other familiar and beloved hits of both the Seventies and the Eighties. Mind blown!

1 comment:

  1. That's a heckuva albums list there. I count 18 I have or had and there's a few more I wouldn't mind owning. I notice that Rush, sweet Kenny Rogers, and some band named Soundtrack each placed two albums on the chart. Shout out to Barry Manilow.

    I clicked over to the Tarney-Spencer Band song and I would swear that today was the first time I ever heard it. The chorus is a little too much like CSN for this guy.

    Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go spin ELO's Time just because I haven't heard it in a while.