Rose Garden by k.d. Lang and the Reclines

#2: Rose Garden by k.d. Lang and the Reclines

City: Burnaby, BC
Radio Station: CFML
Peak Month: April 1987
Peak Position in Burnaby ~ #10
Peak Position in Vancouver ~ did not chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Rose Garden
Lyrics: “Rose Garden

Kathryn Dawn Lang was born in Edmonton, Alberta, in 1961. When she was nine her family moved to the town of Consort, Alberta, where her father ran a drug store. After secondary school, lang attended Red Deer College, where she became fascinated with the life and music of Patsy Cline and decided to pursue a career as a professional singer. She moved to Edmonton after her graduation in 1982 and formed a Patsy Cline tribute band called the Reclines in 1983. She and the Reclines recorded their debut single, “Friday Dance Promenade”, at Sundown Recorders.

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Oh Yeah by Yello

#47: Oh Yeah by Yello

City: Calgary, Alberta
Radio Station: CFCN
Peak Month: October 1987
Peak Position in Calgary ~ #7
Peak position in Vancouver ~ did not chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #51
Peak Position on Cashbox Top 100 Singles ~ #49
YouTube.com: “Oh Yeah
Lyrics: “Oh Yeah

Yello is a Swiss electronic music band formed in Zurich in 1979. Boris Blank was born in Bern, Switzerland, in 1952. Before he joined Yello he was a truck driver. As a child he was very interested in music, but had no formal training. He never learned to read musical notation but always was interested in producing new sounds and samples. Blank began experimenting with tape loops and echo effects as a teenager. He recorded water sounds from a bucket of water and played sounds on a homemade bamboo flute. It was in this period he met Carlos Perón, who was born in Zurich in 1952. The third member to join the band was Deiter Meier. Born in 1945 in Zurich, Meier studied law in university, but never completed his degree. He went into banking and became a professional gambler. Blank and Perón approached Meier when they realized they needed a singer, as Blank’s vocals were better suited to backing vocals. The band’s name, Yello, was chosen as a neologism based on a comment made by Meier, “a yelled Hello”
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Boom Boom (Let's Go Back To My Room) by Paul Lekakis

#85: Boom Boom (Let’s Go Back To My Room) by Paul Lekakis

Peak Month: April 1987
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #43
YouTube.com: “Boom Boom (Let’s Go Back To My Room)
Lyrics: “Boom Boom (Let’s Go Back To My Room)

Paul Lekakis was born in 1966 in New York City. He grew up in Tarrytown, New York – home to Mark Twain, J.D. Salinger, and big band leader Cab Calloway. Lekalis was in the boys choir. He came out at the age of 15 in 1981. At 16, Paul Lekakis got a job waiting tables at Zippers, a gay club in nearby New Rochelle. He dropped out of high school and at the age of 17 he moved to New York City and began studying to become a dancer. “I did some dance industrials,” he recalls, “and auditioned for music videos — but I never got cast. I got the stuff that was like the model/fashion show/dance kinda thing.”

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Contact by Platinum Blonde

#138: Contact by Platinum Blonde

Peak Month: November 1987
13 weeks on CKLG chart
Peak Position ~ #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Contact
Lyrics: “Contact

Mark Holmes was born in the UK and lived in Manchester until the family moved to Toronto. He met several other musicians and formed a punk band that played covers to The Police and other new wave bands. After a lineup change, Holmes was playing guitar and the lead vocalist, Chris Steffler was the drummer and Sergio Galli was a second guitarist. The trio became Platinum Blonde. They got a record deal with CBS in 1983. Their debut album, Standing In The Dark, earned them two Video Of The Year nominations at the 1984 Juno Awards. But it was their second album, Alien Shores, which included “Crying Over You”, a #1 single on the Canadian RPM charts in 1985, and in Vancouver.

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Montego Bay by Amazulu

#183: Montego Bay by Amazulu

Peak Month: June 1987
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #90
YouTube: “Montego Bay
Lyrics: “Montego Bay

Amazulu was a reggae band from Britain. They formed in 1982. Amazulu literally means Mother of the Zulus. The band originally wanted to be named Amazon, but an American rock band already had the name. The name Amazulu came about when Sharon Bailey and Lesley Beach went to see a South African play by the same name. Bailey and Beach met the playwright, who gave his permission to use the name. The band was started by Sharon, the band’s original manager and Lesley, the saxophone player, together with Rose Miner, the original lead singer. With Debbie Dread joining on drums, initially all the members were female. Rose was later replaced by Anne Marie Ruddock, and Debbie was replaced by John “Nardo” Bailey, who they called their token male.

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You're The Voice by John Farnham

#193: You’re The Voice by John Farnham

Peak Month: August 1987
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
1 week Playlist
Peak Position #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #82 (in 1990)
YouTube: “You’re The Voice
Lyrics: “You’re The Voice

John Peter Farnham was born in 1949 in Essex, England. He moved with his family to Australia in 1959. While in Grade Ten, in 1964 he began performing as Johnny Farnham a local Melbourne band called the Mavericks on weekends. In late 1965, he became the lead singer for Strings Unlimited. In 1967, Farnham was signed to the EMI label and recorded a novelty song titled “Sadie (The Cleaning Lady)”. It became a number-one single in Australia for five weeks in early 1968. He followed up with two more Top Ten hits on the Australian pop charts, including a cover of the 1930s pop standard “Underneath The Arches”. In 1969, Johnny Farnham’s cover of the Three Dog Night song, “One”, peaked at #4 in Australia. He returned to the top of the Australian pop charts later that year with a cover of “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head”. He had three more Top Ten hits in Australia in the 1970s, and a Top Ten cover of the Beatles “Help” in 1980.

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#1206: Dirty Water by Rock & Hyde

Peak Month: April 1987
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #19
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Dirty Water

Paul Hyde was born in 1955 in Yorkshire, England. He me Bob Rock, born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1954, later when Rock was high school in Langford, British Columbia. Hyde introduced Rock to the new musical genre of punk rock, popular in England. They formed a garage band and Bob Rock got a job at Vancouver’s Little Mountain Sound Studios as a recording engineer. This enabled The Payola$ to record, in the late 70s, punk rock songs “Money for Hype” and “China Boys” on independent labels. They solds singles at their performances and through local record shops. This led to a contract with A&M Records.

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I Will by Rock & Hyde

#1325: I Will by Rock & Hyde

Peak Month: July 1987
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “I Will

Paul Hyde was born in 1955 in Yorkshire, England. He me Bob Rock, born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1954, later when Rock was high school in Langford, British Columbia. Hyde introduced Rock to the new musical genre of punk rock, popular in England. They formed a garage band and Bob Rock got a job at Vancouver’s Little Mountain Sound Studios as a recording engineer. This enabled The Payola$ to record, in the late 70s, punk rock songs “Money for Hype” and “China Boys” on independent labels. They solds singles at their performances and through local record shops. This led to a contract with A&M Records.

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Wipeout by the Fat Boys and the Beach Boys

#286: Wipeout by the Fat Boys and the Beach Boys

Peak Month: September 1987
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #12
YouTube: “Wipeout
Lyrics: “Wipeout

Brian Wilson was born in Inglewood, California, in 1942. In biographer Peter Ames Carlin’s book, Catch a Wave: The Rise, Fall, and Redemption of the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, he relates that when Brian Wilson first heard George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” it had a huge emotional impact on him. As a youngster, Wilson learned to play a toy accordion and sang in children’s choirs. In his teens he started a group with his cousin, Mike Love and his brother, Carl. Mike was born in Los Angeles in 1941 and Carl was born in 1946 in Hawthorne, California. Brian Wilson named the group Carl and the Passions in order to convince his brother to join. They had a performance in the fall of 1960 at Hawthorne High School, where they attended. Their set included some songs by Dion and the Belmonts. Among the people in the audience was Al Jardine, another classmate. Jardine was born in Hawthorne in 1942. He was so impressed with the performance that he let the group know. Jardine would later be enlisted, along with Dennis Wilson to form the Pendletones in 1961. Dennis was born in Inglewood in 1944.

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You're What I Look For by Glass Tiger

#541: You’re What I Look For by Glass Tiger

Peak Month: January 1987
11 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “You’re What I Look For
Lyrics: “You’re What I Look For”

Discovered in the summer of 1984 when a band from Newmarket, Ontario called Tokyo spent two evenings performing before capacity crowds at Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens opening for Boy George and Culture Club. Their dynamic original sound captured the moment, and the race to sign them was on. Tokyo, which had become a major force in suburban high schools and the Ontario club circuit, officially became Glass Tiger early the following year when a record deal was finally signed with Capitol Records. The band consisted of Alan Frew on vocals and guitar, Sam Reid on keyboards, Al Connelly on guitar, Wayne Parker on bass and Michael Hanson on drums.

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Holiday Rap by MC Miker G & Deejay Sven

#552: Holiday Rap by MC Miker G & Deejay Sven

Peak Month: May 1987
9 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Holiday Rap
Lyrics: “Holiday Rap”

Lucien Witteveen was a breakdancer and rapper, and Sven van Veen was a DJ. They both lived in the Netherlands. In 1986 they met at a disco in Hilversum. They knew the 1983 song by Madonna titled “Holiday”. They pair decided to cut a demo rap version of the song they titled “Holiday Rap”. They also used portions of the melody from Cliff Richard’s 1963 hit “Summer Holiday“. “Holiday Rap” was credited to MC Miker “G” & Deejay Sven. The first demo was not of suitable quality. So they got Dutch music DJ Ben Liebrand to produce the record. Continue reading →

Dance Desire by Haywire

#555: Dance Desire by Haywire

Peak Month: November 1987
11 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #9
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Dance Desire
Lyrics: “Dance Desire

In 1981 five musicians in Charlottetown formed a band they named Haywire. They were keyboard player David Rashed, vocalist and steel pan drummer Paul MacAusland, guitarist Marvin Birt, drummer Scott Roberts and bass player Ronnie Switzer. In 1984 they entered the Homegrown Vol. 1 contest on Halifax, Nova Scotia, FM station Q104. The next year Haywire won the Labatt’s Battle of the Bands in Saint John, New Brunswick. Winning $10,000 first prize, they used their prize money to record a 5-song EP. It sold over 5,000 copies across in the Maritimes. In 1986 Music Express Magazine named Haywire ‘Canada’s Best Group’. The accolades won Haywire a five-album contract with Attic Records. By this time Sean Kilbride had become the band’s drummer.

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Wild Horses by Gino Vannelli

#648: Wild Horses by Gino Vannelli

Peak Month: April 1987
9 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #55
YouTube.com: “Wild Horses
Lyrics: “Wild Horses”

Gino Vannelli was born in Montreal in 1952. During his childhood he was exposed to jazz music and cabaret. His father was a cabaret singer and his mother had a good ear for music. Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich and Ed Thigpen were among the drummers that inspired young Gino. At the age of eleven, Gino was one of a group of elementary school-age drummers trying to audition for a Montreal band named The Cobras. He arrived home from school later than usual to announce he had been picked to be the new drummer for the band after impressing them with his rendition of “Wipeout”. In 1964, five years prior to the Jackson 5’s debut hit “I Want You Back” on Motown, Gino Vannelli happened to join a band in Montreal called the Jacksonville Five. And that Montreal band happened to tailor itself to Motown-sound-alike tunes when The Supremes, The Miracles, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Stevie Wonder and Mary Wells were all topping the charts. By 1966, Gino Vannelli became the lead singer of the Jacksonville Five when he replaced the current lead singer who couldn’t hit the high notes on Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual”.  He was fourteen.
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Kiss Him Goodbye by The Nylons

#830: Kiss Him Goodbye by The Nylons

Peak Month:  July 1987
10 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #12
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Kiss Him Goodbye
Lyrics: “Kiss Him Goodbye”

The Nylons are an a cappella group that formed in 1978, based in Toronto. The original members were all gay men: Dennis Simpson, Paul Cooper, Claude Morrison and Marc Connors. They released their self-titled album in 1982. There were some lineup changes after 1979 when Dennis Simpson left. By the time the Nylons released their first album, Arnold Robinson was the newcomer joining the other original group members. In 1986, the group appeared on the Canadian children’s TV show Sharon, Lois & Bram’s Elephant Show. The show was hosted by a trio of the entertainers and singers known as Sharon, Lois & Bram. The Nylons appeared in an episode of the TV show, Treasure Island, and sang “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”. The next year they released their fourth album, Happy Together.

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Teenland by Northern Pikes

#684: Teenland by Northern Pikes

Peak Month: September-October 1987
10 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Teenland
Lyrics: “Teenland”

In 1984, The Northern Pikes became a band. They were from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The band was made up of members from three existing bands in the city: Doris Daye, The Idols and 17 Envelope. John Peter “Jay” Semko was from Saskatoon and was already a gifted singer, songwriter, bass guitar player and pianist. Bryan Anthony Potvin was born in 1963 in Ottawa and his family moved to Victoria where he began playing guitar. Merl Bryck, born in Humboldt, Saskatchewan, was a backing vocalist and rhythm guitarist. There were a number of lineup changes. In 1986 The Idols drummer, Don Schmid, made The Northern Pikes a permanent quartet, playing drums and percussion. Schmid was born in Saskatoon. Initially, the band released several EPs. The first was the self-titled The Northern Pikes in 1984. The second EP was Scene In North America, released in 1985. They recorded both EPs at a studio near Pike Lake, SK.

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2 Good 2 Be Enough by Corey Hart

#761: 2 Good 2 Be Enough by Corey Hart

Peak Month: August 1987
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #9
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “2 Good 2 Be Enough

Corey Hart was born in 1962 in Montreal, Quebec. He is best known for his international Top Ten hits “Sunglasses at Night” (#7 Billboard Hot 100) and “Never Surrender” (#3 Billboard Hot 100). Hart is lauded as one of Canada’s most successful singer-songwriters. He’s sold over 16 million records worldwide. On the Billboard Hot 100 Hart scored 9 consecutive Top 40 Hits. Back in Canada he succeeded in charting 30 top 40 singles (including 11 Top 10 singles during his career). Hart is a Grammy Nominated, ASCAP & multiple Juno and ADISQ award winner. He has also written and produced several songs for fellow Quebec recording star Celine Dion.

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Real Wild Child by Iggy Pop

#966: Real Wild Child by Iggy Pop

Peak Month: March-April 1987
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #10
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Real Wild Child
Lyrics: “Real Wild Child

James Newell Osterberg, Jr. was born in 1947 in Muskegon, Michigan. His family lived in a trailer park in Ypsilanti, 18 miles west of Detroit. During high school he played the drum in numerous high school bands. One of the bands he played for from Ann Arbor, Michigan, were called the Iguanas. Young James Newell Osterberg Jr. derived his stage name from the Iguanas and became Iggy Pop. He moved to Chicago and was influenced by the Los Angeles based Doors, the Tacoma, Washington, based Sonics and the Lincoln Park, Michigan, based MC5. As he shaped his sound he formed The Psychedelic Stooges. Looking back on his formative years, Iggy Pop remarked in an interview with David Fricke of Rolling Stone Magazine in 2007, “Once I hit junior high in Ann Arbor, I began going to school with the son of the president of Ford Motor Company, with kids of wealth and distinction. But I had a wealth that beat them all. I had the tremendous investment my parents made in me. I got a lot of care. They helped me explore anything I was interested in. This culminated in their evacuation from the master bedroom in the trailer, because that was the only room big enough for my drum kit. They gave me their bedroom.”

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Together (The New Wedding Song) by Joey Gregorash

#1245: Together (The New Wedding Song) by Joey Gregorash

Peak Month: October 1987
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Together (The New Wedding Song)
Lyrics: “Together (The New Wedding Song)”

Joey Gregorash was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. His dad played the violin and young Joey took an interest in learning the instrument. In February 1964 Gregorash saw the Beatles perform on the The Ed Sullivan Show and was turned onto rock ‘n roll. He learned how to play the drums and formed a band called The Mongrels in 1965 with childhood friend John Nykon. Later Gregorash went solo and won a 1972 Juno Award in 1972 for Outstanding Performance-Male for his hit single “Down By the River.” For over a decade Gregorash pursued other interests until in 1987 his single, “Together (The New Wedding Song)”, became a hit in Canada.

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Moonlight Desires by Gowan

#1305: Moonlight Desires by Gowan

Peak Month: May 1987
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Moonlight Desires
Lyrics: “Moonlight Desires”

Lawrence Gowan was born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1956. His family moved to Scarborough, Canada, a suburb of Toronto, when he was a child. He recalls that his “marks in high-school were of a caliber that left me no option but to pursue the occupation of Rockstar.” He practiced piano and was trained at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. He formed a trio called Rhindgold in 1976. As the lead vocalist and keyboardist, Lawrence Gowan also demonstrated acrobatics on the stage and dancing on top of his baby grand piano. Rhinegold was a progressive rock act in the mold of Supertramp, Electric Light Orchestra and Yes.

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