A Look Back at October 1985 in Pop Culture

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Overview of the Music Landscape in October 1985

October 1985 marked a significant shift in the music landscape as the world of pop music began to change drastically. In the first two months of the month, several prominent names released albums that would become iconic records. Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Prince’s Purple Rain were released in October, and both albums would become two of the most successful forms of all time, with Thriller selling over 65 million copies worldwide.

The success of these two albums ushered in an era of “New Pop,” featuring heavily synthesized sounds, innovative production techniques, and a focus on the visual aspect of performance. Artists like Madonna, Duran Duran, and the Culture Club released their chart-topping albums in the same month, helping to define the new wave of music further.

At the same time, hip-hop was also beginning to gain traction, with Run-DMC’s Raising Hell becoming the first rap album to reach the top 10 on the Billboard charts. Hip-hop would become one of the world’s most popular music genres, with artists like Public Enemy, N.W.A., and A Tribe Called Quest emerging in the late 80s to help shape the sound.

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The success of these albums and artists helped define the music landscape during October 1985, setting the stage for the next decade of popular music. While the sounds of the 80s would soon be replaced by the grunge and alternative rock of the 90s, the impact of these albums and artists still resonates with listeners today.

The Top 10 Songs of October 1985

October 1985 was a great month for music. With the release of multiple classic albums, including Madonna’s Like a Virgin and Run-DMC’s King of Rock, the month’s top 10 songs featured some of the decade’s most iconic and memorable tracks.

At the top of the charts was Starship’s “We Built This City,” a synth-driven, rock-pop anthem that defined the sound of the 80s. The song was an instant classic, and its upbeat, anthemic lyrics (“We built this city on rock and roll!”) have become a part of pop culture.

Coming in at number two was “Take On Me” by A-ha, a Norwegian synth-pop band. The song was an international hit, and its groundbreaking music video, which featured pioneering rotoscope animation, was a sensation. The song’s infectious chorus and catchy synthesizer hooks helped make it one of the most iconic tunes of the decade.

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At number three was Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire,” a slow, sultry track showcasing the Boss’s signature heartland rock style. The song is one of Springsteen’s all-time classics, and its simple, haunting lyrics (“Hey little girl, is your daddy home?”) have become iconic.

Number four was Phil Collins’ “One More Night,” a mid-tempo pop-rock track that showcased Collins’ signature vocal style. The song was an international hit, and its gospel-tinged chorus (“One more night I’m gonna take it, take it higher”) has become a classic.

In the number five spot was Dire Straits’ “Money For Nothing,” a blues-rock track that featured one of the most memorable guitar riffs of the decade. The song was a massive hit, and its tongue-in-cheek lyrics (“Money for nothing and chicks for free”) have become iconic.

Number six was Madonna’s “Crazy For You,” a power ballad that showcased Madonna’s signature vocal style. The song was an international hit, and its passionate lyrics (“You don’t have to be rich to be my girl”) have become a classic.

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At number seven was “The Power of Love” by Huey Lewis and the News, a synth-driven, pop-rock anthem showcased the band’s signature sound. The song was an instant classic, and its upbeat, anthemic lyrics (“The power of love is a curious thing!”) have become a part of pop culture.

Coming in at number eight was Daryl Hall and John Oates’ “Out of Touch,” a mid-tempo pop-rock track that featured the duo’s signature vocal harmonies. The song was an international hit, and its catchy chorus (“We’re out of touch, out of time”) has become a classic.

In the number nine spot was “The Heat Is On” by Glenn Frey, a synth-driven, pop-rock anthem showcased Frey’s signature vocal style. The song was an instant classic, and its upbeat, anthemic lyrics (“The heat is on, it’s on the street”) have become a part of pop culture.

Finally, the month’s top 10 was “St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)” by John Parr, a synth-driven, pop-rock anthem that showcased Parr’s signature vocal style. The song was an instant classic, and its upbeat, anthemic lyrics (“Go now, go now, go now!”) have become a part of pop culture.

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October 1985 was a great month for music, and these ten songs are some of the best of the decade. From synth-pop to heartland rock, these songs capture the spirit of the 80s and remain timeless classics.

A. St. Elmos Fire (Man In Motion) by John Parr

“St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)” is a classic power ballad from the mid-1980s, written and performed by British rocker John Parr. The song was released as the lead single from the soundtrack of the 1985 film of the same name, and it achieved tremendous success, reaching number one in the United States and Canada and becoming a Top 10 hit in multiple other countries.

The song has a highly motivational message, as Parr sings about someone “on the brink of destruction” which is determined to make something of himself. The lyrics mention the power of faith and the strength of determination, and the chorus of “St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)” serves as a battle cry for anyone looking to fight through difficult times. Musically, the song is driven by an uplifting piano line and a soaring vocal performance from Parr, making it an anthemic track that has stood the test of time.

The success of “St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)” led to it becoming an anthem for the disabled community, with Parr himself giving the nod to the song’s connection to them in a 2005 interview: “The song resonated with the disabled community and it seemed to become an anthem for them. I’m very proud of that. The song was never written to become an anthem for the disabled, but I’m pleased it has.”

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“St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)” is an iconic song from the 1980s that continues to inspire and motivate people today. Its timeless message of hope and determination will ensure that it remains an evergreen classic for many years.

B. The Power of Love by Huey Lewis & The News

Huey Lewis & The News 1985 hit single, “The Power of Love,” is one of the most iconic love songs of the 1980s. Written by Chris Hayes and Huey Lewis, the song featured in the blockbuster film Back to the Future has since become a classic.

The song is an ode to the power of love and how it can bring us together, regardless of our differences. The lyrics emphasize the importance of finding true love and how it can help us to hold on during difficult times. The song has a classic rock and rolls feel, with a chorus that is instantly recognizable and clap-along-able.

The song opens with the line, “The power of love is a curious thing, make a one man weep, make another man sing.” This line emphasizes love’s mysterious and powerful nature and how it can affect us differently. The verse paints a vivid picture of how love can lift us, bring us joy, and cause us great pain.

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The chorus is mighty, with the lines, “The power of love, a force from above, cleaning my soul, flame on burn desire, love with tongues of fire.” These lyrics emphasize the passionate intensity of love and how it can be both beautiful and destructive simultaneously. The chorus also reflects the idea that love can be a powerful force for good, as it can help us to cleanse our souls and bring out our true desires.

Overall, “The Power of Love” is a timeless love song that perfectly captures the power of love and beauty. Music has stood the test of time and continues to be played on radio stations and in movies. It is a classic that reminds us of the power of love and how it can bring us together.

C. We Don’t Need Another Hero (Thunderdome) by Tina Turner

For many of us, Tina Turner’s “We Don’t Need Another Hero (Thunderdome)” is an iconic anthem of hope and resilience. The song was released in 1985 as part of the soundtrack for the film Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, but its messages remain relevant today.

The song starts with a powerful declaration of independence, with Turner singing, “I need a hero / I’m holding out for a hero ’til the end of the night.” This establishes the song’s central theme – the need for individuals to take control of their own lives and be the heroes of their own stories.

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The chorus is the key to understanding the song’s more profound meaning. Turner sings, “We don’t need another hero / We don’t need to know the way home / All we want is life beyond Thunderdome” – in other words, we don’t need someone to lead us or show us the way; we need to take responsibility for ourselves and fight for the life we want.

The song also speaks to a more prominent theme of resilience and perseverance in facing adversity. Turner sings, “Sometimes you don’t care / If the sky is falling / You can face the fear, and the pain / You can stand your ground.” These lyrics express that even when the odds are stacked against us, we can still find the strength to keep fighting.

Overall, “We Don’t Need Another Hero” is an uplifting and inspiring anthem of hope and resilience. It reminds us that we can be our heroes and that no matter what life throws us, we can find the strength and courage to keep going.

D. Oh Sheila by Ready for the World

Ready For The World’s “Oh Sheila” is an iconic 80s R&B song that has stood the test of time. Written and produced by the band’s lead vocalist Melvin Riley, the song was released as the lead single from their 1985 debut album, Ready For The World.

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The track is an upbeat, danceable song about a man’s unwavering devotion to the woman he loves. With its catchy chorus and infectious groove, “Oh Sheila” was an instant hit, becoming the group’s most significant success and peaking at number one on the Billboard Hot 100.

The song’s lyrics are simple yet sweet, expressing Riley’s love for his lady and appreciation for her loyalty and devotion. He sings, “Oh Sheila, you’re so fine, you’re so fine, you blow my mind. Hey, Sheila, I’ll be yours ’til the very end, you and me, my love, will never end.”

The accompanying music video was also a hit, featuring Ready For The World in various scenarios with their beloved Sheila, including a performance in a high school gymnasium and a romantic date in a park.

The song’s success was a significant milestone for the group, and it remains a favorite among fans of 80s R&B and pop music. Even today, it is a testament to the lasting power of love and the joy of finding the perfect companion.

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