04 May 2022

Kent Music Report beyond the top 100: 4 May 1981

I hadn't heard any of this week in 1981's three new entries that bubbled under the top 100 before.  I'm guessing you probably haven't heard them, either.  Let's take a listen together.
John Cougar: looking surprisingly new Romantic on American Bandstand.
Beyond the top 100:
Position 20 "I Want Your Baby" by Inger Lise
Highest rank: 12th
Peak date: 11 May 1981
Weeks on below list: 3 weeks
Norwegian singer and actress Inger Lise Rypdal had been releasing albums since 1970, but "I Want Your Baby" was her first - and only - entry on the Australian charts... well, if registering on the beyond top 100 list counts.

There are a few 'interesting' facts about this track:
- only a Dutch pressing of the single is listed on discogs at the time of writing;
- there are no videos - TV performances or otherwise - of Inger Lise performing the track on YouTube;
- the single does not appear to have charted anywhere else, although it is possible that the Norwegian and Swedish charts are not archived online going back far enough to pick this one up.

To my ears, "I Want Your Baby" sounds very much a remnant of the 1970s, rather than a track from the early 80s.

Position 25 "Ain't Even Done with the Night" by John Cougar
Highest rank: 12th
Peak dates: 25 May 1981 and 1 June 1981
Weeks on below list: 5 weeks
At this point in 1981, American singer-songwriter John Mellencamp was going by the stage name John Cougar - having previously been Johnny Cougar, a name thrust upon him unwillingly by a manager, believing that his real surname Mellencamp would be too difficult to market.

"Ain't Even Done with the Night" was the second single lifted from John's fourth studio album, and first for the 1980s, Nothin' Matters and What If It Did, which did not chart in Australia.  It followed "This Time" (number 43, February 1981).  John(ny)'s biggest hit in Australia, at this point in time, had been "I Need a Lover" (number 5, August 1978).  His next major Australian hit, equalling his highest position on the singles chart, would come in 1982, with "Hurts So Good" (number 5, September 1982).
In John's native US, "Ain't Even Done with the Night" peaked at number 17 in May 1981.

John would undergo another, interim name-change on the way to assuming his birth name.  He became John Cougar Mellencamp for his 1983 studio album Uh-Huh (number 57, March 1984).

Position 30 "Moonroof" by Sky
Highest rank: 4th
Peak dates: 25 May 1981 and 1 June 1981
Weeks on below list: 7 weeks
Sky were a British/Australian instrumental band formed in London in 1978, and dissolving in 1995.  During their tenure, the group placed one single on the Australian top 100, "Toccata" (number 22, May 1980), an electronic/prog rock re-working of Johann Sebastian Bach's "Toccata and Fugue in D Minor".  Interestingly, "Toccata" was also the band's only single to chart anywhere in the world, it seems, reaching number 5 in the UK in May 1980, number 83 in the US, and the top 10 in Germany, the Netherlands and Ireland.
"Moonroof" was an Australian-only single, and the only release from the band's third album Sky 3 (number 7, April 1981).  The album reached the top ten despite the single stalling outside the top 100.

Next week (11 May): Another three new singles bubbling beneath the top 100.
< Previous week: 27 April 1981                                       Next week: 11 May 1981 >

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