Top Ten Tuesday: WLS-FM (94.7 FM, Chicago), 9/29/85

Browsing the ARSA site this afternoon, I found a few surveys for WLS-FM, WLS-AM’s counterpart in Chicago. It became WLS-FM in the mid-’60’s and went through a number of call letter changes in the ’70’s and ’80’s (most notably WDAI, then WYTZ and WRCK). It brought back the old call letters in the early ’80’s, and now plays an oldies format. Here’s their Top Ten from this date 35 years ago.

# Song / Artist Comments
10 Smokin’ In The Boys’ Room
Mötley Crüe
The original was by Brownsville Station in 1973, when it reached #3 in both the US and Canada. Mötley Crüe’s cover reached #16 for their first Top 40 hit, and also reached #19 in Canada. Their cover is actually pretty close to the original, but I prefer the original.
9 The Power of Love
Huey Lewis & The News
As you can probably tell, this was written for the 1985 movie *Back To The Future* with Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd. It was included on the soundtrack album for the movie and on the British versions of the band’s fourth album Fore!. It reached #1 on the Hot 100 and the Top Rock Tracks chart, #1 in Canada, Australia, and Japan, was certified Gold in the US and Canada and Silver in the UK.
8 Freeway of Love
Aretha Franklin
From her 30th studio album, Who’s Zoomin’ Who?, The Queen of Soul took this to #3 on the Hot 100, #1 on the R&B/Hip-Hop chart and the Dance Club plays chart, #6 in Canada and Australia, and #3 in New Zealand. The video was shot in and around Detroit, better known as Motown (although Aretha recorded this on Atlantic, I believe).
7 Dress You Up
From the Material Girl’s 1984 release Like A Virgin, the song reached #5 in the US, the UK, Australia, Belgium and The Netherlands, #10 in Canada, and #6 in Europe. The video is taken from her 1985 “Material Girl” tour, after which she did a serious makeover.
6 St. Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion)
John Parr
From the soundtrack for the 1985 movie St. Elmo’s Fire starring most of Hollywood’s Brat Pack, this was a #1 hit in the US and Canada. The movie did pretty well, too, even if it was pretty much universally panned.
5 Take On Me
a-ha’s only hit in the US, this reached #1 in most of the world. The video probably has a lot to do with it, which might be part of the reason it’s been the only song they’ve had on the charts here. [Annalisa]( pointed out recently that they’ve had a lot of success in Europe. In fact, they’re still going strong, particularly in Norway.
4 Dancing In The Street
Mick Jagger and David Bowie
Jagger and Bowie did this single as part of the Live Aid famine relief, with all the proceeds going to the effort. The original intent was to do the video live, with Jagger in JFK Stadium in the US and Bowie in Wembley Stadium in the UK, but the delay caused by the satellite linkup made this impractical. It was a Top 10 single in most of the world, earned a lot of money for Live Aid, and they had more fun than adults should have making it.
3 Oh Sheila
Ready For The World
From their eponymous 1985 debut album, this band from Flint, Michigan had a #1 hit in the US and Canada, where it received a Gold record.
2 Cherish
Kool & The Gang
A lovely song that still gets airplay on New Adult Contemporary stations, from the album Emergency, this reached #2 on the Hot 100, #1 on the R&B and Adult Contemporary charts, #1 in Canaada, and in the Top Ten in the rest of the world.
1 Money For Nothing
Dire Straits
From their Brothers In Arms album, it reached #1 in the US, #4 in the UK, received the Grammy for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group and the Video of the Year on the MTV Video awards.

And that’s Top Ten Tuesday for September 29, 2020.

22 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: WLS-FM (94.7 FM, Chicago), 9/29/85

  1. John,

    Is Top Ten Tuesday your creation or did you borrow the idea? I think I’d like to incorporate this meme in the future on my blog. The earliest I see doing that won’t be until November. Next month is pretty full already. I’m joining Mary in her Rocktober Music Fest event. I love your playlists! I just hit start while I catch up with other is Blogosphere. 🙂 Have a terrific day, my friend!


    1. Yes, Top Ten Tuesday is my creation. It’s what used to be the Friday 5×2, also my creation. It replaced Two for Tuesday (not my original idea; I borrowed it from many radio stations), which I moved to Friday where it’s now Five for Friday. If you’d like to use any of those ideas, be my guest… 😀


  2. Thankfully I know all the songs because right at the rop, I could not play the song so I couldn’t get to the others but I like all of these. These are bringing back some fond memories.


  3. Great selection of mewsic. I like that version of Dancing In The Street by Mick Jagger and David Bowie but Martha and the Vandellas did it better. And then there’s the Van Halen version which totally rocks!


    1. There were a lot of covers of that song. Bowie and Jagger were looking to make money for Live Aid, and they succeeded in that. And, I didn’t think their version was bad, and the video is hilarious. They really camped it up…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Yep – 1985 – this is when I started rediscovering country, and this list is why. “Money For Nothing” and “Take On Me” are the only two here that wouldn’t send me to the country station button on the radio.


    1. We might have had country stations in Chicago, although R&B stations were a little more prevalent, and the music from the mid- and late ’70’s were the impetus for me to get into blues and jazz. still, one can always do with background noise…

      Liked by 1 person

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