Thursday, September 22, 1983

Pat Benatar Live from Earth

First posted 9/20/2020.

Live from Earth

Pat Benatar


Released: September 22, 1983


Peak: 13 US, 60 UK, 25 CN, 2 AU


Sales (in millions): 1.0 US, -- UK, 1.1 world (includes US and UK)


Genre: classic rock


Tracks:

Song Title (Writers) [time] (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Fire and Ice (live) (Tom Kelly, Scott St. Clair Sheets, Benatar) [3:46] (7/6/81, 17 US, 2 AR, 4 CN, 30 AU)
  2. Looking for a Stranger (live) (Franne Golde, Peter McIan) [3:28] (4/23/83, 39 US, 4 AR)
  3. I Want Out (live) (Neil Giraldo, Billy Steinberg) [4:05]
  4. We Live for Love (live) (Giraldo) [3:39] (2/25/80, 27 US, 8 CN, 28 AU)
  5. Hell Is for Children (live) (Giraldo, Benatar, Roger Capps) [6:06]
  6. Hit Me with Your Best Shot (live) (Eddie Schwartz) [3:07] (9/15/80, 9 US, 10 CN, 33 AU, gold single)
  7. Promises in the Dark (live) (Giraldo, Benatar) [5:14] (9/25/81, 38 US, 16 AR, 31 CN)
  8. Heartbreaker (live) (Geoff Gill, Clint Wade) [4:21] (10/26/79, 23 US, 16 CN, 95 AU)
  9. Love Is a Battlefield (studio recording) (Mike Chapman, Holly Knight) [5:23] (9/13/83, 5 US, 1 AR, 17 UK, 2 CN, 6 AU)
  10. Lipstick Lies (studio recording) (Giraldo, Myron Grombacher) [3:51]

Chart data is for original studio recordings.


Total Running Time: 43:02

Rating:

3.323 out of 5.00 (average of 4 ratings)


Awards:

About the Album:

This was Benatar’s first live album after four studio albums. It was her fifth consecutive platinum-seller, but didn’t attain the same chart heights as the previous three albums, which had all reached the top 5.

The album featured live versions of six of the nine songs she’d taken to the top 40 in the last six years. That meant most of her big hits, such as Heartbreaker, Hit Me with Your Best Shot, and Fire and Ice are present, but there are a few obvious omissions. Top-20 hit “Treat Me Right” from 1980’s Crimes of Passion is absent, but fan-favorite Hell Is for Children from that album is here.

Looking for a Stranger, first on Get Nervous, was her most recent top-40 hit prior to this collection. However, she neglected to include that album’s other two top-20 hits “Shadows of the Night” and “Little Too Late,” opting instead for the album cut I Want Out.

The album is rounded out by two new studio recordings. Love Is a Battlefield became Benatar’s biggest hit, reaching #5 on the pop charts and #1 on the album rock chart. The video depicted her as a girl on the streets who ends nonsensically dancing with her new street fans a la Michael Jackson’s zombie party in “Thriller.” It was pretty silly, but it was a popular video at the time.

Resources and Related Links:

Saturday, September 3, 1983

Eurythmics hit #1 with “Sweet Dreams Are Made of This”

First posted 2/1/2021.

Sweet Dreams Are Made of This

Eurythmics

Writer(s): Annie Lennox, Dave Stewart (see lyrics here)


Released: January 21, 1983


First Charted: February 12, 1983


Peak: 11 US, 11 CB, 3 RR, 36 AC, 16 AR, 1 CO, 2 UK, 12 CN, 6 AU (Click for codes to singles charts.)


Sales (in millions): 1.0 US, 1.0 UK, 3.14 world (includes US + UK)


Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 570.6 video, -- streaming

Awards: (Click on award for more details).

About the Song:

Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart were in the British pop group the Tourists in the latter half of the ‘70s, reaching #4 in the UK with a cover of “I Only Want to Be with You.” After two albums the group dissolved – as did the romantic relationship between Lennox and Stewart. A new working partnership was established, however, when the pair decided to continue working together as the Eurythmics.

The new wave duo released an album in 1981 that went nowhere. After Stewart experienced a collapsed lung and Lennox had a nervous breakdown, BR1 she doubted if their dreams would ever happen. That pessimism, balanced with Stewart’s messages to “hold your head up, movin’ on,” fueled the lyrics for “Sweet Dreams Are Made of This.” WK She thinks the song has become a mantra that’s an overview of human existence and open to interpretation: “whatever it is that makes you tick, that is what it is.” SF

The “wondrous oddity of this decidedly minimalist, downright skeletal pop song” AMG is that it simultaneously “sounds both warmly inviting and off-puttingly chilly.” AMG The song reflects the duo’s growing interest in synthesizers. Stewart produced the song’s beat and riff on one and Lennox started playing on another to create the dueling synths at the beginning of the song. WK

The record company wasn’t sold on the song because it had no chorus and released three singles in the UK from the Sweet Dreams Are Made of This album before finally taking a shot with the title cut. That might not have happened if the song hadn’t generated a strong response in Cleveland when a radio DJ played it. WK It was released in January 1983 in the UK and reached #2 two months later. In the U.S., it wasn’t released until May and hit #1 in September.

Another part of the song’s success was due to its video, which is “widely considered a classic clip from the early-MTV era.” WK The video paired surreal imagery such as Stewart playing keyboards next to a cow in a field with Lennox’s androgynous look marked by “striking cheekbones and ice-blue eyes emphasized by her close-cropped traffic-cone orange hair and tailored black suit.” AMG “Sweet Dreams” arguably became the duo’s signature song. WK


Resources and Related Links:

  • DMDB encyclopedia entry for Eurythmics
  • AMG All Music Guide review by Stewart Mason
  • BR1 Fred Bronson (2007). The Billboard Book of Number One Hits (4th edition). New York, NY; Billboard Books. Page 575.
  • SF Songfacts
  • WK Wikipedia