Skip to content

Brian A. Wilkins Posts

“Word Up”: 37 years ago this week, Cameo peaked at #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 – December 6, 1986
December 4, 2023

I thought for many years that Cameo lead singer Larry Blackmon was wearing a red jock strap or nut cup when I first saw this video on Night Tracks in late 1986. But years later I learned it was called a “codpiece.” Not even going there. “Word Up” is just a great song. Hard to get more 80s than this.

Leave a Comment

Happy Thanksgiving 2023!
November 23, 2023

My pasta salad is bomb.

Be thankful for every moment with someone you love, even if it’s only one moment, one memory.

Leave a Comment

Rita Coolidge: 44 years ago today, “I’d Rather Leave When I’m in Love” debuted at #83 on the Billboard Hot 100
November 17, 2023

I was too young to remember this song when it first came out. The first memory of it was circa 1981. My family was hanging out with another family out in Conrad, Iowa. I believe our dads worked together at the pork packing plant. These family friends were VERY country! But it was always so fun going to their house and vice versa.

Our parents were all drunk that night. We (the kids) were either outside playing with the chickens, hogs, etc.; or inside taking sips of beer we stole from the adults. At some point, our parents and a few other people were dancing to a slow song that never left my head. It was Rita Coolidge. read more

Leave a Comment

“Do You Remember…the 21st of September” – Earth, Wind & Fire
September 21, 2023

For the record, “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire peaked at number-8 on the Billboard Hot 100 on February 10, 1979.

The 21st of September should be a national holiday just because of this song.

I’m rarely a fan of remakes. And there will never be a better version of this song than the original. But give my girl Nataly Dawn of the duo Pomplamoose a listen. She introduced “September” to a completely different demographic and generation in the 21st century.
read more

1 Comment

32 years ago today, “Step by Step” debuted as part of the TGIF Friday lineup on ABC – September 20, 1991
September 20, 2023

Here are all seven seasons of the show’s intros here.

“A second time around.” Love that so much. Here is Season 4 (getting harder and harder to broadcast it. Leave comment if you can’t see the video).

Step by Step was basically the Gen X version of The Brady Bunch. It had the exact same premise.

I didn’t get to watch much of the first two seasons of Step by Step in September and October 1991-92. My high school football games were on Friday nights. But the replays and subsequent seasons ingrained this show in my heart. It was one of the last television programs I watched regularly. read more

Leave a Comment

Kathy Troccoli: “Everything Changes” (When You Love Someone) was her biggest and only song to eclipse the Billboard Top 20 in 1992
May 12, 2023

Kathy Troccoli – still looking good at 64.

Kathy Troccoli, like Amy Grant, was a Christian singer who briefly crossed over to pop music. And interestingly, 42 years ago this week, on May 9, 1981, Ms. Troccoli moved from Long Island to Nashville to live with Dan Harrell, who was Amy Grant’s brother-in-law at the time.

Her Christian rock career launched with the 1982 album Stubborn Love.

She released two more albums before taking a five-year hiatus from music, beginning in 1986, and moved back to New York. Troccoli became a studio singer for Mariah Carey and Taylor Dayne in 1991. read more

Leave a Comment

33 years ago today, the final episode of 227 aired on NBC
May 6, 2023

It was part of the Saturday Night lineup: 227, Amen, Golden Girls and Empty Nest.

227 aired for five seasons, from September 1985 until the final episode on May 6, 1990.

Leave a Comment

“Don’t eat meat, but she sure like the bone.” Dead Eye Dick and “New Age Girl” peaked at #27 on January 7, 1995 before mysterious disappearance
February 3, 2023

This song was a sign of the new times, the end of old humanity and the start of what we have today. It was readily apparent when I first left home for college in Sioux City, Iowa in 1993.

The girls in college asked questions like “what do you think of abortion?” I thought “WTF” and “huh”? I really only knew the word abortion from the 1986 gross-out movie “The Fly.”

Geena Davis wanted an abortion because she got pregnant by a dude (Jeff Goldblum) who was half human and half insect. The movie was funny, disgusting and disturbing at the same time. read more

Leave a Comment

“You Light Up My Life”: 45 years ago today was the last of 10 weeks on top of Billboard Hot 100; original song was not about God
December 24, 2022

I was barely alive when “You Light Up My Life” graced the top of the Billboard Hot 100 for 10 weeks from October 15, 1977 to December 24, 1977. But the song was such an incredible cultural and musical phenomenon that you’d literally hear it ten times a day on the radio, in television shows, etc. for the next 10 years.

Here is the song that everyone knows, by then 21-year-old Debby Boone.

Boone told anyone who would listen that the song was about God. That story stuck for over four decades. But God was just Boone’s interpretation of the song, as she came from a very conservative Christian family. Pat Boone is her dad. read more

1 Comment

Amy Grant: 31 years ago today, “That’s What Love Is For” was in its third and final week at #1 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary Charts
December 17, 2022

I will forever and always miss these days. Amy Grant had a stellar 1991.

Baby, Baby” reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on April 27, 1991, and #1 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary (A.C.) Charts on May 4, 1991. “Every Heartbeat” peaked at #2 on the A.C. Charts on August 10, 1991, and #2 on the Hot 100 in August 17, 1991.

Both of those songs are tied to so many great memories. But not as many as “That’s What Love Is For.” The song topped out at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 on November 23, 1991. But it hit the top spot on the A.C. Charts on November 30, 1991 and stayed there for three weeks. read more