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Thread: MTV Top 20 Video Countdown (US)

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 20:31

    Bruce debuted in July '84. The first #1 was "Footloose" by Kenny Loggins earlier that March on the very first show. (Movie was on VH1 last night.)

    One of the pre-breaks stated that "Money for Nothing" spent 4 weeks at #1, and 17 weeks in total at the chart, making it a record holder for longest running video at the time.

    I know that "Lonely Ol' Night" and "If You Love Somebody..." both spent 5 weeks at the top. Neither would compare to "Alive and Kicking" by Simple Minds spending a record 8 weeks at the top. (Which would be tied, only after the top 20 stopped airing in the US in favor of smaller top 10 shows, and not too long before MTV stopped using consistent chart methodologies, by Chumbawamba's "Tubthumping".)

    I really hope you do have stuff from '87 and '88. The more the better! And '89 through '90 would be even better if anyone has those.

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    Thanks To Bey.. Careers were ruined. Your Favs went from artist of the year to employee of the month at Dunkin’ Donuts. #RoundIV

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 21:05

    Week of 9/20/85
    1) (=) (5) John Cougar Mellencamp - "Lonely Ol’ Night" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    2) (+2) (?) Davie Bowie/Mick Jagger - “Dancing in the Streets" (#2)
    3) (-1) (12) Dire Straits - "Money For Nothing" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    4) (+2) (7) Sting - “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#4)
    5) (-2) (11) John Parr - "Theme From St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion)" (#1 for 1 week)
    6) (Debut) Loverboy - “Lovin’ Every Minute Of It” (#6)
    7) (=) (?) Phil Collins - “Don’t Lose My Number” (? Most likely #6 or 7)
    8) (-3) (?) Tina Turner - "We Don’t Need Another Hero" (? Most likely #5)
    9) (+2) (?) Wham! - "Freedom" (#9)
    10) (+2) (?) Hooters - "And We Danced" (#10)
    11) (+6) (2) Madonna - “Dress You Up” (#11)
    12) (+1) (?) Cheap Trick - "Tonight It’s You" (#12)
    13) (-5) (6) Michael McDonald - "No Lookin’ Back" (#8)
    14) (Debut) Starship - We Built This City (#14)
    15) (+3) (2) Tears for Fears - "Head Over Heels” (#15)
    16) (-9) (8) Huey Lewis & the News - "The Power of Love" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    17) (Debut) Marillion - “Kayleigh” (#17)
    18) (Debut) Ready for the World - “Oh Sheila” (#18)
    19) (+1) (2) Pointer Sisters – “Dare Me” (#19)
    20) (-10) (?) John Waite - “Every Step of the Way” (#10)


    Week of 9/27/85
    1) (=) (6) John Cougar Mellencamp - "Lonely Ol’ Night" (#1 for 3 weeks)
    2) (+2) (8) Sting - “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#2)
    3) (-1) (?) Davie Bowie/Mick Jagger - “Dancing in the Streets" (#2)
    4) (-1) (13) Dire Straits - "Money For Nothing" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    5) (+1) (2) Loverboy - “Lovin’ Every Minute Of It” (#5)
    6) (+8) (2) Starship - We Built This City (#6)
    7) (=) (?) Phil Collins - “Don’t Lose My Number” (? Most likely #6 or 7)
    8) (+3) (3) Madonna - “Dress You Up” (#8)
    9) (=) (?) Wham! - "Freedom" (#9)
    10) (=) (?) Hooters - "And We Danced" (#10)
    11) (Debut) A-ha - “Take On Me” (#11)
    12) (+6)(2) Ready for the World - “Oh Sheila” (#12)
    13) (+2) (3) Tears for Fears - "Head Over Heels” (#13)
    14) (-9) (12) John Parr - "Theme From St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion)" (#1 for 1 week)
    15) (Debut) Roger Daltrey - “After the Fire” (#15)
    16) (+1) (2) Marillion - “Kayleigh” (#16)
    17) (Debut) Mr. Mister - “Broken Wings” (#17)
    18) (Debut) Heart - “Never” (#18)
    19) (-11) (?) Tina Turner - "We Don’t Need Another Hero" (? Most likely #5)
    20) (-1) (3) Pointer Sisters - “Dare Me” (#19)

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 21:19

    "Lonely Ol' Night" does spend 5 weeks at #1, and I had estimated Sting at 4 weeks but 5 could very well be true as well. I'm absolutely certain that "Money for Nothing" only spent 2 weeks at the top though, as I started watching the top 20 for the sole reason of tracking its progress (I thought that video was just about the coolest thing I'd ever seen). It did log 17 weeks though.

    "Alive and Kicking" is an interesting one. I have it at #1 for 5 weeks, then for the weeks of 1/3/86 and 1/10/86 there was a two-week "break" where they aired the year-end top 100, and then there was no countdown aired, and on 1/17 JCM was back at #1 with "Small Town." It sounds like MTV gave Simple Minds credit for two extra weeks at #1 via a frozen chart period, but that would only add up to 7. Oh well, I'll just keep posting from my records and hopefully we can eventually get confirmation for a lot of these inconsistencies from other chart-watchers who eventually find this thread.

    Do your flashbacks ever credit John Waite's "Missing You" with 6 weeks at #1 in 1984? I seem to recall the VJ's bringing that up as the then-current record whenever a song got to 5 weeks at the top in '85.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 21:40

    Week of 10/4/85
    1) (=) (7) John Cougar Mellencamp - "Lonely Ol’ Night" (#1 for 4 weeks)
    2) (+3) (3) Loverboy - “Lovin’ Every Minute Of It” (#2)
    3) (+1) (14) Dire Straits - "Money For Nothing" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    4) (+2) (3) Starship - We Built This City (#4)
    5) (+6) (2) A-ha - “Take On Me” (#5)
    6) (-4) (9) Sting - “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#2)
    7) (+1) (4) Madonna - “Dress You Up” (#7)
    8) (+2) (?) Hooters - "And We Danced" (#8)
    9) (+3) (3) Ready for the World - “Oh Sheila” (#9)
    10) (+5) (2) Roger Daltrey - “After the Fire” (#10)
    11) (+2) (4) Tears for Fears - "Head Over Heels” (#11)
    12) (+6) Heart - “Never” (#12)
    13) (+4) Mr. Mister - “Broken Wings” (#13)
    14) (-11) (?) Davie Bowie/Mick Jagger - “Dancing in the Streets" (#2)
    15) (+1) (3) Marillion - “Kayleigh” (#15)
    16) (-7) (?) Wham! - "Freedom" (#9)
    17) (-10) (?) Phil Collins - “Don’t Lose My Number” (? Most likely #6 or 7)
    18) (Debut) Thompson Twins - “Lay Your Hands On Me” (#18)
    19) (-5) (13) John Parr - "Theme From St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion)" (#1 for 1 week)
    20) (Debut) Outfield - “Say It Isn’t So” (#20)



    Week of 10/11/85
    1) (=) (8) John Cougar Mellencamp - "Lonely Ol’ Night" (#1 for 5 weeks)
    2) (=) (4) Loverboy - “Lovin’ Every Minute Of It” (#2)
    3) (+1) (4) Starship - We Built This City (#3)
    4) (Debut) Glenn Frey - You Belong to the City (#4)
    5) (=) (3) A-ha - “Take On Me” (#5)
    6) (-3) (15) Dire Straits - "Money For Nothing" (#1 for 2 weeks)
    7) (+2) (4) Ready for the World - “Oh Sheila” (#7)
    8) (+3) (5) Tears for Fears - "Head Over Heels” (#8)
    9) (+1) (3) Roger Daltrey - “After the Fire” (#9)
    10) (+2) (3) Heart - “Never” (#10)
    11) (+2) (3) Mr. Mister - “Broken Wings” (#11)
    12) (-6) (10) Sting - “Fortress Around Your Heart” (#2)
    13) (+1) (?) Davie Bowie/Mick Jagger - “Dancing in the Streets" (#2)
    14) (-6) (?) Hooters - "And We Danced" (#8)
    15) (=) (4) Marillion - “Kayleigh” (#15)
    16) (-9) (5) Madonna - “Dress You Up” (#7)
    17) (+1) (2) Thompson Twins - “Lay Your Hands On Me” (#17)
    18) (+2) (2) Outfield - “Say It Isn’t So” (#18)
    19) (Debut) Paul Young - “I’m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down” (#19)
    20) (Debut) R.E.M. - “Driver 8” (#20)

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 21:42

    Totally unfamiliar with JW's run there, but I do know that it was ranked as #1 of '84.

    Spotted REM there. Pretty sure Rush is due any moment now with "The Big Money".

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:16

    "Dress You Up" at #7 definitely proves that Adam Curry didn't know what he was talking about when he said every video from Borderline to Cherish was a #1.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:21

    you guys might be right with "Don't Mean Nothing", I somehow remember coming home one Friday night from a school event and seeing it #1 on the video countdown, but alas it was 23 years ago this month lol.

    Interesting to see "Take On Me" wasn't dominating the video countdown because I remember that video was massive when it came out and being all over MTV, so I (but I also hadn't watched the top 20 countdown at that point) always assumed that video was probably #1 for weeks on end.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:21

    Blame the writers. They sometimes didn't get their facts straight. Curry was still in Europe for another two years.

    "Take On Me" was ranked #40 of the year. Evidently at the time the top 100 was tabulated from weekly top 20 results, something they evidently dropped a couple years later, as many videos that had strong top 20 runs ended up in surprisingly low spots, and others that didn't do so well or in some cases never made it on ended up really high due to various other factors.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:35

    That is so odd Take On Me didn't fair better on the countdown pointswise. That video was pretty much played on the hour in Sept/Oct 1985 almost as much as "Money For Nothing" was.

    Especially considering the "Loving Every Minute Of It" video by Loverboy is so comparatively forgotten today.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:54

    Yeah, the 1985 year-end chart tracked weekly chart performance pretty closely, then in 1986 it kinda goes off the rails in terms of correlation ("West End Girls" peaks at #16 but winds up #23 in the year-end recap...just a little revisionist history there... )

    Rush is most definitely on the horizon with "The Big Money," which has one of the more bizarre chart runs of the year.

    Gotta join my fantasy football draft, will try to get some more '85s up later tonight!

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 22:59

    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    "Dress You Up" at #7 definitely proves that Adam Curry didn't know what he was talking about when he said every video from Borderline to Cherish was a #1.
    But 'Dress You Up' wasn't a video, it was just a live performance. Does it even count?

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:00

    That soon, huh? Wow. I guess they decided they called it wrong on WEG.

    Here's what doesn't make sense though: "Manic Monday", though I'm not familiar with how it did on the Top 20, came in at a paltry #99 for '86, though it was otherwise one of the year's biggest hits.

    To the above comment, there have been many "live clips" to enter heavy rotation, and the countdown as well, though most came from MTV Unplugged.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:01

    In 1986 did MTV start basing their countdown on times they played the video instead of where they peaked on the countdown? The "Take On Me" fiasco in 85 could've been a big reason for that. Even if "West End Girls" only got to #16, it was played a lot and #23 is a pretty fitting year-end rank. In comparison, I remember in 1989, Debbie Gibson's "Lost In Your Eyes" ranked in the 90's for the year (I believe it was 92 or 93) even though the video had been a #1 on the countdown that spring.

    All in all, this thread is a testament to how MTV has jumped the shark and lost its mission statement. Sure "Jersey Shore" gets ratings but does anyone really think in 2033-2035 that people will still be interested in discussing it the way we're interested in old MTV Video Countdown peaks from 1985? Doubt it. Hell, The Osbournes were everywhere a few years back and now you can't even give the DVD's away.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:03

    Quote Originally Posted by jio
    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    "Dress You Up" at #7 definitely proves that Adam Curry didn't know what he was talking about when he said every video from Borderline to Cherish was a #1.
    But 'Dress You Up' wasn't a video, it was just a live performance. Does it even count?
    if it appeared on the top 20 countdown, you'd think it would as Curry claimed that everything she did from 1984-1989 went straight to #1 on the countdown

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:04

    Quote Originally Posted by azul120
    To the above comment, there have been many "live clips" to enter heavy rotation, and the countdown as well, though most came from MTV Unplugged.
    It was pretty much a standard that every rock act at the time at least had one or two "concert" clips. Bon Jovi were one of the biggies in that dept.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:08

    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    Quote Originally Posted by jio
    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    "Dress You Up" at #7 definitely proves that Adam Curry didn't know what he was talking about when he said every video from Borderline to Cherish was a #1.
    But 'Dress You Up' wasn't a video, it was just a live performance. Does it even count?
    if it appeared on the top 20 countdown, you'd think it would as Curry claimed that everything she did from 1984-1989 went straight to #1 on the countdown
    As I stated above, the writing staff would on occasion get their facts wrong. I remember when "What About Your Friends?" by TLC failed to reach the top, the host (Steve Isaacs IIRC) said they wouldn't be going 3 for 3, when infact TLC had only one #1 to their credit, and that was "Baby Baby Baby".

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:13

    I wasn't criticizing the MTV writers, but stating that a concert video would count as a real video, especially since this was the era of Bon Jovi's "You Give Love A Bad Name" and "Living On A Prayer" (and Bad Medicine, Lay Your Hands On Me, I'll Be There For You, almost easier to count the videos they did that weren't live), Guns N' Roses' "Paradise City", Def Leppard's "Pour Some Sugar On Me", Michael Jackson's "Dirty Diana" amongst scores of other videos in the late 1980's that were primarily set in a concert environment and yet scored massive MTV airplay, many of which going to #1 on the countdown, so if those count as "real videos", so does Dress You Up IMO.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:14

    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    Quote Originally Posted by azul120
    To the above comment, there have been many "live clips" to enter heavy rotation, and the countdown as well, though most came from MTV Unplugged.
    It was pretty much a standard that every rock act at the time at least had one or two "concert" clips. Bon Jovi were one of the biggies in that dept.
    Yeah I remember that, I just wasn't sure if those clips count as videos or not. They should go back to that actually, I mean nothing beats a good concert video

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:22

    I think it's a matter of official vs. co-opted for MTV airplay video release. The "Dress You Up" vid was taken from the "Like A Virgin" tour video, so it could go either way. A more apt example would be the MTV '93 VMA performance of "Animal" by Pearl Jam debuting at #18, stalling there, and falling right off. Evidently MTV was still getting over PJ video withdrawals.

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    by » Sun August 29th, 2010, 23:24

    Quote Originally Posted by jio
    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    Quote Originally Posted by azul120
    To the above comment, there have been many "live clips" to enter heavy rotation, and the countdown as well, though most came from MTV Unplugged.
    It was pretty much a standard that every rock act at the time at least had one or two "concert" clips. Bon Jovi were one of the biggies in that dept.
    Yeah I remember that, I just wasn't sure if those clips count as videos or not. They should go back to that actually, I mean nothing beats a good concert video
    I feel the same way. Concert videos would end up boosting ticket sales too because no better way to show that _____ is worth the price of a ticket until you've seen them in that sort of environment and pretty much all the biggies had concert-oriented videos in the day. Bono himself admits that the "Sunday Bloody Sunday" Red Rocks video went a long way in breaking U2 in America. Plus, they are easier and less expensive to shoot than a traditional video.

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    by » Mon August 30th, 2010, 00:16

    Anyways, since there doesn't seem to be any other activity here atm, I will start with the '92 stuff, which began in earnest with 1/11, as 1/4 was off for reruns of the top 100 of '91:

    Week of 1/11/92 (the skipped week was counted for any video already and still on the chart)
    1) (+2) (7) Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch - "Wildside" (#1 for 1 week)
    2) (+6) (5) Metallica - "The Unforgiven" (#2)
    3) (+1) (5) U2 - "Mysterious Ways" (#3)
    4) (-3) (6) Michael Jackson - "Black or White" (#1 for 3 weeks)
    5) (+1) (6) Motley Crue - "Home Sweet Home '91" (#5)
    6) (+3) (6) Color Me Badd - "All 4 Love" (#6)
    7) (+3) (4) Aerosmith - "Sweet Emotion" (#7)
    8) (+5) (4) Prince and the New Power Generation - "Diamonds and Pearls" (#8)
    9) (+3) (3) Guns 'n' Roses - "Live and Let Die" (#9)
    10) (+5) (3) Paula Abdul - "Vibeology" (#10)
    11) (+3) (4) Nirvana - "Smells Like Teen Spirit" (#11)
    12) (+4) (5) George Michael and Elton John - "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me" (#12)
    13) (-11) (8) Genesis - "No Son Of Mine" (#2)
    14) (Re-entry) (3) Hammer - "2 Legit 2 Quit" (#13)
    15) (-10) (7) Hammer - "Addams Groove" (#5)
    16) (+2) (3) Mariah Carey - "Can't Let Go" (#16)
    17) (+3) (3) Bryan Adams - "There Will Never Be Another Tonight" (#17)
    18) (-11) (8) Boyz II Men - "It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday" (#4)
    19) (Debut) (1) Scorpions - "Send Me An Angel" (#19)
    20) (Debut) (1) Shanice - "I Love Your Smile" (#20)

    Week of 1/18/92
    1) (+1) (6) Metallica - "The Unforgiven" (#1 for 1 week)
    2) (+1) (6) U2 - "Mysterious Ways" (#2)
    3) (+8) (5) Nirvana - "Smells Like Teen Spirit" (#3)
    4) (-3) (8) Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch - "Wildside" (#1 for 1 week)
    5) (+4) (4) Guns 'n' Roses - "Live and Let Die" (#5)
    6) (+2) (5) Prince and the New Power Generation - "Diamonds and Pearls" (#6)
    7) (=) (5) Aerosmith - "Sweet Emotion" (#7)
    8) (+2) (4) Paula Abdul - "Vibeology" (#8)
    9) (+5) (4) Hammer - "2 Legit 2 Quit" (#9)
    10) (-5) (7) Motley Crue - "Home Sweet Home '91" (#5)
    11) (+1) (6) George Michael and Elton John - "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me" (#11)
    12) (-8) (7) Michael Jackson - "Black or White" (#1 for 3 weeks)
    13) (+4) (4) Bryan Adams - "There Will Never Be Another Tonight" (#13)
    14) (+2) (4) Mariah Carey - "Can't Let Go" (#14)
    15) (-9) (7) Color Me Badd - "All 4 Love" (#6)
    16) (Debut) (1) "Mr. Big - To Be With You" (#16)
    17) (-2) (8) Hammer - "Addams Groove" (#5)
    18) (+2) (2) Shanice - "I Love Your Smile" (#18)
    19) (-6) (9) Genesis - "No Son Of Mine" (#2)
    20) (Debut) (1) Right Said Fred - "I'm Too Sexy" (#20)

    Week of 1/25/92
    1) (+2) (6) Nirvana - "Smells Like Teen Spirit" (#1 for 1 week)
    2) (=) (7) U2 - "Mysterious Ways" (#2)
    3) (+2) (5) Guns 'n' Roses - "Live and Let Die" (#3)
    4) (-3) (7) Metallica - "The Unforgiven" (#1 for 1 week)
    5) (+1) (6) Prince and the New Power Generation - "Diamonds and Pearls" (#5)
    6) (+1) (6) Aerosmith - "Sweet Emotion" (#6)
    7) (+1) (5) Paula Abdul - "Vibeology" (#7)
    8) (+3) (7) George Michael and Elton John - "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me" (#8)
    9) (-5) (9) Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch - "Wildside" (#1 for 1 week)
    10) (+6) (2) "Mr. Big - To Be With You" (#10)
    11) (+3) (5) Mariah Carey - "Can't Let Go" (#11)
    12) (+1) (5) Bryan Adams - "There Will Never Be Another Tonight" (#12)
    13) (+7) (2) Right Said Fred - "I'm Too Sexy" (#13)
    14) (-4) (8) Motley Crue - "Home Sweet Home '91" (#5)
    15) (+3) (3) Shanice - "I Love Your Smile" (#15)
    16) (Debut) (1) Genesis - "I Can't Dance" (#16)
    17) (-8) (5) Hammer - "2 Legit 2 Quit" (#9)
    18) (Debut*) (1) Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch - "I Need Money" (#18)
    19) (Debut) (1) Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - "Kings Highway" (#19)
    20) (Debut) (1) PM Dawn - "Paper Doll" (#20)

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    by » Mon August 30th, 2010, 00:19

    was Hammer one of the first re-entries on there?

    The only other one I remember was Motley Crue's "Dr. Feelgood" in late 1989, which debuted at #19 or #20, then fell off the next week, then re-entered the next week and then remained on the chart for several weeks afterwards and making it into the top 10.

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    by » Mon August 30th, 2010, 00:41

    There were a couple others, one such example being Everybody Hurts by REM, initially debuting the very week of its world premiere at #20 only to fall right off. Two weeks later, it made it back on and went all the way to #4.

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