One Day in Your Life: October 28, 1985

October 28, 1985, is a Monday. The headline on the nation’s sports pages today is the meltdown of the St. Louis Cardinals, who lost game 7 and the World Series to Kansas City last night 11-0. On Saturday night, the Cardinals had lost game 6 on an umpire’s call that TV replays clearly showed to be wrong. In tonight’s NFL game, the Los Angeles Raiders run their record to 6-and-2 with a 34-21 win over San Diego. Future NFL player Early Doucet is born, and former player Tommy Thompson dies. Chris Evert takes over the Number One ranking among female tennis players from Martina Navratilova, who had taken it from Evert two weeks only, and who will get it back a month from now. On the comics pages today, Garfield abuses Jon again. A series of stories in the current Time magazine dissects the hijacking of the cruise ship Achille Lauro earlier this month, and the joint American-Italian operation that intercepted a plane carrying the Palestinian hijackers. People magazine’s cover story is on the best and worst-dressed people of the year. Portions of Massachusetts are declared a federal disaster area after Hurricane Gloria struck the East Coast in late September. TV preacher Pat Robertson will claim the hurricane missed his headquarters in Virginia because of his prayers. A total eclipse of the moon is visible throughout all of Asia, but cannot be seen in North and South America.

Top movies at the box office this past weekend include Jagged Edge, Krush Groove, Commando, and Back to the Future. Among the soaps on daytime TV today: Ryan’s Hope. Tonight, PBS airs a documentary about the Statue of Liberty, directed by Ken Burns. On network TV, it’s the made-for-TV movie A Time to Live, starring Liza Minnelli in a role that will win her a Golden Globe award for Best Actress, and the retooled sitcom What’s Happening Now. Joan Rivers is guest host on The Tonight Show with John Larroquette and Howie Mandel. The Grateful Dead opens a two-night stand in Atlanta, Eric Clapton plays Milan, Italy, R.E.M. plays London, and Miles Davis plays Copenhagen, Denmark. The Bob Dylan box set Biograph and Dead Man’s Party by Oingo Boingo are released. Barbra Streisand shoots a video for “Somewhere” at the Apollo Theater in New York. On the Cash Box magazine chart for the week, “Take on Me” by a-ha is in its second week at Number One; “Money for Nothing” by Dire Straits holds at Number Two. “Head Over Heels” by Tears for Fears jumps into the Top 10 at Number 7, moving up from 12. Other strong upward movers: “We Built This City” by the Starship, Glenn Frey’s “You Belong to the City,” “Be Near Me” by ABC, and “Separate Lives” by Phil Collins and Marilyn Martin. A Top-40 station in Illinois that is playing all of these songs plans to launch a live morning show next month. The host, who has never much liked to get up in the morning, will decide to set his alarm for 4:20AM, because 4:15 would be much too early.

Perspective From the Present: I don’t hate “We Built This City” as much as some people (such as Blender magazine, which put it atop its list of 50 worst songs ever), but that video really is sucktastic. It fails to use the images the song provides, most notably the radio reference in the middle, opting instead for shots of people staring. That’s a weird choice for a song supposed to be about the enduring power of rock.

7 responses

  1. I cannot hear this song without hearing the line “We killed this kitty with rocks and stones.”

    In my brief stint in New Zealand radio, I discovered that the version of this song that was popular down there had no DJ patter in it at all… just an instrumental break. I only remembered hearing the version with the DJ on Chicago radio. Did anyone else stateside play the non-DJ version?

  2. @Len: The U.S. Grunt promo 45s had the DJ patter on one side, and the no-patter version on the flip. Trouble was, there was nothing printed on the labels themselves to indicate that the two sides were different, so many radio folks probably assumed – incorrectly – that both sides were identical, then simply carted up one side and aired it.

    1. Thanks!

      I’m wishing I would have carted up the non-patter version with my own patter and left it.

  3. WestBerkeleyFlats | Reply

    I also think that the song is ok, although the video is completely random, as was often the case in MTV’s early years. So the city built on rock ‘n roll appears to be perhaps D.C. or Las Vegas or may San Francisco. I know Grace Slick has said it’s about L.A., but a Bay Area theme would have made more sense in the video, especially with the DJ patter.

  4. Thanks for the spotlight on ’85, Jim. It’s still a little too warm in Houston right now to reminisce, but an autumn mixtape for me would most likely include “Head Over Heels” and/or its flipside, “When in Love With a Blind Man” (an early demo of what would become “The Working Hour”). “Be Near Me” would also be a contender.

    I was 15 that fall, and my best friend was the low-power Houston-area video channel I could receive in my room until about midnight, when interference from San Antonio’s CBS affiliate would overpower its signal. Among the songs that bring those evenings back: The Cure’s “In Between Days”, Fiction Factory’s “(Feels Like) Heaven” (two years old at that point) and Quarterflash’s “Walking on Ice” (great tune but another sucktastic video). Speaking of which, “We Built This City” isn’t as horrid as Blender and their ilk make it out to be, but it’s still no “Sara”. Had that blue-vinyl 45, but I’ll save that tale for a One Day…entry from the spring of ’86.

  5. I would have been recovering from UT’s 16-14 victory over Alabama on the preceding Saturday in Birmingham (10/26). Alas, it would be the last time the Vols would beat the Tide for 10 years. There was actually a tie thrown in during that 10 years back when such things existed in college football. Unfortuntely (IMO anyway) the next week Take on Me would be replaced by Saving All My Love for You by Whitney Houston as the #1 song (at least on the Billboard charts). For as bad as the We Built this City video was the Aha video was just as good.

  6. I was born on this particular day I am now 27.

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