This Week In The 80’s: Walking Like a Man, Hitting Like a Hammer

This Week In The 80’s: Walking Like a Man, Hitting Like a Hammer

Spring of 1989. It’s the second semester of my freshman year of college. It’s a little over a month to the end of the school year and I have Spring fever. Bad. I can easily be talked into skipping class to go do something else at this point. The dorm I lived in was always a cacophony of noise as there were so many different songs blaring out of various dorm rooms and common rooms. From this week’s Top 40 chart, you could be sure to hear “One” by Metallica (fantastic video), “She Drives Me Crazy“, “Forever Your Girl” and especially “Funky Cold Medina” at any and all hours of the day. There was a juke box (an ACTUAL record playing juke box) in the little cafe/grill located in the dorm basement that was free to play and they were actually really good about changing out the music in it. We would frequently sit down there, eat grilled cheese sandwiches (because they were cheap) and spin stuff on the jukebox. One of the songs I can remember punching up on that thing was “The Look” by Roxette which is sitting at #2 this week after spending a week at #1.

I will shamelessly admit that Roxette was one of my guilty pleasures of the late 80’s/early 90’s. Lead singer, Per Gessle, said of the song:

“I wanted to write a ZZ Top-type of song. It turned out to be something totally different in the end, which is always the case. I never really thought it would be a big song. I had it around for a couple of months before I played it for Marie and our producer. They both said, ‘This is the best thing you’ve done in ages – you have to record it.’ The first two lines of the song – ‘Walking like a man, hitting like a hammer’ – are guide lyrics, words just scribbled down to have something to sing. Couldn’t come up with anything better, so we kept them. Everybody gets lucky sometimes.”

One other song on this week’s chart that I absolutely loved is “Cult of Personality” by Living Colour. They were just so different from everything else that was popular at the time. New Jack hard rock, jazz infused funk metal that was radio accessible. This song is great but, honestly, the entire album is just terrific. You should check it out.

If you want to check out the rest of this week’s Top 40 chart, you can check out my Spotify playlist – This Week In The 1989. I started it six years ago with 1983 and I update it weekly based on that week’s Top 40 chart (the playlist is listed in reverse order so you can listen from #40 to #1). We just happen to be walking through 1989 right now so go give it a listen!

This Week In The 80’s is a weekly look at the Top 40 charts with Eric Vardeman. His Twitter handle is @ericvardeman.

About Eric Vardeman 115 Articles
80's lover. Screenwriter. Cohost of The Greatest Lists podcast. Christmas enthusiast. Tulsa Curling Club founder. Cherokee. Guitar player. Boomer Sooner. Curator of 80's playlists (

1 Comment

  1. Cacophony is the perfect word to describe my college dorm as well when it came to shear volume and variety of music being blared at the same time. “Cult of Personality” is one of my all-time favorites (and it always kind of annoys me when people only know it as CM Punk’s intro music).

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