Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, opinion, reviews and style, is known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres, it hosts events, owns a publishing firm, operates several TV shows. Billboard was founded in 1894 by William Donaldson and James Hennegan as a trade publication for bill posters. Donaldson acquired Hennegen's interest in 1900 for $500. In the early years of the 20th century, it covered the entertainment industry, such as circuses and burlesque shows, created a mail service for travelling entertainers. Billboard began focusing more on the music industry as the jukebox and radio became commonplace. Many topics it covered were spun-off into different magazines, including Amusement Business in 1961 to cover outdoor entertainment, so that it could focus on music.
After Donaldson died in 1925, Billboard was passed down to his children and Hennegan's children, until it was sold to private investors in 1985, has since been owned by various parties. The first issue of Billboard was published in Cincinnati, Ohio by William Donaldson and James Hennegan on November 1, 1894, it covered the advertising and bill posting industry, was known as Billboard Advertising. At the time, billboards and paper advertisements placed in public spaces were the primary means of advertising. Donaldson handled editorial and advertising, while Hennegan, who owned Hennegan Printing Co. managed magazine production. The first issues were just eight pages long; the paper had columns like "The Bill Room Gossip" and "The Indefatigable and Tireless Industry of the Bill Poster". A department for agricultural fairs was established in 1896; the title was changed to The Billboard in 1897. After a brief departure over editorial differences, Donaldson purchased Hennegan's interest in the business in 1900 for $500 to save it from bankruptcy.
That May, Donaldson changed it from a monthly to a weekly paper with a greater emphasis on breaking news. He improved editorial quality and opened new offices in New York, San Francisco and Paris, re-focused the magazine on outdoor entertainment such as fairs, circuses and burlesque shows. A section devoted to circuses was introduced in 1900, followed by more prominent coverage of outdoor events in 1901. Billboard covered topics including regulation, a lack of professionalism and new shows, it had a "stage gossip" column covering the private lives of entertainers, a "tent show" section covering traveling shows, a sub-section called "Freaks to order". According to The Seattle Times, Donaldson published news articles "attacking censorship, praising productions exhibiting'good taste' and fighting yellow journalism"; as railroads became more developed, Billboard set up a mail forwarding system for traveling entertainers. The location of an entertainer was tracked in the paper's Routes Ahead column Billboard would receive mail on the star's behalf and publish a notice in its "Letter-Box" column that it has mail for them.
This service was first introduced in 1904, became one of Billboard's largest sources of profit and celebrity connections. By 1914, there were 42,000 people using the service, it was used as the official address of traveling entertainers for draft letters during World War I. In the 1960s, when it was discontinued, Billboard was still processing 1,500 letters per week. In 1920, Donaldson made a controversial move by hiring African-American journalist James Albert Jackson to write a weekly column devoted to African-American performers. According to The Business of Culture: Strategic Perspectives on Entertainment and Media, the column identified discrimination against black performers and helped validate their careers. Jackson was the first black critic at a national magazine with a predominantly white audience. According to his grandson, Donaldson established a policy against identifying performers by their race. Donaldson died in 1925. Billboard's editorial changed focus as technology in recording and playback developed, covering "marvels of modern technology" such as the phonograph, record players, wireless radios.
It began covering coin-operated entertainment machines in 1899, created a dedicated section for them called "Amusement Machines" in March 1932. Billboard began covering the motion picture industry in 1907, but ended up focusing on music due to competition from Variety, it created a radio broadcasting station in the 1920s. The jukebox industry continued to grow through the Great Depression, was advertised in Billboard, which led to more editorial focus on music; the proliferation of the phonograph and radio contributed to its growing music emphasis. Billboard published the first music hit parade on January 4, 1936, introduced a "Record Buying Guide" in January 1939. In 1940, it introduced "Chart Line", which tracked the best-selling records, was followed by a chart for jukebox records in 1944 called Music Box Machine charts. By the 1940s, Billboard was more of a music industry specialist publication; the number of charts it published grew after World War II, due to a growing variety of music interests and genres.
It had eight charts by 1987, covering different genres and formats, 28 charts by 1994. By 1943, Billboard had about 100 employees; the magazine's offices moved to Brighton, Ohio in 1946 to New York City in 1948. A five-column tabloid format was adopted in November 1950 and coated paper was first used in Billboard's print issues in January 1963, allowing for photojournalis
Commodores is an American funk/soul band, at its peak in the late 1970s through the mid 1980s. The members of the group met as freshmen at Tuskegee Institute in 1968, signed with Motown in November 1972, having first caught the public eye opening for the Jackson 5 while on tour; the group's most successful period was in the late 1970s and early 1980s when Lionel Richie was the co-lead singer. The band's biggest hit singles are ballads such as "Easy", "Three Times a Lady", "Nightshift". In 1986, the Commodores won their first Grammy for the song "Nightshift"; the Commodores came together from two former student groups, the Mystics and the Jays. Richie described some members of the Mystics as "jazz buffs". Together, a six-man band was created from which the notable individuals were Lionel Richie, Thomas McClary, William King from the Mystics, they wanted to change the name. To choose a new name, William King randomly picked a word. "We lucked out," he remarked with a laugh. "We became'The Commodes.'"The band originated while its members attended Tuskegee University in Alabama.
After winning the university's annual freshman talent contest, they played at fraternity parties as well as a weekend gig at the Black Forest Inn, one of a few clubs in Tuskegee that catered to college students. They performed cover tunes and some original songs with their first singer, James Ingram. Ingram, older than the rest of the band, left to serve active duty in Vietnam, was replaced by Walter "Clyde" Orange, who wrote, or co-wrote, many of their hit tunes. Lionel Richie and Orange alternated as lead singers; the early band was managed by Benny Ashburn, who brought them to his family's vacation lodge on Martha's Vineyard in 1971 and 1972. There, Ashburn test marketed the group by having them play at outdoor spaces such as parking lots and summer festivals; the Commodores made. They performed the song "Too Hot ta Trot" during the dance contest. "Machine Gun", the instrumental title track from the band's debut album, became a staple at American sporting events, is featured in many films, including Boogie Nights and Looking for Mr. Goodbar.
It reached No. 22 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1975. Another instrumental, "Cebu" became a staple in the Quiet storm format. Three albums released in 1975 and 1976 are considered the peak of their harder funk period. After those recordings the group started to move towards a softer sound; that move was hinted at in their 1976 Top Ten hits "Sweet Love" and "Just to Be Close to You". In 1977 the Commodores released "Easy", which became the group's biggest hit yet, reaching No. 4 in the U. S. followed by "Brick House" top 5, both from their album The Commodores, as was "Zoom". The group reached No. 1 in 1978 with "Three Times a Lady". In 1979 the Commodores scored another top-five ballad, "Sail On", before reaching the top of the charts once again with another ballad, "Still". In 1981 they released two top-ten hits with "Oh No" and their first upbeat single in five years, "Lady". In 1982, Lionel Richie left to pursue a solo career. Skyler Jett replaced Richie as co-lead singer. In 1982, their manager Benjamin Ashburn who managed another band Platinum Hook died of a heart attack aged 54.
Over time, several founding members left - McClary left in 1983 to pursue a solo career and to develop a gospel music company. McClary was replaced by guitarist-vocalist Sheldon Reynolds, while LaPread left in 1986 and moved to Auckland, New Zealand. Reynolds departed for Earth, Wind & Fire in 1987, which prompted trumpeter William "WAK" King to take over primary guitar duties for live performances. Keyboardist Milan Williams exited the band in 1989 after refusing to tour South Africa; the group gradually abandoned its funk roots and moved into the more commercial pop arena. In 1984 former Heatwave singer James Dean "J. D." Nicholas assumed co-lead vocal duties with drummer Walter Orange. The band remained hitless until 1985 when their final Motown album, produced by Dennis Lambert—all prior albums were produced by James Anthony Carmichael—delivered the title track "Nightshift", a tribute to Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson who had both died the previous year. "Nightshift" won the Commodores their first Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals in 1985.
In 2010 a new version was recorded, dedicated to Michael Jackson. The Commodores were on a European tour performing at Wembley Arena, London, on June 25, 2009, when they walked off the stage after they were told that Michael Jackson had died; the band thought it was a hoax. However, back in their dressing rooms they broke down in tears; the next night at Birmingham's NIA Arena, J. D. Nicholas added Jackson's name into the lyrics of the song, thenceforth the Commodores have mentioned Jackson and other deceased R&B singers, thus came the inspiration upon the one-year anniversary of Jackson's death, to re-record, with new lyrics, the hit song "Nightshift" as a tribute. In 1990 the Commodores formed Commodores Records and re-recorded their 20 greatest hits as Commodores Hits Vol. I & II
"Oh Sheila" is a 1985 single by Ready for the World. The song went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100, the Hot Black Singles and the Hot Dance Club Play charts, it was the first of two chart toppers for the band on the Billboard R&B chart, preceding their 1986 number-one R&B hit, "Love You Down". The song is misattributed to Prince, due to similarity to his vocal and musical style, as well as the belief that the song's lyrics allude to frequent Prince collaborator Sheila E; the use of a faux British accent during parts of the song was the preference of singer Melvin Riley Jr. who said "I like that kind of accent, so I thought I'd use that sound." 7" vinyl version"Oh Sheila" – 3:36 "I'm the One Who Loves You" – 3:2012" vinyl version"Oh Sheila" – 6:48 "Oh Sheila" – 4:00 "Oh Sheila" – 3:54 In 1999, Dutch dance duo Angel City covered the song, featuring vocals by British singer Lara McAllen. The song was released as the lead single in 1999 and 2003 from the band's 2005 album, Love Me Right. Angel City's version changes the chorus.
"Love Me Right" reached number 11 on the UK Singles Chart and number 95 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States, becoming their first charting single in the latter. The single charted in Belgium and the Netherlands. List of Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles of 1985 List of number-one dance singles of 1985 List of number-one R&B singles of 1985 List of number-one singles of 1985 List of number-one dance airplay hits of 2004 Lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics
DeBarge was an American musical recording group composed of several members of the DeBarge family, a family of musical talent compared to the Jackson family. In addition to various solo projects completed by members of the family, DeBarge was active between 1979 to 1989; as an R&B group, they enjoyed popularity throughout that time with a popular musical sound, compared to a mix pop-oriented whose repertoire included R&B, soul and pop music. The group consisted of Mark, El. Bunny and Bobby joined later. DeBarge released six studio albums, four of them with Motown's Gordy Records: The DeBarges, All This Love, In a Special Way, Rhythm of the Night; the latter became the group's best-selling album and garnered the single "Rhythm of the Night", which hit #3 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it their highest charting single in the United States. DeBarge entered its decline in 1986, when Bunny and El were offered solo deals with Motown and departed the group, DeBarge was dropped from Motown soon afterward.
The remaining members signed with Stripe Horse Records, an independent label, in 1987, which released their final studio album, Bad Boys. The group continued to perform for an additional two years, with Chico DeBarge joining the group in 1988. Two members of the group, brothers Bobby and Chico were arrested for drug trafficking in 1989. Legal issues, compounded with the changing musical tastes of the public led to the group's dispersion in 1989, 10 years after its inception; the DeBarge family are the children of Robert DeBarge, Sr. a white man of French descent, Etterlene DeBarge, a black woman born in Michigan in 1935. They married when Etterlene was 17, a year after the death of her father James Abney, a church choir leader and peanut retailer, they separated in the mid-1970s and divorced in 1974. Etterlene remembers Robert DeBarge, Sr. as physically and abusive to her and the children, said he used her youth, the absence of her father, continuous pregnancy to control her. DeBarge, Sr. has been characterized as "domineering and physically abusive to his wife," and some of the DeBarge children have accused him of having sexually abused them.
Bunny Debarge, the eldest, recalls being sexually abused by him between the ages of 7 to 13. The group, named for their shared surname, hailed from the East Side of Detroit, where the siblings were born and raised. Members included sister Bunny and brothers Mark, William and James; the siblings who became DeBarge started performing in various groups together in the Detroit, Michigan area in the mid 1970s. In 1979, brothers Randy, El were part of the SMASH band, a release on Source Records/MCA in the USA/Canada before it was released as Pall Mall Groove HOT ICE in Germany by Polydor. Bernd Lichters, who rented a home in Cerritos, CA, bought them instruments, they were mentored by members of the Motown group Switch, including their elder brothers Tommy and Bobby and co-founding member and family friend Gregory Williams. Bunny DeBarge had joined her younger brothers in 1979 as well, they formed as The DeBarges in 1980; that year, because of Bobby's success with Switch, younger brother El was able to perform live on the piano and sing for Motown CEO and founder Berry Gordy, impressed by the group and agreed to sign them that year.
For a year the group worked alongside members of Switch, helping to add background vocals, instrumentation and musical and lyrical composition to the band's works, most prominently in "I Call Your Name", "My Friend in the Sky", "Love Over and Over Again". By 1981, Bobby and Tommy had left Switch and returned the favor to their siblings working with them on their debut album, released that year with Bobby, El as main producers; the only single, the Bobby-led ballad "What's Your Name", failed to chart. In 1982 they added their 18-year-old brother James to the lineup and worked on their second album, All This Love, produced by El and Iris Gordy; the album launched them into R&B stardom with the records "I Like It" and "All This Love". Both songs became crossover pop hits with "All This Love" going to number one on Billboard's adult contemporary chart. In 1983, the group made an impression after appearing on Motown 25, where they performed alongside High Inergy, their performance together ended in a standing ovation.
In 1983, the group issued their third album, In a Special Way, which spawned two further hit singles, "Time Will Reveal" and "Love Me in a Special Way". Like All This Love before it, the album reached gold status in the United States. Following that album's success, DeBarge were handpicked by Luther Vandross to open for him on his "Busy Body Tour" to support his album of the same name. Vandross discovered the band's popularity while waiting for his set to begin, shocked at the attention the group got, which group members compared to "Beatlemania" and Motown's early phenomenon, The Jackson 5, which DeBarge was molded to follow after by its staff. In 1984, James DeBarge made headlines when he secretly eloped with Janet Jackson of the famed Jackson family, but their marriage was annulled the following year; when the tour ended in late 1984, the group recorded the Diane Warren composition, "Rhythm of the Night", for the soundtrack to the Motown-produced film, Berry Gordy's The Last Dragon from 1985.
The song was released in early 1985 and became a smash single reaching the top five in several countries in the US and UK, becoming the band's biggest-sel
Freeway of Love
"Freeway of Love" is a song by American singer Aretha Franklin. It was written by Jeffrey Cohen and Narada Michael Walden and produced by the latter for her thirtieth studio album Who's Zoomin' Who?. The song features a notable contribution from Clarence Clemons, the saxophonist from Bruce Springsteen’'s E Street Band. Sylvester, Martha Wash, Jeanie Tracy provided backup vocals on "Freeway of Love". Released as the album's leading single, it became Franklin's highest-charting single in twelve years, reaching number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, while topping the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart for five weeks from July 27, 1985 to August 24, 1985. In a remixed "rock" version, the song topped the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart; the accompanying promotional music video was filmed in the Detroit, Michigan area, became one of the most popular videos of the year. "Freeway of Love" earned Franklin her 12th Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. Owing to the pink Cadillac appearing on the album cover and several times in the lyrics, more than 100 pink Cadillacs accompanied Franklin in her funeral procession in August 2018.
The video was filmed in black and white and shows videos of automobiles being manufactured in the early seventies and a then-current Cadillac Cimarron. Franklin co-owned Detroit's Club Taboo on Woodbridge where her "Another Night" music video was filmed. Portions of the "Freeway of Love" video were filmed at Doug's Body Shop, at 22061 Woodward, in Ferndale, Michigan. Clarence Clemons, who performs the saxophone during the song, is featured in the video, as well. Although the video is set to the original version of the song, the tempo of the song is noticeably faster in the video. US 7" Single In 1986, "Weird Al" Yankovic covered the song as part of his polka medley "Polka Party!". The song was covered in 2009 by house music/dance singer Pepper Mashay. A version by jazz musician Lea DeLaria appears in and on the soundtrack of the 2017 Pixar movie Cars 3. Lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics
We Are the World
"We Are the World" is a charity single recorded by the supergroup United Support of Artists for Africa in 1985. It was written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie and produced by Quincy Jones and Michael Omartian for the album We Are the World. With sales in excess of 20 million copies, it is one of fewer than 30 retail singles to have sold at least 10 million copies worldwide. Following Band Aid's 1984 "Do They Know It's Christmas?" Project in the United Kingdom, an idea for the creation of an American benefit single for African famine relief came from activist Harry Belafonte, along with fundraiser Ken Kragen, was instrumental in bringing the vision to reality. Several musicians were contacted by the pair, before Jackson and Richie were assigned the task of writing the song; the duo completed the writing of "We Are the World" seven weeks after the release of "Do They Know It's Christmas?", one night before the song's first recording session, on January 21, 1985. The historic event brought together some of the most famous artists in the music industry at the time.
The song was released on March 1985, as the first single from the album. A worldwide commercial success, it topped music charts throughout the world and became the fastest-selling American pop single in history; the first single to be certified multi-platinum, "We Are the World" received a Quadruple Platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America. Awarded numerous honors—including three Grammy Awards, one American Music Award, a People's Choice Award—the song was promoted with a critically received music video, a home video, a special edition magazine, a simulcast, several books and shirts; the promotion and merchandise aided the success of "We Are the World" and raised over $63 million for humanitarian aid in Africa and the US. Following the devastation caused by the magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake in Haiti on January 12, 2010, a remake of the song by another all-star cast of singers was recorded on February 1, 2010. Entitled "We Are the World 25 for Haiti", it was released as a single on February 12, 2010, proceeds from the record aided survivors in the impoverished country.
Before the writing of "We Are the World", American entertainer and social activist Harry Belafonte had thought for some time to have a song recorded by the most famous artists in the music industry at the time. He planned to have the proceeds donated to a new organization called United Support of Artists for Africa; the non-profit foundation would feed and relieve starving people in Africa Ethiopia, where around one million people died during the country's 1983–1985 famine. The idea followed Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" Project in the UK, which Belafonte had heard about. He planned money to be set aside to help eliminate hunger in the United States of America. Entertainment manager and fellow fundraiser Ken Kragen was contacted by Belafonte, who asked for singers Lionel Richie and Kenny Rogers—Kragen's clients—to participate in Belafonte's musical endeavor. Kragen and the two musicians agreed to help with Belafonte's mission, in turn, enlisted the cooperation of Stevie Wonder, to add more "name value" to their project.
Quincy Jones was drafted taking time out from his work on The Color Purple. Jones telephoned Michael Jackson, who had just released the commercially successful Thriller album and had concluded a tour with his brothers. Jackson revealed to Richie that he not only wanted to sing the song, but to participate in its writing as well. To begin with, "We Are the World" was to be written by Jackson and Wonder; as Wonder had limited time to work on the project and Richie proceeded to write "We Are the World" themselves. They began creating the song at the Jackson family home in Encino. For a week, the two spent every night working on melodies in Jackson's bedroom, they knew that they wanted a song that would be memorable. The pair wanted to create an anthem. Jackson's older sister La Toya watched the two work on the song, contended that Richie only wrote a few lines for the track, she stated that her younger brother wrote 99 percent of the lyrics, "but he's never felt it necessary to say that". La Toya further commented on the song's creation in an interview with the American celebrity news magazine People.
"I'd go into the room while they were writing and it would be quiet, odd, since Michael's very cheery when he works. It was emotional for them." Richie had recorded two melodies for "We Are the World", which Jackson took, adding music and words to the song in the same day. Jackson stated, "I love working quickly. I went ahead without Lionel knowing, I couldn't wait. I went in and came out the same night with the song completed—drums, piano and words to the chorus." Jackson presented his demo to Richie and Jones, who were both shocked. The next meetings between Jackson and Richie were unfruitful, it was not until the night of January 21, 1985, that Richie and Jackson completed the lyrics and melody of "We Are the World" within two and a half hours, one night before the song's first recording session. The first night of recording, January 22, 1985, had tight security on hand, as Richie, Jackson and Jones started work on "We Are the World" at Kenny Rogers' Lion Share Recording Studio; the studio, on Beverly Boulevard in California, was filled with musicians, video crews, retinues and organizers as the four musicians entered.
To begin the night, a "vocal guide"
Caravan of Love
"Caravan of Love" is a 1985 R&B hit recorded by Isley-Jasper-Isley, the second half of The Isley Brothers' 3 + 3 lineup of the 1970s. After breaking away from the legendary family group, the group wrote and produced this single, Jasper's interpolation intending to reach audiences by presenting Christian beliefs in his music; the song became the trio's biggest hit going to #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart and #51 on the Billboard pop chart in 1985. The music video was filmed on-location in New York City. Chris Jasper: Keyboards, lead vocals, production Ernie Isley: Guitar, backing vocals, production Marvin Isley: Bass, backing vocals, production Side one "Caravan of Love" – 4:15Side two "I Can't Get over Losin' You" – 4:05 Side one "Caravan of Love" – 5:43Side two "I Can't Get over Losin' You" – 4:05 British indie band The Housemartins released "Caravan of Love" in November 1986; the a cappella song was a success, reaching number one in the UK Singles Chart on 16 December 1986, before being denied the Christmas number one single by a posthumous re-release of Jackie Wilson's "Reet Petite".
The song was released on the greatest hits compilation Now. Side one "Caravan of Love" – 3:40Side two "When I First Met Jesus" – 2:46 Side one "Caravan of Love" "We Shall Not Be Moved"Side two "When I First Met Jesus" "So Much in Love" "Heaven Help Us All" On The Rippingtons 1996 album Brave New World, featuring the vocals of The Whispers. Gospel singer Marvin Sapp with Christian contemporary singer Bob Carlisle and jazz saxophonist Kirk Whalum from the WOW Gospel 2000 compilation. Jazz artist Terry Callier on his 2002 album, Speak Your Peace. In 2003, Australian born Irish singer Johnny Logan recorded the song on his album, We All Need Love. In 2004, German pop group Preluders covered the song on their album Prelude to History. British pop singer Pixie Lott released in November 2014 a charity version of the song as the lead single from her first hits collection Platinum Pixie; the song charted at #129 in the UK