My Jams ’81

1981 pic

Warning:  “My Jams” posts contain adult language and situations.

“Gwin, you better hurry up and come get your plate ‘cause the food is gettin’ cold!”

Today, mama cooked fried pork chops with collard greens and macaroni and cheese!!! By the way, I helped her grate the cheese for the macaroni.  I figured I better watch her while she cooks so that when I grow up I’ll know how to cook for my own family.

Anyway, so you know I quit violin right?  Daddy was a little bit mad about that because he bought me my own violin after spending two years renting the one I had before.  Don’t worry, he’s gonna sell it so he’ll get his money back.

Oh yeah, the reason why I quit was to become a majorette in the marching band this year. Sorry, but I can’t do violin, chorus and band practice.  That’s too much!  That’s why I quit violin.  Shoot, I wanted to play “Star Wars” like Ms. Hargrove but we ain’t even got to the lesson where you learn how to make your fingers trimble on the strings.

Besides, I can’t wait to march with the band.  We gon’ play “Let’s Groove” by Earth Wind and Fire.  We already practicing our routine.

Guess what?

All the majorettes added parts to our dance.  I added the part where  we jump up, kick and land close to the ground and twirl our way back up.  We’ll do that when the band plays the part “So we can boogie on down, down, boogie on down…”  Everybody likes my idea!  I made that part up because I know I can jump and kick higher than all the rest of ‘em.

That’s enough about that.

Do you wanna know a secret?  Ok, I’ll tell you but you have to promise me you will NOT tell a soul.

Ok, so you remember the boy I was telling you about that I like?  Well today, he was at my friend’s house and there was nobody home but my friend, this boy, another boy and me.  Well, my friend told me that since I like the boy that I should go all the way with him.  That’s not exactly what she said but you know what I mean.  Anyway, she pushed me into the den with him and shut the door behind her.  He was standing by a stereo that was playing “Am I dreaming” by Atlantic Starr.

You know I was shaking and FREAKING OUT right?

I didn’t say a word, I just stood there looking like a mullet fish.  So he walked over to me and asked me if I was scared and I said, “yes.”


He gave me a really big long hug, lifted my chin and kissed me on my lips.  Then he told me that I didn’t have to do anything that I didn’t want to do.

Well I didn’t want to do anything and I told him that. Then, he smiled and said, “You a sweet girl, I’ll see you later.”

Atlantic Starr was still singing when he walked out the door.

Oops!  I gotta go for now!  My food gon’ really be cold plus I wanna watch ‘Solid Gold’ when it first come on.  I already hear them playing “Let’s get physical,” by Olivia Newton-John.

Oh yeah, my favorite Solid Gold dancer is Darcel, she’s the one with the long hair—she knows how to get down!  Somebody told me she was married to one of the Spinners but I don’t know if that’s true.

See ya later!

🙂 🙂 🙂


Chile, y’all better watch those kids!  I don’t give a damn how well you know their friend’s family!  All kinds of crazy tomfoolery happens at the homes of people you ‘know.’  Now to be fair, parents can’t be everywhere but just remember that children can be sneaky as hell!  I got two of them jokers so I know from experience.  Hell, I was sneaky and so were you!

Baby, that little fast ass heffa had Lil Lady G hemmed up in a room with a mannish little boy.  Chile I was in danger of making a serious life choice waaaaaay too soon.  Just imagine if young Mr. Carribeanish had decided he didn’t give a damn what I wanted.  That whole little saga could have gone bad-wrong!

To thicken up the plot, did you peep the song that was playing in the background?  “Am I Dreaming” by Atlantic Starr?  Whaaat?  Oh and let us not forget “Send for me!” Baby, the mood was SET!

I think it’s safe to say that I am flat out lucky that I came out of that situation with all my girl parts intact.


Anywhats, so what’s going on in your corner of the world in 1981? Are you getting along okay?  Anything I should know about?  Don’t hesitate to tell me!  Meet me in comments at the after party!

And so…

Let’s do this…

My Jams ‘81

Get down on it by Kool and The Gang

Just in case you didn’t know, that ain’t Kool singing.

Baby that’s cool ass “JT.”

That brother know he was ice cold on a microphone!

Talk about a sexy crooner?  He most assuredly goes on Lady G’s list—sorry Chevvy, “I saw him first!” LOL!

“Ooooooooh ooooh ooooh get down.”

It Must be Magic by Teena Marie

“Weeeeeeeeee!”  Oh don’t act like you don’t know! That’s Lady T’s signature entrance!

Stop the damn presses!  Stop the presses!

Lady T has ENTERED the building!  Yessir!

Baby this Queen had Melvin Franklin and all the damn Temptations spitting a little fire on that joint!

Who else do you know with that kind of clout?

Now don’t get me wrong I know that Melvin Franklin was Rick James’ ‘play uncle’ and that may have had something to do with it but Teena…I mean Teena!

Horns, strings, bass….all the sounds that I love the most!  I see T. Wayne two stepping!  Ron is catching up and Geo is straight chilling!

Do y’all miss Lady T like I do?

No worries, you will see her again on this list!

Lady G always has and always will be down with Lady T!  Baby that’s Bible and Church!

Stepping out by Kool and the Gang

This one didn’t get the credit that I think it should have!  If you don’t know it, please go check it out!  But, I’ll betcha my core followers know this joker!

What’cha Gonna Do For Me by Chaka Khan

Damn! Just Damn!

“Uh huh a-uh huh!”  Queen Chaka so bad she can make an utterance sound like high opera!

I simply cannot with Chaka!

But do you hear that bass guitar turning and churning all around in that damn thang? What?

This my shit right here!

Make that Move by Shalamar

Aw hell….The first few notes and I am DEAD!

Howard acted a damn fool on this jam and that’s a good thing!

Again, it has all the essential elements that I need in a song.  It’s got me some horns, some strings and some bass!  Some piano!  Some rhythm guitar….All the shit I need to kill me DEAD!

By the way, DEAD is good!

Oh but have you heard “Somewhere there’s a love just for me?”  SHIIIIIIIIT!!!! They killed that one too!

Two Hearts by Stephanie Mills with TP

A musical unicorn of sorts!  I mean, where do you see two masterful singers willing to work together to sound so freaking good?


I heard it through the grapevine by Roger Troutman and Zapp

Mama left planet Earth mad at Roger Troutman for committing what she considered a form of blasphemy when he recorded this song using the voice box thingy.

Did I mention that Roger died years before she did?  That’s how deep it ran with Eva!

Anyway, please allow me to make a minor digression in order to tell you a true story!

One day, mama asked me if I had ever heard of Roger Troutman.  I said, “Yeah mama, everybody know Roger Troutman!”

She then went on to say:

“I went to Pyramids to get that new Shalamar record. Well a limo pulled up and a man got out so I said, ‘excuse me, who are you?’ and he said, ‘Hi m’am, I’m Roger Troutman.’  She then said he opened the door to the store for her and they both went on about their business.

Needless to say, I was chomping at the bit!!  I said, “Mama you know Roger Troutman, he’s the one that sings with that voice thingy!”

Mama looked at me and barked, “Wait just a damn minute!  Is he the one that fck’d up “Grapevine?”

I said, “Well…yes.” But I was thinking “hell to da naw!”

Mama said, “If I hadda known that…..”

Y’all I can’t tell you everything she said! And for my own safety I didn’t even mention that he remade ‘Midnight hour’ too.  That would have been deadly–and not the good kind of deadly either.

Anyway, let’s just end the story by saying that Roger did, somewhat, redeem himself with her when he made ‘Computer Love.”

Whew!!! Despite all the drama, I gotta admit that all kinds of magical things happened when mama was around!

Now, frankly, I liked Roger’s version of Grapevine!  The long version is my jam!  He showed out!

“Don’t you leave me… don’t you leeeeave me girl!”

“Heard it through, heard it through, heard it through…tear it up!”

On the beat by The BB&Q band

Yessir!  That’s Brooklyn, Bronx and Queens!  All the way up there in New York!  I think Tony Tone Vega is from around that way somewhere!

Honey if I didn’t know any better I would’ve thought that was Nile Rodgers playing rhythm guitar on this jam! Hell it might just be; but Lady G simply cannot be bothered to research it!  If you want to know for sure, google it then let me know.

Yaasss!  Get it boys!

Let’s work by Prince

Yasss! Baby that thang got down off his magical Pegasus– with his pretty self –and commenced to show his entire ass with this jam!

BASS!!!!!  Yasss!

Walking into Sunshine by Central Line

When I first heard this song I remember saying to myself “Self, you done heard this music from somewhere before!”

Yasss baby, this song samples the Duke of Earl’s “Get down.”

Baby sampling or interpolating or whatever you want to call it was new territory back then so some people were a bit confused!

Either way, I loved it!  I still rock it to this day!

Thanks UK!

“I gotta get away to see what’s right for me!”

Bon bon vie by T.S. Monk

“Gimme da Bon, Bon, Bon, Bon, Bon, Bon, Bon, Bon Vie!  Give me the good life”

A funky ass ode to living your life right!


Are you single by Aurra

BASS!  BASS! BASS!  Bassline!  I JUST CAN”T !!!

I’ll guarantee that T. Wayne will pay $5 per bass slap!

A bassist’s heaven!

And love goes on by Earth Wind and Fire

This is one of those back in the back on the b-side jams!

Yeah well you best believe that Lady G knows it intimately!

I actually read that Phillip Bailey said it’s one of his favorites despite the fact that most folks don’t know it.

Go check it out!

Holla back in comments.

Love has come around by Donald Byrd and the Blackbyrds

“I’m so glad now love has come around!”

T. Wayne!!!! Please tell the peoplez about this jam!

This is one of those jams that folks liked when it was out but then forgot about it!

Well I implore you to revisit this joker right here!


Freaky Dancin’ by Cameo

This one and pretty much EVER-Y-THANG Cameo did from about 1976 up until 1982 was funky as hell!  Do you hear me?  If funk is your thing, please don’t leave off Cameo!

‘Knights of the Soundtable?”  WTF?

“In order to move like this, you gotta have confidence…”

Heartbeat by Taana Gardner




Wake your ass up and check out this BASSSSSSS!

This joker has been sampled so much that it is unreal!

It’s all about the BOTTOM on this jam!!!

Oh yeah and that little tweeting on top is nice too but the bottom is the boss right ‘chere! Just plain NASTY!

You got to give it to Taana, that Queen handled all of that!!  Yasss!

DEAD! DEAD dammit I am DEAD!!!


8th Wonder by The Sugar Hill Gang

“With the pow-wow boogie and the big bang bang……….and you don’t stop!”


Ok, I can get with this whole rap thing!  This was the jam! This is when rappers could really rap and have fun.  The rap game done devolved something awful save one or two dudes/chicks out there.

Master GEE? Say whaaaaaat?

He was mine….in my head anyway!

I guess I “just been hit by the Capricorn King!”

Nights…..Feel like getting down by Billy Ocean

Yasss baby!!!!

I love this damn song!  Again, this is another one that I take with me to this day!

Another shout out to da UK!

Something about you by Ebonee Webb

Yeah…you thought it was Prince didn’t you?



Y’all it’s time to check out Mama’s list:

Can’t go for that by Hall and Oates

Why do fools fall in love by Diana Ross

When she was my girl by The Four Tops

Lady by the Commodores

It’s a love thing by The Whispers

Take my heart by Kool and the Gang

Ai no corrida by Quincy Jones

I’m in love by Evelyn Champagne King

Never too much by Luther Vandross

Give it to me baby by Rick James

Double Dutch Bus by Frankie Smith

Fantastic Voyage by Lakeside

Snap shot by Slave

Ghetto Life by Rick Jams (Whole Street Songs album)

Silly by Deneice Williams

I’ll do anything for you by Denroy Morgan

Sweat til you get wet by Brick

Get it up by The Time

This kind of Lovin by The Whispers

Before I let you go by Frankie Beverly and Maze:  Aw shit now!

Your love is on the one by Lakeside

Funky sensation by Gwen McCrae:  Y’all know this-it’s been sampled a lot

NULL or in other words ***NOT Mama’s : Numbers by Kraftwerk, a bonus for rap buffs—it is the basis for a lot of early rap hits—whole bunch of counting in German.  You ought to know it!

Back to mama’s:

For the lover in you by Shalamar

Bad Lady by Con Funk Shun

Here’s to you by Skyy

Searching to find the one by Unlimited Touch:  Ah yeah!

Feel me by Cameo

Love in the fast lane by Dynasty

Feelin’ must be real by The Skool Boyz

Fire and Desire by Rick James and Teena Marie

Controversy and Do me baby by Prince


And now we’ve come full circle in a way…..

Let’s talk about the two jams that started this whole series, I present:

Who’s been kissing you by Haute Cuisine and Gigolette by Ozone Featuring Teena Marie.

If you are a bass fan, Gigolette is FOR YOU! And since I am a Bass fan it damn shole is for me!!!!  It’s another one that was overlooked by the masses.

Anyway, you probably already know that these two jams were highlighted in the post “That’s My Jam.”

Friends, “That’s My Jam” is the post where I announced my decision to start the “My Jams” series on Thursdays!  I guess you can call it the mother post!

Funny, how one thing can lead to another one and then it’s on and popping!

Now, let me be candid, I have always been extra, extra, extra sentimental during New Years!  Sometimes, I have trouble letting the ‘old year’ go.  Baby, 1981 was no exception, in fact, I found that particular year to be very hard for me to let go.

Believe me when I tell you that I really wanted to keep 1981 in place for some reason.

Maybe one day I’ll discuss this with a counselor– but, for now, the reasoning behind all of that will remain a mystery!

So, it is with a heavy heart that I must bid 1981 farewell–again! Damn!

Hey, what are your favorite memories or jams from 1981?

Join me for the 1981 ‘My Jams’ party in the comments section.









66 thoughts on “My Jams ’81

  1. Pingback: Rambling Musical Commentary: You Just Been Hit By The Capricorn King! – Seek The Best Blog

  2. 81 was a good year! Thx, as always, for sharing and highlighting the great tunes. Good story, too (glad he was a gentleman). Want to read all the comments you received, cause I’ll bet there are some good ones. Also tried to respond to ur post with regard to being a nerdy kid, etc., but for some reason my iPad or WordPress wasnt allowing me to. Just wanted to tell you that navigation–art of, its tools, etc.–is yet another reason I love sailing. Unlike you, though, I didn’t figure this out until later in life. Not sure if I’m making sense…tired and on the road. Enjoy the week and upcoming holiday weekend.


    Liked by 2 people

  3. Oh, I so enjoyed this trip back to 1981. Those were great times. I used to love watching “Soul Train”, but I would have to go over to my best friend’s house to watch it. I wasn’t allowed to watch TV during the afternoon, and my Mum would know if I had, because she memorized the exact angle of the TV antennae, and could tell if they had been readjusted by 1 degree and then I would be in HUGE trouble. Incidentally, I was cleaning out all the closets in my house the other day and came across a box of 45s I have been lugging around for years (used them to make party tapes). Ha – those were days!!!!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am so happy to know that you had a little fun going back to 1981 with me. You are right, those were the days!

      I laughed so hard when I imagined your mom examining the TV antennae! That is hilarious! But regardless, you found a way to get on the “Soul Train!”

      Here’s a funny and true story about secret Soul Train Watchers:

      I am from Augusta where EVERYBODY knows how to play golf-it didn’t matter if they were rich or poor or black or white or what.

      Anyway, my Dad played all the time and sometimes I would tag along. Well one day we went to his favorite course. Once we got there, he told me that he was planning to play 18 holes and I was like “the hell!”—of course I didn’t say that but I surely was thinking it.

      Since I didn’t want to walk the entire course and back (and be quiet), I decided to stay back at the proshop with the Pro who was a 65 year old red headed Irish dude.

      Well when everybody left, Pro said, “Gwin let’s watch TV.” So he goes over to the TV and tunes in to “Soul Train.” So you know I just about died right?

      Believe it or not, we watched the show for quite a bit–well until Don Cornelius announced that Barry White was coming up next. Baby, before Barry could hit the stage, Pro got up and changed the channel. He looked at me and said, “I like soul but that’s too much soul for me!”

      I hollered laughing!!

      We then settled on National Geographic!
      Anyway, thanks for spending time with me. BTW, I’ll bet those tapes that you made from the old 45s are the bomb!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s funny, an Irish golf pro watching “Soul Train”, I can just see you two hanging out in the Pro Shop watching that show. As far as the 45s go, I just can’t bring myself to get rid of them, too many memories and I don’t even have a turntable to listen to them on.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Don’t get rid of them. Barnes and Noble is now selling ‘vinyls’ –as they like to call them now. They also sell a small turntable.
          Funny how everything old is new again.


  4. I must have been sidetracked, missed this note. I’ve just had a look at pictures of Collard greens and it seems to be be a combination of what we’d call Brocolli, cabbage and Spinach. Spinach probably most likely – it grows very quickly and for a large part of the population Spinach and Pap (pronounced – PPUPP) is a staple diet. Pap is a kind of very stiff porridge made fine white corn meal. Because we are such a melting pot of people – our food is influenced by the various cultures. Generally, we are a nation of meat eaters. In my house pork chops and macaroni and cheese go down very well.

    Since I’m originally from the East Coast which ha a high Indian population, I like spicy curries. I’d say I do a good Chicken or Fish Breyani and Breyani is something that is served at all major events.

    The other day, T was talking about a cook out – I guess that’s what we call a “Braai” that’s the meat on the fire (barbeque?) So if you came to my house, in Summer you’d either have a Braai with salads or a Breyani. In Winter we like comfort food, Pumpkin soup, Oxtail stew , Basmati Rice.

    I don’t know if you have the same trend but the younger millenials here are increasingly becoming vegetarian and Vegan. My younger daughter calls herself a Piscetarian. Vegetarian who eats fish.

    Drinks – not big on alcohol but I like cocktails. I would definitely go for your Sweet lemonade.

    Yes, the 80s was a rolling decade for me but when I think about each decade since has been action packed for me but I’ll save the stories for when we get there.

    Finally, just to conclude on what we ate when I was growing up. My father liked to keep his own chickens and ducks. So Sunday lunch included a chicken from the yard which we were all implicated in murdering and everything was cooked, head, insides, legs and feet. I was reminded by Ron’s stories about one of dem fools – of my my uncles who went fishing. So it was a good pastime to have fish straight from the sea. Sorry – that was a very long answer 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Never apologize for a long answer! I LOVE them and I live for them.
      Your pap sounds like what we call ‘grits’ or what Italians call “polenta.” We also like to eat cabbage, broccoli and spinach; each of these were staples in my home growing up.
      I am going to have to google Breyani, it sounds like it would be delicious. And at a cookout everything is fair game.
      I love oxtails, basmati rice and butternut squash. I like to cut it in chunks and bake it—so good.
      Yes, a lot of people are vegan/vegetarian. I actually can go long spans of time without meat but being a true vegan is damn near impossible because, here, there are meat by-products in most everything.
      I let out a big laugh at the implications that go along with a chicken murder. My Grandma once got a chicken from my great uncle. She kept him in the yard and fed him very specific things to ‘clean him out’ which is like monitoring his diet so that all of the bad things are flushed out of his system. Problem was, Grandma failed to tell us that the chicken was NOT a pet. My cousins and I named the freaking bird Petey! Well one day all of the cousins went out and when we came back there was fried chicken waiting for us. We all dove right in naturally! After we ate we went outside to play with Petey. Alas, he was nowhere to be found.
      I think you know how that story ended right?
      I love these exchanges, I learn so much from these! ❤ 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Oh Lawd – your chicken story is hilarious. Our experience was brutal – I was too squeamish to chop their head off, but I certainly saw them running around without their heads and then “us” children had to pluck out the feathers – Those days you had to earn your meal – never a shortage of chores to sustain your livelihood – something my children don’t fully appreciate. Talking about our exchanges, when I was growing up, I had 3 penpals – one in Taiwan, one in Australia and another in Cape Town. I remember how we looked forward to letters arriving 3 weeks at a time. So isn’t it just amazing that we can write so instantly. I’m currently trying to be self employed. I’ve been working with an international team and it’s been so cool to not have lengthy meetings as I was accustomed to -but just quick skype calls. I guess our world of work will change radically in the near future.😀

        Liked by 2 people

        1. LOL! earning keep? Naw my kids don’t know that life but to be honest, I think that I grew up a bit more like your kids because everything that we ate, Petey aside, was purchased from the grocery store. We lived in a suburban area where livestock was prohibited.
          To be clear, we were by NOOOOO means rich, but I would say that I grew up solidly working class. Dad was a conductor for a freight train company and mom was a housewife.
          Yes it’s so funny you mention the whole distance thing because I was just thinking about how a conversation between the two of us–not even counting T, Ron and G–would have taken weeks if it happened in 1981!
          I love technology! I have been lucky to have worked in a way that technology allowed me to stay at home more. That’s the life for me. I wish you tons of luck with your entrepreneurial efforts!
          You go girl! 😉

          Liked by 2 people

        2. Well, my background is similar to yours. The chicken thing was not a common thing. We still had to subscribe to most of the bylaws as well. Yeah! I appreciate all the experiences and opportunities of working but missed out on a lot of my children’s growing years. So I’ve enjoyed the past 6 months of working from home though it’s a routine I still have to master.
          We’re just under a lot of stress as a country. We’ve been holding our breath today waiting to hear about the rating of our economic status. They’ve just announced on the radio that we have a reprieve until December. Any further downgrades will lead us into recession .So yet again, this is a pivotal year for me too. Anyway, I’m going offline for a while. Might see you later on the blog.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. I remember those pen pal days It filled me with excitement to think that I could communicate with a young boy or girl in another country. Now I’ve traveled to several countries and communicate daily with the likes of Chevvy! Technology is great…sometimes

          Liked by 2 people

        4. Ah! glad to know that I’m not living in the dark ages. But it is amazing how fast technology is evolving. So now we have near instant gratification- but there was that anticipation of going to the postbox everyday looking out for your letter. Today I heard that within two years driverless cars will be on the roads. I agree with the “sometimes” Ron.

          Liked by 2 people

      2. Naw Cuz, Petey’s playing days was OVER! I can remember my grandaddy “wringing” a chicken’s neck (his preferred way of chicken execution). He’d grab the chicken by his heads and twirl is body around until the head separated from the neck. The chicken body would then run around for hours without its head. That always fascinated me!

        I’ve seen chickens executed by axe, which always seemed more chick-mane to me. Observing the antics of these headless chicken bodies would later cause me to wonder about the days of guillotine executions in France. I often wonder if the severed head retained any consciousness in the few milliseconds after head/body separation. Morbid I know.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Ooh wringing necks – that’s brutal – definitely needed to be more Chick-mane 🙂 Yeah I have a story about those guillotines in France – but I’ll save that morbidity for another day:-)

          Liked by 2 people

  5. Hey Chevvy! Welcome to the party!

    First of all let me reiterate how nice it is to have some additional feminine energy in this camp! I have been alone with the fellas representing the ladies for quite some time. Don’t get me wrong, they are always gentlemen, but it’s just nice to have another lady around. Wish I had even more!

    Yes, I would agree that the ’80’s represent “coming of age” in my world too. So I totally get what you are saying. Sounds like you accomplished a whole lot in that great decade. As you said, lots of beginnings and endings for many of us.

    Collard greens? Girl yes! But my favorites are mustard greens mixed with turnips/ with the turnip roots. I can assure you that you have something comparable- just not exactly the same.

    My Jamaican friend’s mother, who I could barely understand on an earthly level- yet totally understood on a spiritual level told me that in the islands they cook something similar called callaloo. Basically ,in each case, they are green leafy vegetables that are stewed down until they are tender–usually with some sort of meat for seasoning. In the Southern U.S. we typically use smoked pork.

    I would love to cook some for you! I’d serve it with those fried pork chops, macaroni and cheese and some sweet tea with lemon!

    Hey, why don’t you tell me about your favorite dish growing up-I’d love to know how y’all did it in SA.

    I was surprised to know that you didn’t know “Bon Vie” by TS Monk! Girl that was the business over here! I hope you liked it and thanks for posting such excellent videos!

    Can’t wait to hear back from you!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So Lady G and fellas, sorry that you had to start the party without me but here I am. As I said to Lady G the other day, it feels like a family reunion.

    As usual, the warm up you do Lady G is excellent – I love that setting of context and your story telling. Yeah I had to ask T about what Collard Greens are and from his definition, I don’t think we have that around here. So one day, one day when I jet set to your neck of the woods, I want to eat what the peoples eat😀

    Ah! 1981 was a good year like fine wine. If I differentiate between the 70s and 80s- I think we were chilling in childhood nostalgia with lots of good slow soul music. The 80s saw me coming into my own in many ways – going clubbing, my first boyfriend, graduated from university, got married, moved 600 kilometres from my home city, started working, switched careers. So yes, this was a decade of lots of change, beginnings and endings – just an awesome time. Somewhere in between, the old Stylistics songs of Break up to make up and Go now feature as well.

    But hey 1981 was a groovin year and “Let us groove” the ultra cool “Kool and the Gang” and Shalamar’s Make that move would have got me on the floor anytime, any day,any how 😀

    Before I continue yacking – I found this medley to remind us of some of the songs you’ve listed here:

    Yeah – on your point about that near mishap with a boy, my parents were way to strict for me to even venture near any boy. I think they wanted me to be a Catholic nun 😀

    I hadn’t heard T.S. Monk before so thought we could listen together

    Then, I thought I would end with christening this year with this song and may I especially dedicate this to Ron based on his lovely Gramps stories.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Girl is that you in that majorette uniform? Go on now! She’s bad, she’s bad, she’s bad, I know she bad! Loved the “lead in” story, as usual. I can remember being in a similar situation as you and the young Caribbeanish fella. Good thing that ya’ll managed to keep it G rated. I’m sure that’s cause of good home training; something the world could use a little more of; that and LOVE! But not that mannish and omalish kind. LOL

    I enjoyed your list. I listened to a few of them and jammed out. They all remind me of living on Lackland AFB. For some reason, I get an uneasy feeling surrounding those times. I guess I was still homesick! I think I might have met my first wife too, around this time.
    Mama liked JT also. He did his thing. Chaka Khan, ALWAYS, did her thing; and I had a crush on her fine self.

    Roger, a one named wonder! I think he did the song justice. So many people did that song, back in the day. He deserved a fair chance too Auntie Eva! LOL

    Never too much of Luther Vandross, NEVER TOO MUICH! The greatest!

    Yeah, looking at the rest of your list, I’m sure that I was “in like Flint” with the first set of in-laws. They loved Teena.

    I’m just chilling in the cut. I see ya’ll

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Yeah Cuz that’s me in both pics. Of course, I know you recognize Tack standing beside me there with his church suit! The other pic has me with one of the band members from the neighborhood.

      These are the ‘lost years’ for you and I.

      As for the situation with me and the young man, yeah, I would have to credit that to home-training in BOTH cases because you notice that he didn’t try to force his will on me.

      Now, I am interested to know how your scenario worked out. But hey, I’ll understand if you choose to keep that private or save it for a one on one.

      As for the jams, I am happy to know that you are jamming on those ones that you missed out on but I am sorry to know that they give you an uneasy feeling. Music is so strongly linked to memory–that can be a good thing and a bad thing huh?

      Oh and it’s very interesting to know that your in-laws liked our dear Lady T.

      Ron, as I was telling G, I love reading about the memories that you guys share about the year at hand. Even though you didn’t have much access at all to good music from the ’80’s realtime, you might find yourself amazed at the one song that slipped through and made itself at home in your cryptic memory files. LOL!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, a couple slipped through. AS for my situation… some “kissing “. Then someone shouted, “Hey Kim, yo daddy looking for you. He say you better not be with no boy!”

        That girl lit out , like a bat outta hell”

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Lady G You know what – Your “backatchas” in your comment sections are mini blog gemstones. I know your Mom could burn in the kitchen – she’s that old school Mom that could make three spices outta one and never miss a beat – all plates come back licked clean.

    And from what I read from you, I’ve ascertained the young apple didn’t fall far from the tree – I suspected you could burn in the kitchen too. Wow!

    I had to laugh at the “cuss out Roger” comment – but you know that’s the kind of realness I’ve come to respect and love. “I don’t care who you are – you messed up my song” and Ima tell you about it. – Love it.

    Awesome Lady!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That’s G right there y’all!

    Baby let me tell you, if I ain’t got no problem with you writing a long comment then NOBODY else should! In fact, I love it when you guys comment and tell me everything that you can think of about the year that was. As for you, I especially like hearing about your days as a DJ. I mean, you were the guy who helped to make our memories. I say that because if y’all didn’t play those jams we wouldn’t know them!

    By the way, since you asked, I can cook everything that I listed in this post including macaroni and cheese! Mama really did teach your girl how to cook all dat! The only difference is the fact that mama only used salt, pepper and occasionally garlic powder. But you know what G? That woman could burn with just those three spices.

    As for me, I use all kinds of spices! I am much more willing to experiment than mama was. Remember, you are talking bout the woman who wanted to cuss Roger out for F-ing with “Grapevine.”

    LOL! as always, it’s a pleasure sharing memories with you!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Fried Pork Chops, homemade Mac and Cheese, and greens. In the words of Martin Lawerence’s character “Jermome” Gurl you done took old Rome Rom back gurl you done took me back” That’s some good eating and was a popular trio back in 81.

    The visit back to you and the guy you liked touched on the importance of saying no when teen raging hormones are saying yes. It is skillful how you tie this in with a review that includes some tunes that promoted love and relationships over thoughtless hit and run sex.

    81 left us with an abundance of tunes that will be forever relevant in the contexts of dance, relationships, love. And as you have in the past you have highlighted the cream of the crop. As usual, you’ve snared my favorites in your skillful roundup net.

    Atlantic Starr – Am I Dreaming? (I’m playing it now). Wow. That one awoke sleeping memories of a lady I met in a nightclub on a Saturday Night and after a long night of partying we had a wonderful Sunday dinner and I invited her to Myrtle Beach on a business trip that Monday. I was dreaming that she was all that – she turned out to be a junkie that was about to set off all my guy friends. However, the experience didn’t tarnish the wonderful feelings the song evokes,

    Teena Marie – Looked white – everything else was Black about this one. And it’s funny because her never”trying” to be Black or capitalize of Blacks embracing her actually made her more Blacker. Her “Must Be Magic” created a magical ambiance for me everytime I heard it. And yes I too miss Lady T.

    What’cha Gonna Do For Me by Chaka Khan is one of those works where the music is conducive to promoting some serious footwork yet it has a timeless message. That one was a club favorite – I know I was one of the DJ’s at this club called the Palladium that would pull this one out when all else failed and it never failed to load up the dance floor.

    I Learned Something From You. But then that’s not new – I’m always learning something from you Lady G. The BB&Q Band was one of those bands whose music I grooved to but never went to any extent to learn anything about the Band. Thank you, Lady G for ending years of me making a fool out of myself thinking BB&Q somehow translated into BarBQue Band. Brooklyn Bronx And Queens – no I didn’t know that.

    Aurra Are You Single – This one was the door opener for that signature female voice that would infiltrate discos across the nation in the years to come. The group couldn’t miss garnering at least one hit seeing as to how it’s brainchild was Slave’s frontman Steve Arrington. Are you Single set up eye contact, the nod of the head, the awesome time together on the dance floor and the following date. Still love this one to this day!

    One of my absolute favorites from your list is Heartbeat – by Taana Gardner. I played this one raggedy I’m telling you. It’s no accident this one was available in 12-inch record format – Dj’s worked it 9 ways to Sunday and not one person would leave the floor. I know some women that wore down heels “fuggin” with this one.

    Hey here I am all long winded again but Lady G you know you be getting me started with your awesome stories and incredible music and I just can’t stop. I’m going to become know to your readers as “That guy that goes around writing blog posts in folk’s comments section”.

    All I need to know now is that you can make homemade Mac and Cheese like you talked about in the post and I’m going to be in Lady G heaven – I’ll send over a pre-paid Fed Ex overnight delivery box – put the casserole dish in it and tell the Mofo in the short pants it better find it’s way to it’s destination.

    Thanks lady for another wonderful experience, this time courtesy of Lady G and 1981. I Love It!

    Liked by 3 people

  11. T. Wayne

    Gonna make some comments as soon as I round up about $1,000 to give to the late Mark Adams’ (Slave) family for all those bass slaps on “Are You Single”…

    Welp I was warned. 1981 done went and burned the place down! Not to mention that little segment on Taana Gardner’s “Heartbeat”! We are musical wonder twins! I didn’t even give it a thought that today was 1981 day on the My Jams schedule! Great minds do think alike!

    Shoot, Darcel was the MAIN reason I checked out Solid Gold. Whoo Lawd. The only other thing I remember of note was that was the show where I found out Madonna was white!

    And when you mentioned “Am I Dreaming” by Atlantic Starr! For about four seconds, I was my mama in here, waving her hand in the air from side to side! I know they had hits (and good ones too) after she left, but Sharon Bryant was the best female lead they ever had. Don’t even get me started on the long version of “Grapevine” by Roger. Oh man that thing killed!

    I could go on and on and on and be here all night if I commented on all of these great choices. I’ll add a few: “How ‘Bout Us” by Champaign, “She’s A Bad Mama Jama” by Carl Carlton, “Pull Up To The Bumper” by Grace Jones, “Shake It Up Tonight” by Cheryl Lynn and “Don’t You Know That?” by Luther Vandross.

    Well chosen, and well written, Twin!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You be killing me Twin! Naw, you didn’t holler that you went back mama style and started waving your hands in the air with the eyes closed at the thought of “Am I Dreaming!” I screamed out loud when I read that!

      Yasss baby, Darcel was the business on Solid Gold!

      Mark Adams and that BASS!!! Yes, honey we all owe some duckets.

      Chile I didn’t mention Madonna but I was all about “Holiday” and all her stuff!

      Oh and I am in total agreement with you on Sharon Bryant from Atlantic Starr, “Circles,” Can’t nobody sang that jam like Sharon! Her riffs were soooo unique! She had her own thing going baby!

      Oh yes, Eva was not having Roger’s experimental interpretation of ‘Grapevine” baby, for Eva it was Marvin or bust. Like I said, it wasn’t no way in the hell I was gonna tell her that he had experimented with The Wicked Pickett’s Midnight hour!

      And, you better know that everything that you picked was on my big list. I really wanted to put “How bout us” but I had to cut it off somewhere.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. In the words of my little cousin Kim, I think I am going to park this right here! It’s a reminder of Saturdays in the early ’80s for many black families–The Soul Train theme song sung by The Whispers!

    Oh yeah and I meant to add “Here I am” by Dynasty!

    Liked by 2 people

        1. That damn Leon Sylvers showed the hell out on that one. The Bass! Kevin Spencer on vocals with those girls! But you pulled my favorite lyric: ” I just have to make you understaaaaannnd!”

          The harmony! What about “Adventures in the land of music?” I JUST DAMMIT CAN”T!!!

          You can tell that Leon was revisiting harmonies learned from his parents with the Sylvers!

          Liked by 2 people

        2. T. Wayne

          Yes! Nidra Beard and Linda Carriere, I believe were their names. But yes, “Adventures In The Land Of Music” has been sampled so much by so many, we kinda take it for granted how good it was now.

          Liked by 1 person

        3. T. Wayne

          Yes! There were about another twenty songs I wanted to say something about, but I had to stop somewhere! LOL

          Not to mention…I neglected to “tell the peoplez” about “Love Has Come Around!”

          Liked by 1 person

        4. T. Wayne

          Alright, alright…see “Love Has Come Around” by Donald Byrd & 125th St. N.Y.C. is mostly about Isaac Hayes. See he did that classy arrangement. I’m sure Donald is in there somewhere, but I’m pretty sure that’s not him on the male lead and I don’t hear any trumpet or flugelhorn solo. Maybe he’s playing with the horn section! Anyway…that is 7+ glorious minutes of uptown soul right there! Incognito made a cover of it and they couldn’t touch this! I mean, theirs was good, but the original? Top shelf.

          Liked by 2 people

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