Chart Beat Podcast: The Hot 100's Top 20 This Week in 1990 – 'U Can't Touch This,' 'Vogue' & More – With Special Guest Roxette's Per Gessle
Roxette ruled with its classic “It Must Have Been Love.” “I’m really proud of that era,” Gessle says.
Welcome to the Billboard Chart Beat Podcast, where each week co-hosts Gary Trust and Trevor Anderson, from the Billboard charts department, discuss why what's on the charts … is on the charts, while also looking at current chart action in a historical context for even greater insights.
This week, Gary and Trevor travel back to the Billboard Hot 100 this week 28 years ago, dated June 16, 1990, to count down the chart's top 20, a playlist that includes hits by Sinead O'Connor, Richard Marx, En Vogue, Phil Collins, M.C. Hammer, Janet Jackson and Madonna.
Also in the mix (at No. 1?): Roxette's smash from the Julia Roberts/Richard Gere blockbuster Pretty Woman, “It Must Have Been Love,” and Per Gessle from the duo (Marie Fredriksson has since retired from recording and performing with him) is our special guest.
“The whole idea with Roxette to begin with was very much that I was the writer and Marie was the singer,” Gessle says. “She always made my songs better than they were. I think that's one of the tricks: you have to find people who make you stand on your toes. Marie's capability of singing triggered me to write even better songs, because suddenly I had someone who could sing them.
“A song like 'It Must Have Been Love' … it was just one take by Marie in the studio, this amazing vocal.”
Gessle recounts the story of how the ballad was originally a Christmas hit in Sweden in 1987; after Roxette topped the Hot 100 in 1989 with “The Look” and “Listen to Your Heart,” from its breakthrough U.S. album Look Sharp!, the pair changed the “It Must Have Been Love” lyric “Christmas” to “winter's,” and a No. 1 hit in June (and a year-round classic since) was born.
Among other topics that Gessle covers: his forthcoming solo album, recorded in Nashville; the secret to why so much great pop music, from ABBA to Max Martin, has originated in Sweden; and personal Roxette favorites.
“We made some great records,” he says. “I'm really proud of that era.”
Gary and Trevor also chat about this week's Hot 100 top 10, as Post Malone's “Psycho,” featuring Ty Dolla $ ign, hits No. 1, a grateful Cardi B boasts two songs in the top five and Kanye West launches at No. 8.
Enjoy the latest Billboard Chart Beat Podcast and remember that you can be a part of it by calling the new Chart Beat Podcast hotline: 212-493-4021 (aka, “40-to-1” … like a countdown!) Call with your chart questions and/or observations for us to play back and respond to, and check back for additional upcoming episodes with artists, label executives, radio programmers and personalities, songwriters, producers and more. And, to receive every episode automatically in your inbox, subscribe to (and rate) the Billboard Chart Beat Podcast on iTunes!