30 Years of Albums in My Wheelhouse: 1989

1989 was full of action. My younger son was born, Pete Rose was forced to resign as player/manager of my beloved Cincinnati Reds due to gambling allegations, the Cold War was slowly coming to an end and some peaceniks in China attempted to protest the government in Tiananmen Square only to be squelched a couple of weeks later. Personally, I had dipped my toes into an education class at Miami University and loved it. I was on my way to become a teacher a scant five years later.

Taylor Dayne

And the music world was still riding the wave that began with the 1987 tsunami of classic albums. 1989 was a fairly solid year. Prince made a commercial comeback of sorts riding on the coattails of the Batman blockbuster phenomenon with his kind of dopey “soundtrack” album of the same name. In the Prince catalog, Batman is nowhere near his best LP, but it may not be his worst either. To this Prince fanatic, I just simply ignore the album these days.

Faith No More

On a positive note, the alternative rock of the Eighties, either known at the time as college rock (since the music was first played on college radio stations) or modern rock (as the commercial radio stations named this type of music), was peaking both commercially and influentially. Some stellar albums were released in 1989 by the likes of The Cure, Pixies, Love & Rockets, The Cult and The Stone Roses. However, most of this music was relegated to MTV’s alternative music program 120 Minutes and not played much in regular rotation.

The Stone Roses

Also peaking creatively and commercially was the pop/dance and pop/rock mixes of the day. Pop/dance was led by Taylor Dayne, Janet Jackson, Madonna and others, while pop/rock slice was in the hands of Enuff Z’Nuff, The Bangles and all kinds of hair metal bands. Plus, the teenybopper sect were buying albums and singles by the bulk from the likes of New Kids on the Block, Debbie Gibson and Tiffany.

De La Soul

All in all, 1989 was a pretty solid year for music. My Top 10 is a very solid group of albums, with some just outside that group which might have been Top 10 albums in other years, like the one to follow 1990.

Well, let’s do this! Time for the countdown!

50. Skid Row – Skid Row

49. The Rolling Stones – Steel Wheels

48. John Cougar Mellencamp – Big Daddy

47. Aerosmith – Pump

46. 2 Live Crew – As Nasty as They Wanna Be

45. Prince – Batman

44. Don Henley – The End of Innocence

43. Queen Latifah – All Hail the Queen

42. Enuff Z’Nuff – Enuff Z’Nuff

41. John Lee Hooker – The Healer

40. Bonnie Raitt – Nick of Time

39. Lisa Stansfield – Affection

38. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Mother’s Milk

37. Lou Reed – New York

36. The Cult – Sonic Temple

35. Chris Isaak – Heart Shaped World

34. Roy Orbison – Mystery Girl

33. Soul II Soul – Club Classics Vol. One (Keep on Movin’)

32. Stevie Ray Vaughan – In Step

31. Mötley Crüe – Dr. Feelgood

30. New Order – Technique

29. Neil Young – Freedom

28. Tears for Fears – Seeds of Love

27. Kate Bush – The Sensual World

26. The Smithereens – 11

25. Soundgarden – Louder Than Love

24. Lenny Kravitz – Let Love Rule

23. Elvis Costello – Spike

22. Love and Rockets – Love and Rockets

21. Nirvana – Bleach

20. XTC – Oranges and Lemons

19. Simply Red – A New Flame

18. Paul McCartney – Flowers in the Dirt

17. Nine Inch Nails – Pretty Hate Machine

16. Neneh Cherry – Raw like Sushi

15. Fine Young Cannibals – The Raw & the Cooked

14. The Bangles – Everything

13. Faith No More – The Real Thing

12. Taylor Dayne – Can’t Fight Fate

11. The Replacements – Don’t Tell a Soul

10. De La Soul – 3 Feet High and Rising

9. Tom Petty – Full Moon Fever

8. Madonna – Like a Prayer

7. The Cure – Disintegration

6. The B-52’s – Cosmic Thing

5. The Stone Roses – The Stone Roses

4. Beastie Boys – Paul’s Boutique

3. Janet Jackson – Rhythm Nation 1814

2. Bob Mould – Workbook

1. Pixies – Doolittle

Author: ifmyalbumscouldtalk

I am just a long-time music fan who used to be a high school science teacher and a varsity coach of several high school athletic teams. Before that, I worked as a medical technologist at three hospitals in their labs, mainly as a microbiologist. I am retired/disabled (Failed Back Surgery Syndrome), and this is my attempt to remain a human. Additionally, I am a serious vinyl aficionado, with a CD addiction and a love of reading about rock history. Finally, I am a fan of Prince, Cheap Trick, Tom Petty, R.E.M., Hall & Oates, Springsteen, Paul Weller & his bands and Power Pop music.

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