Andre Gardner

BOSTON - SEPTEMBER 6: Bruce Springsteen (L) performs with members of The E Street Band on the first night of Bruce Springsteen's concert series at Fenway Park September 6, 2003 in Boston, Massachusetts. Springsteen is performing the first-ever rock concerts at Fenway Park September 6 and 7. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/Getty Images)

On this week’s Thursday Top 10 Countdown on MGK, we look at the charts from January 11, 1987. It was the week that Bruce Springsteen’s first live album was a record breaker, in several ways.

Live Bruce

If you’ve seen him live, you know that a Bruce Springsteen concert is truly a special event. While his studio albums are all fantastic, beautifully recorded works, there’s nothing like seeing him and The E Street Band in person. Amazingly, his setlists are rarely the same from night to night, and he’s fond of pulling out gems he hasn’t played live in decades. He’s one of those artists who have an incredibly rabid fan base, too. Bruce’s shows from the Born To Run tour onward were sold out all around the world.

“Bruce, when’s the live album coming out?”

For years, fans would beg Bruce to put out a live album. Until Live 1975-1985 came out, only the live version of Tom Waits’ “Jersey Girl” had been released, the b-aide of the “Cover Me” single, and “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” came out on a compilation album. Thankfully, Bruce and his team recorded many of their shows over the decades, going back to the Born To Run tour. Finally an opportunity came to release some of these legendary performances.

How Do You Follow Born In The USA?

Bruce’s exhausting Born In The USA tour ended in October, 1985, and the talk soon turned to the next album. Bruce’s manager, Jon Landau, compiled three live songs from Bruce’s tours and gave him a tape copy to check out. Bruce bought in pretty quickly and, for the next six months, he, Landau and engineer Toby Scott sifted through a decade’s worth of live shows. The resulting work, Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band Live 1975-1985, was an instant success. Not only did the multi-LP set break a record for pre-orders, but it was the first 5-LP set to hit the top 10. It did even better than that, hitting the top spot for seven weeks. It’s also the second best selling live album of all time (behind Garth Brooks’Double Live). I guess it’s not really a surprise that Bruce Springsteen’s first live album was a record breaker.

On today’s countdown, Bruce’s first live album spent its seventh and final week at #1. Here’s the rest of the Top 10:

  • 10. Georgia Satellites - Georgia Satellites

    If you lived in Atlanta in the early 80s, you may have seen The Satellites rocking the house Monday nights at Hedgen’s, a club in the swanky neighborhood of Buckhead. They were such a tight band, and got a deal with Elektra Records that saw them release a solid self-titled debut under their new name, Georgia Satellites. It later went platinum, and peaked at #5, and on January 11, 1987, it was #10.

  • 9. Can't Hold Back - Eddie Money

    The Money Man hit it big with his sixth album called Can’t Hold Back. It’s the #9 rock alum on this sweek’s Thursday Top 10 Countdown, and it gave both Eddie Money AND Ronnie Spector a huge hit.

  • 8. The Bridge - Billy Joel

    Even though Billy Joel called this “an unhappy album” to make, The Bridge was another in a long string of hit albums for the Piano Man. After peaking at #7, it drops one to #8 on January 11, 1987.

  • 7. Invisible Touch - Genesis

    The thirteenth studio album by Genesis started off, as Phil Collins said, “in a jazz fashion.” That meant the band had no songs or even song ideas to present. They just jammed until they found some good riffs, and developed the songs from there. Invisible Touch was the result of those jams, and it became their biggest seller, peaking at #2 and dropping this week to #7.

  • 6. Night Songs - Cinderella

    Delco hard rockers Cinderella became nationwide rock stars with their major label debut, Night Songs. Produced by the legendary Andy Johns, the album peaked at #3 and slipped to #6 on January 11, 1987.

  • 5. Fore! - Huey Lewis And The News

    Huey Lewis and The News’ fourth album, cleverly titled Fore!, was the biggest album of their career, giving them 5 top 10 singles, two of which were #1, and also peaking at the top spot. On this weeks Thursday Top 10 Countdown, it’s #5.

  • 4. The Way It Is - Bruce Hornsby And The Range

    This next album features harmonica work and some producing duties by the guy we just played, Huey Lewis. He was helping out his pal Bruce Hornsby on his debut album with The Range, The Way It Is. That album helped Hornsby grab a Grammy as Best New Artist and, nine months after its release, it was still going strong at #4 on January 11, 1987.

  • 3. Third Stage - Boston

    Once again, Boston’s Tom Scholz worked slowly and diligently on the band’s third album, and delivered another solid effort. On January 11, 1987, and after peaking at #1, Third Stage was #3.

  • 2. Slippery When Wet - Bon Jovi

    It took three albums for Jon Bon Jovi to realize his dream, and Slippery When Wet gave him and his band more success than they could have imagined. It hit #1 for eight weeks, and was the best selling album of 1987. On January 11, 1987, it was #2.

  • 1. Live 1975-1985 - Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band

    At the top of the charts this week is one of the most anticipated album releases ever. The fact that this was a FIVE album live set didn’t seem to bother anyone. In fact, it was just what the fans wanted. They literally lined up outside record stores, the old school way, on the day of release to get a copy! This album followed a monstrously successful album by this kid from Jersey, and further solidified his status as one of the biggest rock stars in the world. The #1 rock album on January 11, 1987 was Live 1975-1985 by Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band!

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