Dr. Smooth’s Flashback #7: Cash Box Jazz album chart of March 6, 1982

Spend an hour remembering some of the most popular jazz of late winter 1982 as listed on the Top 30 Jazz Albums chart in the March 6, 1982 issue of Cash Box magazine.



#30: “Baby, Come to Me” by Patti Austin with James Ingram, from the #30 album of the week, Every Home Should Have One. This smooth single was written by Rod Temperton and produced by Quincy Jones, the duo that would bring the world Michael Jackson’s Thriller album later in the year. It was released without much impact in the spring of ’82, but was re-released in October after being feature on the soap opera General Hospital and became a huge hit on the pop, adult contemporary and R&B charts. The immediately recognizable voice of Michael McDonald sings back up on the chorus. Patti, the goddaughter of Quincy Jones, was the first signee to his new label, Qwest and this album was one of the label’s first releases. This was the album’s last of 19 weeks on the jazz chart.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top 200 Albums 55 25


#29: “The Man With the Horn” by Miles Davis, from the #29 album of the week, The Man With the Horn. This title track, a tribute to Davis himself (“His music sets the pace but masters never have to race”), features lead vocals by Randy Hall and trumpet work by Miles filtered through some sort of wa-wa synthesizer throughout. The album, Davis’s first new release since 1975 following a six-year reclusive retirement, was not well-received by critics but spent over 30 weeks on the Cash Box jazz chart, peaking at #1 back around September, 1981.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 40 16


#28: “It’s for You” by Pat Metheny & Lyle Mays, from the #28 album of the week, As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls. Side one of this album features the  epic 20 minute title track; this song from side two, however, became one of the more popular cuts on the album, having later been covered by several artists and appearing in the 1985 Kevin Costner movie, Fandango. The album is notable as one of the few albums in which Metheny, in addition to his signature guitar work, also plays bass. The album had peaked on the chart at #2 in August, 1981.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 61 20


#21: “Telluride” by Spyro Gyra from the #21 album, Freetime. This cut from the group’s 1981 album features mallet work by Dave Samuels and a saxophone solo from band leader/composer/producer Jay Beckenstein. The album, the group’s fifth, had peaked at #3 in early October, 1981.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 40 29


#19: “Segue/There’s a Way” by Ronnie Laws from the #19 album, Solid Ground. The second and third tracks on Laws’ 1981 album. “There’s a Way” features vocals and sax work by Laws. After attending Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, Laws was briefly a member of Earth, Wind & Fire and the influence of Maurice White is evident on this track. This album was Laws’ sixth solo effort and had previously peaked at #5 on the jazz albums chart.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 55 22


#15: “Valdez in the Country” by the Ernie Watts from the #15 album, Chariots of Fire. This cover of a 1973 Donny Hathaway instrumental leads off side two of this album, Watts’ first solo album on the aforementioned Qwest label. In addition to tenor sax work from Watts, the track features a synth solo by Don Grusin and trumpet arrangements by studio legend Jerry Hey. Half of the album’s eight tracks are covers of music from Vangelis’ soundtrack to Chariots of Fire.


Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 156 9


#10: “Sleepwalk” by Larry Carlton from the #10 album, Sleepwalk. This title track is a cover of the instrumental by Santo & Johnny that hit #1 in 1959. The song features Carlton on his  Valley Arts Stratocaster and was released as a single and briefly placed on the adult contemporary charts in ’82.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 88 10


#9: “As” by Jean-Luc Ponty from the #9 album, Mystical AdventuresThe third consecutive cover on this compilation is fusion cover of Stevie Wonder’s “As.” The song features solos by Ponty on electric violin and Jamie Glaser on guitar; Ponty also tries his hand at the vocoder. The bass player on this cut is Randy Jackson, who would go on to become a judge on American Idol.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 68 15


#8: “Time to Say Goodbye” by Angela Bofill from the #8 album, Something About You. The ballad, written by Bofill, closed this 1981 album, produced by Narada Michael Walden. It was selected as the B-side for two of the album’s three singles. Like our previous Ponty cut, this song features Randy Jackson on bass. On this date, the album had been on the jazz album chart for 17 weeks and had begun its descent from a peak at #5.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 66 26


#5: “Twinkle” by Earl Klugh from the #5 album, Crazy for You. This upbeat piece features Klugh on acoustic guitar, Paulinho Da Costa on percussion, and Louis Johnson (of The Brothers Johnson) on bass. Klugh solos on guitar and Greg Phillinganes contributes an electric piano solo. The album, Klugh’s eighth, had earlier peaked at #3 in late January.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 59 26


#2: “Turn Your Love Around” by George Benson from the #2 album, The George Benson Collection. This hit single, the lead track from the 1981 greatest hits 2 LP set was written by Bill Champlin of Chicago, guitarist Steve Lukather of Toto and producer/guitarist Jay Graydon. The song won a Grammy award for Best R&B Song. The album, which earlier spent 5 weeks in the #1 spot, was a compilation of Benson’s best work from the years 1969-1981.

Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 17 30


#1: “Jamming” by Grover Washington, Jr. from the #1 album, Come Morning.  This cover of a 1977 Bob Marley tune smooths out the original’s reggae lilt and opened side two of the album. The album features an all-star cast of musicians including Steve Gadd, Marcus Miller, Richard Tee, and Eric Gale. This chart marked the album’s fifth consecutive week in the top position. The song was released as a single b/w “East River Drive.”


Cash Box Album Charts: Peak Weeks
Top Albums 31 27


As always, thanks to Herc of Herc’s Hideaway for research assistance and support.


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