Listen to Your Heart – 30 years ago it was #1 on Billboard

The Daily Roxette Time Machine: 30 years ago, Roxette hit #1 with “Listen To Your Heart” Where does the time go? 30 years ago today, Roxette climbed top the top of Billboard’s Hot 100 for a second time.

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Just seven months after their viral (before viral even was a thing) hit “The Look” reached the summit, the Swedish duo topped the chart with “Listen to Your Heart.” In the liner notes of the greatest hits compilation Don’t Bore Us, Get to the Chorus!, Per Gessle referred to “Listen to Your Heart as “The Big Bad Ballad. This is us trying to recreate that overblown American FM-rock sound to the point where it almost becomes absurd.”

It’s safe to say that it worked. Not only did the song make it to the top of the Billboard chart, “Listen” also became the #22 hit of all of 1989. Aside from the fact that the this all happened t-h-i-r-t-y years ago, there is other significance to “Listen to Your Heart” hitting the top spot. “Listen to Your Heart” was the first song to reach #1 on the Hot 100 that was not commercially available as a vinyl 45 single. At the time, vinyl was on its way out and sales of cassingles and compact discs was on the rise. Despite being available in one less format, the single went gold, selling more than 500,000 copies in the U.S.

Ironically, in 2019 vinyl sales are set to outpace CD sales for the first time since 1986. The album version of “Listen to Your Heart” clocks in at a whopping 5-minutes and 31-seconds. You could listen to “Old Town Road (Remix)” by Lil Nas X, Billboards longest-running #1 Hot 100 hit of all-time, nearly two-and-a-half-times in the same time that it takes to get to the end of “Listen.”

“Listen to Your Heart” reached #1 a second time in 2005 — but as a dance remix by Belgian group DHT. Their cover version reached number one on Billboard Hot Dance Airplay chart in June 2005 — and cracked the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at number eight. With “Listen” reaching #1, Roxette became the first Swedish act to reach up more than one number-one hit on the chart. (ABBA hit #1 in 1977 since “Dancing Queen”.) The group also became only the third European/Non-UK act (following U2 and Milli Vanilli) to have two #1s on the Hot 100. They’d become the first with European/Non-UK act with four #1s a few years later.

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November 4th, 2019

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