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Dateline: Events/Headlines - Week of January 15, 1986 In News, Pop Culture, Tech, Celebrity, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts


In The News

A jetliner carrying passengers to Mayan ruins in northern Guatemala crashes and explodes, killing at least 90. The toll includes 6 Americans.

Austin - Dozens of National Guardsmen, riot clubs in hand, form a human barricade to close the Hormel plant there and prevent violence between meat packers and workers crossing picket lines.

U.S. intelligence reports say that Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos, in the midst of a reelection campaign, is seriously ill with a cyclical, potentially fatal rare disease complicated by diabetes.

Philippines - Foreign journalists and international observer teams will be banned from the polling places during the special presidential election scheduled for Feb. 7.

A bust of Dr. Martin Luther Kin Jr., is unveiled by his widow. It will now be part of the Capitol Rotunda.

The White House says laboratory tests of tissue samples removed from President Reagan all show no signs of cancer.

President Reagan welcomes the surprise new offer on arms control by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev on the eve of a new round of arms control negotiations.

Near Los Angeles - In a surprising development charges against five the seven defendants in the McMartin Pre-School molestation case are dropped by prosecutors, who say they had insufficient evidence to prove the five guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  Only Raymond Buckey and his mother, Peggy McMartin Buckey will stand trial.

Passing – Herbert W. Armstrong – pioneer radio preacher who built the Worldwide Church of God out of Pasadena, CA. He was 93.


Medical/Health/AIDs News Update – January 15, 1986

NBC-TV presents an AIDS special – see TV section.

AIDS update – Federal health officials suggest that the AIDS epidemic may soon make it necessary for state health departments to maintain lists of those infected with the virus and to force their sexual partners, as is done now with other sexually transmitted diseases.

The percentage of AIDS cases related to blood transfusions doubled last year to 2 of all cases, the Centers for Disease Control reports. Also, scientists report that they have identified how the AIDS virus binds itself to cells of the immune system, a finding that will aid in development of a vaccine.

The Rev. Charles Stanley, head of the 14.3 million-member Southern Baptist Convention says God created AIDS to show displeasure with America’s acceptance of the homosexual life style. “It is a sinful life style according to scripture and I believe that AIDS is God indicating his displeasure and his attitude toward that form of life style, which we in this country are about to accept.”


Technology news – January 15, 1986

Among the VCR’s sold – only 15% are Betas. VHS brand names outnumber Beta about 7 to 1. There’s also HQ VHS and Super Beta and a new 8-millimeter videotape initially promoted by Kodak.

GTE’s Sprint and United’s US Telecom will merge. 

Apple unveils the Mac Plus – with 1 meg of internal memory. The existing Macintosh, called the Mac 512 – has only 512-kilbye of memory. Mac Plus will carry a retail price of $2,595. 


Radio news – January 15, 1986

(Power 95) WPLJ is #1 for the first time since the station switched from Album rock to top-40 hits. The movie knocks urban WRKS and rival WHTZ (Z-100) into a tie for number two. WNEW-FM the album rock station is up to a 4.1 from a 3.5.

In Los Angeles – Adult contemporary KMGG (Magic 106) becomes Power 106 and is going after KIIS-FM with a funky top 40. Gone is morning man Robert W. Morgan.

Jay Thomas is “not going to be here anymore,” so says WXRK New York general manager Tom Chiusano. Jay was fired January 6. “We decided it just wasn’t working. Birth and Arbitron showed that,’ said Chiusano. Thomas looks at it another way – “it’s impossible to know what they want. On the same day that (afternoon talent) Howard Stern did his ‘Lesbian Dial-A-date,’ I was told I couldn’t say my ‘If you don’t believe it, stuff it’ bit.” Stern called Thomas and the two chatted on-air about his departure. In the meantime, Jimmy Fink will handle mornings at the station. Will Stern move to mornings?

Larry Lujack moves from mornings to afternoon drive at WLS Chicago.

KMET-FM Los Angeles is plugging the use of compact discs, saying they air more music from CD’s than any other rock station.  The commitment is traced to the station’s conviction that “CD is just on the edge of really mass acceptance,” which prompted an investment estimated at $12,000 for CD playback equipment for the station. 

Rick Sklar moves his Sklar Communications consulting firm to 100 Park Ave. Call 212 370-0077 (interesting).


Television News – January 15, 1986

Passing – Donna Reed (64) … Of pancreatic cancer. One of the all-time great TV moms.

On CBS this week – George Burns 90th Birthday Special. It stars Ann-Margret, Diahann Carroll, Billy Crystal, John Denver, John Forsythe and many others. 

The FCC has told the nation’s cities they cannot outlaw satellite receiving dishes as a way to promote the growth of cable TV. There close to 2 million dishes in use, with 40,000 to 60,000 being sold each month. Owners typically use them watch movies and other programs being transmitted to cable TV systems without paying a fee to the program service. Congress had made this legal as long as it is not done for commercial purposes such as providing entertainment in a bar. But HBO, the largest pay programmer, has plans to scramble its signal in days. Others say they will follow before year’s end.  

AIDS TV Special

NBC News presents an authoritative national forum that calmly and clearly explains the facts about AIDs – what is now known and remains unknowns, what the prospects are for a cure. Tom Brokaw and Science Correspondent Robert Bazell anchor the program. This week – “Life, Death And AIDS.”

Comic Relief is born - Whoopi Goldberg, Billy Crystal, Robin Williams and Harold Ramis – join Home Box Office executives at a Beverly Hills press conference to announce the formation of Comic Relief. The charity is the latest Hollywood fund-raising effort in the now familiar USA for Africa mode. Comic Relief’s plans are to distribute all of its proceeds from an upcoming HBO special to this year’s American homeless.


Wednesday night television listings/programming/TV guide – January 15, 1986

CBS – Mary, Foley Square, Crazy Like a Fox, The Equalizer

NBC – Highway to Heaven, Blacke’s Magic, St. Elsewhere, Tonight Show

ABC – MacGyver, Dynasty, Hotel

PBS – National Geographic, Martin Luther King:” The Dream and the drum

Showtime – Honeymooners Lost Episodes. Brothers, Bizaare

MTV – Video Music


MacGyver – MacGyver is injected with deadly serum.


Music news – January 15, 1986

The song “Hands Across America” will make its public debut during the super Bowl pre-game show on NBC-TV Jan. 26. It was in October when organizer Ken Kragen announced his plan to stretch a line of 6 million to 10 million Americans 4,152 miles from New York to Los Angeles. Kragen believes the May 25 event (6 to 7pm eastern) will be a reality, even though similar projects failed in the past. One that comes to mind is the 1976 Bicentennial.

MTV is challenging findings by Nielsen which indicate a dramatic decline in key demographic segments of the metered viewer sample for the 24-hour cable music channel. Unexplained apparent drops of about 20% in the number of 18-to-24-year-old viewers and 25% in the 12-17 age group as compared to the second quarter of 1985 are causing an unspecified delay in Nielsen’s publishing of MTV’s fourth quarter 1985 ratings.


Top Album Rock Tracks – January 15, 1986

Kyrie – Mr. Mister

Silent Running – Mike & The Mechanics

Stages – ZZ Top

Talk To Me – Stevie Nicks

Day By Day- The Hooters

Face the Face – Pete Townshend

I Can’t Wait – Stevie Nicks

Give Blood – Pete Townshend

Can’t Stop Rockin’ – ZZ Top

Life In A Northern Town – Dream Academy

Strength – The Alarm


Top Country Hit Music Singles – January 15, 1986

Bop – Dan Seals

Never Be You – Roseanne Cash

Just in Case – Forester Sisters

Home Again In My Heart – Nitty Gritty dirt Band

Memories to Burn – Gene Watson

Hurt – Juice Newton

(Back to the) Heartbreak Kid – Restless heart

Makin’ Up for Lost Time – Crystal Gayle and Gary Morris

Old School – John Conlee

Morning Desire – Kenny Rogers


Top pop music hits In Britain – January 15, 1986

Saving All My Love For You – Whitney Houston

West End Girls – Pet Shop Boys

Merry Christmas Everyone – Shakin Stevens

The Sun Always Shines On TV – A-Ha

Hit That Perfect Beat – Bronski Beat

Dress You Up – Madonna

Girlie Girlie – Sophia George

Walking In The Air – Aled Jones


Top pop hit music albums – January 15, 1986

Heart – Heart

Miami Vice – Soundtrack

The Broadway Album – Barbra Streisand

Brothers In Arms – Dire straits

Afterburner – ZZ Top

In Square Circle – Stevie Wonder

Knee Deep In The Hoopla – Starship

Born in the U.S.A. – Bruce Springsteen

Promise – Sade

Scarecrow – John Cougar Mellencamp

Welcome to The real World – Mr. Mister

Whitney Houston – Whitney Houston

Songs Form The Big Chair – Tears For Fears

Power Windows – Rush

Once Upon A Time – Simple Minds

Greatest Hits – The Cars

Rock A Little – Stevie Nicks

No Jacket Required – Phil Collins

Reckless – Bryan Adams

White Nights – Soundtrack

Rocky IV – Soundtrack

Rock Me Tonight - Freddie Jackson

So Red The Rose – arcadia

Here’s To Future Days - Thompson Twins

Seven The Hard Way – Pat Benatar

How Could It Be – Eddie Murphy

Who’s Zoomin’ Who – Aretha Franklin


Top hit music singles(top-40) – January 15, 1986

That’s What Friends Are for – Dionne & Friends

Party All The Time – Eddie Murphy

Say You, say Me – Lionel Richie

I Miss You – Klymaxx

Alive and Kicking – Simple Minds

Small Town – John Cougar Mellencamp

Talk To Me – Stevie Nicks

Burning Heart – Survivor

Walk of Life – dire straits

Tonight She Comes – The Cars

I’m Your Man – Wham!

Go Home – Stevie Wonder

My Hometown – Bruce Springsteen

Spies Like Us – Paul McCartney

Conga – Miami Sound Machine

Separate Lives – Phil Collins/Marilyn martin

Goodbye – Night ranger

It’s Only Love – Bryan Adams/Tina Turner

Broken Wings – Mr. Mister

Sidewalk Talk - Jellybean


Top movies – January 15, 1986

Iron Eagle


Color Purple


Spies Like Us

Out of Africa

A Chorus Line

Jewel of the Nile

101 Dalmations

Runaway Train

Basic Training

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