Crowd shot masthead ApologetiX Logo Keith Haynie plays bassBill Hubauer plays lead guitarJ. Jackson sings leadJimmy Vegas Tanner plays drums
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03.01.24A Serious Problem We're Trying to Address
02.29.24How to Donate Online or by Mail
02.29.24How to Get the ApX Library, USBs, Multiple Downloads
02.29.24All About Our Next CD
02.29.24Influential Albums: 1388-1394
02.29.24This Week's Bible-Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.29.24Easter Season Playlist 2024
02.25.24This Week's News Bulletin
02.25.24USBs Include New Single & Next CD
02.25.24Over 1650 Tracks for $100
02.25.24Buy Our Next CD, Get 1 of 40 Free
02.22.24Get Ready for Our Next CD
02.22.24Influential Albums: 1381-1387
02.22.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.22.24Wayne Is Retiring, What's Next for Him and Us?
02.22.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
02.19.24This Week's News Bulletin
02.19.24Get Multiple Downloads for One Donation
02.19.24New Single: Billy & The Beach
02.16.24Influential Albums: 1374-1380
02.16.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.16.24Remembering ApX Friend Paul "Doc" Nigh (1956-2024)
02.16.24Clues for 2024 Single #4
02.10.24Influential Albums: 1367-1373
02.10.24Fans Making Plans to Attend Our Big Show September 1
02.10.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.10.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
02.06.24This Week's News Bulletin
02.06.24New Single: '74 & '83
02.03.24ApX Lead Singer/Lyricist Shares His Testimony 36 Years Later
02.03.24Influential Albums: 1360-1366
02.03.24This Week's Bible Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
02.03.24Latest CD Added to iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Etc.
02.02.24Clues for 2024 Single #3
01.29.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.26.24Influential Albums: 1353-1359
01.26.24How to Get the ApX Library, USBs, Multiple Downloads
01.26.24This Week's Bible-Reading and Rock Thru the Bible
01.26.24Flashback: J.'s Vision for ApologetiX in 2014
01.26.24J.'s Vision for ApologetiX in 2024
01.26.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
01.24.24Checking in With ApX Alum Drummer Fred Behanna
01.22.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.22.24New Single: '70s #1 Hits That Remade '60s Top 10 Hits
01.19.24Influential Albums: 1346-1352
01.19.24Encouraging Message from Longtime Fan in Oklahoma
01.19.24This Week's Bible-Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
01.15.24This Week's News Bulletin
01.12.24Influential Albums: 1339-1346
01.12.24The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
01.12.24Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
01.12.24New Testament Reading Started Wednesday
01.11.24New Worship Songs Available from ApX Alum Bill Rieger
01.08.24New Single: '81 & '83
01.08.24New CD BOGO Ends Sunday
01.08.24New USB Thumb Drives on the Way
01.05.24Clues for 2024 Single #1
01.05.24Influential Albums: 1332-1338
01.05.24Have You Heard About the Other Music City Miracle?
01.05.24This Week's Bible Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
12.29.23Influential Albums: 1325-1331
12.29.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.28.232023: A Record-Breaking Record-Making Year
12.28.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.26.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.26.23New Single: 1974 & 2008
12.23.23Influential Albums: 1318-1324
12.23.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.23.23ApologetiX Updated Christmas Playlist
12.18.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.18.23New Samson CD Mailed to Fans, New Orders Sent as They Come In
12.16.23Influential Albums: 1311-1317
12.16.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
12.16.23New Story
12.16.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.11.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.11.23New Single: '83 & '84
12.11.23ApX Apparel: Order by Tuesday with Express Shipping
12.07.23New ApX Apparel and More: Order Soon for Christmas
12.07.23Influential Albums: 1304-1310
12.07.23Just Reword CD Added to iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Etc.
12.07.23Clues for 2023 Single #25
12.04.23This Week's News Bulletin
12.02.23Influential Albums: 1297-1303
12.02.23This Week's Bible Reading & Rock Thru the Bible
12.02.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
12.02.23New Shirts & Other ApX Merch Coming Soon
12.02.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.28.23This Week's News Bulletin
11.28.23New Christmas Single: All '80s
11.24.23Influential Albums: 1290-1296
11.24.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.24.23Clues for 2023 Single #24
11.16.23All 71 ApX CDs Available as Downloads for $9.99 Each
11.16.23Influential Albums: 1283-1289
11.16.23The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
11.16.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week
11.12.23This Week's News Bulletin
11.12.23New Single: #1 Hits from '81 & '86
11.09.23Rock Thru the Bible with ApX This Week

The Expanding Album Challenge: Week 35
Sun., Jan. 10. 2021 6:19pm EST

J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.

It has become apparent that I'll need more than 365 days in the "albums that influenced me" series that I started in May 2020. Here are entries from this past week:

240. Sports Huey Lewis and the News
My college friend (and one of my eventual housemates) Dave Anthony was the first person I knew who bought this album. He already owned previous releases by Huey, too. The four Top 10 hits on Sports were part of the soundtrack of my sophomore year in college and the summer afterward — "Heart and Soul," "I Want a New Drug," "The Heart of Rock & Roll," and "If This Is It." The final single, "Walkin' on a Thin Line," came out in the fall of my junior year. It only went to #18, but I liked it a lot. "Bad Is Bad" was a little slow for me, but there's another version of that song done by another artist on an another album coming up on this list. ApologetiX eventually spoofed "I Want a New Drug." We also spoofed the single that followed up this album, "The Power of Love."

241. Don't Stop - Billy Idol
This 1981 record was actually just a four-song EP, but I played "Dancing with Myself" to death. I couldn't get enough of that song and also really liked "Baby Talk." I thought Billy's version of "Mony Mony" was great, too, until I heard it for umpteenth time. Even "The Untouchables" was decent. I was also a big fan of "White Wedding," "Hot in the City," and "Love Calling" from Billy's 1982 eponymous follow-up album. I actually heard that one before I heard this one.

242. Into the Gap Thompson Twins
The Thompson Twins played a concert at IUP during the spring semester of my sophomore year, right about the time their biggest hit, "Hold Me Now," was cresting the charts (it went to #3). I adored that song — I'd also enjoyed their previous hits, "Lies" and "Love on Your Side" — but for some reason, I didn't feel compelled to go. Maybe I needed the money for pizza. But I bought the single and its follow-up, "Doctor! Doctor!" Then I heard "The Gap" on the local rock station. What a cool tune! I can't remember if I'd heard the third single, "You Take Me Up," before I finally bought this album, but I love that one, too. I never owned the follow-up album, but I'm a big fan of its two big hits, "Lay Your Hands on Me" and "King for a Day."

243. She's So Unusual - Cyndi Lauper
The winner of 1985's Grammy for Best New Artist had a quite a run of singles off this album in 1984-85 — each distinctly different from the others, yet each distinctly Lauper-esque —"Girls Just Want to Have Fun" (#2), "Time After Time" (#1), "She Bop" (#3), "All Through the Night" (#5), and "Money Changes Everything" (#27). You play any of those tunes, and everyone knows it's Cyndi. I liked 'em all. Her cover of Prince's "When You Were Mine" was popular with some of my friends, too. Hey, I made it the whole way through a paragraph about Cyndi Lauper without using the words "quirky" or "eccentric"! Oops.

244. 1984 (a.k.a. MCMLXXXIV) Van Halen
I'd liked plenty of other Van Halen songs along the way, but this was the one that brought them into the mainstream for me (and the rest of America). You know the four singles — "Jump," "I'll Wait" (cowritten by an uncredited Michael McDonald), "Panama," and "Hot for Teacher." ApologetiX has already spoofed a couple of them. I also liked "Top Jimmy" a lot.

245. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme Simon & Garfunkel
Even though Simon & Garfunkel's Greatest Hits had been a seminal (Simonal?) record in my development as a young rock fan, I'd never bothered to listen to any of their other albums. Then, one day during the summer of 1984, I heard this one playing in Camelot Records at Westmoreland Mall. I already knew the title track, plus "Homeward Bound," "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)" and "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her," but most of those were live recordings on Greatest Hits. These were the studio versions, and I liked them even better. Moreover, I couldn't believe how great everything else sounded! My favorite tracks were: "Cloudy," "Flowers Never Bend with the Rainfall," "The Big Bright Green Pleasure Machine," and "A Simple Desultory Philippic." This album also includes their classic-albeit-disturbing Christmas commentary, "7 O'Clock News/Silent Night." ApologetiX eventually spoofed the title track in 2014.

246. Let's Dance David Bowie
The title track from Let's Dance went to #1, and the follow-up single, "China Girl," went to #10, but it was the third single, "Modern Love" (#14), that did it for me. I also like the fourth single, "Without You," quite a bit, but you might not have known there even was a fourth single, since it only went to #73. I didn't hear it till I heard the album. I also dug "Cat People (Putting Out Fire)," although Bowie had already released an excellent, moodier, smoldering, slow version on the soundtrack for the Cat People movie over a year earlier. "Ricochet" was never one of my "go to" tracks, but it's hard to get out of your head once you hear it.

Note: The albums are not listed in order of preference or excellence, but in chronological order of when they influenced me. Also, just because the albums on my list influenced me back then doesn't mean I give them all a blanket endorsement now.

I started actively listening to music in the early 70's and didn't become a born-again Christian until early 1988, so it's going to be a while before we get to the Christian albums, but there will be many of those when the time comes (literally).