Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column – 1990 – Michael Bolton and M. C. Hammer

Welcome to the next episode in our adventures and the music I was listening too back in 1990… that is still on my playlist today.

On a ferry trip in Portsmouth with my mother 1990

It is 1990 and I am 37 years old. Work was going well and I was now Advertising Sales Manager for the paper I worked for, bringing a fair bit of stress but nothing that I could not handle. I had a full-time telesales team during the day and part-time team that came in until 9.00pm each evening and all day Saturday selling private property and car adverts. This meant that I tended to be in the office from 8.00 a.m. to 7pm each weekday and on call on Saturdays. I had some great supervisors thankfully which meant I rarely received a call. It was also pre-mobile phone days which meant that if we had headed off to London to the cinema they had to make the decisions on their own.

There were some interesting moments at work as keeping 25 young telesales staff motivated enough to achieve the tough weekly targets we were given was challenging. Rejection is part of the package in outbound cold calling and we focused on building up regular advertisers who booked weekly. They were offered incentives of course for longer- term bookings and there were bonuses for those sales people who managed to obtain these preferred customers.

This did not always involve spot prizes such as money, cinema or theatre tickets. It also involved some personal forfeits by their sales manager. On one occasion I promised that if they hit a particularly heavy weekly target that I would do the splits; a skill left over from my ballet days at age seven. To be honest I did not expect that this target handed down from head office was achievable despite my team’s best efforts, and it was in desperation that I put my well-being on the line. Bless them they pulled out all the stops and at the eleventh hour they overtook the target in spectacular style. I am a firm believer in keeping promises and despite being a fairly hefty 15 stone at the time I honoured my commitment and descended into the splits. They of course were delighted but it did take three of the more substantial lads to get me back up into a standing position!

Some of the aforementioned regular advertisers who had taken out six-monthly or annual packages were sometimes treated to lunch. I was not into three hour business lunches as there was far too much work to be done, but I would meet them at Ho-Ho Chinese Restaurant up on the high road in South Woodford (since closed I am informed by Jessica Norrie) and we would have the set lunch accompanied by a bottle of warm Saki served in very small china cups. Since I was a very regular customer (David and I used to frequent often), I knew the owner and the head waiter very well, and we came to an arrangement, that when I brought in a client, they would serve the Saki in the much larger tea cups so speeding up the process.

On one occasion as I was walking up the high street with an important client on our way to Ho-Ho’s I noticed a pretty Chinese girl coming towards us. As she came level she held her cupped hands way out in front of her breasts and smiled at me. ‘Hello Miss Big Cups, how are you today?’ Recognition in any form is always excellent customer service!!

Now to the music of the year….

With limited time music was something I listened to whilst I prepared the evening meal. I tended to stick with my long-term favourites on the CD player in the kitchen and only bought a couple of new albums. To be honest I thought that a lot of the chart hits were not great that year apart from stand outs from artists such as Elton John with Healing Hands still being played on the radio from 1989, Phil Collins I Wish It Would Rain Down, The Beautiful South A Little TimeThe B-52’s Love Shack, Kylie Minogue Tears on my Pillow and Better the Devil You Know. I am a huge fan of Michael Bolton so his CD was definitely added to the collection that year and his single How Am I Supposed to Live Without You, was and still is, amazing. One track; M.C. HammerU Can’t Touch This was up there with my top ten of the year and is still on my iPod today.

So here are those two tracks .. How Am I Supposed to Live Without You..….MichaelBoltonVEVO

Buy Michael Bolton music: Amazon

U Can’t Touch This...MC HAMMER 

Buy M.C. Hammer Music: Amazon

As part of this series I would love to hear what your favourite music is and if you put the title of the track in the comments, I will play as a request as part of next week’s post.

Thanks for tuning in… Sally

16 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column – 1990 – Michael Bolton and M. C. Hammer

  1. This is a fabulous post, Sally. Phil Collins, Elton John, and Michael Bolton have long been among my favorites. They certainly bring up good memories. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Another great episode in your life. Miss Big Cups is so funny!! In the early 90s, I too had to motivate a sales team, never easy. I never did the splits though! I once promised them green tea ice cream which I treated them all to when they hit the target. They were delighted and still talk about it. One of my favourite songs from 1990 was Roxette’s It Must Have Been Love (from Pretty Woman) Still love it.


  3. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column – 1990 – Michael Bolton and M. C. Hammer | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

  4. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – William Price King with Chet Baker – 1990s #Charts – Short stories – Recipes for #Turkey – #Books for #Christmas. | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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