The ‘80s: Thomas Dolby’s “She Blinded Me With Science”

dolby1In 1982, Thomas Dolby released his debut album The Golden Age of Wireless in the U.K.  The album, now considered an ‘80s synth-pop classic, included everything from quirky up-tempo tunes like “Europa and the Pirate Twins” to the cinematic and mellow song “Airwaves.”

The album was released a second time that year, this time in the U.S., but neither release contained the signature hit “She Blinded Me With Science,” which was added to the album in 1983 when it was released a third time.  Ironically, while Dolby, now a Professor of the Arts at Johns Hopkins University, had several tunes to hit the charts in his music career, “She Blinded Me With Science” still wound up on VH1’s “100 Greatest One-hit Wonders” and on their “100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s” lists.

“She Blinded Me With Science” definitely was a hit—a big one, in fact.  It hit the Top 10 on the U.S. Billboard dolby3Hot 100, mainstream rock and dance charts, and peaked at #49 on the R&B chart.  This was, of course, a result of heavy radio airplay, a lot of love from club DJs, and a popular music video on MTV which showed Dolby checking himself in at the “Home For Deranged Scientists.”  The song has since become a mainstay in pop culture being used by The Muppets and The Simpsons, and was sampled by hip-hop’s Mobb Deep in their song “Got It Twisted.” 

In 1985 Dolby performed a snippet of “Science” during the 1985 Grammy Award Synthesizer Jam, which featured the most popular keyboard players on the charts at the time: Dolby, Herbie Hancock, Howard Jones, and Stevie Wonder.  Thanks to the single’s success, The Golden Age of Wireless became a Top 20 hit, peaking at #13 on the Billboard albums chart.

—Montrose Cunningham

Montrose Cunningham is a Dallas, Texas-based, independent funk/rock/soul artist and devoted music aficionado, with a Master of Science degree in Marketing. When he isn’t digging through the crates–digital and analog–he’s jamming with his band or hanging with his daughters, sometimes at the same time. Purchase his release Inertia at, follow him on Twitter @MontroseC and check out his blog, Daddy Rock Star.

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