Saturday, October 1, 2011

Joel Whitburn answers MOST of my questions....

After that attack of chartmania I had a month ago, I took the plunge & grabbed a cheap copy of Joel Whitburn & BILLBOARD's TOP POP SINGLES 1955-2002 -- mostly cos I wanted 2 track down more info on songs I heard while I was growing up & haven't heard since. I wanted 2 know if I hallucinated them, or if they really did briefly Xsist.
Whitburn & his team of record researchers answered most of the questions my 13-year-old self had, tho there R still a few mysteries I'll probly never know the answer 2.... I already knew Whitburn & his folks were reliable with their chart data -- an old marked-up copy of their mid-'80s TOP 40 HITS book is propping up this laptop right now.
As 4 TOP POP SINGLES -- well, it's massive. 1,000 pgs. It weighs 3 pounds. It hurts 2 hold up. But there's a lotta good stuff in it if you're an old charts/nostalgia fiend like me.
I was mainly intrested in stuff that DIDN'T make the Top 40 -- some of those old shoulda-been-hits that I wrote-up as "Great Lost Singles" awhile back. & I found most of them. But not all. & I've found lots more intresting stuff in the few days I've had 2 look over this massive book that I could easily get lost in 4 weeks.
Here's a few dozen Xamples -- I can vouch 4 the fact that most of the list below is Worth Tracking Down. Some of them I even did my part 4 the economy by BUYING back in the day....

* The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's "Some Of Shelley's Blues" peaked at #64 in Fall 1971. Their great stomping version of Kenny Loggins's "House at Pooh Corner" reached #53 in Spring '71.
* Billy Lee Riley's "I Got a Thing About You Baby" peaked at #93 in Winter '72.
* 10 c.c.'s "Rubber Bullets" hit #73 in Fall '73.
* The Hollies' "Magic Woman Touch," #60, Spring '73; "Sandy (4th of July, Asbury Park)," #85, Spring '75.
* Billy Joel's "Travelin' Prayer," #77,  Fall '74.
* Paul Revere & the Raiders' "Do Unto Others" "bubbled under" at #102 in Winter of '67; "Song Seller," #96, Fall '72; "Country Wine," #51, Winter '72.
* El Chicano's "Brown-Eyed Girl," #45, Summer '72.
* Chris Hodge's "We're On Our Way," #44, Summer '72.
* John Kongos's "He's Gonna Step On You Again," #70, Summer '71.
* Steely Dan's "My Old School," #63, Winter '73; "Pretzel Logic," #57, Fall '74.
* Manfred Mann's Earth Band: "Living Without You," #69, Spring '72.
* Todd Rundgren: "Couldn't I Just Tell You?" #93, Summer '72; "Real Man," #83, Spring '75; "A Dream Goes On Forever," #69, Spring '74; Rundgren & Utopia's "The Very Last Time," #76, Summer '80.
* Carolyne Mas: "Stillsane," #71, Fall '79. Her equally great "Sadie Says" didn't make the Hot 100.
* The Left Banke: "Desiree," #98, Fall '67.
* Ike & Tina Turner: "River Deep, Mountain High," #88, Summer '66.
* Lighthouse: "Pretty Lady," #53, Winter '73.
* Kinks: "Apeman," #45, Winter '71.
* Nazareth's hilarious "Holiday," #87, Spring '80.
* Zep's "Over the Hills and Far Away," #51, Summer '73.
* Albert Hammond's "Free Electric Band," #48, Spring '73.
* Spirit's "Nature's Way," #111, Fall '73.
* Love's "Alone Again Or," #99, Fall '70.
* The Headboys' "The Shape of Things to Come," #67, Winter '79.
* Uriah Heep's "Stealin'," #91, Fall '73.
* Raspberries' "Tonight," #69, Fall '73. "Ecstacy" didn't make the Top 100.
* Sutherland Brothers & Quiver's "You Got Me Anyway," #48, Fall '73; "Arms of Mary," #81, Spring '76.
* The Rip Chords' great acapella "Here I Stand," #51, Spring '63; "Gone," #88, Summer '63.
* Heaven Bound's gorgeous "Five Hundred Miles," #79, Winter '71.
* Gladstone's "A Piece of Paper," #45, Summer '72.
* Cozy Powell's "Dance With the Devil," #49, Spring '74.
* Modern English's "I Melt With You," #78, Spring '83.
* Giorgio Moroder's cute & catchy "Son of My Father," #46, Spring '72.
* The Pop Tops' "Mammy Blue," #57, Fall '71.
* Los Bravos' "Bring a Little Lovin'," #51, Summer '68.
* Simon Stokes: "Captain Howdy," #90, Summer '74.

* Not reaching the Hot 100 & not mentioned as "bubbling under" are: Johnathan King's "A Tall Order for a Short Guy;" 10 c.c.'s "Wall Street Shuffle;" Poco's "Here We Go Again" & "A Good Feeling to Know;" Andy Pratt's "Pistol Packin' Melody;" Kracker's "Because of You (The Sun Don't Set);" ELP's "Still ... You Turn Me On;" Stories' "Love is in Motion;" Nicolette Larson's "Radioland;" Rickie Lee Jones' "We Belong Together;" Rare Bird's "Birdman, Part 2;" The Road Home's "Keep it in the Family;" Austin Roberts' "One Word;" Mal's singalong "Mighty Mighty and Roly Poly;" Matthew Fisher's "Interlude;" The Wackers' "I Hardly Know Her Name;" Brenda & the Tabulations' "One Girl Too Late"....

...I could go on. Actually, I did, but this list is 2 long already & I'm probly 4getting a few dozen things. A couple Xtra items:
* Nektar's "Astral Man" actually reached #91 on BILLBOARD's Hot 100 Singles chart in Summer '75. I woulda chose "Fidgety Queen" as a single myself, but still....
*...& just 2 show how outta touch I am: Mariah Carey has more than 15 #1 hits ... & I can recognize Xactly 1 of them: "I'll Be There" -- mainly Bcos it sounds almost Xactly like the Jackson 5's original.... The rest of her career is a mystery 2 me....

...Now then. About most of the above list: Look at all that musical genius that went unrewarded. What were people THINKING...?

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