EVERY Billboard #1 hit discussion thread 1958-Present

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by alphanguy, Jan 29, 2016.

  1. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Thanks! In all honesty I don't know much about Harris' music, and I know a cornball when I see one, but MacArthur Park and a few other tracks of his manage to nicely skirt the edge between cheesy and awesome (at least for me they do!).
     
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  2. John B Good

    John B Good Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    NS, Canada
    I'm getting close to needing a Rascals-Young Rascals cd...
     
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  3. W.B.

    W.B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    Just make sure there's some mono in there. In some cases there were major differences between the mono and stereo.
     
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  4. John B Good

    John B Good Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    NS, Canada
    I'm thinking of that Real Gone edition, though it is expensive.
     
  5. tmoore

    tmoore Forum Resident

    Location:
    Olney, MD
    I don't post often and so I'll comment on several songs. For my comments to make sense, understand that I was 1 in 1968, and I didn't actually hear these songs until later (probably '70s, if I heard them at all in the '60s it was at the very very end of the decade).

    Mrs. Robinson - my family bought this 45 and for a long time it was my favorite S & G song. Nowadays it is #2 for me (topped by "America" which I did not hear until the 1980s -- we did not have the Bookends album and I did not hear that album or "America" until the 1980s). The B-side "Old Friends/Bookends" was also a favorite. I should also point out that for a very long time I thought the vocals (what I later learned were Simon's) were female (we did not have any pictures of S&G, and those names didn't help me figure that out).

    This Guy's In Love With You -- my mother, the Herb Alpert fan (and the rest of my family) watched the 1968 TV special with Herb Alpert, which I believe someone in our house recorded on our reel-to-reel tape recorder, so for a long time in the '70s I was hearing this song as recorded on the reel-to-reel that we had. Then sometime (guessing 1974?), the reel-to-reel tape recorder broke (and was not repaired or replaced), and it was another 10 years before I heard the song again. But when I heard it again, I instantly remembered it.

    Grazing in the Grass (Hugh Masekela version) and Classical Gas by Mason Williams-- I remember hearing both of these a lot on our local radio station in the early '70s and both of them I have never tired of hearing.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
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  6. Grant

    Grant A Musical Free-Spirit

    Location:
    Arizona
    I had the mono single mix on CD for at least a couple of decades before it showed up again on the Real Gone Singles collection. The main feature of the mono mix is that the horn blasts and drums are clear and up front.

    If you read the booklet in that CD, you'll find an explaination of why he wrote that song. It's perhaps the most important song Felix Cavaliere wrote for the band, and was directly influenced by the civil rights struggle. If I remember correctly - and don't get upset if i'm wrong - the label had an objection to releasing it as a single. The band's instincts were, again, correct, as the song shot to #1.

    As Manapua says, it was the first record they released under their original name "The Rascals". They had a cease and desist order from some other band named The Rascals back in 1965, but they had grown to be a major band, never liked being billed as "The Young Rascals", and in 1968 just said basically "the hell with it", and used the original name. That is why they are called "The Rascals" today, but adds the "young" part on the earlier records.
     
  7. W.B.

    W.B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    There's a little problem with this timeline - "People Got To Be Free" was actually the second single to be credited to "The Rascals." The first: "A Beautiful Morning."
    [​IMG]
     
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  8. W.B.

    W.B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    I.I.N.M., that was one of several cases of Atlantic objecting to potential single releases, that wound up either topping the charts or otherwise becoming big hits.
     
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  9. Grant

    Grant A Musical Free-Spirit

    Location:
    Arizona
    Like Motown, Atlantic executives were stuck on happy, danceable R&B. They were afraid of political songs. But, in the late 60s, songs about politics and the social state of the union was exactly what people wanted to hear. That, and bubblegum.
     
  10. W.B.

    W.B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY, USA
    I was thinking of Jerry Wexler's reported objection to The Drifters' first record after an entirely new group with that name (fronted by a certain Ben E. King) was put together - "There Goes My Baby." Which was only held up for a few months instead of close to a year, contrary to legend.
     
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  11. Dougd

    Dougd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Fla.
    Grazing is a far different song than Mrs. Robinson.
    Apples & oranges.

    Jumpin' Jack Flash does sound like a No. 1. I'd of thought it went to No. 3.
    But No. 3 is very high.
    It supports my view that almost any song that cracks the Top 5 (at least Top 3) is as good as No. 1, particularly if the No. 1 HOGS the top spot FOR WEEKS, like many Bee Gees songs in the late 70s, Honey, My Love, etc.

    These are just a few other No.2- No. 3 songs that also sounded like No. 1s:
    -Saturday in the Park (#3)
    -California Girls (#3)
    -Louie, Louie (#2)
    -Wooly Bully (#2)
    -Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me (#2)
    -Paint It, Black (#3)
    -Wouldn't It Be Nice (#8)
    -Little Darlin' (kept out of No. 1 by Elvis)
    -Here Comes the Sun (never released as a single)
    -Fun Fun Fun (#3)
    -You Don't Own Me - Lesley Gore (#2) (kept from No. 1 by The Beatles)
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
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  12. Dougd

    Dougd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Fla.
    [On Mrs. Robinson]
    Much like Gilbert O'Sullivan's Alone Again (Naturally), which would hit No. 1 in the early 70s.
    Its upbeat nature masked its depressing suicide-themed lyrics.
     
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  13. Dougd

    Dougd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Fla.
    The 2 songs aren't really related.
    Classical Gas is more rockin', Love Is Blue is a delightfully beautiful song, but more of a ballad.
    The only thing the two great songs share is being instrumentals.
     
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  14. Hey Vinyl Man

    Hey Vinyl Man Forum Resident

    Paint It Black went to #1 in Billboard.
     
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  15. Dougd

    Dougd Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Fla.
    Oops. I got that song mixed up with Black is Black, a similar-titled song.
     
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  16. Hey Vinyl Man

    Hey Vinyl Man Forum Resident

    I've been known to get those mixed up too. :)
     
  17. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Interesting... This song got a LOT of airplay on our late, lamented oldies station. Of course, it was a long time before I knew the name of it!
     
  18. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Boy, it sure felt like 4 minutes! :cool:
     
  19. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    I remember talking about this when we were discussing Respect. I'm not sure if anyone was able to definitively answer whether that song came up with the phrase, or it was just a saying that was around that Aretha threw in there (it wasn't in Redding's version IIRC). It definitely predated Laugh In, however.
     
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  20. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Trying to play catch up...

    This Guy's In Love With You

    It is one of the ironies of Herb Alpert's career that his biggest hit of the 60s was one of the few that wasn't an instrumental. I always liked this song, and the fact that Alpert isn't a professional quality singer makes it all the more charming. A real singer would overwhelm the mellow vibe I think.

    This is one I almost never heard on oldies radio. I only know the song because my mom was/is a huge Herb Alpert fan. Yes, I was one of those boys who realized he liked the way girls looked when he first spied that Whipped Cream album cover. :)

    I heard his stuff so much as a kid it's hard to know which one I like the most. I guess the Lonely Bull or Spanish Flea; Lonely Bull really puts the Tijuana in the Tijuana Brass. As far as his covers, I like A Taste of Honey, a song I knew mainly from his version until I started to complete my Beatles collection.

    Grazing in the Grass

    It's one of those interesting twists that 1968 saw back-to-back #1 hits by guys who were primarily known as trumpeters. Grazing in the Grass was a song that was literally never played on oldies radio, but weirdly, the cover of that song by the Friends of Distinction WAS often played. So here's a case where a cover/alternate version of a big hit is the one that has come down to us while the bigger hit has been 'lost'. I quite like the Friends version, better than Hugh's version to be honest.

    Here are the Friends doing the number in 1970. The ladies really are getting down!

     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
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  21. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Hugh Masekela played at the Monterey Pop Festival, and also accompanied the Byrds on one of their better mid-period songs, So You Want To Be a Rock N' Roll Star? Here is their collaboration! He doesn't appear in the video, but you can't mistake that horn, the first use of brass in a Byrds single.

     
  22. AppleBonker

    AppleBonker Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    As I mentioned, one of my favorites of the Tijuana Brass, A Taste of Honey. Man, this brings back a lot of ancient memories for me!

     
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  23. thecdguy

    thecdguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Philadelphia, Pa.
    "Black Is Black" made it to #4 in Billboard.
     
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  24. John54

    John54 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    I can take or leave People Got to Be Free. For me the Rascals were like the Animals in the UK, meaning they were probably my least favourite of all the big topnotch acts from their respective nations. But I like enough of each's songs to have a compilation or two. For the Rascals, I always liked It's Wonderful, probably the least substantial of any of their songs, but several others are okay. It's a case of a good band that didn't really make an impact on me personally.
     
  25. tmoore

    tmoore Forum Resident

    Location:
    Olney, MD
    That's exactly what my mom said about the Tijuana Brass, that once he hit it big with Whipped Cream album, the Tijuana influence went away.

    And she liked him doing vocals even less. Not so much "This Guy's in Love With You", but the ones he did after that (e.g. "Without Her" and "To Wait For Love").

    But I think she still liked the non-vocal sides, at least for a few years, since she kept buying the records and singles at least up to 1970 and "Jerusalem". She definitely did not like 1979's "Rise".

    ==========
    Re: Grazing in the Grass. I am not in love with the Friends of Distinction version. The "gas" and "can you dig it?" lines really date it (badly) for me, as I was a little too young to experience those times.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017

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