This week, we visit everywhere from the depths of Africa (Kinshasa) to the roof of the world, (Katmandu, Nepal). We have songs in English, Spanish, and with no words at all. We see Mike Post for the first time and Tony Orlando for the last. We go where the music takes us, from the ballroom to the gas station. All that, and the Smothers Brothers too! Let's go.
Opening our chart are 12 hot 100 debuts, including 4 that made an impression. Bob Seger comes in at 93 from the album Beautiful Loser with Katmandu. For the first time, this week featured the same song in 2 different versions by the same act in the same countdown; with Love Will Keep Us Together still at 27, the Spanish language version, Por Amor Viveremos, charts at 90 for the Captain and Tennille. One notch higher is Helen Reddy with Ain't No Way To Treat A Lady; and John Denver's follow-up to top dog Thank God I'm A Country Boy, I'm Sorry, is in at 80. A tie for the big dropper this week with a 28 notch fall: Lynyrd Skynyrd's Saturday Night Special down to 69, and the Moments' Look At Me (I'm In Love) to 67. The big mover upwards is the Pointer Sisters, up 16 to 50 with How Long (Betcha Got A Chick On The Side). Between them and Helen, grammar is taking a beating this week.
Our first special this week is the countdown from my top songs of the 70's. At 80 is our former top dog Jackie Blue; 79 is George Harrison's My Sweet Lord. At 78, Styx's Crystal Ball is our first entry that did not chart on the hot 100. 77 begins a long list of tunes by ELO with Livin' Thing; and lastly this week, we have Barry Manilow at 76 with Can't Smile Without You.
Coming into the airplay zone this week are 6 songs: Johnny Wakelin and his Kinshasa Band with a song much more popular in England than here, Black Superman-Muhammad Ali at 40; Neil Sedaka with That's When The Music Takes Me at 39; Three Dog Night with a song I didn't know (but after listening would have to say that they got severely short changed by the listening public on this one), Till The World Ends, at 38; Johnny Rivers' version of Help Me Rhonda at 37; The Amazing Rhythm Aces' Third Rate Romance at 35; and Sweet's Ballroom Blitz leaps 10 to 32.
Our almost but not quite goes to Michael Anthony Orlando Cassavitis, also known as Tony Orlando, with Morning Beautiful which peaks this week at 15, the last of his and Dawn's 8 top 20 hits. Another song short changed by the listening public.
Two come into the top 10, two go out. Wings drop to 16 with former top dog Listen To What The Man Says; Frankie Valli dips to 20 with Swearin' To God. Which brings us to the tops of other years this week; we're in the 8's this time. 1998's top on the Alternative chart was the highly overplayed Inside Out by Eve 6; 1988 saw Stevie Winwood at the top with Roll With It; 1978's #1 song this week was the Stones' best song ever, Miss You. 1968 saw Smothers Brothers' writer Mason Williams at 1 with Classical Gas, a song which was arranged by Mike Post (who is at 11 on our current chart with the Rockford Files Theme) and was originally supposed to be called "Classical Gasoline" but got shortened by a copy writer somewhere along the line. And in 1958, Perez Prado and his orchestra, who is known for his huge hit Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White- and not so known as the original composer, in 1949, of Mambo #5 of later Lou Bega fame- rode the top with Patricia. This was the last song to hit #1 before the Billboard chart came into existence.
Here we go with this week's top ten. Down 4 to 10 is Van McCoy's The Hustle. Climbing 5 to 9 is James Taylor with How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You); the other rookie is Glen Campbell at 8, up 3, with Rhinestone Cowboy. Midnight Blue moves up a notch to 7 for Melissa Manchester; War climbs 3 to 6 with Why Can't We Be Friends. The Eagles, giving ground stubbornly, edge down 2 to 5 with One Of These Nights; Olivia Newton-John seems to be taking a faster trip back down from the top, falling to 4 with Please Mister Please. 10cc edges up to 3 with I'm Not In Love; Elton John storms up 3 to the runner up slot with Someone Saved My Life Tonight. All of which means that our new top dog, or dogs, are the Brothers Gibb, who reach for the second of the nine number ones they will eventually collect with Jive Talkin'.
Another trip is at an end; see you next week!