Coming up this week on time machine: a down week for debuts; the "real" meaning of "tush"; once again, how hits come from beer joints; and a nod to a fallen Parrothead. But first, a couple of non- music asides.
First off, last night was the end of the NFL preseason, and thus the end of the NHFFL preseason. Although I started to fear (seeings as this is NFL "scrub week") that we might be looking at some 0-0 ties, that proved unfounded. The SVA take the Purple div. with a 12-10 win over the B2s which puts the SVA at 3-1 and the mice at 1-3. The T-Cubs win the Gold div. after a 19-11 win over the Ducks. T-Cubs also 3-1, while the Ducks lose the last two to end at 2-2. The Angels win the Scarlet div. with a perfect 4-0 mark after a 14-12 win over the Beagles (2-2). The KCAs (2-2) edge the Elks (1-3) 10-9; the Rhinos (2-2) give the Rangers an 0-4 preseason with a 24-16 win; annnnd Buzz puts down the Clock BBQs 17-8 to leave both teams at 2-2. The real thing starts next week, dudes!
Second, Scrappy and I saw the fox again. It was the tan one, in the same spot at the corner of the woods, just sunning himself not 100 ft from the nearest house (which I suspect throws bread out in the meadow paths for the privilege). He sat there; we stood there. I talked to him; he cocked his ears. We turned to leave; two steps later, he was gone as well.
Okay, as I said it was a down week for debuts back in September 1975. 9 songs hit the hot hundred this week, and three are noteworthy. Coming in at 96 is Jigsaw with Sky High; at 89 are the Outlaws with There Goes Another Love Song; and Linda Ronstadt enters at 86 with Love Is A Rose (which becomes a nifty comedy song if you replace the "R" with an "N", but I digress). Our big dropper never even got a real mention before; a song of Cat Stevens called Two Fine People peaked at 45 last week and falls 33 to #78. I'm playing it right now and would say that its problem is that it sounds like an early outtake of Wild World (which is a good song, but only Al Green and Barry White get away with releasing the basically same song over and over). We'll see our big gainer in the top 40 debuts in just a bit.
This week's first special is #s 60-56 on my personal '70s list. 60 was on our countdown not too long ago- Bad Time By Grand Funk Railroad. 59 was Marvin Gaye with What's Going On. 58 is the title track from Jimmy Buffett's album Changes In Latitude, Changes In Attitude. I had a parrothead friend years ago named Stu who was taken from us much too soon. Ever since then, when I come into a place with a jukebox that has this song, it gets played in his honor. I was just reading that supposedly the phrase "good times and riches and son-of-a-bitches" was changed for the single to "bruises and stitches" but I can't honestly say that I've ever heard it except the first version. The Elvin Bishop Band, whose singer was future Jefferson Starship vocalist Mickey Thomas, at 57 with Fooled Around And Fell In Love. This song I always remember watching American Bandstand one week when it was at 6 and Eric Carmen's Never Gonna Fall In Love Again was 7 on Dick Clark's top ten- and I've associated the two songs ever since. Finally at 56 is Heatwave's The Grooveline. This is another song that I formed an association with a concurrent song, as they battled for number one on my chart in the long hot summer of 1978. That other song? It will be right here in this feature next week, so tune in for the rest of the story.
Only three songs make the top forty this week. The big jumper goes from 66 to 40- Mr. Jaws by Dickey Goodman. Sampling bits of songs for comedy records was a forte since the '50s for Goodman, who sadly blew his brains out in 1989. Jumping 20 to 39 this week is Michael Murphy with Carolina In The Pines; and the Spinners climb 7 to 33 with Games People Play. One last time, a stubborn report: Love Will Keep Us Together moves down to 36 this week, its 20th on the hot hundred, while its Spanish version moves up to 57.
The almost but not quite salute this week goes to ZZ Top's Tush, which peaks at 12. Allegedly the term "tush" was part of a slang "good, better, best" ranking. Tush was okay, plush was better, and primo was best. Yes, I'm quite sure that's what you guys meant.
Two songs come into the top ten, two drop out. War falls from 6 to 17 with Why Can't We Be Friends, while former top dog Someone Saved My Life Tonight falls from 7 to 23.
Coming into the top ten, up 5 to #10, is David Geddes with Run Joey Run. Geddes had given up on music and was in his third year at Wayne State U's law school when a former agent heard the song and thought David's voice would be perfect for it. He dropped out of law school to go back into music, but results indicate he'd have been better advised staying in school. (That goes for you too, kids!)Barry Manilow climbs one to 9 with Could It Be Magic; Freddy Fender begins his second tour of duty in the top ten, up 3 to 8 with Wasted Days And Wasted Nights. Number seven is the Isleys with Fight The Power , up 2. At 6, David Bowie climbs two notches with Fame. And the Bee Gees finally descend from 2 to 5 with Jive Talkin'.
Our trip back through the years hits the 2's this week. Guns And Roses had the top dog this week in 1992 with November Rain. In 1982 the Steve Miller Band had their last #1, Abracadabra. Looking Glass was at #1 in 1972 with Brandy (You're A Fine Girl). The top dog in 1962 was Little Eva with The Loco-Motion, just one week away from the Four Seasons' 6-week run with Sherry. And in 1952, Vera Lynn was near the end of a 9-week run with Auf Weiderse'hn Sweetheart. This was originally an instrumental called Auf Weiderseh'n, Auf Weiderse'hn written by German composer Eberhard Storch, and was being played in a beergarden when Lynn walked in and heard it. She insisted that lyrics be wrote for it once she returned to the States, and recorded the resulting song.
Okay, we're down to the main contenders now. Janis Ian moves up 1 to #4 with At Seventeen. KC and the Sunshine Band step down from the top with Get Down Tonight, falling two to #3. Glenn Campbell moves up one more notch to 2 with Rhinestone Cowboy. And the sweet sound of the piano intro can be heard as Hamilton, Joe Frank and Reynolds ascend the throne with Fallin' In Love, the one and only number one for the Playboy label.
That's it for one long trip. See you in week #20!