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What is it about nice people that attract total idiots?Nice people are martyrs. Idiots are evangelists.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

And now... the great seventies countdown!

As the applause dies down, the Humble Author steps to the mike.  "Thank you, " he begins.  "Thank you for coming by for this, what I hope will be, a wonderful show.  I'd like to say a few words of introduction before we begin.  One can only realize how many truly deserving songs there are when you try to set an arbitrary limit to these things.  Like with the sixties countdown, you could literally make lists of 'the 500 top songs that missed the countdown'.  And still have good songs. 

"For myself, I had actually made a list of over 1,200 a couple years ago, and this is basically that list.  A lot of changes have been made; some songs that graded high because I'd just gotten a CD with it have slid;  Others I have revisited and said, 'what are you doing down there?' The old top fifty are relatively intact. But there are a lot of new faces elsewhere, and some old faces have disappeared.

"Some songs wear better than others, and this has been a factor since I burned the top 150 or so to CD from the old list.  This was especially damning to a couple of songs.  Carly Simon's That's TheWay I've Always Heard It Should Be got nailed for all the early morning heated conversations I had with Carly over her take on marriage and how she was complaining about "I'll never learn to be just me first" when she's out of college and still living at home.  Another one didn't fall clear out, but it did fall to today's list, so you'll have to wait a minute on that.

"Even last night after I printed the list, I agonized over songs 'I should have put in'.  But in the end, I looked for the emotional connection- something in the memory, the lyrics, or the music, that set one apart from another.  So, allow me one more check of the numbering, and we'll begin."  And with that, he steps back from the stage and the lights dim.  Suddenly, he sticks his head out one last time and says, "Glad we checked that.  The numbering was indeed buggered up; and it will be 320, and not 325."

320- I Like Dreamin', Kenny Nolan, peak position #3, 1977.  This is a song that happened along about the time of my first big freshman crush.  Her tastes at the time ran more along the lines of Don Ho.  Kenny actually wrote along with Four Seasons mentor Bob Crewe songs like My Eyes Adored You and Lady Marmalade.

319- Second Hand News, Fleetwood Mac, unreleased, 1977.  Man, remember how great Rumours was?  I could have easily put all ten tracks on here!  I think I ended up with three.  And looking at the list, now I've got I Don't Wanna Know playing in my head.

318- Lady Blue, Leon Russell,pp#14, 1975. Perhaps the smoothest song of all time.  I find it hard to believe this couldn't have been #1 in any era, but Bob's your uncle.

317- Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da, Beatles,  #49, 1976.  Silly, yes.  Fun, yes.  Got a lot more airplay here than nationally, apparently.

316- Knowing Me, Knowing You, ABBA, #14, 1977.  Top ten in 14 countries, #1 in five.  Only the USA, Spain, and Finland had it outside the top ten.

315- Head First, The Babys, #77, 1979.  The title cut of an lp that got played a ton that summer in our group.  One of many songs that remind me of summer at Snow Lake. Frankly, I thought the only single was Everytime I Think Of You, though I would have released California.

314- Nightrider, Electric Light Orchestra, non-charting, 1976.  Wiki claims it didn't chart on either Billboard or Cashbox, but I thought it had on Cashbox. One of the best songs to never chart, then, I guess.

313- Message In A Bottle, The Police, #74, 1979.  The first of 3 straight #1s in the UK, a moderate AOR hit here.  One of those songs I wish I could say, "It's my all time favorite of theirs", but it's a crowded line.

312- Heard It In A Love Song, Marshall Tucker Band, #14, 1977.  I don't know what's weirder- that there are so many 1977's down here, or that so many of them hit #14.  A mellow song I always sing along to.

311- Tin Man, America, #4, 1974.  This song got tucked in last night.  I remember Mom hated this song- see couldn't make sense of it because she thought they were saying, "I never did give nothing to the Tin Man" instead of "Oz never did..."  And if you get derailed there...

310- Doesn't Somebody Want To Be Wanted, the Partridge Family, #6, 1971.  This was the other big dropper from the original countdown I mentioned.  I remembered this as a clip to the episaode where Danny thought he was adopted, and was looking through graveyards, etc., for clues to his "real" family.  Funny how Bonaduce never did get that clue.

309- Jazzman, Carole King, #2, 1974.  Carole is the second great love of my life, after Yvonne Elliman.  Her vocals just soar, and the imagery:  "When the Jazzman's testifyin' and the band is windin' low/ It's the late-night side of morning in the darkness of his soul.."

308- Jamie's Crying, Van Halen, unreleased, 1978.  Plenty of drunken times in the party woods to this one.  Van Halen was like one-two with AC/DC to the drinking crowd back then. (Of course, I never cared for AC/DC.)

307- Detroit Rock City, Kiss, #25, 1976.  Despite the fact that all the rest of the world wanted to hear was the b-side (Beth) this song was night after night battling for #1 on the nightly top ten call in show on WMEE.

306- Spirits In The Night, Manfred Mann's Earth Band, #97, 1975. I love all of Manfred Mann's Bruce Springsteen covers.  Just heard this on my pandora station last night, as a matter of fact.

305- Magnet And Steel, Walter Egan, #8, 1978.  This song, forever linked in time and my mind with Toby Beau's My Angel Baby, immediately takes me back to the hottest days of summer.

304- The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, Genesis, non-charting, 1974.  Pre pop-chart Genesis is the best! "Wonder women draw your blind!/Dont look at me! Im not your kind./Im Rael!"

303- Tear The Roof Off The Sucker(Give Up The Funk), Parliament, #15, 1976.  I'm a sucker for good funk.  And no one was better than P-Funk.

302- Thunder Road, Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street band, unreleased, 1975.  Springsteen Live  changed our lives.  Another summer nights at Snow Lake song.

301- Happy Anniversary, Little River Band, #16, 1977.  There's just something about that middle part: "There's a lesson here to learn, when your baby ups and leaves you/Carry on don't be concerned, even though you're so much in love/ You need a little help from above, whoa-ohh".

"And that brings us to the end of this installment", he says as the lights edge up just a little bit.  "Be here next time for more funk and fun in the seventies.  Drive safe, and here's something to guide you home.  Good night, everybody!"


  1. The 70's were the greatest music wise to grow up in. The memories are amazing from this list. Great post.

  2. CWM:
    I have to agree w/ Barb here.

    There are going to be SO many songs in THIS list that I'll be humming for WEEKS!

    Thanks for the 70s countdown!!!

    Stay safe