Now, I think there was something else I wanted to interject before moving on, and if I think of it later, I'll shoehorn it in as we go. But now is time to click your seatbelts as I throw the switch on this thing.
Today is October 12, 1970- a day so boring that, not only did nothing happen, but the 10-12-70 version of Time Magazine actually had an article titled, "Is Basket Weaving Harmful?" This of course is Time Machine, our weekly debauch into the year 1970 for pop chart hijinks. This week, a look back redux, a group named after a brand of hashish (and it's not the Doobie Brothers), Laurie contributes a story that's a kind-of epilogue to the Andy Williams tribute, and a new top dog.
We kick things off here on TM with the Hot 100 debuts for this week in 1970. Why 1970? Because it's my blog! (And I am lost in the seventies, as well). There were ten debuts this week, two of which I shall note. Coming in at 92 is Eric Clapton's rocker After Midnight. And coming in at 70 is the last big hit for the amazing Smokey Robinson and the Miracles- and their best- Tears Of A Clown. These songs turn 42 this week, and this is where we segue into "birthday songs"- and what a list we have this week!
Turning thirty this week: Hall and Oates' Maneater; Eddie Money's Shakin'; the crossover country hit for Eddie Rabbit and Crystal Gayle, You And I; and my favorite from The Fixx, Stand Or Fall. Turning 35 this week: Fleetwood Mac's You Make Lovin' Fun; Paul Simon's Slip Sliding Away (or as my disaproving Aunt Cleo called it, Slip Sliding Around); Steve Miller's Swingtown; and ABBA with Money Money Money (which hit #1 in 8 countries but only #56 in the US of A). Turning 40 this week are: The Temptations' Papa Was A Rolling Stone; The late great Jim Croce with his finest, Operator (That's Not The Way It Feels); America's Ventura Highway; and Johnny Rivers with The Rockin' Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu. Turning 45 are Neil Diamond's Kentucky Woman and Lazy Day by Spanky and Our Gang. And turning the big 5-0 are two of my all timers- The Orlons' Don't Hang Up, and a song I'm told I used to run around singing when I was in diapers- Marcie Blaine's Bobby's Girl. Blow out the candles...
Next comes the biggest movers up and down within the count down. Going up a measely 19 spots to take the big mover award are the Partridge family with I Think I Love You; the big dropper was muppet Ernie with Rubber Ducky, falling 41 spots after peaking the last two weeks at #13.
|What happened, ducky? Nobody likes us any more!|
And the Partridge Family is the perfect lead in to the story Laurie tumbled onto. She was watching The Partridges on Antenna TV (Because, with me at work, David Cassidy is the next best thing), and saw a set of twins do a song called Say It Again. These twins, as it turned out, were the identical-twin 14 year-old nephews of the late Andy Williams, Andy and Dave. They were trying to ride the teeny-bopper wave of the day, but weren't terribly successful- their only charting single, a remake of Don and Juan's doo-wop hit What's Your Name climbed to #73 on Cashbox (which we use because it's free!!!) and #92 on Billboard. They did two lps and apparently enough stuff for a third that was put together from outtakes much later. They tried comebacks a few times, notably in 1987, a failure that cost them their band and "left them with nothing but their two guitars". In 1994, Dave announced he'd been gay since he was 16 years old. I sampled a couple of songs, and while the song on the PF episode "Two For The Show" was pretty good (although it wasn't on either album), the remake of What's Your Name was a basically boring rendition of a very good song.
|Me and David- we could be twins, too!|
Our song at #50- the Where Are They Now song- is a tune called As The Years Go By by a Canadian Band named Mashmakan (after a local type of hashish). The quartet featured Pierre Senecal, who was the lead songwriter and keyboard guy; Brian Edwards; Jerry Mercer; and Rayburn Blake. The band had a big hit internationally with As The Years Go By, topping the Canadian charts and selling a million 45s in Japan. But two albums later, they were done and split up. Pierre went on recording and eventually reformed the band with new musicians twice. Blake and Edwards went on to a superstar Canadian psychadelic-folk band called Riverson for their single lp; afterwards, Blake also did some time with another Canuck quartet called the Lisa Hartt Band. Mercer became the drummer for April Wine, and other members of Senecal's suceeding versions of the band also ended up in April Wine.
Four songs enter the top 40 this week. Moving up 8 notches to #40 is Candi Staton with her cut of Stand By Your Man. The Who enter at 39, up 8 spots as well, with See Me, Feel Me from Tommy. At 37, up 5, is a very underrated song by an R&B quintet called Five Flights Up, called Do What You Wanna Do. And at #35, up 6 spots, are Crosby Stills Nash and Young with Our House.
One of the things we do here is called the Look-back. I've been touring the ancient history of acts that set the stage for the music of today. This week, it was my intention to do Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians- until I got to the part where he crashed a speedboat, and I realized I HAD done Guy before! Two things though I probably didn't mention. First, how truly big he was. He charted for 27 years- from 1927's #1 Charmaine to 1954's Hernando's Hideaway. What was really amazing was his run from 1930-33. He charted 13 top tens in 1930, 10 more in '31, 11 in '32, and 9 more in '33- an incredible 43 top tens in 4 years, and his average chart peak in 1930 was 6.5!
Second, I didn't realize what a family business the Royal Canadians were. The main core of the band was Guy on violin, brother Carmen who was a vocalist, and Lebert who was a trumpeter. Victor joined as a sax player, but never owned a piece of the band as the other three did. Sister Elaine married Kenny Gardner, considered the best vocalist they ever had; sister Rose Marie Lombardo Rogers, who also sang in the band, is the only surviving family member and according to their website, lives near Toledo. Brother Joseph got short changed in musical talent, and became an interior designer/architect.
OH, I remeber what the other thing was! Last week, if you were paying attention, I announced, "two songs enter the top ten, two drop out", and then went on to have THREE songs enter the top ten! I'm blaming it on work schedule. The other song that dropped out was, appropriately enough, Aretha Franklin's Don't Play That Song. Apparently people finally listened to her, and it fell last week from a peak of 10 down to 33.
Our almost but not quite this week goes to Gene Chandler, whose hit Groovy Situation peaked last week at 11 and falls to 13 this week. And next up could be called an alomst but not YET. Christie's Yellow River is still dawdling, moving up a mere 3 spots to 61 after 15 weeks on the chart. Those in the know know that eventually it will make top ten, but even the top 40 is still 4 weeks away. Sheeeesh!
This time, I KNOW two songs enter the top ten, so two fall out. Dropping are Julie Do Ya Love Me from 5 to 11, and War from 9 to 26.
Blasting its way fro #28 to lead off the top ten are the Carpenters with We've Only Just Begun.
R. Dean Taylor comes sirens blaring from 14 to #9 with Indiana Wants Me. I remember as a little kid listening to this song in my room when suddenly my dog, I think Chip, came barreling into my room, barked once, and left. No idea why, I just figured he liked the song.
Free moves up a pair to #8 with All Right Now.
Diana Ross tumbles 5 to #7 with Ain't No Mountain High Enough.
Snowbird hovers in place at #6 for a second week for Anne Murray.
Rare Earth climbs 2 to #5 with (I Know I'm) Losing You.
And that brings us to our weekly game of six degrees.
CCR tumbles from the top dog to #4 with Looking Out My Back Door, which John Fogarty refuted the claims it was a "drug song" by explaining he wrote it for his 3 year old son after reading to him Dr. Suess' And To Think I Saw It On Mulberry Street. This would be the last big hit for the band, as John's tyrannical rule grew too much. "Cosmo" Collins and Stu Cook would go on to join the Don Harrison Band for a time. Stu would later go on to join Southern Pacific, a country band whose founders were Keith Knudsen and John McFee of the Doobies. Stu replaced Jerry Scheff, a veteran sideman who boasted such credits as The Association's Along Came Mary (another drug song, ironically) and the Doors' LA Woman lp. From 1969 to 1977, though, Jerry was best known for being a member of Elvis' TCB Band (Takin' Care of Business). This was his core band till his death, and the TCBers still perform today.
|The TCB Band - James Burton - Glen D Hardin - Jerry Scheff - Ronnie Tutt|
Neil Diamond climbs two with Cracklin' Rosie at #2.
And that means the new top dog this week is....
See, I told you it was definately TWO top ten newbies this week! I was right, wasn't I? WASN'T I?
Okay, it is now almost 3 AM and time for bed. Enjoy the weekend!