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


Friday, November 23, 2012

Time Machine week 43

It's November 23, 1970- a night that will live in infamy, at least in the annals of Monday Night Football.  Coincidence had left them with a turkey of a game- the 1-7-1 Philadelphia Eagles versus the 6-3 NY Giants.  Eagle QB Norm Snead would score twice on one-yard runs, and the Giants would blow the lead three times to lose 23-20.

But that wasn't all that blew.

Don, could you move your feet? I don't feel so well...
It was 16° in the unheated MNF booth in Philly, and team owner Leonard Tose took it upon himself to warm the broadcast team with vodka martinis and cognac.  And Howard Cosell took it upon himself to get warm.  So much so, in fact (and though he would blame it on an "inner ear infection"), he blew chunks all over Dandy Don Meredith's cowboy boots.  He would leave at halftime in a cab for Manhattan, and later (he says) went to a hospital thinking he was having a heart attack.  No, Howard, you were just hung over.  Only in Philly, right, Bobby G.?

And with that lovely mental image to start us off, welcome to a special Time Machine-post-Thanksgiving edition.  This week, I bring you not one, but TWO special countdowns, which I call the "turkey" and the "dressing".  Also, a six degrees taking us from R. Dean Taylor to Edwin Starr, via Marvin Lee Alday (who?) and a new top dog.  Put down that glass o' booze and let's go!

As always, let's kick things off with the hot 100 debuts from this week 42 years ago.  There were 11 debuts, and we'll look at 3 of 'em.  Led Zep comes in at an appropriate pilgrim-kinda week at 88 with Immigrant Song.  Elton John, who had recently had his first American chart single with Border Song (which will come up- er, will be mentioned again later- curse you, Howard!) now debuts with what will be his first big American hit: Your Song, at # 82.  And finally at 74, Gladys Knight und der Pipsters with If I Were Your Woman.

Which leads us into the birthday songs of the week.  Turning 30, we have J Geils' cover of I Do; The Other Guy by the Little River Band; Adam Ant's Goody Two Shoes, Barry Manilow's cover of the song Memory from the musical Cats, and Judas Priest's You Got Another Thing Coming.

"Don't drink, don't smoke, what do I do?"
Turning 35 would be ELO's Turn To Stone and Bill Withers' Lovely Day, both of which bring back fond memories of listening to CLKW.  Turning 40, we have Carole King's Been To Canaan, Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show with Cover Of The Rolling Stone (which brings back fond memories of the day back at St. Louis Besancon grade school when the eighth graders got to babysit the first graders for some odd reason- and amazingly the school didn't burn down when they played Steppenwolf's The Pusher), and one other oddity which I, in my perverted sense of humour just had to mention- a song called Day And Night by a group called- The Wackers.

I can't make this stuff up.

Finally, turning 45 is American Breed's Bend Me, Shape Me; and turning 55 is Jerry Lee Lewis and Great Balls Of Fire ( I wonder if the Wackers... or maybe not.)  Blow Out The Candles...

Now normally I'd just go right into the big movers of the week, and then hit the Where Are They Now.  But as I said, this is a special week, and we interrupt your normal programming for the first of my two countdowns.  This one is the "turkey" countdown- my all time biggest turkeys.  Now, back in the day, I would have had a long list of songs to put in here, but as I grew older, many of those songs I started to like.  These eleven, though, retain the title of turkey.  Why eleven?  Because 10 is the normal, and 12 is a dozen, and eleven is just that turkey number in between.  So, in sorta-kinda order, here we go:

11. Going A Little Crazy, the Guess Who.  As much as I love these guys- because they had great singles- they... struggled sometimes on album cuts.  This seven minute oddesey of stupidity from So Long, Bannantine is as good an example as any.

10. Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)- John Fred and the Playboy Band.  I mentioned last week my distaste for this tune.  Allegedly inspired by Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, I think I'll take the original instead.

9. Rapture, Blondie.  Y'know, I still kinda like this tune, but admit it: man from Mars, eating cars?  The only thing that made this palatable back then was the Novelty of rap.

8. Imagine, John Lennon.  Yeah yeah, I know a lot of you out there think this is the greatest song of all time.  But if universal atheism was going to make a utopia, why isn't the Soviet Union still in business?

7. Emotional Rescue, Rolling Stones.  Not only a terrible imitation of the Bee Gees, a terrible excuse for songwriting.  We used to call it Emotional Restroom.

6. Kites Are Fun, The Free Design.  I found this kicking over rocks in the "sunshine pop" category.  A definite top-lister for "songs to play to prisoners serving life terms".  Mind numbing within seconds.

5. Andrea, The Sunrays.  If you ever doubt that it took Brian Wilson immense talent to put those harmonies together right, listen to a song where it's done wrong.

4. Don't Worry, Be Happy, Bobby McFerrin.  Do I REALLY need to say more?

3. Cease To Exist, Charles Manson.  Speaking of Wilsons, here's a guy Dennis should have stayed away from.  I tried to give it the benefit... but in the end, it IS Charles Manson.  The later, re-worked Beach Boys version was only marginally better.

2. Physical, Olivia Newton-John.  Take one "sweet and innocent girl" trying to change her image, give her possibly the sluttiest song not sung by Courtney Love, make a video that tries to make it look like she's singing about physical fitness.  Oh, and have her screech at the end.


1. Bohemian Rhapsody, William Shatner.  Could there be ANY doubt?

I know some of you might have been expecting Tiny Tim's Tiptoe Through The Tulips, but, c'mon, at least that had a certain charm to it.  Maybe we'll give that an emeritus status.

So now (if you didn't get up and leave, or do a "Howard" and have to clean up) let's move on to our big movers this week.  Moving up 22 spots to #48 is Aretha Franklin with her cover of that song we said would be back, Elton John's Border Song, (which she subtitled "Holy Moses").  We have not one, but two songs that fell (count'em) 42 notches this week- Teegarden and Van Winkle's God Love And Rock'N'Roll, to 56, and Blood Sweat And Tears' Lucretia McEvil to 64.

Which brings us to our top 40 debuts this week.  Ray Price's crossover hit For The Good Times goes from 49 to 40.  Last week's WATN, Andy Kim's Be My Baby, moves from 50 to 39.  Neil Young comes in at 38, up 9 with Only Love Can Break Your Heart.  Badfinger enters at 37, a 14-spot advance with No Matter What.  Flaming Ember, who was just recently here with Westbound #9, hits again with I'm Not My Brother's Keeper moving from 41 to 36.  Up 12 big spots are the 5Ds with One Less Bell To Answer.  And at the top, we have Eric Clapton going from 45 to 33 with After Midnight.

And that brings us to the "dressing" countdown.  These are songs I've unearthed looking for other things that have become big hits in my book.  This ten, in a semblance of order:

10. Bang En Boomerang, Svenne and Lotta.  You remember this story from just a few weeks ago.  I still need to listen to the ABBA version.

9. Pretty Ballerina, the Left Banke.  A follow up to Walk Away Renee, I found this searching for baroque-pop tunes.

8. For The Love Of Him, Bobbi Martin.  Alright, this doesn't QUITE fit the profile.  But it went from a "song I know"  when I read the heartbreaking story of her mom's getting screwed over by her father and her own fruitless search for a man that wasn't worthy to be a "dad", to a song that makes tears come every time.

7. Summer Soldier, Brave Belt.  I liked a lot of the stuff I heard listening to this early incarnation of BTO, but this is the one that sticks in my mind.

6. Did You Boogie With Your Baby, Flash Cadillac and the Continental Kids.  How could you not fall in love with this retro tune featuring Wolfman Jack? 

Did you boogie with your baby in the back row of the movie show
And did you boogie there cause you had nowhere else that you could go
And when the lights went way down low
Did you forget about the picture show
Yes, did you boogie with your baby in the back row of the movie show?

5. It's My Time, the Mynah Birds.  A band with Neil Young AND Rick James.  Wow!

4. It's OK, Beach Boys.  The best tune I never heard before.

3. Hit The Road Jack, the Stampeders.  A great tune set to the lead singer trying to beg a place to stay from Wolfman Jack and Ray Charles.

2.  Diamonds And Rust, Joan Baez.  A haunting melody, and lyrics to match.


1. A Wednesday In Your Garden, The Guess Who.  Okay, so not all their album cuts were awful.  This might be their best song save for No Time.

Whaddya mean, our album cuts suck?
One song enters the top ten, one falls out.  Bread be the victim, falling from 7 to 20 with It Don't Matter To Me.

Two songs arrest downward motion this week.  Sugarloaf's Green Eyed Lady is first, holding at 10 after falling out 2 weeks ago.

The other is Free's All Right Now, which "free-zes" at # 9 again this week.

The Carpenters slip from 3 to 8 with We've Only Just Begun.

Bryan Hyland returns to the top ten for the first time in 8 years (since 1962's Sealed With A Kiss) with Gypsy Woman.

100 Proof Aged In Soul holds at 6 with Somebody's Been Sleeping.

And that brings us to our six degrees victim.

R Dean Taylor's Indiana Wants Me falls from top dog top #5 this week.  Taylor recorded this on the Rare Earth label, which was Motown's "Rock'n'roll" subsidiary.  Among the acts on this were (obviously) Rare Earth, the Rustix- whose claim to fame is that they were the first all-white band signed by Motown, and believe it or not, one Marvin Lee Addy- known best by all as Meat Loaf!  Yes, Meatloaf's first lp was a disc recorded with his co-star from the Detroit cast of Hair, Shaun "Stoney" Murphy.  The disc, Stoney and Meatloaf, had a hit single which we will one day see on Time Machine, What You See Is What You Get.  Meat Loaf soon left the Motown fold; Berry Gordy, in his unending attempt to alienate all those who worked for him, took Meat Loaf's "one song he liked on the album", a tune called Who Is Thje Leader Of The People?, erased his and Stoney's vocals, and gave it to Edwin Starr.  Edwin, as far as I can tell, released it as a single in Germany, and wasn't included on any lps other than later greatest hits packages.

The man claimed the music industry "treated him like a clown"- but he let them dress him up like this on album covers...

James Taylor holds at 4 with Fire And Rain.

Smokey Robinson and the Miracles know how Meat Loaf felt- they move up 5 spots to 3 with Tears Of A Clown.

The Jackson 5 go from 5 to 2 with I'll Be There- perhaps next week!

And the new #1 song this week-

The Partidge Family with I Think I Love You!!!!!!

Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving, and for those who get to spend today sitting around digesting yesterday's meal..

See ya NEXT holiday!


  1. CWM:
    Yes...ONLY in Philly.
    If Howard waited ONE year, he could have TRULY "christened" the (then new) Veterans Stadium in 1971.
    The "Iggles" used to play at FRANKLIN FIELD before that, and THAT was located in University city (out by 33rd st).

    Great mix of songs this week, too.
    Bohemian Rhapsody - one of THE best (imho).
    Judas Priest wasa really decent band when they started out, and that was about as "metal" as I used to get.
    (AC/DC aside, if they can be called a metal band - to me, they're just a DAMN GOOD

    Clapton's After Midnight was always a hit with me.
    Like that Meatloaf "history", too.
    Didn't know much about him BEFORE his (killer)debut LP Bat Out Of Hell.
    Good find.

    Very nice ride this week.

    Stay safe (and rockin' the day away) up there.

  2. I heard #9 on my Pandora player today, not too shabby! Story for the puke on shoes though, one of our drinking nights back in HS one of my girl friends puked all over my boy friends shoes, lasagna! Yum! Hope you had a lovely holiday!

    1. I can top that- I had a girlfriend throw up in my lap at a bar!

  3. CW-

    Go up to almost any American and call him a Communist and he'll want to fight.

    As the same American what his favorite John Lennon tune is, he'll say "Imagine."

    Isn't it amazing how many people do not know that "Imagine" is simply the Communist Manifesto set to music?

    But my number one turkey of all time?

    "Seasons In The Sun" by Terry Jacks.

    My skin scrawls thinking about it...


    1. If you don't like TJ's version, you should try the Beach Boys version with the original lyrics (translated from French). Shooting yourself because your cheating wife is now trying out your best friend is SOOO much less pathetic... ;)