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


Friday, August 1, 2014

Time Machine week 15

It's August 1st, 1972.  Today the first Watergate article written by Woodward and Bernstein hits the papers, reporting how a cashiers check from a Florida bank meant for the Committee to re-elect the President for $25,000 ended up going into the account of one of the Watergate burglars- and withdrawals of $100 bills from the account it was deposited in were in the possession of the OTHER Watergate burglars.  And with that, the seeds of a good movie with Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman were planted.

Remind me to tell you one day of the day I went to see it...

Welcome to Time Machine for this week.  And we will be featuring- a "song I never heard before" that I actually have heard before (because I didn't really care for the other candidates); watch the Top Top Ten lead into the Top Latin songs of the Martin Era; 4 new top tens and a new number one; and what the Count Five were really counting.  Welcome to the week that featured the first chart appearances of three classic songs- Saturday In The Park by Chicago, Black And White by Three Dog Night, and Chuck Berry's My Ding-A-Ling- along with the first chart hit for a young man I think you'll recognize:

Let's dig right into the Top Top Ten this week, from the third week of October, 1966.  Any one new to the show, the Top Top Ten is based on my own subjective research on my favorite overall top tens for each year in the Martin Era (1962-79). I'm going forward in time each week, and saving out the top ten Top Top Tens (getting a bit redundant, ain't it?) for last.  So now it's 1966, and here are the songs in the best top ten of the year:

10- What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted, Jimmy Ruffin.  The biggest of three hits he'd have in 1966-7... and the brother of the Temptations' David Ruffin wouldn't score again until Hold On (To My Love)- another very good song- hit #10 in 1980.

9- Poor Side Of Town, Johnny Rivers.  One of my favorites from this hall of famer.

8- Cherry Cherry, Neil Diamond.  Believe it or not, Neil's first top 40 hit.

7- Walk Away Renee, the Left Banke.  The baroque hit is a big tear jerker for me; the band was led by Michael Brown, whom you heard on keyboards two weeks ago on the Stories' hit I'm Coming Home (which is #28 this week.)

6- Cherish, The Association.  Original member Jim Yester said in an interview a couple years ago that the record company didn't like the song, calling it "too old and archaic."  He told the interviewer that due to the song's success, the band was able to "have it's archaic and eat it too."  Ba-dum-DUM!

5- Have You Seen Your Mother Baby, Standing In The Shadows, Rolling Stones.  The single jacket had the very unsettling sight of the band in drag.  I might have passed it by just for that...

And they weren't beauties as MEN...

4- Psychotic Reaction, the Count Five.  Actually not counting any thing, but they were five guys who performed in capes reminiscent of COUNT Dracula.

Frankly, the Stones in drag are scarier...

3- Reach Out (I'll Be There), the Four Tops.  The second #1 for another hall of fame act.

2- Last Train To Clarksville, The Monkees.  Always considered a mild protest song (Clarksville AFB in Tennessee was a jump off point on the draftee's path to Vietnam), but Bobby Hart claims they didn't even realize about the AFB when he wrote it.

Annnnnd at #1 that week- a song that contributed NO points to the overall score since I never liked it-

1- 96 Tears, ? and the Mysterians.  They were the first band to be called a "punk rock" band (if you can believe that), and Wiki claims they were the first Latino band to have a big mainstream hit.  I immediately thought of songs like Tequila, but they may have been the first all-Latino band with a big hit.  (Did you know they were Latino?  I sure didn't.  No wonder they were Mysterians. And BTW, why the heck didn't spellcheck catch that I wrote "Latibo" once in this paragraph/  King Latibo, husband of Queen Latifah?  I better quit whilst I'm ahead.)

So I had to dig in to the story, and what I found kinda did and kinda didn't help.  Billboard published a list a while back of the top "Latin songs" on the hot 100.  I am not sure what their criteria was, but it sure wasn't "Top songs by Latino acts whether they sound Latino or not."  So I whittled it down to Martin Era tunes, and their list of forty became my list of nine:

9- The Fool On The Hill, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66.   I love these guys- and they are not only on here twice, but another song I (stupidly) THOUGHT was theirs but wasn't is also on here! #6 in 1968.

8- Eres Tu, Mocedades.  A song that has gotten mentioned around here quite a lot lately.  #9 in 1974.

7- The Lonely Bull, The Tijuana Brass.  Not a Hispanic of any flavor on this one.  While Latino-flavored, Herb Alpert described the combo as "Four lasagnas (Italians), two bagels (Jews, including himself), and one American cheese." #6 in 1962.

6- The Girl From Ipanema, Stan Getz and Astrud Gilberto.  This is the one that I thought belonged to Mendes et al.  In apologia, here is this great hit, #5 in 1964:

5- The Look Of Love, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66.  Really them this time.  No, really.  #4 in 1968.

4- A Taste Of Honey, The Tijuana Brass, #7 in 1965.  I didn't know there were words to this song, but the Beatles recorded it on their Please Please Me lp.  Play it in 78 RPM and it might go with the Brass's version.

3- Light My Fire, Jose Feliciano.  Please don't come to my door with torches and pitchforks, but I've always preferred this to the Doors' original.  #3 in 1968.

2- Black Magic Woman, Santana.  Originally done by Peter Green's version of Fleetwood Mac.  #4 in 1970.

And a head scratching #1 on the list (and #17 on the full list):

1- Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001 theme), Deodato.  Here we go from style to nationality as a requirement, apparently, because I sure can't hear this on the jukebox down at El Poso.

Among the acts above this and outside the Martin Era were Macarena at #1 (surprise), a pair of Santana's big 21st century hits, 3 from Gloria Estefan, two each from J-Lo and Christina Aguillera, and of course Los Lobos' cover of La Bamba and Ricky Martin's La Vida Loca.  And Shakira's Hips Don't Lie.  Which I'm sure is more Latin than, say, Deodato's 2001.


Top 40 debuts this week:  Candi Staton's cover of In The Ghetto slips in, up 3 to #40;  at 25 notches our biggest mover within this week's countdown, the O'Jays' Backstabbers goes from 63 to 38;  a five notch jump for the Partridge Family with the Neil Sedaka classic Breaking Up Is Hard To Do; the Rolling Stones (not in drag, hopefully) with Happy moving up 8 to #34;  and the Jackson Five take the high debut, moving up 13 to #31 with one of the songs I didn't know and didn't pick to play (Candi Staton was the other), Lookin' Through The Windows.

You Peaked has a pair of tunes for us this week:  Stevie Wonder's Superwoman nosedives from last week's peak of #32 clear out of the top 50; and the Stylistics are done after stopping at #18 with People Make The World Go 'Round.

Did I mention four new top tens this week?  That means we have four out-droppers.  They are:  Take It Easy (9 to 11), Too Young (8 to 13), I Wanna Be Where You Are (7 to 14), and Troglodyte (4 to 22).


Our first debut is at 10, up two spots- Day By Day by Godspell.

Up five to #9 is Mouth And MacNeal with How Do You Do, which has already hit the top in Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and New Zealand.

Also up 5 to #8 is Roberta Flack and Donnie Hathaway with Where Is The Love.

The final debut, up 4 to #7, is Alice Cooper and School's Out!

Lats week's #1, Bill Withers' Lean On Me, falls to #6.

Looking Glass covers half the count in a single bound, up 5 to #5 with Brandy.

Luther Ingram continues to inch up, making it to #3 with If Loving You Is Wrong, etc.

Also covering half his remaining distance to the top, Gilbert O'Sullivan moves from 6 to #3 with Alone Again Naturally.

Wayne Newton moves up one into the runner up spot with Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast.

And that means that the new number one belongs to the people whose picture I used last week, and so, since I can't put their picture up twice, look at this nice shot of the butterfly that landed on Laurie's hand at the zoo last week while I queue the drum roll....

....Too Late To Turn Back Now by the Cornelius Bros and Sister Rose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All right, it's suppertime as I type this, so see you next time!


  1. I had no idea Rick Springfield recorded anything before Jessie's Girl. Geez. I learned something today!

  2. Chris:
    That's a really GOOD top top ten string of songs...and they STILL play well today.
    I also didn't know that "? and the Mysterians" were a LATINO band either.
    (but the Japanese movie from the 50s called The Mysterians isn't all that bad, either)

    MY dad had EVERY Herb Alpert album that came out...played them a lot...all the classic hits, too.
    And Deodato did some GREAT interpretations of the "classics".
    Wow...someone OTHER than Elvis did "In The Ghetto"

    Nice butterfly (think it's called an ADMIRAL...don't salute)

    Excellent ride this week...gotta go hum me up some classic hits.

    Keep on rockin'; up there.