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


Friday, August 29, 2014

Time Machine week 19

It's August 29th, 1972... and pitcher Jim Barr of the Giants is coming off of a 2-hit, 8-0 shutout of the Pirates, in which Milt May's second inning single was the last hit- or baserunner- he gave up.  Tonight, it wouldn't be until the Cardinals' Bernie Carbo doubled with 2 outs in the 7th that he would give up another- a 41-batter streak that broke Harvey Haddix's 13 year old record, and would stand alone for 35 years.

UPDATE:  I finish the post and go on ESPN, only to find that today, another Giants pitcher Yuniseiro Petit, has snapped this same record, held by Mark Buerhle since 2009, with his 46th straight batter retired.  How's that for a coinkydink?

Welcome to another adventure in my Time Machine,  from the week that brought us the first chart appearances of the Eagles' Witchy Woman, Johnny Nash's I Can See Clearly Now, Danny O'Keefe's Good Time Charlie's Got The Blues, and the beautiful From The Beginning by Emerson Lake and Palmer.  Up this week, we have Italians, Japanese, and Germans on the best selling hits of all time; #14 on the "one-hit-wonders' next best hit list- a song we WON'T play (and why); and we leap up to 1977 on the top top tens- because everything in between has a spot in the top ten top top tens! (What?)  All that and the farthest drop from #1 in history!  Oh, and a slight shift in the logjam at the top of this week's chart.  The set, the pitch...

Why not unravel the top top ten business first.  As I explained on the first of these, what I did was use an extreme subjective scoring system to figure out my best top ten weeks in the Martin Era (1962-79), and I have been going up the list since then- but I promised we would pull out the top ten of those weeks to do last.  Well, that time has arrived, so we skip from 1969 all the way to 1977- which begins a string of the three lowest rated years (outside of the partial year of 1962).  With all that finally said, here is the top top ten of 1977, from the week of April 16th:

10- Lido Shuffle, Boz Skaggs.  Love Boz, had this single, played the flip-side- his original of We're All Alone- way more.

9- Right Time Of The Night, Jennifer Warnes.  Much better than her movie duets, IMHO.

Oh, you and me, baby... we could think of something to do...
8- Hotel California, Eagles.  Boy, these birds are sure coming up a lot today!

7- Southern Nights, Glen Campbell.  Good memories of a trip through the south with my brother Tom's family on this one.

6- So Into You, Atlanta Rhythm Section.  I haven't been able to spell Rhythm right without looking it up in 5 years!

5- I've Got Love On My Mind, Natalie Cole.  Got good pipes from her dad, eh?

4- The Things We Do For Love, 10cc.  The first song at #1 when I first started making a top ten.  A good song to hear when you're walking in the snow and you're feeling like a part of you is dying, believe me.

3- Don't Leave Me This Way, Thelma Houston.  A song that I appreciate much more now than I did then.

2- Rich Girl, Hall and Oates.  The rise of this song coincided with the return of spring that year.


1- Don't Give Up On Us, David Soul.  May have been at #1 in my top ten that week, too.  If you missed last week, go back and listen to HIS next single, Silver Lady.  I promise you it was even better.


This week, we had seven new songs in the top 40.  For a second week in a row, we had a song sneak in from 41 to 40.  This week, it's the Crusaders, a long time jazz-pop outfit with a tune called Put It Where You Want It.  Like last week's, Billboard stupidly peaked it at #52; the Crusaders wouldn't cross THEIR top 40 until 1979's Street Life.  This tune is better.

Next in is Neil Diamond's Play Me, up 10 to #39.  The Staple Singers are next, climbing 7 to #38 with This World (which was a tad repetitious, but FAAAAR from the most repetitious we'll hit today.  Then comes Hot Butter with the long-awaited instrumental Popcorn, moving 6 to #36 (and still not repetitious enough), followed by Elton John's Honky Cat, going up 11 to #35.  Next is another song which I'd guess would also have been an also ran in the "repetitious sweepstakes" this week- though I haven't listened to it yet- James Brown and Get On The Good Foot, up 10 to #34.  Finally comes the biggest mover inside the countdown- 16 spots to #32- the Main Ingredient with Everybody Plays The Fool.

(After a listen, James Brown "sings" get on the good foot 23 times by my calculation, throws in about a dozen "hey"s.  Good guess, huh?)

Now, the song that went from 41 to 40 last week- I Miss You by Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes- is one of three You Peaked entries.  The others are Bobby Vinton's Sealed With A Kiss at 14, and Sonny and Cher's When You Say Plagiarize Love at #30.


Remember last week when I messed up and said, "Oh well, we'll play #14 on the one-hit-wonder's next hit list next week?"  Ain't gonna happen.

Not that I don't like the tune, mind you.  After hitting the top with Venus, Shocking Blue's next biggest hit was Mighty Joe, which followed it up.  Mighty Joe was a bigger hit in their Dutch homeland than Venus, hitting #1 to Venus' #3.  It crapped out at #70 here, but a cool tune.  But in researching, I read where the flip side of Mighty Joe was even better- and it was.  See for yourselves:


Time for the next five songs on the list of biggest physically-selling hits of all time, and it's a real mixed bag:

I Want To Hold Your Hand, The Beatles, 1963-4.  It had advance sales of over a million in the UK, which would have put it at #1 in it's first week- except that it couldn't knock She Loves You from the top. Like the next two, this one is in the 12 million range.

Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brighton, Time To Say Goodbye, 1996.  This duet by the Italian tenor and the English soprano is the fastest selling, and biggest selling, hit in German history, sitting at #1 for 14 weeks, going gold 11 times.  Not far behind it was a solo version in Italian only ( the duet had some English) by Bocelli which hit #1 in France and Switzerland and was the biggest hit ever in Belgium.  If you like GOOD opera, here's your song.  (I like the song by U2 and Pavarotti better myself.)

Gene Autry, Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer, 1949.  Not only the first #1 of the 1950's and with covers the biggest selling song all time save for White Christmas at over 150 million, but the only song to ever go from #1 completely OFF the chart.  Of course, it is a little late to buy Christmas songs in mid-January, I guess.

TRIO, Da Da Da, 1981.  If you liked Kraftwerk back in the day, this is your bag.  It's catchy, simple, and OH so repetitive.  If you weren't a fan of early electronica, this will be what you listen to whilst awaiting your turn at the Last Judgment.  I kinda liked it... It was top ten across Europe, #1 in Austria, Switzerland, and South Africa. It has sales of 13 million.

The Casio VL he was playing on the video for this song was actually about a foot long...
Kyu Sakamoto, Sukiyaki, 1961.  Another one we've mentioned heavily recently.  It spent 1 week at #1 in the US of A- and 3 MONTHS on top of the Japanese charts.  Another one at 13 million.  And that leaves us 13 more songs on this list...


Okay, we're closing in on the end this week, and we have three new top tens, which means we have three former top tens.  Dropping out are Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast (7 to 22), School's Out (6 to 23) and How Do You Do, from 8 all the way to #42!  (And that's a fine how-do-you-do!)

Jim Croce sneaks up one to #10 with You Don't Mess Around With Jim.  First time it ever dawned on me that the singer and the title have the same name, if you can believe THAT!

Donna Fargo holds at #9, but she's still The Happiest Girl In The Whole USA.

The Carpenters plow in from 12 to 8 with Goodbye To Love.

But the real big move belongs to the O'Jays, who leap 12 spots to #7 with Backstabbers.

Argent climbs a quick 4 to #6 with Hold Your Head Up.

Just to let the top set change a little (because he's that kind of a guy), Luther Ingram drops 2 to #5 with If Loving You Is Wrong, etc.

Accordingly, the next two logs in the jam move up one each- the Hollies' Long Cool Woman to #4, and Al Green's I'm Still In Love With You to #3.

That means that Looking Glass remains at #2 with Brandy, and #1 for a third week...

Here's an old picture of me and my buddy Baxter.  Baxter's not been feeling well, so keep him in your prayers!

.... Gilbert O'Sullivan and Alone Again Naturally!!!!!

That's a wrap, kids!  Hope you enjoyed it!


  1. I didn't know you had more than one pet...

    1. Baxter belongs to Laurie's sister. I'm just a visiting uncle.

  2. Poor Baxter. Praying for him.
    I loved Jim Croce!! That's funny that you didn't realize the name in the song and the singer.

    1. And then, Laurie says, "Y'know... I never thought about it either..."

  3. >>... Jim Croce sneaks up one to #10 with You Don't Mess Around With Jim. First time it ever dawned on me that the singer and the title have the same name, if you can believe THAT!

    Yeah, that never occurred to me either.

    And by the way, I actually like "...Jim" better'n I do "...Leroy Brown". Similar songs in a way, but Jim beats Leroy with a two-piece, custom-made pool cue.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    1. I'll go along with you on that, but still like Operator best.

  4. Chris:
    That Boz Skaggs single was indeed a great "two-fer" for the price in it's day..wish I still had the 45!

    Always did like that Thelma Houston number, too...good orchestration behind her.

    Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brighton doing Time To Say Goodbye...heard it once, fell in love with it, then SAW a special where they sung it in Italian...fantastic!
    (add that to my "funeral list"

    I was wondering when Jim Croce would start to show up...died too far ahead of his time (imho).

    GO'S again...nice.

    (and I hope Baxter hangs in there...he's a cutie)

    Very good ride this week.

    Keep on rockin' up there.

    1. Amazingly enough, KC knew the opera tune too. Had to do it in school, I guess.