This week, the cough-infested musical Tardis lands in 1968, and today, the United Methodist Church is 1 day old, and the island of Mauritius is a newborn nation, weighing in at a bit bigger than my home county and at about three times the population. And at Columbia University, white students are protesting Columbia's participation in a munitions think-tank, while black students are protesting segregated facilities, and the dean is spending a very uncomfortable night as their guest.
|Mauritius, in case you were wondering...|
Welcome to this week's Time Machine, where my tease on the shuffle ten is, I'm still shuffling it as we speak! Also this week, Satchmo starts off the six degrees, 27 different songs make the panel's lists, one station sets a record for most songs that weren't that big elsewhere, the unknown song from the guy who according to one source started our #1 on its way up the charts... oh, and that #1, which rolled up a 42-16 victory! Don't worry, the shuffle is up to #2 as I type, it'll be ready just in time!
Of course, this IS a Tardis...
First up, let me introduce our distinguished panel. Back for repeat appearances are, WABC New York, KGB San Diego, WRKO Boston, WIXY Cleveland, WDGY from the Twin Cities, WCFL Chicago, CKLW Detroit, KHJ from Big LA, and WQXI Atlanta, along with newbies KISN Vancouver, WA, WSBA York PA (Which Shady Del Knight mentioned in comments just last week as one of his old faves, and I just happened to have them on the list), and WSGN Birmingham AL. As I mentioned, they combined for an astounding 27 different songs, six of them not yet in the national top forty- three of those on one station! That would be Atlanta, where their #1, Joe Simon's take on You Keep Me Hanging On was at #78, their #2 was Otis Redding's The Happy Song, which was #70, and their #3, Gene Pitney's She's A Heartbreaker- a song that had just broke in nationally at #130! Their 4 and 5's finished 25 and 15, respectively, for an average position of #62... not real trend-followers. Of course their average finishing position was a hair under 16, so they eventually made good.
And, as I said, it wasn't a close race this week, as the #1 beat the next three combined with 2 points to spare. The also-rans:
At #4, with one #1 vote, the 3rd ranked song in the nation, Gary Puckett and the Union Gap's Young Girl.
At number three, with the #1s from Boston and LA, the 7th-ranked song in the nation, the Rascals' Beautiful Morning.
And at #2, with the #1s of Vancouver and San Diego, the #9 song in the nation, the Irish Rovers and The Unicorn.
Which reminds me I keep forgetting to mention, that station from Bamberg, SC, last week, WWBD? Laurie was wondering, Bobby G., if the call letters stand for What Would Bob Do?
Notably absent from this list are the #2 nationally (the Beatles' Lady Madonna, got but 2 votes and 5 points), the #4 (Cry Like A Baby by the Box Tops, which racked up 3/9), number 5 (Mighty Quinn by Manfred Mann, which got a single 2-point vote), and the #6, which is the six degrees victim. And to get to it, we start... with Satchmo.
|Lawd, Ah didn't think I'd EVAH make Time Machine!!|
|It's okay if I smoke in here, right?|
Unlike most weeks, I'm going to reveal the panel's number one pick, because it plays into our unknown song. That unknown was a tune called The Last Goodbye, and it was at #1 in Birmingham by a guy named Dave Roddy. With no trace of the song anywhere else, I looked up the narrator (a spoken-word tune), and come to find out he is a big name in Birmingham radio history. He was a dj in 1968... well, let the Alabama Record Collector's Association tell the part that brings us to our actual panel #1- and what Dave had to do with it:
In 1968, Dave was the first DJ to play “Honey” by Bobby Goldsboro and, to capitalize on “Honey’s” success, Dave went into the studio and recorded a similar record, “The Last Goodbye.” It was released on Warner Brothers and got heavy airplay in Birmingham where it topped the charts in April and May 1968. That record is still a highly sought after collectible .
That's right, the panel's #1 is...
Geez, I almost forgot- time for Bottom's Up!
Each week I list off the songs I know and love from the bottom of the chart up, and here's this week's diaper Dans..
10- Scarborough Fair, Simon and Garfunkel, was dropping out at 33 in it's ninth week on the charts.
9- Marvin and Tammi, Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing, climbing to 37 in its third week.
8- Mony Mony, Tommy James and the Shondells. In what I hope will be the unusual occurrence of three top 40s in the BU, they sit at 40 in their fifth week.
7- Delilah, Tom Jones, at 41 after 7 weeks.
6- 1910 Fruitgum Co., Simon Says, on its way down at 42 after a whopping 14 weeks.
5- Finally a debut at #47, double-dipping Simon and Garfunkel with Mrs. Robinson.
4- One of my all timers, Four Jacks and a Jill with Master Jack, sitting at 66 in its 7th week.
3- Spanky and Our Gang with I'd Like To Get To Know You, one week after its debut, at #75.
2- Neil Diamond's version of Red Red Wine, at 76 after six weeks.
And at #1, our only other debut, Ohio Express with Yummy Yummy Yummy at #92.
All right, the shuffle ten is ready!
Number ten is the second song to make it from the lp Arlee Bird tipped me off to- Seals and Crofts first lp. The song is called Ashes In The Snow, and it's well worth a listen if you don't know it. S&C are on the ten for their third time overall.
Jefferson Airplane hits the landing strip for the first time at #9 with their 1967 #5, Somebody To Love.
The Classics IV come in at #8 with their #2 from 1968, Traces.
Another song you should listen to if you've never heard this singer is Lucinda Williams. I ran into her first when she sang on Flogging Molly's song Factory Girls, and went out and got her big lp Car Wheels On A Gravel Road. From that 1998 lp, here's Drunken Angel.
Stone Temple Pilots make their second shuffle ten, with a song that made 50 pop/ 7 alternative/ 3 AOR. In fact, it was the very next single after their previous shuffle ten entry, Creep. This tune is called Big Empty, and it lands at #6.
Sly Stone and the Family make their third shuffle ten with their chart topper from 1969, Everyday People, coming in at #5.
A song I forgot about and just recently added to the shuffle, one of the first country songs I actually first heard on a country station, Mel Tillis with Coca-Cola Cowboy. The fifth of his six C&W #1s, it hit in 1979 and lands here at #4.
You're just a Coca Cola cowboy
You got an Eastwood smile, and Robert Redford hair
But you walked across my heart like it was Texas
And you taught me how to say I just don't care...
Neil Sedaka claims his second shuffle hit, grabbing the runner-up spot with his 1961 #4 hit, Calendar Girl.
And at #1? Surve...er, shuffle says...
...Brian Hyland and Gypsy Woman!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Brian's #3 comeback from '70 was his first top ten since 1962, and his first top 40 since '66.
And that is a wrap, my children! Tune in next time!