Welcome to May 8th, 1965, where VEEERRRY little happened. The best I could do was a note from Wikipedia which mentioned baseball "star" Steve Boros played his last major league game. For the uninformed (and I'm sure they are the majority on THIS one), Steve played for seven years, and if you subtract 1 decent season with the Tigers, he totalled 5 home runs and 54 RBIs. In fact, of his 26 homers and 149 career RBIs, 21 and 109 came in 1961 and '62. He did go on to become a manager (which is how I knew him), although in parts of three years with the A's and Padres, he amassed a shiny 94-112 record. Quite the star, there.
|Get his card now for a buck-fifty on e-Bay...|
However, music still happened, and we have a great show lined up, featuring: Another tight race for the survey top dog; a six degrees that kicks off with a ...Japanese top ten? Also, a bottoms Up with three debuts, a shuffle ten with 7 first time acts, and two unknown songs... replaced by two better ones involved in the story! Batter up!
As usual, we open with the panel for this week in 1965: WCOL Columbus OH; KQV Pittsburgh; WTRY Troy; KYA (and you gotta wonder what THOSE call letters stand for, especially since the station was from) San Francisco; WPOP Hartford; KYW (which everyone in the east and midwest knows is a news station in Philadelphia, but from 1956-65, through some legal chicanery, they were a rock station in) Cleveland; KDEO San Diego; WQAM Miami; WABC New York; KWYK Farmington NH; KRLA Los Angeles; and WLAV, Grand Rapids, MI. They put together 23 different songs in their combined top fives, including a pair of #1s that I would normally name here, but they will be appearing in a bit in the unknown songs segment. As I mentioned, it was a tight race for the top for a long time, though the winner moved out to a 38-30 win by the end. The top 4:
With the #4 slot (17 with a bullet nationally) and the #1s of San Diego and LA (go figure), Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs with Wooly Bully.
At #3 here, #4 nationally, with the #1s of Pittsburgh and Farmington, Gary Lewis and the Playboys with Count Me In.
The runner up, with the #1 votes of Troy and Cleveland, the Beatles with Ticket To Ride.
And the winner... stay tuned.
The two unknowns that hit #1 have a couple of interesting stories... and later follow ups that I liked better. First up is the #1 from Miami, a song about the city of San Francisco called Tiger A Go-Go by an act calling themselves Buzz and Bucky. The song wasn't really all that great (unless you were a SFer)- it's chart peak was 107- but the band was a bit unusual. Buzz was Buzz Cason, who first attained note with a song called Look For A Star in 1960. The problem was, an English chap named Gary Mills had just released it here after it began climbing there. To beat the competition, Buzz recorded a near-identical version and released it under the name Gary MILES. It worked, and Mills sputtered out while Buzz hit #16.
Soon after that, he met John "Bucky" Wilkin, better known as Ronnie of Ronnie and the Daytonas. They got together and not only did the Buzz and Bucky thing, but also collaborated on a much better song that the Daytonas took to #27 in 1965:
Story number two involves the number one from (ironically) San Francisco called Land of 1,000 Dances. Wait a minute, Chris, you don't know THAT one? Actually yes, especially the top ten version from wicked Wilson Pickett. But this version was by a gentleman calling himself Round Robin. Robin, whom I found out was really Robin Lloyd, was the "West Coast Chubby Checker", and was being promoted on variations of a dance tune called Do The Slauson (Slauson being a street in his LA neighborhood). The Slauson was actually based somewhat upon a song that should be familiar from last week's feature- Bob and Earl's Harlem Shuffle! His version of LO1,000D crapped out at 135, but he had other singles- and other careers- that were more successful. He recently posted on a fan forum saying he had been the owner of a company that builds custom homes- "huge, wonderful custom homes", a bandmate on the same forum said- in the Dallas and Plano area for the last 27 years.
I mentioned he did actually hit the charts a bit harder- the year before, he peaked at #61 with this gem:
Time for Bottoms Up!
Once again, our bottom enders venture into the top forty briefly before giving us three debuts this week.
10- Jr Walker and the All-Stars had Shotgun at #37, on its way down after 12 weeks.
9- Another song recognizable to those who've been faithful to TM lately, Jodi Miller's Queen Of The House- the reply to Roger Miller's King Of The Road- is at #39 after 3 weeks.
8- Herman's Hermits are dropping to 47 after a whopping (but not this week's best) 14 weeks with Can't You Hear My Heartbeat.
7- Martha and the Vandellas have Nowhere To Run, so they stop at 55, on their way down after an 11 week run.
6- Imagine my excitement when The Guess Who copped this spot with their Chad Allen-era hit Shakin' All Over, at 58 in week #4.
5- And speaking of that longest running hit of the week, as well as that song that got replied to, Roger Miller is at 63 in his 15th week with King Of The Road.
4- Another one you'll recognize if you've been around TM long enough- Reparata and the Delrons' Tommy is at 66 in its 4th week.
3- Debut #1 is Donovan's Catch The Wind, at #80.
2- Debut #2 is the Yardbirds with For Your Love, at #83.
And the top bottom?
The Byrds with Mr. Tambourine Man, at #88!
In chasing down this week's six degrees story, I ended up at a list of the biggest foreign language hits to make the Japanese Charts. I modified the list, keeping it to songs in the Martin Era (1962-79 for you newbies), and songs that made the US of A's top 40. With those two caveats in mind, here are the biggest hits in Japan:
10- Another one of those "if you've been following TM long enough" songs- a song that got annoying in its frequency of showing up- Mamy Blue by the Pop-Tops.
9- John Denver, a long way from home with Take Me Home Country Roads.
8- Mary Hopkins' Those Were The Days.
7- The Bee Gees with a song about a place they'd never been at the time- Massachusetts.
6- A pair of tunes that were a double a-side there: The Carpenters with I Need To Be In Love/Top Of The World.
5- Of course, the Beatles had to make the list, and they do with Let It Be.
4- Two weeks in a row in the six degrees, Jigsaw with Sky High.
3- The Carpenters once more, with Yesterday Once More.
2- Simon and Garfunkel's Sounds Of Silence.
And the top selling foreign language song in Japan, with or without my caveats? Daniel Boone's Beautiful Sunday.
Now, getting into the six degrees part of the story, this song was redun by a b-list country act named Jack Reno. Jack had 7 C&W top 40s, but this wasn't one, peaking at 67 in 1973. He also did a country cover of Vanity Faire's Hitchin' A Ride, which he took a bit higher, up to #12 C&W in 1971. That song was co-written by Pete Callander, who you might recall co-wrote last week's six degree victim, Georgie Fame's The Ballad Of Bonnie And Clyde. (We sure are having lots of connections this week!) His co-writer on that one was one Mitch Murray, who also had a co-credit on the six degrees victim this week- Freddie and the Dreamers' I'm Telling You Now, which sat at #7 nationally this week, but got no love from the panel.
|I don't see our bloody song anywhere...|
And now, the mainly-rookie shuffle ten:
At number ten is the first of 7 newbie acts on the shuffle ten- Strawberry Alarm Clock. Their song Birds In My Tree was the flip of their 1968 hit Tomorrow.
Manfred Mann's Earth Band released the Bruce Springsteen cover Spirits In The Night twice- it got to 97 in 1975, but made it to #40 in 1977. The Boss's version never charted.
Better Than Ezra's second-biggest hit comes in at #8 this week. It's called In The Blood, and was top ten in both alternative and MSR, though only charting #48 pop in 1995. BTE thus becomes the first of two acts to get their second shuffle ten hit.
Gordon Lightfoot's inaugural trip to the shuffle ten sees him place his 1974 top dog, Sundown, at our #7 slot.
Donna Fargo comes in at 6 with her first ST, the #5 pop/#1 C&W from 1972, Funny Face.
Kiss is the second act to repeat this week- their 1984 11 MSR/49 pop Heaven's On Fire blasts in at #5.
Mac Davis puts his 1972 #1 Baby Don't Get Hooked On Me in our countdown at #4.
Rare Earth scores its first ST with their #4 from'70, Get Ready.
And the third repeater is a three-time act- Crosby Stills and Nash with the 1969 #28 Marrakesh Express.
And at number one? Survey says...
Herman's Hermits with Mrs Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Peter Noone and crew also bagged the national title as well.
And, Shuffle says....
Elvis Costello and the Attractions with Oliver's Army!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A no-charter here, it was #2 in the UK and #4 in Ireland. His name here was made on the #19 Veronica (which got me to buy the Spike cd) and #36 Everyday I Write The Book (which my son loved when he was a wee lad).
That's it kids, come back next time for...1971!