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


Friday, June 2, 2017

Time Machine co-ordinates VIV4326261

So we zoom in to the covfefe world of June 2nd, 1961, where we find Albany NY's WGFM, one of the oldest FM stations in the US of A, became the first to broadcast FM stereo.  They adopted a classic music format (they had been simulcasting AM's WGY) to showcase the new technology.  They actually started the day before, using a combined system developed by GE and Zenith; it sure beat the crap out of the 50's version of "stereo" where you had to tune two radios- one to the station's AM signal, and another to their FM broadcasting the second channel.  I can't imagine THAT was a real hoot.


And with that we welcome you to another Time Machine, where we find:  A savage battle for the Panel #1 between one disc, and its flip;  a 6D which leads us to the biggest selling single of all time in the UK;  why Annie got banned from the radio; why a big hit song had so many a cappella versions; and the 50th M10 #1 song!  Get the signal?


Let's open festivities with the first of our three debuts!  The are from Wales, they call themselves Kidsmoke, and they come in at #10...


The Panel was 29 strong this week, and gave us 12 candidates for POTM!  And here to try once again help us with the list, our reigning POTMs, the Everlys!

P:  I'm kinda sorry we missed Johnny Horton last week.

D:  Yeah, Johnny Cash gave the eulogy.  It was beautiful.

P: Don, you weren't there...

D: I always thought I'd be the one to go first. 

Um, guys?

P: Oh, yeah, right.  First up, we have Gene McDaniels with A Hundred Pounds Of Clay, which was #3 on Cashbox this week.\

D:  I vote for Gene!   

P:  You don't get to vote!  Next was Andy Williams with The Bilbao Song, which was at #37.

D:  I didn't think Lord Of The Rings was around in our day...

P:  Don!  Not Bilbo, Bilbao!  Anyway...

D:  Hey, let me do one!

P: Well, don't screw it up...

D:  Next is Dooley by the Olympics.  These guys did the original Good Lovin' which the Rascals had a hit with.  These guys didn't do so well though.  Don't vote for them.

P: Now the next one on the alphabetic list, Chris wants us to not mention yet, so go to the next one.

D:  Which one?  This one?

P:No, that's the one you skip.  This one.

D:  Oh, gotcha.  Next is the McGuire Sisters with Just For Old Times Sake, at #27 this week.  I sure had a crush on Christine.

P:  No, the one you liked was Phyllis.  Dad liked Christine.

D:  Are you sure?  I thought Dad liked Maxine...

P:  That's the Andrews Sisters, Don!  Dad...

Okay, running a little short on space here, guys, so let me take over.  Pat Boone was next with Moody River, at #14.

Ernie K Doe's Mother-In-Law was at #6.

Dee Clark with Raindrops, sitting at #15 this week.

Del Shannon's Runaway was on the way up at #10.

The only song to get more than one vote outside the two main event tunes, Roy Orbison's Running Scared, which was #1 here this week.

The Velveteens, a quartet of local girls from Springfield MA, got a vote for their tune Teen Prayer.

And that brings us to the true contest here.  The two songs are flip sides of the same disc!  One of them was charting at #2 on CB, and won the Panel vote.  The other was at #9 and came in a close 2nd.  Either way, your POTM next week will be...

...the incredible Rick Nelson!  But will he win with Travellin' Man... or Hello Mary Lou?  Make yer picks and we forge on!


Debut #2 comes to us from an American band called Northern Faces, and they hit the chart this time at #9...


Our 6D victim was Shep and the Limeliters with the original of Daddy's Home at #4.  This tune was covered in 1981 by Cliff Richard and he hit 23 here.  But in the UK, he was held out of the #1 slot four straight weeks by the Human League's Don't You Want Me.  That tune was mentioned as being "at the time" the 23rd biggest seller in UK history, which of course got me wondering what did top the UK all-time sellers list.  The thing that amazed me was that the Stones, the Moody Blues, the Who- they all got shut out of the top 40! (In the meantime, Aqua's Barbie Girl made #18.)  So too, despite all his chart hits there, was Sir Cliff.  But what DID make the list, you ask?

10- Mary's Boy Child/Oh, My Lord by Boney M;
9- Love Is All Around- Wet Wet Wet;
8- She Loves You, the Beatles (who also scored I Want To Hold Your Hand at 18 and Can't Buy Me Love at #32);
7-Boney M again with Rivers Of Babylon;
6- Frankie Goes To Hollywood with Relax;
5- Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta with You're The One That I Want;
4- Wings with Mull Of Kintyre/Girls School;

Oi see John din't make it.  Pity, that.

3- Queen, combining two chart runs for Bohemian Rhapsody;
2- Band-Aid and Do They Know It's Christmas; and at the top,

Elton John with Candle In The Wind '97!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


On the subject of the UK charts, Elvis was at the top with Surrender, and two of our Panel contenders made the flips- Runaway was the highest UK charter on the US charts (2 there, 10 here), while Running Scared was the highest here currently charting there (1 here, 27 there).

At our #61 in '61, we have a tune called The Continental Walk by Hank Ballard and the Midnighters.  Now Hank had a good string of R&B hits back in the day- despite having his most famous string of hits banned from many stations for alleged sexual innuendo.  They included the R&B #1 Work With Me, Annie, the follow up Annie Had A Baby (guessing she worked with him), and the #10 Annie's Aunt Fanny, which I assume sounds worse because of the pattern than it really was..

Now I know I know Annie understood
That's what's happens when the game gets good

Annie had a baby, can't work no more
No, no, no, no, no, no, no
Annie had a baby, can't work no more
Every time she start to working
She has to stop to walk the baby 'cross the floor

And THAT's what got you banned in '61.


Debut number three is one I've been trying to squeeze in for a while, and I have finally succeeded.  With their third M10 hit, though this time with Mike Del Rio rather than Krista Ru singing, here is POWERS:


This week I knew 19 of the hot 100, and we had a bubbling under list!  At 101 was Bobby Darin covering an old Nat King Cole hit, Nature Boy.  Nat took it to the top in '48- just as the musician's unions all went on strike to protest something in the Taft-Hartley Act.  Thus, Nat's record company was the only one able to sneak the song out, before the ban, with an orchestra- but it didn't stop others from trying.  Both Dick Haynes and Sarah Vaughn released a cappella versions that each peaked at #11, while Frank Sinatra rounded up a choir back-up and cracked the top ten at #7.  Bobby would make it to #31 when he tried it 13 years later.


And that brings us to the remaining M10:

Styx moves up to #7 with Radio Silence.  Sorry, still no videos about...

Ruth B spends a third week at #6 with Dandelions.

Nothing But Thieves crank up three notches to #5 with Amsterdam, as do Flogging Molly at #4 with The Days We've Yet To Meet.

The Orwells tumble from the top to #3 with They Put A Body In The Bayou.

Beach House slides up one to #2 with Chariot.

And that means the 50th #1 in M10 history belongs to...

.... PVRIS and Heaven!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And which Rick Nelson song won him the title this week?  By a 10-7 score...

Travellin' Man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Next week, we visit a  three week old me in 1962!  See Ya!


  1. Just thought I would drop by and tell you my head hurts and I want to sleep, not that you really care but even though I read post and thought never heard of Kidsmoke as well as others in this post but can't think of a damn thing to say so just wanted you to know I was here

    1. That's fine, and never think I don't care...

  2. Chris:
    ---That's some good history you dug up about FM radio. Didn't know ALBANY did it first.
    And NO, we never did the simulated stereo AM/FM thing.
    ---LOL - cat meme is hilarious.
    ---KIDSMOKE...yeah, I'm groovin' on it.
    ---Hundred Pounds of Clay - loved that song.
    ---Del Shannon's RUNAWAY...another good one.
    ---Hello Mary Lou v. Travellin' about DECISIONS!
    ---NORTHERN FACES...pretty "standard" song (for me).
    ---Can't believe the UK shut out the STONES for that top 40!? AND The Who? AND, the Moody Blues?!
    And (amazingly) Cliff Richard???
    ---Thought the Beatles would top that chart and NOT Elton No Bowie, either.
    ---Astounding what USED to get a song banned back then, huh?
    ---POWERS - not bad. reminds me of some later (solo) Paul Simon stuff, but a bit heavy on the bass downbeat. Otherwise, pretty good.
    ---Never heard of the song NATURE BOY (gonna have to give it a listen).
    ---Figured the OTHER Rick Nelson song was the topper. And that's why I don't bet on things that much...heh.

    Very good ride this week.
    Nary a bump at all.

    Keep those hits comin' up there, brother.

    1. I'm going to look into this UK thing a bit deeper- I know these sales figures diverged from their "most popular polls" quite a bit. BUT... not next week, I've a full page of notes already...