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BIG Jay's BIG Week In Pop Music History

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August 28th, 2015

THE

BIG

SINGLES

 

For the Chart-Week

 

ENDING

 

AUGUST 31, 1968



HOT 100

SINGLES

Top 10

 

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘68:

 


THIS WEEK—LAST WEEK—TITLE—WRITER(s)—ARTIST(s)—RECORD LABEL—CATALOG NO.    


***************************************************************************

No. 10  (LW 10)  "STAY IN MY CORNER"

(Bobby Miller / Barrett Strong / Wade Flemons)

Produced by: Bobby Miller

                  

THE DELLS CADET Records 5612

******************************

No. 9  (LW 9)  "I JUST CAN'T STOP DANCING"

(Kenny Gamble / Leon Huff)                                   

 

Produced by: Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff
Arranged by: Tommy Bell




ARCHIE BELL & THE DRELLS ATLANTIC Records 2534


******************************


No. 8  (LW 15)  "YOU'RE ALL I NEED TO GET BY" 

 

(Nick Ashford / Valerie Simpson)                                                           

Produced by: Nicholas Ashford & Valerie Simpson


MARVIN GAYE & TAMMI TERRELL TAMLA Records 54169

******************************

No. 7  (LW 81)  "HARPER VALLEY P.T.A."

(Tom T. Hall)                                                           

Produced by: Shelby S. Singleton, Jr.

JEANNIE C. RILEY SSS INTERNATIONAL Records 400

******************************

No. 6  (LW 11 )  "YOU KEEP ME HANGIN' ON"

(Brian Holland / Lamont Dozier / Eddie Holland)                             

Directed by: Shadow Morton

Arranged by: The Guys


VANILLA FUDGE ATCO Records 6950


******************************

No. 5  (LW 6)  "SUNSHINE OF YOUR LOVE"

(Jack Bruce / Peter Brown / Eric Clapton) 

Produced by: Felix Pappalardi by arrangement with Robert Stigwood

(THE) CREAM  ATCO Records - 6544


******************************

No. 4  (LW 3)  "HELLO, I LOVE YOU"

(Words And Music by The Doors -- Jim Morrison / Ray Manzarek, Robbie Krieger / John Densmore)                                                     

Produced by: Paul A. Rothchild
Engineered by: Bruce Botnick

the doors (**how it appeared on the label) – ELEKTRA Records 45635


******************************

No. 3  (LW 4)  "LIGHT MY FIRE"

(Jim Morrison / Ray Manzarek, Robbie Krieger / John Densmore)
Produced by: Rick Jarrard


JOSE FELICIANO RCA VICTOR Records 9550

******************************

No. 2  (LW 2)  "BORN TO BE WILD"

(Mars Bonfire)                                                 

Produced by: Gabriel Mekler

 

STEPPENWOLF   DUNHILL / ABC Records 4138

******************************

 

 

No.1

Pop

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 1)

 

"PEOPLE GOT TO BE FREE"


(Felix Cavaliere / Eddie Bragati)


Flip-Side:

“MY WORLD”


THE RASCALS

ATLANTIC Records 2537

Produced by:

The Rascals: Felix Cavaliere, Eddie Bragati, Gene Cornish & Dino Danelli



With the Rascals successful run on Broadway, plus a sold-out tour across the U.S.A. a few years ago, the group had perhaps been the most anticipated act to reunite over the last 40-plus years. The recently deceased promoter, Sid Bernstein ‘discovered’ the group; even promoting them with a huge sign during the Shea Stadium appearance by the Beatles saying “The Rascals Are Coming.” By ‘68, the group lost the word "Young" in their title to become simply The Rascals, after the word young was utilized to avoid confusion with the Harmonica Rascals. This week in ’68, “People Got To Be Free” was an unblemished example of trying to keep the fire burning for civil rights reform, and a secondary lament about the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Robert F. Kennedy had not yet died when the song was written.) There are reports that it was also penned as a direct result of being hassled by ‘rednecks’ while traveling in Florida. The song was composed quickly by keyboardist Felix Cavaliere and singer Eddie Brigati; rounded out by the instrumentation of guitarist Gene Cornish and drummer Dino Danelli. There was an initial roadblock the Rascals had to bust through to gain release on their Atlantic Records label, as Jerry Wexler was not convinced a ‘political’ song was right for the group that usually beamed with blue-eyed-soul-style optimism about life and love. Brigati and Cavaliere insisted the song was not only proper, but needed to be heard by the masses. They were correct. Not only did “People Got To Be Free” sit atop the Pop singles chart for the third of an eventual five weeks, it also did well on the R&B singles chart; truly bridging the chasm between races and culture with a plea for unity.



The song was available only as a single for nine months; finally appearing on their next adventurous concept LP called Freedom Suite in March of ’69. That album featured a follow-up of sorts to their last No. 1 Hot 100 song in the form of the single “A Ray Of Hope”, which was written directly to Senator Edward Kennedy to carry on where his slain brothers left off; particularly Robert. The album was not well-received by the public as it was viewed as too ‘psychedelic’ from a group known for their soul/rock roots. Unfortunately, that LP would be the beginning of the rapid decline of the group both internally and externally. After over 40 years, the Rascals seemed to have patched-up their differences, as they packed them in at shows since they reunited in 2013; but it seems that "harmony" may have been short-lived, as another Broadway run was cancelled at the last minute. Cavaliere is touring as Felix Cavaliere's Rascals as of this writing. Let's hope they can fix things and play their great music for their legions of fans again. Money talks -- Noboby Walks. 


TOP 40

EASY LISTENING SINGLES

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘68

No.1

MIDDLE-OF-THE-ROAD

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 1)



"CLASSICAL GAS"


(Mason Williams)

 

Flip-Side:

“LONG TIME BLUES”


MASON WILLIAMS

WARNER BROS. / SEVEN ARTS Records 7190

 

Produced by:

Mike Post

for Amos Productions, Inc.

Arranged by: 

Mike Post


Baroque-Rock? Yep. You may remember the TV show The Smothers Brother's Comedy Hour. Mason Williams was the head writer and also performed instruments (including guitar) on the show while having this big hit this week in 1968. "Classical Gas" on Warner Bros. / Seven Arts Records would peak at No. 2 on the Hot 100 during the No. 1 run of "Hello, I Love You" by the Doors. But it was the prime record on the Top 40 Easy Listening singles chart for this, the third and final survey-phase in that slot. The song did reach No. 1 on the Cashbox Top 100 Singles chart for the week of August 10, 1968.  Williams had performed the song for the first time on TV on The Smothers Brother's Comedy Show on March 3, 1968 to rave reviews, mere weeks after it had been released as an album cut on February 1, '68 on the LP called The Mason Williams Phonograph Record, which was only released in stereo. Amazingly, the released version was the first take of the track. Sometimes songs come from interesting places. During time off from the TV program, and before the second season of the show, Williams had toured with the Smothers Brothers in Vegas, hardly getting a wink of sleep with the party boys. After arriving back home (then in Los Angeles) he began playing his neglected guitar to get back to normal. During that playfullness, he began doodling what he was then called "Classical Gasoline" as a sort of warm-up for classical guitar-playing. He spent many months perfecting the song, and by the time the second season of the Brothers' show was in progress, Tom Smothers suggested to Warner Bros. / Seven Arts Records that they sign Williams to their roster. They agreed; and during the recording sessions in L.A., perhaps an engineer write the words "Classical Gas"--leaving off the letters "oline" and that's how the track was officially named.

Mason Douglas Williams was born in Abilene, Texas in 1938 and divided his time with his divorced parents in Oklahoma and the state of Washington as a child. After high school, Williams attended college and then joined the Navy. He moved to L.A. and became a regular writer and performer on the Smothers Brothers TV show and their live touring act. "Classical Gas" won three Grammy® Awards for: Best Instrumental Composition, and Best Instrmental Performance for himself; plus another for Mike Post for Best Instrumental Arrangement. "Classical Gas" has been performed over six million times according to the performance rights organization BMI--Broadcast Music Incorporated. In addition to his musical prowess, Mason Williams is an accomplished poet, comedy writer (he was once head writer for Saturday Night Live in NYC) and activist.


BEST SELLING R&B

SINGLES

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘68

No.1

R&B

45 RPM

 

(Last Week No. 2)

 

"YOU'RE ALL I NEED TO GET BY"


(Nick Ashford / Valerie Simpson)

 

Flip-Side:

“LITTLE OLD BOY, LITTLE OLE GIRL”


 

MARVIN GAYE

& TAMMI TERRELL


TAMLA Records 54169


Produced by:

Nicholas Ashford & Valerie Simpson


Thomasina Winifred Montgomery was best known as Tammi Terrell. She was discovered at age 15 by producer/songwriter Luther Dixon, perhaps be remembered for his work with the Shirelles.  Initially,  Tammi recorded materail by Dixon on the Scepter/Wand labels, usually as demos for the Shirelles along with Checker Records out of Chicago (the Chess subsidiary) and even James Brown's label called Try Me Records.  She was reported to have been romantically linked to the Godfather Of Soul at one point; ending badly with reported domestic abuse. Berry Gordy saw her sing in Detroit at the famous 20 Grand nightclub and promptly signed the teen to a contract; changing her name to Tammi Terrell.  She then became romantically involved Sam Cooke and then with Temptations singer David Ruffin, only to have that  romance turn sour,  reportely much like the James Brown incidents.  But  the headaches she had suffered as a child and teenager got worse just as her career with Motown (Tamla) was exploding.  The icing on the cake happened in  1967 with Tammi did a duet with Marvin Gaye (a follow-up to another duet with Motown labelmate Kim Weston called  "It Takes Two") for  Ashford & Simpson's composition "Ain't No Mountain High Enough." They were begged to give the song to Dusty Springfield to record, but held it back as a way to get into the Motown circle with Berry Gordy, Jr. The tactic worked. Though only reaching No. 19 on the Pop Hot 100, the song  got to No. 3 on the R&B singles list.  That single was followed by a dud, "Your Unchanging Love." But the next release ended up being Marvin & Tammi's biggest chart hit called "Your Precious Love," reaching No. 5 Pop & No. 2 R&B and even cracked the Top 40 Easy Listening Singles list. If you go by what the R&B singles chart showed, "If I Could Build My Whole World Around You" was an even bigger hit there, gettin to No. 2 & No. 10 Pop, written and produced by Johnny Bristol, Harvey Fuqua with writing help by Vernon Bullock. That begat "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing" (No. 8 Pop &  No. 1 R&B) penned and producecd by Ashford & Simpson. The next duet between the now quickly becoming hot duo was "You're All I Need To Get By." This was to be the biggest R&B success as a team. The song was No. 1 R&B for five survey-periods and attained a peak position of No. 7 on the Pop Hot 100.Here's an extended version of the song. I think this version is spectacular. I hope you agree.

Unfortunately, the story gets even saddder regarding Tammi Terrell, as her lifelong issue with migranes turned into brain cancer. In October of '67, Terrell fainted onstage into the arms of Gaye. She was hospitalized with a diagnosis of a malignant brain tumor. This happened just before she recorded "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing" and this week's No. 1 R&B hit, "You're All I Need To Get By." She had brain surgery and returned to the studio once again for those sessions. Hearing those two songs now makes me feel like she was quite heroic for not letting her ailment get in her way. But the headaches continued as did her cancer which prevented her from returning to the road. She did record a solo LP but the later duets supposedly with Marvin Gaye were in fact recorded with Valerie Simpon portraying Tammi as listed on the record labels. Simpson insists that Tammi’s vocals were done over the top of Valarie’s guiding singing when she was well enough to perform. But Gaye once said it was Simpson who did most of the vocals. Reports claim the brass at Motown didn’t know just how sick she was until Tammi was terminally ill. Tammi's last live performance was at the Appolo Theater in Harlem, after which she progressively got worse and fell into a coma after she lost her eyesight as was confined to a wheelchair. She never recovered after an eigth brain surgery and died on March 16, 1970. Though never romantically linked, Gaye was said to be despondent (even though he recorded many hits after her death) but he hurtled down a path filled with depression and drug abuse that would haunt him until his death in 1984 at the hands of his father.


 

THE

BIG

ALBUMS


 For the Chart-Week

ENDING

AUGUST 31, 1968

 

TOP LPs

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘68:


No. 1

Pop

LP

(Last Week No. 1)


 

WHEELS OF FIRE

CREAM


ATCO Records SD 2-700


Produced by:

Felix Pappalardi


This survey-period in ’68 was the fourth and last for Cream's double-album called Wheels Of Fire to sit at the pinnacle of the Top LPs chart.  The band led by singer/bass player Jack Bruce, along with drummer Ginger Baker and guitarist Eric Clapton decided to release a two-record set. The first was a studio effort, done in London and New York, with the other LP a live set of music recorded at the Fillmore in San Francisco; or so we thought. Only one of the four was actually recorded at the Fillmore in San Francicso. That track was "Toad." But the other three were actually taken from shows at the Winterland Ballroom, with other live tracks left over for use on later LPs. But for this album, producer Felix Pappalardi had engineer Bill Halverson record six nights of shows. Pappalardi embellished what would end up being just four songs; two per side of the second disc that was named Wheels Of Fire. Some consider this set (studio and live) as a whole to be the finest album Cream ever did; with special attention to Eric Clapton's extended guitar solos ruling the record. The first single taken from this set was released in the beginning of September of '68, and first hit the Hot 100 for the week ending on October 5th of that year. Here's Cream doing a live version of "White Room."


Dang, that wah-wah pedal sure did get a workout on that video. The song "White Room" was about lyrisist Peter Brown's living room! Yes. His living room. Of course, it was also about loneliness and desperation, but the idea came from him being alone in a room.The single "White Room" ended up reaching No. 6 on the Hot 100 and No. 5 on the Cashbox Top 100 list. It was NOT a successful single in the band's native U.K., as Cream was much bigger here in America. The second single was "Crossroads", only eaching No. 28 Pop. But truth be told, by the time "White Room" was a hit, the band had already decided months earlier to call it quits. They performed a farewell tour in the states, yet ended the band's performances in London on November 26, 1968 with two shows at the Royal Albert Hall. There was bitterness mainly between Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker as (according to Eric Clapton) they were trying to show-off too much. Cream did finally reunite for their induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1993 and again for a brief two-venue live performances at the Royal Albert Hall for four shows in May of 2005 and and in New York at Madison Square Garden at the request of "Slowhand" for three performances in October. In 2006, Cream was awarded a Lifetime Grammy® Lifetime Achievement Award. Clapton went on to become a superstar in bands like Ginger Baker's Airforce, his own Derek & the Dominoes and a prolific solo career. Ginger Baker is considered to be one of rock's finest drummers. Bassist and singer Jack Bruce died of liver disease in England on October 25, 2014.


TOP SELLING R&B 

LPs

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘68:


No. 1

R&B

LP

(Last Week No. 1)

 

ARETHA NOW

 

ARETHA FRANKLIN

 

ATLANTIC Records 8186


Produced by:

Jerry Wexler

Engineered and Arranged by:

Tom Dowd & Arif Mardin

 

Released on Flag Day in 1968, the right-rockin,’ good-lookin,’ good-cookin’ Sista Ree was enjoying her royalty as the Queen of Soul on the Best Selling Rhythm & Blues LPs chart this week in ’68 with her fourth Atlantic Records album, Aretha Now. While sitting at the throne of that chart, the LP was had peaked at No. 5 on the Top LPs Pop listing. The album was in the fifth of an eventual 17 non-consecutive weeks at No. 1 on the R&B LP chart. Highlights from this album were “Think,” (that reached No. 1 on the R&B singles chart for three weeks and a million-selling single) “I Say A Little Prayer” (No. 10 Pop) and the Steve Cropper and the Don Covay-penned song (No. 14 and a million-seller later in ‘68) “See Saw," one of my fave Aretha tracks. The B side of “Think” was a remake of Sam Cooke’s “You Send Me” and was minor hit on its own. Oddly, Aretha Franklin’s current A side, “The House That Jack Built” (No. 6 Pop and a million-seller) was NOT on this LP. But your Biggest Jay will feature both sides of one of the best singles Aretha ever released. First, here’s the original A side, "The House That Jack Built."

“The House That Jack Built” (with Jack now being a nasty word around my radio home, CBS-FM 101.1) was a superb track. But Aretha’s version of “I Say A Little Prayer” (on the B side) became her biggest hit in the U.K. at the time, and outdid the A side in the U.S.A.; not by chart position (“I Say A Little Prayer” got to No. 10 Pop) but by the fact that it was the million-selling side.

Another fact; the British music publication New Musical Express gave the Queen of Soul’s adaptation of the Bacharach & David song the No. 1 position by their critics as the TOP single out of 150 reviewed up to that date in 1987! That’s BIG. The album Aretha Now was executive produced by Jerry Wexler who championed Lady Soul’s newfound success by letting her write and find material more suited to her talents. The vocal group the Sweet Inspirations sang backing vocals on the entire set of released hit singles from the Aretha Now and the A side of the 45 RPM “The House That Jack Built.” 



 

THE

BIG

SINGLES

For the Chart-Week

 

ENDING

 

SEPTEMBER 1, 1979



HOT 100

SINGLES

Top 10

 

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘79:

 

 


 

 

THIS WEEK—LAST WEEK—TITLE—WRITER(s)—ARTIST(s)—RECORD LABEL—CATALOG NO.

*************************************************************************

No. 10  (LW )  "I'LL NEVER LOVE THIS WAY AGAIN"

(Will Jennings / Richard Kerr)

Produced by: Barry Manilow

                                                                                              

DIONNE WARWICK ARISTA Records 0419


******************************

No. 9  (LW 9)  "MAMA CAN'T BUY YOU LOVE"

(Leroy Bell / Casey James)

Produced, Arranged and Conducted by: Thom Bell

Mixed by Elton John & Clive Franks for Frank N. Stein Productions, LTD.



ELTON JOHN MCA Records41042



******************************

No. 8  (LW 10)  "SAD EYES" 

(Robert John)



Produced by: George Tobin in Association with Mike Piccirillo

Executive Producer: Don Grierson

          

ROBERT JOHN EMI AMERICA Records 8150



******************************

No. 7  (LW 8)  "LEAD ME ON"

(Ali Willis / David Lasley)

Produced by: Denny Diante

Arranged by: Michel Columbier


MAXINE NIGHTINGALE WINDSONG Records  11530 

******************************

No. 6  (LW 7)  "THE DEVIL WENT DOWN TO GEORGIA"

(Charlie Daniels / Fred Edwards / Jim Marshall /

Charles Hayward / Tom Crain / Joe DiGregorio)                                                          


Produced by: John Boylan for Sir Charles Productions


THE CHARLIE DANIELS BAND EPIC Records 50700



******************************

No. 5  (LW 6)  "DON'T BRING ME DOWN"

(Jeff Lynne)

Produced by: Jeff Lynne


ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA JET Records 5060

 

******************************

No. 4  (LW 4)  "AFTER THE LOVE HAS GONE"

(David Foster / Jay Graydon / Bill Champlin)

Produced by: Maurice White for Kalimba Productions

String Arrangments by: David Foster

Horn Arrangments by: Jerry Hey

                                                                   

EARTH, WIND & FIRE COLUMBIA / ARC Records 11033


******************************



No. 3  (LW 3) – "THE MAIN EVENT / FIGHT"

(Paul Jabara / Bruce Roberts -- Paul Jabara / Bob Etsy)

 

Produced, Conducted and Arranged by: Bob Etsy

Co-Produced by: Larry Emerine

Recording and Re-Mix Engineered by: Larry Emerine

 

BARBRA STEISAND COLUMBIA Records  11008


******************************

No. 2  (LW 2)  "GOOD TIMES"

(Bernard Edwards / Nile Rogers)

Produced by: Nile Rogers & Bernard Edwards


CHIC ATLANTIC Records 3584


******************************

No.1

Pop

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 1)

 

"MY SHARONA"

 

         (Doug Fieger / Berton Averre)             


Flip-Side:

“LET ME OUT”

 

THE KNACK

 

CAPITOL Records 4731



Produced by:

Mike Chapman




1979’s biggest hit, “My Sharona”, featured the pounding drums played by Bruce Gary with the group The Knack. Gary said he based the beat on the intro to the Miracles song "Going To A Go-Go" which was a No. 11 Hot 100 hit in late '65 into early '66 at the height of the discoteque craze. If you look at the Capitol Records label of the song above, you'll note from interesting trivia...or hat-tips to the Beatles. Of course many thought this week's biggest hit was a Beatles' knock-off for the  late '70s. Honestly, there were some things about the song that was Beatles-esque including the high energy beat, guitar playing and vocals. But the Knack was an All-American band (much like the Raspberries) and the inside joke on the label was that (like the Beatles records on Capitol saying "Recorded in England") this said "Recorded in the U.S.A." So the group, producer Mike Chapman and Capitol itself were in on the fun. At this point in time, Capitol had long abandoned the orange and yellow swirl label for 45 RPM releases; so this throwback (long before that word was invented) was even more precious. 


This was the second of and eventual six survey-cycles as the biggest Hot 100 hit in America. On the front page of this week's Billboard Magazine, they commented that retail shopping for music was doing very well during the last 10 days, due to, in part, the latest Led Zeppelin LP, plus the single "My Sharona" and the album from which it sprang, Get The Knack. Doug Fieger was the vocalist and rhythm guitar player, Berton Averre played lead guitar (they were the two writers of "My Sharona") with Averre playing the searing guitar solo in the middle of the song, and the band was rounded out by Prescott Niles on bass and the aforementioned Bruce Gary on drums. Unlike the Beatles, the Knack didn't have the knack for staying power, as they broke up a mere three years after having this massive hit. Yeah, they did have a few more hits including: "Good Girls Don't" (No. 11 Pop), "Baby Talks Dirty" (No. 38 Pop) and a few stiffs after that. "My Sharona" had a slight revival of sorts in 1994 and charted again (only peaking at No. 91 on the Hot 100) after it was used in the film Reality Bites, starring Winona Ryder. Sadly, Fieger died of cancer at age 57 in 2010, with the drummer Bruce Gary preceding him in death due to cancer as well at age 55 in 2006.


 

TOP 50

ADULT CONTEMPORARY SINGLES

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘79

No.1

MIDDLE-of-the-ROAD

(Easy Listening)

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 2)



"LEAD ME ON"

 

(Ali Willis / David Lasley)

                                                                                      

Flip-Side:

“LOVE ME LIKE YOU MEAN IT”


MAXINE NIGHTENGALE


WINDSONG Records 11530

 

Produced by:

David Diante

Arranged by:

Michel Columbier


Maxine Nightengale was from Wembley, England and before the hits, she had previously done stage work in productions like: Hair, Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar and others in London's West End and in Germany. Giving up on recording after some dismal results on Pye Records in the early '70s, Maxine Nightengale reluctanly returned to the scene, but did so like a ton of retro Motown bricks with her debut hit in '76, "Right Back Where We Started From" on United Artists Records. "Right Back Where We Started From" had been released on United Artists Records in the U.K., in '75, but was not released in the U.S. as a single--until the 45 RPM smashed on to the radio here in the colonies in our bi-centennial year. That song sold over a million copies and peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100 for two survey periods. One follow-up single died a fast death. Flash-forward three years, and Maxine Nightengale had another million-selling 45 RPM with "Lead Me On" on the small Windsong Records label. That label was basically a John Denver project and mainly a folky label; but it also signed Nightengale, the Starland Vocal Band, famous for their one-hit-wonder, "Afternoon Delight" along with a Philly Phave, the rock group, Johnny's Dance Band.Her comeback was led by United Artists Records president Al Teller leaving that company; becoming the new head of Windsong Records (later named Windstar) and proceeded to release "Lead Me On" and new Nightengale's LP Love Lines, sensing it was a hit. His hunch was correct.


"Lead Me On" was a huge record on this Adult Contemporary Singles listing, as it was No. 1 for a total of seven non-consecutive weeks. This was the final week in the prime position on this chart. The record was able to bounce back into the top spot twice; first overtaken by Spyro Gyro's "Morning Dance," and then Elton John's "Mama Can't But You Love" only to return to the crest. Unfortunately for Nightengale, her next release just stood there on the Hot 100, peaking at No. 73 for just a few weeks. She recorded a duet with one-time Motown artist Jimmy Ruffin which had some legs on the Hot Soul chart in '83. Since then, it's been Jazz that has kept her performing for live shows.



HOT SOUL SINGLES

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘79

No.1

R&B

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 1)

 

"GOOD TIMES"

 

(Bernard Edwards / Nile Rogers)

 

Flip-Side:

“WARM SUMMER NIGHT”

 

CHIC

ATLANTIC Records 3584


Produced by:

Nile Rogers & Bernard Edwards

“Good Times” were not really about good times; but a social commentary about the economic doldrums of the late ‘70s. CBS-FM’s Scott Shannon and the BIG Show interviewed Nile Rogers, co-writer/producer of “Good Times” on his show not long ago. Rogers’ group Chic had already had one of the biggest hits of the ‘70s with “Le Freak” the fifth biggest hit of the entire decade, selling over four million copies; a rare feat. The Atlantic Records release "I Want Your Love" was the followup single, "only" reaching No. 7 on the Hot 100 and "only" a million-seller. Next came “Good Times," another No. 1 Pop and Soul single. You can dig that "Good Times" certainly spawned a bass and rhythm riff that has been copied and sampled quite a bit since. Because the group the Sugarhill Gang lifted a portion of the riff used on their hit “Rappers Delight”, Rogers and Edwards were given co-writers credit on that landmark hip-hop recording. Rogers says he was first exposed to ‘hip-hoppers’ playing their riff after friends Deborah Harry and Chris Stein from Blondie took him to clubs in Queens and the Bronx. “Good Times” was in the last of six weeks as the top single on the Hot Soul singles chart during this survey-cycle in ‘79. It was the chart-topper for just a sole week on the Pop singles chart before “My Sharona” from the Knack claimed that crown last survey period. For you Disco creatures, here's the extended dance mix.

"Good Times" had moved down to No. 2 this week on the Hot 100, kept from the apex by the Knack once again on the Hot 100. At this point, the Chic Organization (as they liked to be known) was comprised of Nile Gregory Rogers, who played guitar and co-wrote and co-produced the band, along with his partner and bass player Bernard Edwards who died in Japan in 1996. Tony Thompson was the drummer for the ensemble. He passed away in 2002. In addition, the female lead singers on “Good Times” were Luci Martin and Alfa Anderson, as well as the talents of dozens of other musicians on the track from the Chic LP Risqué; featuring a very dark type of dance music lyrics, targeting ‘buppies’; Black Urban Professionals. Even the album cover photo was in black & white and grainy. Risqué was recorded in its entirety at the Power Station studio here in Manhattan. Chic dissolved after creative differences between Rogers and Edwards in 1983, although they briefly reunited in 1992 for an album called Chic-ism.


THE

BIG
ALBUMS


 For the Chart-Week

ENDING

SEPTEMBER 1, 1979

 

TOP LPs 

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘79:


No. 1

Pop

LP

(Last Week No. 1)

 

GET THE KNACK

THE KNACK

CAPITOL Records 11948


Produced by:

Mike Chapman

The Knack was comprised of Doug Fieger, lead vocalist and rhythm guitar player, Berton Averre played lead guitar (they were the two writers of "My Sharona") with Averre playing the searing guitar solo in the middle of the song, and the band was rounded out by Prescott Niles on bass and the aforementioned Bruce Gary on drums. Unlike the Beatles, the Knack didn't have the knack for staying power, as they broke up a mere three years after having this massive hit. Yeah, they did have a few more hits including: "Good Girls Don't" (No. 11 Pop) which was on this LP Get The Knack. I happened to love this track, and especially their 45 RPM picture sleeve.



"Good Girls Don't" may not have been a smash in the U.S., but north-of-the-border, the song reached No. 1 in Canada. That song was followed up by "Baby Talks Dirty" (No. 38 Pop) from their next LP called ...But The Little Girls Understand, and a few stiffs after that. It turns out that their first two LPs, Get The Knack and ...But The Little Girls Understand were supposed to be combined for a double album, but Capitol didn't see it that way as a debut. In hindsight, that explains why the second album sounded a lot like the first. A third album fizzled at which time leader Fieger left the band on New Year's Eve, 1981. "My Sharona" had a slight revival of sorts in 1994 and charted again (only peaking at No. 91 on the Hot 100) after it was used in the film Reality Bites, starring Winona Ryder. Sadly, Fieger died of cancer at age 57 in 2010, with the drummer Bruce Gary preceding him in death due to cancer as well at age 55 in 2006.



SOUL

LPs

“Special Survey”

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘79:


No. 1

R&B

LP

(Last Week No. 2)

 

TEDDY

TEDDY PENDERGRASS

PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL Records 34390

Produced by:

Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff

Thom Bell

Sherman Marshall

Gene McFadden & John Whitehead

Victor Carstarphen

Arranged by:

Jack Faith

Anthony Bell

Dexter Wansel

Jerry Cohen & Larry Gold

John Usry

Don Ronaldo His Strings and Horns


The album Teddy was the prime album this week in '79 on the Soul LPs chart from Teddy Pendergrass. It was in  the seventh of eight concluding survey periods at the peak of that register. The first single from this set, his third solo album since leaving Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes in 1975 after he wanted the group called Teddy Pendergrass & The Blue Notes, as many thought HE was Harold Melvin. The last big hit Teddy had with the Blue Notes was "Wake Up Everybody" a No. 1 Soul single and No. 12 Pop hit at the end of '75, into early '76. In fact, after Theodore DeReese Pendergrass exited the vocal group, they ended their run on Philadelphia International Records and recorded unsuccessfully for ABC Records. But Teddy came out as a solo artist in '77 and had an R&B smash right off the bat with the mean "I Don't Love You Anymore." In '78, Pendergrass had his only solo million-selling single, the quiet storm-styled "Close The Door"--proving the women still loved him. That record was No. 1 Soul and reached No. 25 on the Pop Hot 100. Teddy wasn't done by a long shot. His third LP Teddy featured "Turn Off The Lights" (No. 2 Soul land No. 48 Pop) yet another "bedroom ballad" from the crooner.


Teddy continued to have mostly R&B hits (with some minor Pop successes) including "Can't We Try" from the Meatloaf film Roadie. By this time, some music writers were calling Pendergrass "The Black Elvis" as he was usurping Marvin Gaye and Barry White as THE R&B crooner of his time, because of his singing, hisCh stage persona and the fact that he had purchased a huge mansion just outside of his hometown of Philadelphia. But tragedy was just around the bend, as Teddy was driving his Rolls-Royce on Lincoln Drive along the Schuylkill River (pronounced skool-kle) in Philly, when he lost control of the vehicle and hit two trees. It took nearly an hour to extricate Teddy and a reported trans-sexual occupant; leaving Pendergrass a quadrapalegic--paralyzed from the neck down. But by 1984, Teddy was able to record again, and had a minor Pop hit that year with the debut single featuring the then unknown Whitney Houston, "Hold Me," reaching No. 46 on the Hot 100, but No. 5 on the Soul Singles and No. 6 on the Adult Contemporary Charts. He also performed at Live Aid at JFK Stadium in South Philadelphia. Pendergrass continued to record, but without the major success of his earlier efforts. He acted in the play Your Arms Too Short To Box With God in 1996 alongside Stephanie Mills in a road version of the musical. In addition, he released an autobiography called Truly Blessed in 1998. Teddy left the music business in 2006. He contracted colon cancer in 2009 and had successful surgery, only to succumb seven months later to respiratory failure in 2010 at age 59.

 


 

 

THE

BIG

SINGLES

 

 

 

For the

 

Chart-Week ENDING

 

AUGUST 30, 1986

 

HOT 100

SINGLES

Top 10

 

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘86:

 

 


 

THIS WEEK—LAST WEEK—TITLE—WRITER(s)—ARTIST(s)—RECORD LABEL—CATALOG NO.    


***************************************************************************

No. 10  (LW 15)  "MAD ABOUT YOU"

(Paula Brown / James Whelan / Mitchell Evans)

Produced by: Michael Lloyd for Mike Curb Productions

Remixed and Engineered by: William Orbit


BELINDA CARLISLE  I.R.S. Records  69728

******************************
No. 9
  (LW 15)  "STUCK WITH YOU"

(Chris Hayes / Huey Lewis)

Produced by: Huey Lewis and the News


HUEY LEWIS and the NEWS CHRYSALIS Records 43109


******************************

No. 8  (LW 9)  “RUMORS”    

(Marcus Thompson / Michael Marshall / Alex Hill)

Produced by: J. King & D. Foster
Mixed by: J. King & Alex Hill

Assistant Engineer: Devon Bernadoni


TIMEX SOCIAL CLUB JAY Records 7001


******************************

No. 7  (LW 11)  "SWEET FREEDOM" (Theme From "Running Scared"                         

(Rod Temperton)

 

Produced by: Rod Temperton, Dick Rudolph and Bruce Swedien

Arranged by: Rod Temperton

Horns Arranged by: Rod Temperton and Larry Williams

Recorded and Remixed by: Bruce Sweiden


MICHAEL McDONALD MCA Records 52857

 

******************************

No. 6  (LW 12)  "FRIENDS AND LOVERS"

(Paul Gordon / Jay Gruska)

Produced and Mixed by: Yves Dessca

GLORIA LORING & CARL ANDERSON USA CARRERE Records 06122


***************************************************************************

No. 5  (LW 6)  "DANCING ON THE CEILING

(Lionel Richie / Carlos Rios)

Produced by: Lionel Richie & James Michael Carmichael

Arranged by: Lionel Richies, James Michael Carmichael & Carlos Rios


LIONEL RICHIE MOTOWN Records 1843

 
***************************************************************************

No. 4  (LW 7)  "TAKE MY BREATH AWAY" (Love Theme from TOP GUN)

(Giorgio Moroder / Tom Whitlock)

Produced by: Giorgio Moroder

 

BERLIN COLUMBIA Records 05903

 
******************************

No. 3  (LW 1)  "PAPA DON'T PREACH"

(Brian Elliot -- Additional Lyrics by Madonna)

Produced by: Madonna and Stephen Bray

 

MADONNA SIRE Records 28660


 ***************************************************************************

No. 2  (LW 3)  "VENUS"

(Robbie Van Leeuwen)

Produced by: (SAW) Mike Stock / Matt Aitken / Pete Waterman for PWL Productions

                

BANANARAMA LONDON Records 886-056


***************************************************************************

 

 

No.1

Pop

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 2)

 

"HIGHER LOVE"

 

(Steve Winwood / Will Jennings)

 

Flip-Side

“AND I GO”

 

 

STEVE WINWOOD


ISLAND Records 28710


Produced by:

Russ Titelman and Steve Winwood

Engineed by:

Tom Lord Alge and Jason Corsaro

Mixed by:

Tom Lord Alge



 

Steve Winwood's music pedigree is that of legend. First as a 15 year-old teen as lead vocalist with Spencer Davis Group, with such rock classics as: "Gimme Good Lovin'," which he wrote (No. 7 Pop) "I'm A Man" (No. 10 Pop) "Keep On Running" (No. 76 Pop) and "Somebody Help Me" (No. 47 Pop) in America. Then, he co-founded the "super-group" Traffic in '67 with Dave Mason, Jim Capaldi and Chris Wood. After that, Winwood co-founded another "super-group," the short-lived Blues/Rock/Fusion band Blind Faith with Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker and Ric Grech. He was in another band called Go for a short time. By 1981, he was "super-grouped-out." Starting his solo career with a hit right out of the box called "While You See A Chance," you could see he would still rely heavily on his keyboard prowess. That song reached No. 7 on the Hot 100 Singles chart in the U.S.A. But the biggest successes were ahead as was proven by the album Back In The High Life on Island Records. The first single "Higher Love" was Winwood's first No. 1 record in America. It was at the crest of the Hot 100 for just this week in '86. Winwood enjoyed backing vocals by Chaka Khan on this track. 


"Higher Love" reaching the top spot on the Hot 100 comes 20 years and six months since his first chart hit with Spencer Davis Group's single "Keep On Running" on Atco Records in 1966, reaching only No. 76 on the Hot 100; a long time to wait for a chart-topping 45 RPM. "Higher Love" won two Grammy® Awards for Best Pop Vocal-Male and the producers award for Record of the Year for himself and Russ Titelman. The song was also nominated for a Grammy® for Song of the Year, but lost to "That's What Friends Are For" written by Burt Bacharach and Carol Bayer-Sager and performed by Dionne Warwick & Friends; Elton John, Stevie Wonder & Gladys Knight. The LP Back In The Highlife had three other singles spawned from it here in America; while a total of seven of the album's eight tracks were put on 45 RPM in the U.K. Here in the U.S., “Freedom Overkill” was the follow-up to "Higher Love" (No. 20 Pop) then, "The Finer Things" (No. 8 Pop & No. 1 for three weeks on the Adult Contemporary chart) and finally “Back In The Highlife Again” featuring James Taylor on backing vocal was released as a single later in the spring (No. 13 Pop & No. 1 on the Adult Contemporary survey. The LP was a Grammy®-nominated for Album Of the Year, and won the Best Engineered, Non-Classical Album award. The album Back In The Highlife was Grammy® nominated for Record of the Year in 1988; losing to Graceland; produced and performed by Paul Simon. All in all, Back In The High Life sold over three million copies in the U.S. and reached the peak position of No. 3 on the Top Pop Albums chart.


 

HOT

ADULT 

CONTEMPORARY

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘86

 

No.1

ADULT CONTEMPORARY

(Middle-Road)

45 RPM

 

(Last Week No. 1)


"WORDS GET IN THE WAY"

 

(Gloria M. Estefan)

 

Flip-Side

“MOVIES”

 

 MIAMI SOUND MACHINE


EPIC Records 06120

 

Produced by:

Emilio Estefan, Jr.



The third single by Miami Sound Machine was their biggest Hot 100 Singles chart-hit to date called "Words Get In The Way" featuring lead singer Gloria Estefan. The group's first two hit were million-selling 45 RPM's; "Conga" (No. 10 Pop) and "Bad Boy" (No. 8 Pop) with this new single NOT gaining the million-seller designation. It was this week's biggest hit on the Top 50 Adult Contemporary chart; something the previous two couldn't accomplish. Being a ballad didn't hurt it on this survey. Gloria wrote the song, and it was her first composition to be a hit single. Her husband, producer Emilio Estefan, Jr. produced the track from the album Primative Love on Epic Records.
 

Miami Sound Machine's name all by itself lasted for just one more single called "Falling In Love (Uh-Oh)" (No. 25 Pop) as it was quickly realized that Gloria Estefan was the star, so the act was renamed Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine. They would have a smash right out of the box with the new moniker with "Rhythm Is Gonna Get You" (No. 5 Pop) followed by "Betcha Say That" (No. 36 Pop) "Can't Stay Away From You" (No. 6 Pop & No. 1 AC) and the act's first No. 1 Pop singles, "Anything For You" another ballad that reached No. 1 on the AC chart as well. Fittingly, the final chart hit as Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine was called "1-2-3" reaching No. 3 on the Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Adult Contemporary register. As a solo artist, Gloria Estefan had tons of hits including her out-of-the-box No. 1 solo record in '88 "Don't Wanna Lose You," "Get On Your Feet" (No 11 Pop) "Here We Are" (No. 6 Pop & No. 1 AC--her biggest hit on that chart) in 1990 followed by a couple of clunkers. Then, she rebounded after having a terrible motor vehicle accident involving her tour bus with she and her husband both injured badly, and came back with her last No. 1 Pop and AC hit in '91, "Coming Out Of The Dark" long after the crash. Estefan had one final big hit as a solo artist in '94; a remake of the Vickki Sue Robinson hit from '76, "Turn The Beat Around" with Gloria's version reaching No. 13 on the Hot 100. Riding the bandwagon of the, she co-starred on the No. 2 Pop hit Music Of My Heart" as NSYNC and Gloria Estefan in 1999. She was selected for induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame with the Howie Richmond Hitmaker Award in 1996 among other various statues over the years.

 


BLACK SINGLES

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘86


No.1

R&B

45 RPM

(Last Week No. 4)


"LOVE ZONE"

 

(Barry Eastman / Wayne Brathwaite / Billy Ocean)


Flip-Side

"LOVE ZONE" (INSTRUMENTAL VERSION)



BILLY OCEAN


JIVE Records – 9212

  

Produced by:

Wayne Brathwaite and Barry J. Eastmond

 

The album Love Zone from Billy Ocean had been on top of the Top Black Albums chart for the week ending on August 9th, just three survey-cycles ago; based on the strength of the first two singles, "When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going" (No. 2 Pop, No. 2 Hot Adult Contemporary & No. 6 Hot Black Singles) and the most recent single, "There'll Be Sad Songs (To Make You Cry)" (No. 1 Pop, No 1 Hot AC & No. 1 Hot Black)--obviously another across the board smash. The SONG "Love Zone" was the third single from the album of the same name; the principal 45 RPM on the Top Adult Contemporary listing for this week only.The song was No. 22 during this survey-phase on the Pop Hot 100; heading for an eventual No. 10 peak position on that list. Billboard explained that "Love Zone" received the "Power Pick-Sales" designation along with the title, as it was a strong record this week, but that there was (as they proclaimed) "Chart congestion." Don't they have stuff at Walgreen's for that?

"Love Zone" was also on the chart maintained for 12-inch singles at No. 47. Ocean had 14 Hot 100 singles charting from 1976 through 1989; three of those were No. 1 records in addition to three No. 1 Soul or Hot Black singles and three that hit the apex of the Hot Adult Contemporary listing. Billy Ocean's real name is Leslie Sebastian Charles and was born in Trinidad but raised in merry-old London. His first hit in '76 caught my ear as a radio programmer at the time because "Love Really Hurts Without You" had a Motown retro feel to it. That record peaked at No. 22 on Ariola America (yes that was the name) Records. Ocean's biggest hit was his first on Jine Records "Caribbean Queen (No More Love On The Run" No. 1 for two weeks in '84 and his only million-selling single.



 

THE

BIG

ALBUMS


 For the Chart-Week ENDING

AUGUST 30, 1986

 

TOP POP

ALBUMS 

 

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘86:


No.1

Pop

LP

(Last Week No. 1)



TRUE BLUE


MADONNA


SIRE / WARNER BROS. Records  25442



Produced by:

Madonna, Patrick Leonard & Stephen Bray


The album True Blue holds the distinction of being the longest-running No. 1 album on the European Top 100 album chart, with an amazing 34 weeks at that chart’s peak. In America the LP True Blue was No. 1 on the Top Pop album chart for a total of five consecutive weeks. This was its third of the five. Madonna dedicated the Album chart. Madonna dedicated True Blue to, "My Husband, the coolest guy in the universe." She was referring to Sean Penn whom she married while this LP was being recorded, and then divorced him by the end of the decade. How cool was he? Anyway, the song "Papa Don't Preach" spent the previous two survey-periods at the helm of the Hot 100 Singles chart and was Ms. Ciccone's fourth No. 1 record. That song was written by tunesmith Brian Elliot who claimed he overheard some teenage girls gossiping about girls having sex and other things near North Hollywood High School, not far from his recording studio. Madonna added some minor lyrical changes to the song to get a co-writing credit. She claims it was simply a frank discussion with a father-figure about the issue; a life celebration. That song was still at No. 3 this week in '86 in the U.S., and was currently No. 1 in Canada as the LP's second single. The first single from this grand album also reached No. 1 (for a sole survey-phase) for the week ending on June 7, 1986 called "Live To Tell"--her third No. 1 45 RPM.  I'd like to feature the album’s title track and third single, “True Blue” at this point in the discussion, as it reached a respectable number three for three survey-cycles on the Hot 100 later in the year. 

After the 45 RPM "True Blue," there were two more singles to follow—another No. 1, “Open Your Heart” and the fifth single called “La Isla Bonita” (meaning "The Beautiful Island") logging in at No. 4 at its peak position. Hey, three American No. 1 songs and two top-four singles—not bad for and artists’ third album. Consider this collection as the record that made Bay City, Michigan native Madonna Louise Ciccone a superstar, and a reported future billionaire. The Guinness Book of World Records claims Madonna is the best-selling female artist of all time and was added to the roster of the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in 2008.

 

 

TOP BLACK

ALBUMS

 

THIS WEEK IN ‘86:


No. 1

R&B

LP

(Last Week No. 1)


RAISING HELL


RUN-D.M.C.


PROFILE Records  25110


Produced by:

Rick Rubin & Russell Simmons

Co-Producers:

Jason Mizell & Joseph Simmons



Run-D.M.C. were the first Hip-Hop group to have a video played on MTV. In 1984, they were also the first to have a Gold Record and the first to have a Grammy® nomination. They're in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2009; the second Rap act after Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five to be inducted. They have the distinction of being the only Hip-Hop act at Live Aid in Philadelphia in '86. Run-D.M.C. had the biggest album on the Top Black Albums listing this week in '86, Raising Hell on Profile Records; the third of an ultimate seven non-consecutive survey periods at the pinnacle. RUN-D.M.C hailed from Holis, Queens, New York and featured Joseph Simmons (Reverend Run) Darryl Matthews McDaniels (D.M.C.) and Jam Master Jay a/k/a Jason William Mizell. The first single from their third album was "My Addidas"gaining the peak slot of No. 5 on the Hot Black Singles chart, but didn't make the Pop Hot 100. The track that made the most noise and crossed over into the world of Rock and Pop was a remake of "Walk This Way" featuring Steven Tyler on vocals and Joe Perry on guitar. 


The album Raising Hell reached No. 6 (its peak position this week) on the Pop LPs chart as well as leading the Top Black Albums list this during this survey period. A third single from this set reached the Hot 100 at the end of October of '86 called "You Be Illin' reaching No. 29 on the Pop Hot 100 and No. 12 on the Hot Black register. A fourth single called "It's Tricky" only reached No. 57 on the Pop Top 100 and No. 21 on the R&B list. Joseph Ward Simmons (Reverend Run) was the lead vocalist of the group. Darryl Matthews McDaniels (D.M.C.) was also a club DJ and vocalist. Mizell, a former club DJ, performed drums & bass on the Raising Hell LP. Jam Master Jay was shot and killed at a recording studio in Queens by an unknown assailant in 2002. 

BE BIG!





**Special thanks to www.ShopRadioCast.com for supplying the photo of the 45 RPM adapter insert. 

**Special thanks to www.ShopRadioCast.com for supplying the photo of the 45 RPM adapter insert. 

(Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net -- '60s 45 record image by dan; '70s headphones/vinyl record image by dan; '80s cassette tape image by graur razvan ionut.)

**All chart information is used by permission of Record Research, Inc., from Publisher Joel Whitburn. The original information comes from Billboard Magazine’s various Hot 100 singles, Top 200 albums, and various R & B charts published by Billboard as compiled by Record Research. www.RecordResearch.com

All content on this page is copyright Big Jay Sorensen and of its respective copyright owners.

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