Don’s Top 10 For July 22, 1974
It's a “Time Machine” trip to those dark days before President Nixon resigned, when it looked like he would be impeached. We escaped with some great hit music! Here's the local top 10 singles for Monday, July 22, 1974.
“Sideshow” by Blue Magic
(#11 last week) To my ears, this sounded like the latest from the Stylistics! But they were already on the survey. Philly soul at it's best, co-written by the same team (Vinnie Barrett & Bobby Eli) that did “Love Won't Let Me Wait” by Major Harris.
“You Make Me Feel Brand New” by The Stylistics
(#4 last week) Speaking of….it was their biggest hit single, co-written by the great Thom Bell & Linda Creed. There have been at least six remakes of this.
“Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me” by Elton John
(#14 last week) Nobody was hotter in music in 1974 than this guy. First single from the “Caribou” album, & this featured some stellar backup vocals from Carl Wilson & Bruce Johnston of the Beach Boys, and, of all people, a then-unknown Toni Tennille!
“Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” by Steely Dan
(#16 last week) According to Entertainment Weekly, Rikki Ducornet was the apparent inspiration for the song due to a friendship songwriter Donald Fagen had with her while attending Bard College. Ducornet was pregnant and married at the time, but recalls that Fagen did give her his phone number at a college party while attending Bard and said that she believed she was the subject of the song. Fagen would not confirm the story. That's Jeff “Skunk” Baxter on the guitar solo.
“Sundown” by Gordon Lightfoot
(#6 last week) In the I-did-not-know-that-department, “Sundown” was allegedly inspired by Lightfoot's then girlfriend, Cathy Smith, later more infamously known for her involvement in the death of John Belushi. Lightfoot has commented in interviews that she was “the one woman in my life who most hurt me.” Well, she certainly didn't hurt his career or wallet!
“The Air That I Breathe” by The Hollies
(#7 last week) First written & recorded by Albert Hammond for his 1972 album “It Never Rains In Southern California”, this track was actually first covered by Phil Everly of the Everly Brothers on a solo album in 1974. It's been done dozens of time since the Hollies hit big with it. ,
“Billy Don’t Be A Hero” by Bo Donaldson & The Heywoods
(#3 last week) This may be the worst synching job I have ever seen on youtube. Anyway, this was a hit in England for Paper Lace & was actually about the American Civil War, not Vietnam, as many people assumed. If Paper Lace was upset that Bo & the Heywoods rush-American-cover beat them to the charts here, they probably weren't too freaked out, since “The Night Chicago Died” hit #1 here just weeks later.
“Annie’s Song” by John Denver
(#5 last week) One of the ultimate love songs from a man to a woman. How could they divorce & ruin the fantasy for us? BTW, Denver was a one-hit wonder in England, & this was the hit.
“Rock The Boat” by The Hues Corporation
(#1 last week) The lead singer on this, Fleming Williams, left the group right after it was recorded & never appeared in public to sing it! This would ultimately go on to be our local #1 hit of the year in 1974.
“Rock Your Baby” by George McCrae
(#2 last week; 1st week at #1) Co-written by K.C. of Sunshine Band fame, before he was famous here in the states! In fact, it was intended to be a KC & The Sunshine Band song, but McCrae just happened to pop into the studio that day, spur-of-the-moment laid down some vocals, & the rest was history.