Don’s Top 10 From April 13, 1970
Way back to Monday, April 13, 1970 in “The Time Machine”, to Monday, April 13, 1970. Here’s how the local top 10 singles chart went:amazon.com
“The Rapper” by The Jaggerz
(#10 last week) Talk about a forgotten 45! The Jaggerz were a Pittsburgh band fronted by Donnie Iris, who had some solo success a decade later with songs like “Ah! Leah!”. This song SHOULD have been played over the years: it’s very catchy, uptempo pop-rock.
“House Of The Rising Sun” by Frijid Pink
(#12 last week) Surprise hit remake of the 1964 #1 hit by The Animals from a Detroit hard rock one-hit wonder. Like “The Rapper”, this single was also certified gold.
“Come & Get It” by Badfinger
(#11 last week) On Apple Reocrds, written by Paul McCartney & featured in Ringo Starr’s movie “The Magic Christian”, how could this be anything but a big hit? First of four American charters for power-op group Badfinger, formerly The Iveys in England.
“Instant Karma (We All Shine On)” by John Ono Lennon
(#5 last week) Recorded in an hour, literally! It became John’s first top 10 solo hit (& the first one by a Beatle). The title became a frequently used phrase, too. Still sounds fresh.
“Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Simon & Garfunkel
(#3 last week) What can you say? An instant classic, winning every award a piece of music can win. The incredible piano was played by Wrecking Crew member Larry Knechtel, who took four days to perfect the arrangement. Believe it or not, Garfunkel originally felt Simon should sing lead, & Paul himself came around to that view as well, AFTER the song was released. Oh well. The disagreement over this contributed to the duo’s breakup later in the year.
“Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)” by Edison Lighthouse
(#4 last week) Ah, what could have been: Rob Grill told an interviewer that his group, the Grass Roots, was offered this song for the North American market but turned it down. So we ended up hearing the same version as Europe, with lead singer Tony Burrows, who famously was a one-hit wonder five times with five different groups, four of them here in 1970.
“Easy Come, Easy Go” by Bobby Sherman
(#8 last week) For a short time in 1969-70, Bobby Sherman filled the role of teen idol, but he wasn’t an overnight success, gradually b uilding up his career over an eight-year period, which included being a regular on the music show “Shindig!” & an acting career which included “Here Come The Brides”. His post-teen idol life has been almost as interesting, focusing on EMT work & as a Deputy Sheriff in southern California.
“Spirit In The Sky” by Norman Grenbaum
(#6 last week) If it struck you as interesting that someone with a “Jewish-sounding” name would write a song about Jesus, well, you’re not alone. Alice Cooper said just that in a interview. Yes, Greenbaum is Jewish. He was inspired to write the song after watching singer Porter Wagoner on TV singing a gospel song. Greenbaum later said : “I thought, ‘Yeah, I could do that,’ knowing nothing about gospel music, so I sat down and wrote my own gospel song. It came easy. I wrote the words in 15 minutes.” The resulting sound was an innovative & compelling combination of gospel & rock music, with loud drums, distorted electric guitar, clapping hands, & tambourines.
“ABC” by The Jackson 5
(#2 last week) The second straight smash for the brithers from Indiana.At the time New York City top 40 station WMCA hated the idea of playing what was essentially a 3 minute commercial for their rival, WABC, so they took a suggestion from Alex Bennett & called it “MCA” for the entire time it was on their chart!
“Let It Be” by The Beatles
(#1 last week; 3rd week at #1) The Beatles, at the end of their time together, still at the top of the chart, even beating a solo hit by one of them to the top spot. No, the song lyric about “Mother Mary” was not biblical, it was about McCartney’s late mum Mary. Most of it was recorded in January 1969, over a year before its eventual release.