Don’s Top 10 from this week in 1973
Back…back…back into time in “The Time Machine” again tonight, as I flash back with Don's Top 10 from Tuesday, November 20, 1973 (new survey day!). As always, these are the local hits. You can hear all 10 tunes on New Jersey 101.5 with me starting just after midnight.
“Just You ‘n’ Me” by Chicago
(#12 last week) The second single from “Chicago VI”, James Pankow of the band wrote this song after a disagreement with his future wife, Karen. He made up for the fight by pouring his love for her into the song lyrics. The lead sheet for it was used as the official announcement of their wedding, with their picture embossed on it. Awwww.
“Angie” by the Rolling Stones
(#4 last week) The first single from the Stones LP “Goat's Head Soup”, the band recorded it in Jamaica. According to then Stones guitarist Mick Taylor, the title referred to a Jamaican delicacy of run-down goat scooped up off the road & cooked on the stove. Oooo-k.
“Keep On Truckin'” by Eddie Kendricks
(#6 last week) Former Temptation Kendricks boasted of this smash, “I knew it was a hit because of the title. The old people used to 'truck' when they were dancing. And I knew the trucking industry would embrace the record”.
“The Love I Lost (Part 1)” by Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes
(#9 last week) Some would argue that this was the very first record with that chugging “disco” bass line to make the top 10. This was originally written as a ballad by Gamble & Huff.
“Paper Roses” by Marie Osmond
(#5 last week) Argue all you want with me about how corny this song is, & I don't care. As a teenager, Marie was one of my biggest 70s crushes! And she's still sexy.
“Space Race” by Billy Preston
(#8 last week) After hitting big with the futuristic instrumental “Outa Space” in 1972, Preston switched to vocals for the '73 smash “Will It Go Round In Circles”, then followed up by going back to instrumentals with this near-clone of his '72 song. It was later adopted by “American Bandstand” as the theme music used halfway through the show.
“Midnight Train To Georgia” by Gladys Knight & The Pips
(#3 last week) Jim Weatherly wrote & first recorded this song as “Midnight Plane To Houston”. Cissy Houston (Whitney's mom) was the first to record it with the title we now know it by. Did you know Gladys was the Kelly Clarkson/Carrie Underwood of her day? She won “The Ted Mack Amateur Hour” at age seven.
“Photograph” by Ringo Starr
(#2 last week) The “Ringo” album, of which this was the first single, was the closest we came to a Beatles reunion while all four were still alive. All four are there, just not all on the same song. Ringo co-wrote this song with George Harrison, who plays 12-string acoustic guitar & sings harmony vocals.
“Top Of The World” by Carpenters
(#7 last week) The youtube video link has the year wrong, it was from Oct. 1973. When this was first recorded as an album cut, it had a bit more of a country twang to it, so much so that Lynn Anderson covered it & took it to #1 on the country chart. That convinced Richard Carpenter to release it as a single, but only after he recut the song for single release with more “pop” instrumentation. Yet that single version is hard to find these days.
“Heartbeat…It’s A Lovebeat” by The DeFranco Family featuring Tony DeFranco
(#1 last week; 2nd week at #1) Two of the greats from famed L.A. session musicians “The Wrecking Crew” play on this bubblegum smash: drummer Hal Blaine & guitarist Larry Carlton. Let's be honest: the DeFrancos were clones of the Osmonds, & just couldn't sustain their initial success. Talk about a career change: Tony DeFranco is now a real estate agent in southern California.