My 1974 Charts – September

waltzer gloucester 74

waltzer gloucester 74

3rd September 1974

Time was up: no job, so back to school for me along with a group of other re-takers for a year of GSE’s proper this time, and including mate Ian. Based in a newly-built 6th-form block, the teachers were much less condescending and willing to regard the students as not kids. All in all, a massive leap forward, even if a school uniform of sorts (albeit less strict and non-green-blazered, hooray!) was required. This was to become the first year of school I’d enjoyed since leaving Singapore.

In the charts, Mama Cass gets a 5th non-consecutive week on top while Mama Come Out is the highest entry at 12, Medicine Head’s 4th hit (in my charts – in the world it was a floppy) and rather fab. Kung Fu Fighting hits 7 – haiiii-ya! – while Abba’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Band replaces Abba’s song Honey Honey in the Top 10. I’ll say it again: I said I was an Abba fan from the moment I saw them!

Pans People get a new entry at 13. No, you’re not imagining things, they had an actual stab at being pop stars, and it was written and produced by Mike Batt, a bit moody, a bit rockpop. I loved it, the vocals could have been better of course, but I forgive them! Alvin You You You’s up to 18, meanwhile, while it’s pure Silly Love at 20 for 10CC, his 4th Top 20, their 6th. New entries for soulster songwriter Johnny Bristol and his wonderful Hang On In There Baby at 27, while his terrific song Love Me For A Reason, as covered by the Osmonds, slips in at 40, under-appreciated by me at the time (but loved by me now). Leo Sayer gets his 3rd hit with the jolly-sounding Long Tall Glasses, Syreeta debuts at 29 with the sweet Spinnin’ and Spinnin’, not only Stevie Wonder’s missus of the time and written by both, but a great singer. Finally, Mike McGear’s in at 30 (aka Mike McCartney, Paul’s bruv) with Paul’s very-Wings-tastic song Leave It, just a few places lower than the actual Wings-tastic Mrs Vandebilt.

In the diminishing oldies chart JK’s Hooked On A Feeling is reissued following its cover-version by Blue Swede – and it tops my chart for the 2nd time. Oogachagga oogachagga…!

1 ( 1 ) IF YOU’RE GONNA BREAK ANOTHER HEART Cass Elliot
2 ( 3 ) YAMASUKI The Yamasukis
3 ( 6 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL (WHO NEEDS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL) Rainbow Children
4 ( 8 ) WE’RE GONNA HAVE A PARTY Mouth And MacNeal
5 ( 2 ) ROCK YOUR BABY George McCrae
6 ( 5 ) ROCK THE BOAT The Hues Corporation
7 ( 11 ) KUNG FU FIGHTING Carl Douglas
8 ( 16 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL BAND Abba
9 ( 7 ) SAD SWEET DREAMER Sweet Sensation
10 ( 4 ) QUEEN OF CLUBS KC And The Sunshine Band

11 ( 14 ) MACHINE GUN The Commodores
12 ( NEW ) MAMA COME OUT Medicine Head
13 ( NEW ) YOU CAN REALLY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ME Pans People
14 ( 13 ) TRAVELING BOY Garfunkel
15 ( 9 ) HONEY HONEY Sweet Dreams
16 ( 12 ) TELL ME SOMETHING GOOD Rufus
17 ( 10 ) MOONLIGHT SPECIAL Ray Stevens
18 ( 25 ) YOU YOU YOU Alvin Stardust
19 ( 20 ) AFTER THE SHOW Kevin Ayers
20 ( 28 ) SILLY LOVE 10C.C.

21 ( 18 ) THE WIZARD OF LOVE The Pearls
22 ( 22 ) MRS VANDEBILT Paul McCartney and Wings
23 ( 15 ) PEPPERBOX The Peppers
24 ( 23 ) ANOTHER SATURDAY NIGHT Cat Stevens
25 ( 17 ) 2 WHEELS Firebird
26 ( 21 ) ROCK ME GENTLY Andy Kim
27 ( NEW ) HANG ON IN THERE BABY Johnny Bristol
28 ( NEW ) LONG TALL GLASSES Leo Sayer
29 ( NEW ) SPINNIN’ AND SPINNIN’ Syreeta
30 ( NEW ) LEAVE IT Mike McGear

31 ( 19 ) Y VIVA ESPANA Sylvia
32 ( 24 ) GOLDEN DAY Rain
33 ( 26 ) THE BLACK-EYED BOYS Paper Lace
34 ( 27 ) RING RING Abba
35 ( 29 ) THIS IS THE STORY OF MY LOVE (BABY) Wizzard
36 ( 30 ) ANNIE’S SONG John Denver
37 ( 31 ) BAND ON THE RUN Paul McCartney & Wings
38 ( 32 ) YOU WON’T SEE ME Anne Murray
39 ( 33 ) DANCING MACHINE The Jackson 5
40 ( NEW ) LOVE ME FOR A REASON The Osmonds

OLDIES!

1 ( NEW ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Jonathan King
2 ( 3 ) SAN FRANSISCO (BE SURE TO WEAR SOME FLOWERS IN YOUR HAIR) Scott McKenzie
3 ( 1 ) BABY LOVE Diana Ross And The Supremes
4 ( 2 ) (TO BE) YOUNG GIFTED AND BLACK Bob And Marcia
5 ( 4 ) WHERE DO YOU GO TO (MY LOVELY) Peter Sarstedt
6 ( 5 ) BE MY BABY The Ronettes
7 ( 6 ) BACK STREET LUV Curved Air
8 ( 7 ) BREAKING DOWN THE WALLS OF HEARTACHE The Bandwagon
9 ( 8 ) LADY WILLPOWER Gary Puckett And The Union Gap
10 ( 9 ) WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKEN-HEARTED Jimmy Ruffin
11 ( 10 ) BOTH SIDES NOW Judy Collins
12 ( 11 ) A HORSE WITH NO NAME America
13 ( 13 ) MONKEES THEME The Monkees
14 ( 12 ) GENTLE ON MY MIND Dean Martin
15 ( 14 ) I AM WHAT I AM Greyhound
16 ( 15 ) SCHOOL’S OUT Alice Cooper
17 ( 18 ) STRANGERS IN THE NIGHT Frank Sinatra
18 ( 16 ) STAY WITH ME The Faces

10th September 1974

A brand new entry at 1 for Magpie presenter Mick Robertson, like Pans People at 3 trying to have a pop career. Both were good tries, though the tango wasn’t exactly in vogue in 1974, the record managed to get on TOTP and I was mad on it for a while. Other TV shows having less of an impact on my charts would have been: Doctor Who (of course!), Rising Damp, Planet Of The Apes, Rhoda and The Goodies, whereas at the movies the disaster movie was taking over, notably The Towering Inferno which was terrific when it came out.

Ray Stevens goes back up to a new peak of 4 with his novelty track giving my entire Top 5 a non-UK-hit-floptastic quality (and 7 of the 10 failed to chart, as my tastes and the singles chart went their own ways). That said, Andy Fairweather-Low’s fab Reggae Tune did chart in both, and in at 14 here, his first chart hit since Hello Susie when Amen Corner charted with Roy Wood’s song 5 years earlier. Elton has another go at a rocking single, for a change, and it wasn’t bad, the title Bitch Is Back hinting at future campness, and in at 17.

I Am Missing You is in at 27, another non-hit, and very Indian-sounding to my delight, from Ravi Shankar and his friends: one in particular being George Harrison, who gave it a Phil Spector production, joined in, and released it on his own Dark Horse label. Sadly, I was one of the few to bother buying it! Ravi wrote a top notch toon, and of course donated Norah Jones to the world 5 years later, and a much longer chart career and sales than her dad. At 28, the one-hit (UK charts) wonder that is Brian Protheroe with the absolutely gorgeous Pinball, sounds as good as it did 40 years ago. Joni Mitchell meanwhile grabs another popchartfreak hit single with the delicious Free Man In Paris, her 3rd of the year and taken again from the wonderful Court And Spark album. Finally, sneaking in at 30 is Noosha Fox and the very odd and unusual breathless pop of Only You Can, which I loved right away. It took the UK record buyer 3 months to decide they liked it too.

1 ( NEW ) THE TANGO’S OVER Mick Robertson
2 ( 1 ) IF YOU’RE GONNA BREAK ANOTHER HEART Cass Elliot
3 ( 13 ) YOU CAN REALLY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ME Pans People
4 ( 17 ) MOONLIGHT SPECIAL Ray Stevens
5 ( 4 ) WE’RE GONNA HAVE A PARTY Mouth And MacNeal
6 ( 5 ) ROCK YOUR BABY George McCrae
7 ( 12 ) MAMA COME OUT Medicine Head
8 ( 6 ) ROCK THE BOAT The Hues Corporation
9 ( 14 ) TRAVELING BOY Garfunkel
10 ( 10 ) QUEEN OF CLUBS KC And The Sunshine Band

11 ( 7 ) KUNG FU FIGHTING Carl Douglas
12 ( 11 ) MACHINE GUN The Commodores
13 ( 3 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL (WHO NEEDS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL) Rainbow Children
14 ( NEW ) REGGAE TUNE Andy Fairweather-Low
15 ( 15 ) HONEY HONEY Sweet Dreams
16 ( 9 ) SAD SWEET DREAMER Sweet Sensation
17 ( NEW ) THE BITCH IS BACK Elton John
18 ( 16 ) TELL ME SOMETHING GOOD Rufus
19 ( 29 ) SPINNIN’ AND SPINNIN’ Syreeta
20 ( 27 ) HANG ON IN THERE BABY Johnny Bristol

21 ( 28 ) LONG TALL GLASSES Leo Sayer
22 ( 22 ) MRS VANDEBILT Paul McCartney and Wings
23 ( 26 ) ROCK ME GENTLY Andy Kim
24 ( 20 ) SILLY LOVE 10C.C.
25 ( 19 ) AFTER THE SHOW Kevin Ayers
26 ( 8 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL BAND Abba
27 ( NEW ) I AM MISSING YOU Shankar Family & Friends
28 ( NEW ) PINBALL Brian Protheroe
29 ( NEW ) FREE MAN IN PARIS Joni Mitchell
30 ( NEW ) ONLY YOU CAN Fox

31 ( 18 ) YOU YOU YOU Alvin Stardust
32 ( 21 ) THE WIZARD OF LOVE The Pearls
33 ( 23 ) PEPPERBOX The Peppers
34 ( 24 ) ANOTHER SATURDAY NIGHT Cat Stevens
35 ( 25 ) 2 WHEELS Firebird
36 ( 30 ) LEAVE IT Mike McGear
37 ( 37 ) BAND ON THE RUN Paul McCartney & Wings
38 ( 34 ) RING RING Abba
39 ( 36 ) ANNIE’S SONG John Denver
40 ( 38 ) YOU WON’T SEE ME Anne Murray

Over in the oldies chart, Jonathan King gets a 2nd week on top, and new in at 7 is The Yamasukis – I say new, but actually it’s a drop from 2 in the actual singles chart having suddenly found out it’s an old record and transferred it over. A minor follow-up hit in the UK, and second-time around, it’s 1968 Motown gem Gotta See Jane from R.Dean Taylor, a literally driving dance number, “mmmm red lights green lights speeding through the dark nights”, ahhh just fab fab fab. In at 9, and on the budget album wot I bought, it was. Lastly, as hilariously parodied by The Goodies the following year, in at 13 it’s Presley: Reg Presley and the terrific Wild Thing. (Goodies: Hold me…tight. (strangling sound) Not. Quite. That. Tight). The Troggs became better known for allowing Wet Wet Wet to ruin one of Reg’s sweetest songs – though he WAS laughing all the way to the crop circles.

1 ( 1 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Jonathan King
2 ( 4 ) (TO BE) YOUNG GIFTED AND BLACK Bob And Marcia
3 ( 3 ) BABY LOVE Diana Ross And The Supremes
4 ( 2 ) SAN FRANSISCO (BE SURE TO WEAR SOME FLOWERS IN YOUR HAIR) Scott McKenzie
5 ( 6 ) BE MY BABY The Ronettes
6 ( 5 ) WHERE DO YOU GO TO (MY LOVELY) Peter Sarstedt
7 ( NEW ) YAMASUKI The Yamasukis
8 ( 8 ) BREAKING DOWN THE WALLS OF HEARTACHE The Bandwagon
9 ( NEW ) GOTTA SEE JANE R. Dean Taylor
10 ( 7 ) BACK STREET LUV Curved Air

11 ( 10 ) WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKEN-HEARTED Jimmy Ruffin
12 ( 9 ) LADY WILLPOWER Gary Puckett And The Union Gap
13 ( NEW ) WILD THING The Troggs
14 ( 14 ) GENTLE ON MY MIND Dean Martin
15 ( 12 ) A HORSE WITH NO NAME America
16 ( 15 ) I AM WHAT I AM Greyhound

17th September 1974

My singles-buying was helped heavily by my blagging my way to continue doing swimming in Gloucester town centre swimming pool, along with mate Ian, as a means of avoiding rugby and cricket – there weren’t any other sports on the agenda, and they were the two most-hated sports of all as far as I’m still concerned. That meant I could continue to get cheap ex-chart singles as soon as they hit the bargain bins. Yay!

It’s 2 weeks for Mick Robertson and his frizzy hair on top. If only Susan Stranks had joined him in a duet on a record! Up to 4, ex-Amen Corner singer Andy gets his 2nd-biggest hit, after Half As Nice topped the chart in 1969. The Commodores fabby funky instrumental jumps to 6, machine gunning Syreeta at 7, who’s left spinnin’ and spinnin’ in a very melodic Stevie-Wonder-fashion. Rufus almost make the 10, though Chaka and Rufus had bigger hits ahead, as did Elton at 12.

In at 18, Sparks make it 3 out of 3 with the fab insistent Something For The Girl With Everything, a future single in 1975, but here an early album track hit as I am left bemused as to why they went with a different 3rd UK hit single. Same goes for Macca, Mrs Vandebilt at 20, such an obviously great single-that-wasn’t. At 22 is Reunion, a group of studio musicians based around Joey “Yummy Yummy Yummy” Levine, 60’s bubblegum act Ohio Express. The song is regarded as a novelty, but it’s much better than that, it’s a speed-rap history of rock, pop, soul, blues in 3 minutes, the number of acts name-checked is (literally) breath-taking to try keeping up with, and the chorus is singalong delight. It was an actual UK chart hit too, as well as the USA.

Elton’s gal (on his Rocket record label) Kiki Dee gets a second hit with the rocking Music In Me, still sounds terrific. Don Covay funks in with It’s Better To have, and Polly Brown gets her 2nd hit in the chart with Up In A Puff Of Smoke (that’s her in Sweet Dreams), minus the black make-up this time. Over in the oldies chart, JK gets a 3rd week on top, his 4th in total, but R. Dean is nipping at his heels. Splishing splashing – calling out her name I gotta see Jane. Fan-bloody-tastic.

1 ( 1 ) THE TANGO’S OVER Mick Robertson
2 ( 2 ) IF YOU’RE GONNA BREAK ANOTHER HEART Cass Elliot
3 ( 3 ) YOU CAN REALLY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ME Pans People
4 ( 14 ) REGGAE TUNE Andy Fairweather-Low
5 ( 5 ) WE’RE GONNA HAVE A PARTY Mouth And MacNeal
6 ( 12 ) MACHINE GUN The Commodores
7 ( 19 ) SPINNIN’ AND SPINNIN’ Syreeta
8 ( 4 ) MOONLIGHT SPECIAL Ray Stevens
9 ( 16 ) SAD SWEET DREAMER Sweet Sensation
10 ( 7 ) MAMA COME OUT Medicine Head

11 ( 18 ) TELL ME SOMETHING GOOD Rufus
12 ( 17 ) THE BITCH IS BACK Elton John
13 ( 10 ) QUEEN OF CLUBS KC And The Sunshine Band
14 ( 28 ) PINBALL Brian Protheroe
15 ( 20 ) HANG ON IN THERE BABY Johnny Bristol
16 ( 13 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL (WHO NEEDS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL) Rainbow Children
17 ( 21 ) LONG TALL GLASSES Leo Sayer
18 ( NEW ) SOMETHING FOR THE GIRL WITH EVERYTHING Sparks
19 ( 15 ) HONEY HONEY Sweet Dreams
20 ( 22 ) MRS VANDEBILT Paul McCartney and Wings

21 ( 23 ) ROCK ME GENTLY Andy Kim
22 ( NEW ) LIFE IS A ROCK (BUT THE RADIO ROLLED ME) Reunion
23 ( RE ) THIS IS THE STORY OF MY LOVE (BABY) Wizzard
24 ( 29 ) FREE MAN IN PARIS Joni Mitchell
25 ( 30 ) ONLY YOU CAN Fox
26 ( 27 ) I AM MISSING YOU Shankar Family & Friends
27 ( 36 ) LEAVE IT Mike McGear
28 ( NEW ) (I GOT THE) MUSIC IN ME The Kiki Dee Band
29 ( NEW ) UP IN A PUFF OF SMOKE Polly Brown
30 ( NEW ) IT’S BETTER TO HAVE Don Covay

31 ( 6 ) ROCK YOUR BABY George McCrae
32 ( 8 ) ROCK THE BOAT The Hues Corporation
33 ( 9 ) TRAVELING BOY Garfunkel
34 ( 11 ) KUNG FU FIGHTING Carl Douglas
35 ( 24 ) SILLY LOVE 10C.C.
36 ( 25 ) AFTER THE SHOW Kevin Ayers
37 ( 26 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL BAND Abba
38 ( 31 ) YOU YOU YOU Alvin Stardust
39 ( 32 ) THE WIZARD OF LOVE The Pearls
40 ( 33 ) PEPPERBOX The Peppers

1 ( 1 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Jonathan King
2 ( 9 ) GOTTA SEE JANE R. Dean Taylor
3 ( 2 ) (TO BE) YOUNG GIFTED AND BLACK Bob And Marcia
4 ( 4 ) SAN FRANSISCO (BE SURE TO WEAR SOME FLOWERS IN YOUR HAIR) Scott McKenzie
5 ( 3 ) BABY LOVE Diana Ross And The Supremes
6 ( 7 ) YAMASUKI The Yamasukis
7 ( 6 ) WHERE DO YOU GO TO (MY LOVELY) Peter Sarstedt
8 ( 5 ) BE MY BABY The Ronettes
9 ( 8 ) BREAKING DOWN THE WALLS OF HEARTACHE The Bandwagon
10 ( 13 ) WILD THING The Troggs
11 ( 10 ) BACK STREET LUV Curved Air
12 ( 11 ) WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKEN-HEARTED Jimmy Ruffin
13 ( 15 ) A HORSE WITH NO NAME America
14 ( 14 ) GENTLE ON MY MIND Dean Martin

24th September 1974

3 weeks on top Tango-ing, and Pans People dance into 2nd place. Up 22 places to 4 though, it’s Ravi Shankar, as the melody kicks into my mind, leapfrogging Syreeta who gets a Top 5 hit with a Stevie Wonder co-write, as a full-write Wonder song hits 10 for Rufus. Stevie was so prolific during this period he could afford to give away loadsa great songs. Elton bitches his way to 9, love those buzzsaw guitars and the venom-in-cheek. Mike McGear replaces his brother at 20, and there’s a bunch of new entries..

The first of only two examples of an album making my chart pops in at 7 – a schoolmate took it into the 6th form revision area and played it, and it blew my mind it was so unusual. It was a follow-up album, instrumental, and a complete work, no tracks, so I allowed it in. It was called Hergest Ridge and the young whippersnapper was called Mike Oldfield on new label Virgin run by a young hippie called Richard Branson. I wonder if he became a high-flyer…?

Highest new single entry is Pilot’s follow-up hit, the less good (but more commercial, and debut UK/US hit) Magic. Very catchy though. At 22, an utterly obscure unobtainable single on RAK records by Barry Reynolds, Outsiders Point Of View: more of a prog rock act, this was one slow sultry falsetto soul-rock fusion that deserved to be big. I’ve just heard it for the first time in 40 years on youtube, and it’s fab, not dated at all. I believe young Barry went on to guide Marianne Faithful’s Broken English phase and onwards. I want this single badly!

At 23, the recently late folk semi-legend Dory Previn with Coldwater Canyon, a Joni Mitchell-esque appeal to me, while at 25 Thunderthighs return with a second hit, not quite the dramatic cinematic Lynsey De Paul song this time (nor Walk On The Wild Side either), but a halloween novelty song that’s a barrel of laughs. It’s cheesy in a great way, and really should be played each year at the end of October right after Monster Mash. It’s Dracula’s Daughter and sounds like you’d imagine it would, horror effects and girlie vocals and monster-movie lyrics. Suzi Quatro, meanwhile, gets her 6th straight Top 30 hit with The Wild One and at 30 it’s Alaska. Who? No idea, google doesn’t help me, it’s that obscure. I never bought it, and just have an image of a sort of pleasant harmony track. It was a long time ago…!

1 ( 1 ) THE TANGO’S OVER Mick Robertson
2 ( 3 ) YOU CAN REALLY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ME Pans People
3 ( 4 ) REGGAE TUNE Andy Fairweather-Low
4 ( 26 ) I AM MISSING YOU Shankar Family & Friends
5 ( 7 ) SPINNIN’ AND SPINNIN’ Syreeta
6 ( 9 ) SAD SWEET DREAMER Sweet Sensation
7 ( NEW ) HERGEST RIDGE Mike Oldfield
8 ( 5 ) WE’RE GONNA HAVE A PARTY Mouth And MacNeal
9 ( 12 ) THE BITCH IS BACK Elton John
10 ( 11 ) TELL ME SOMETHING GOOD Rufus

11 ( 13 ) QUEEN OF CLUBS KC And The Sunshine Band
12 ( 15 ) HANG ON IN THERE BABY Johnny Bristol
13 ( 14 ) PINBALL Brian Protheroe
14 ( 6 ) MACHINE GUN The Commodores
15 ( 8 ) MOONLIGHT SPECIAL Ray Stevens
16 ( 18 ) SOMETHING FOR THE GIRL WITH EVERYTHING Sparks
17 ( 22 ) LIFE IS A ROCK (BUT THE RADIO ROLLED ME) Reunion
18 ( 21 ) ROCK ME GENTLY Andy Kim
19 ( 10 ) MAMA COME OUT Medicine Head
20 ( 27 ) LEAVE IT Mike McGear

21 ( NEW ) MAGIC Pilot
22 ( NEW ) OUTSIDERS POINT OF VIEW Barry Reynolds
23 ( NEW ) COLDWATER CANYON Dory Previn
24 ( 19 ) HONEY HONEY Sweet Dreams
25 ( NEW ) DRACULA’S DAUGHTER Thunderthighs
26 ( NEW ) THE WILD ONE Suzi Quatro
27 ( 28 ) (I GOT THE) MUSIC IN ME The Kiki Dee Band
28 ( 29 ) UP IN A PUFF OF SMOKE Polly Brown
29 ( 30 ) IT’S BETTER TO HAVE Don Covay
30 ( NEW ) I DON’T KNOW WHY Alaska

31 ( 2 ) IF YOU’RE GONNA BREAK ANOTHER HEART Cass Elliot
32 ( 16 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL (WHO NEEDS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL) Rainbow Children
33 ( 17 ) LONG TALL GLASSES Leo Sayer
34 ( 20 ) MRS VANDEBILT Paul McCartney and Wings
35 ( 23 ) THIS IS THE STORY OF MY LOVE (BABY) Wizzard
36 ( 24 ) FREE MAN IN PARIS Joni Mitchell
37 ( 25 ) ONLY YOU CAN Fox
38 ( 31 ) ROCK YOUR BABY George McCrae
39 ( 32 ) ROCK THE BOAT The Hues Corporation
40 ( 33 ) TRAVELING BOY Garfunkel

On the oldies chart, R. Dean Taylor gets his 2nd Number 1 of the year the poundingly brilliant Gotta See Jane, while Dave Edmunds enters at 2 with his classic 4-year-old I Hear You Knocking, a song I missed at the time (being in Singapore) but caught in the year-end chart rundowns of late 1971 and loved. A kiddie-fave of mine from 1968 pops in at 6, the charmingly quirky, and so-so 60’s Judy In Disguise, taking me back to RAF Swinderby days. With Glasses! At 12, it’s a future ELO USA hit (1976ish) but here it’s a Move B Side to California Man from 1972. That’s very fair though, as Jeff Lynne wrote it, it’s the last side of the last Move single, and the next thing he did was ELO’s 10538 Overture, so it’s beautifully connectivizing. Made-up word! Do Ya? Not ‘arf pop-pickers!

1 ( 2 ) GOTTA SEE JANE R. Dean Taylor
2 ( NEW ) I HEAR YOU KNOCKING Dave Edmunds
3 ( 1 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Jonathan King
4 ( 4 ) SAN FRANSISCO (BE SURE TO WEAR SOME FLOWERS IN YOUR HAIR) Scott McKenzie
5 ( 5 ) BABY LOVE Diana Ross And The Supremes
6 ( NEW ) JUDY IN DISGUISE (WITH GLASSES) John Fred And His Playboy Band
7 ( 7 ) WHERE DO YOU GO TO (MY LOVELY) Peter Sarstedt
8 ( 6 ) YAMASUKI The Yamasukis
9 ( 8 ) BE MY BABY The Ronettes
10 ( 9 ) BREAKING DOWN THE WALLS OF HEARTACHE The Bandwagon
11 ( 10 ) WILD THING The Troggs
12 ( NEW ) DO YA The Move

My 1974 Charts – May

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Me and the neighbours 1974

7th May 1974

Exams were very much flavour of the month, both CSE’s and GCE O Levels. I ended up doing CSE’s, on the grounds that I’d changed schools inconveniently about 7 months before and the syllabus wasn’t the same as North Kesteven. Boo hoo for me, though it did spread out the revising times (of the few notes I had) over a longer period which meant I could stay at home and revise to Radio One and Radio Luxembourg (many of the obscure chart entries come from them). How did I do? Glad you asked. Took months to get the results, but I got grade 1 for CSE Maths and French (O level equivalent grades) and passed in O levels, English Language, Geography, I think.

My fave comic book Legion Of Super Heroes was well revitalised by now, so it came as a shock to me that they actually killed off one of the heroes, Invisible Kid. Sounds petty, but heroes just didn’t killed in comic books, it wasn’t the done thing when they’d been around for over 10 years. These days they kill off superheroes on a monthly basis and re-invent them monthly too. Invisible Kid, however, stayed dead, despite being previous leader of the Legion and a popular character. He’s still dead. Of course so is the rest of the Legion now, those DC toads killed them off years ago in a pathetic attempt to start from scratch which failed, not once, not twice, not thrice, but four times in 20 years. Think Marvels’ Avengers and X-Men movies, combined, and that’s the Legion, who were there first. Marvel were the copies, there’s no justice sometimes…

Pop music: (at last). Sparks finally do it, after playing subordinate to Abba and Wizzard for 4 weeks, overhaul them both and properly start their career. Fab! Barry White gets to 11 with his flop UK single (it’s good) just ahead of the UK success of Seals & Croft’s song as performed (way better) by the Isley Brothers, Summer Breeze highest new entry at 12 and it’s still brilliant guitar-soul.

In at 13, The Locomotion. Not Kylie, no. Not Little Eva either (she’d peaked Top 3 in 1972 already). No, this was a plodding heavy pop metal cover from Grand Funk that inexplicably hit big in the USA and my charts – I think it was the novelty value of being a totally different cover version. Smiffy at 15, Tranquility at 20, Melanie at 30, all obscure radio faves that sold about 6 copies each. I never managed to find copies, and haven’t heard them for 40 years, so I’m going to treat myself right now – if I can find them on youtube. Back in a jiffy!

Smiffy is pedestrian glam rock. Tranquility is not on the net, sadly, but was their final single release (harmony folkrock) before splitting up. Songwriter Terry Shaddick apparently went on to co-write Physical for Olivia Newton-John, so he prob made a few bob out of it. Melanie’s track is OK, and her final john-chart-hit for 9 years. Showaddywaddy. TV talent-show winners with a record deal, who’d’a thought of that eh? 50’s throwback stylee, this debut hit was actually glamtastically stomping singalong fun. In other words utterly unlike 21st century talent show winners, give or take the odd Olly Murs.

Quo drop by trying to break the rules, but sounding like their earlier boogie hits instead, so pretty much sticking to the rules. Gigliola Cinquetti finally charts some weeks after Eurovision. This one was the main opposition to Abba and Mouth Macneal in the contest (and Olivia) and it was a slow ballad, so I hated it on principle for doing so well against my newly-beloved Abba. After it became the latest of 4 eurovision big hits in 1974, it kinda grew on me. It’s very MOR Italian big ballad, but it’s gorgeous!! Still.

1 ( 3 ) THIS TOWN AIN’T BIG ENOUGH FOR BOTH OF US Sparks
2 ( 1 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL WINTER Wizzard
3 ( 2 ) WATERLOO Abba
4 ( 4 ) T.S.O.P. (THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA) M.F.S.B. (featuring the Three Degrees)
5 ( 5 ) JUDY TEEN Cockney Rebel
6 ( 6 ) SUGAR BABY LOVE The Rubettes
7 ( 8 ) LUCINDA Howard Werth
8 ( 7 ) RED DRESS Alvin Stardust
9 ( 9 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Blue Swede
10 ( 22 ) BENNY AND THE JETS Elton John

11 ( 24 ) HONEY PLEASE CAN’T YA SEE Barry White
12 ( NEW ) SUMMER BREEZE The Isley Brothers
13 ( NEW ) THE LOCOMOTION Grand Funk Railroad
14 ( 34 ) ONLY FOR THE CHILDREN The Stylistics
15 ( NEW ) SEE YA LATER (LITTLE BABY LOVE) Smiffy
16 ( 30 ) A TOUCH TOO MUCH Arrows
17 ( NEW ) HEY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Showaddywaddy
18 ( 10 ) TEEN WAVE Ricky Wilde
19 ( 12 ) THE YEAR OF DECISION The Three Degrees
20 ( NEW ) MIDNIGHT FORTUNE Tranquility

21 ( NEW ) BREAK THE RULES Status Quo
22 ( RE ) I’LL TAKE YOU HOME AGAIN KATHLEEN Lieutenant Pigeon
23 ( NEW ) GO (BEFORE YOU BREAK MY HEART) Gigliola Cinquetti
24 ( 26 ) I SEE A STAR Mouth and MacNeal
25 ( 21 ) SPIDERS AND SNAKES Jim Stafford
26 ( 29 ) RHODE ISLAND RED Ike & Tina Turner
27 ( 16 ) THE CAT CREPT IN Mud
28 ( 15 ) THE MAN WHO TURNED ON THE WORLD Friends Of St Francis
29 ( 28 ) THE JARROW SONG Alan Price
30 ( NEW ) LOVE TO LOSE AGAIN Melanie

31 ( 11 ) I JUST CAN’T BELIEVE THE FEELING Buffy Sainte-Marie
32 ( 13 ) MISSTRA KNOW IT ALL Stevie Wonder
33 ( 15 ) ON THE LINE Graham Nash
34 ( 14 ) SHANG A LANG Bay City Rollers
35 ( 17 ) PAPER MOON Nemo (aka Jonathan King)
36 ( 19 ) SEASONS IN THE SUN Terry Jacks
37 ( 18 ) DOCTOR’S ORDERS Sunny
38 ( 20 ) ON THE RUN Scorched Earth
39 ( 27 ) BAND ON THE RUN Paul McCartney & Wings
40 ( NEW ) THE NIGHT CHICAGO DIED Paper Lace

14th May 1974

2 weeks on top for Sparks, but it’s straight in at 2 for Cozy Powell’s drumming instrumental follow-up to Top 3 Dance With The Devil. I loved the hook, it reminded me of a 60’s instrumental hit I’m struggling to recall the name of. The even better Judy Teen goes up to 3, and the Isleys get their biggest hit in 5 years with Summer Breeze at 6, while runner-up to Abba overtakes them, shocker! Yes Gigliola up to 7. Melanie goes Top 20, the rest shuffle about overtaken by all the new entries.

In at 12, one of David Essex’ minor hits, but it’s cool, all bluesy, saxey and multi-track-delayed-vocaley (made up words). I also had a thing about America, the land of my dreams – the pop culture was so much more exciting than the dreary UK pop culture, mostly. Only another 5 years to wait for the reality of it. Even better, though, Bryan Ferry had another solo album of covers out, oldies done modern stylee, and the 60’s soul dance hit The In Crowd is turned into a glam sax-full finger-snapping thundering guitar gem. Love it love it.

4 years before the Jacksons Blamed It On The Boogie, and 9 years before Michael Jackson warned of the Thriller, The Jackson released a great funky warning about The Boogie Man (he’s gonna get you). Obviously too scary as it bombed except in my chart. It’s a goodie. Three Dog Night turn up 5 years after Joy To The World, and show just how good Leo Sayer is by doing an inferior cover (and huge US hit). I was listening to the American charts on the American Forces radio network by this time, in the evenings, which is why there’s so many popping up in my charts. Talking of: the fab Staple Singers made 3 in 1972 in my chart (I’ll Take You There), so good they decided to do a soundalike follow-up (and huge US hit) 2 years later, popping in at 29 just behind my favourite novelty record maker Ray Stevens. He had loads of funny records, including the one new at 28, The Streak. The craze of taking your clothes off and running round naked in public was big news, so he naturally took the piss. It was hilarious for 2 or 3 weeks, then saturation set in and it stopped being funny. Then annoying. That’s the problem with novelty records when you hear them too much.

1 ( 1 ) THIS TOWN AIN’T BIG ENOUGH FOR BOTH OF US Sparks
2 ( NEW ) THE MAN IN BLACK Cozy Powell
3 ( 5 ) JUDY TEEN Cockney Rebel
4 ( 7 ) LUCINDA Howard Werth
5 ( 6 ) SUGAR BABY LOVE The Rubettes
6 ( 12 ) SUMMER BREEZE The Isley Brothers
7 ( 23 ) GO (BEFORE YOU BREAK MY HEART) Gigliola Cinquetti
8 ( 4 ) T.S.O.P. (THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA) M.F.S.B. (featuring the Three Degrees)
9 ( 2 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL WINTER Wizzard
10 ( 3 ) WATERLOO Abba

11 ( 11 ) HONEY PLEASE CAN’T YA SEE Barry White
12 ( NEW ) AMERICA David Essex
13 ( NEW ) THE IN CROWD Bryan Ferry
14 ( NEW ) THE BOOGIE MAN The Jackson 5
15 ( 15 ) SEE YA LATER (LITTLE BABY LOVE) Smiffy
16 ( 13 ) THE LOCOMOTION Grand Funk Railroad
17 ( 17 ) HEY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Showaddywaddy
18 ( 30 ) LOSE TO LOVE AGAIN Melanie
19 ( 8 ) RED DRESS Alvin Stardust
20 ( 18 ) TEEN WAVE Ricky Wilde

21 ( 21 ) BREAK THE RULES Status Quo
22 ( 16 ) A TOUCH TOO MUCH Arrows
23 ( 14 ) ONLY FOR THE CHILDREN The Stylistics
24 ( 24 ) I SEE A STAR Mouth and MacNeal
25 ( 26 ) RHODE ISLAND RED Ike & Tina Turner
26 ( 19 ) THE YEAR OF DECISION The Three Degrees
27 ( NEW ) THE SHOW MUST GO ON Three Dog Night
28 ( NEW ) THE STREAK Ray Stevens
29 ( NEW ) IF YOU’RE READY (COME GO WITH ME) The Staple Singers
30 ( 22 ) I’LL TAKE YOU HOME AGAIN KATHLEEN Lieutenant Pigeon

31 ( 9 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Blue Swede
32 ( 10 ) BENNY AND THE JETS Elton John
33 ( 20 ) MIDNIGHT FORTUNE Tranquility
34 ( 25 ) SPIDERS AND SNAKES Jim Stafford
35 ( 27 ) THE CAT CREPT IN Mud
36 ( 28 ) THE MAN WHO TURNED ON THE WORLD Friends Of St Francis
37 ( 29 ) THE JARROW SONG Alan Price
38 ( 31 ) I JUST CAN’T BELIEVE THE FEELING Buffy Sainte-Marie
39 ( 39 ) BAND ON THE RUN Paul McCartney & Wings
40 ( 40 ) THE NIGHT CHICAGO DIED Paper Lace

21st May 1974

A big leap to 1 for Ray Stevens comedy hit, his second number one 4 years after his previous whopper, Everything Is Beautiful, not even a novelty hit that one, it’s a gospel song with a gorgeous tune and a kiddie refrain intro. I was mad on that one for years. I was mad on The Streak for at least one week. Sadly, it stops Cozy Powell getting to the top. Boo!

3 classic new entries though, in at 5 1968 Motown flop, now a Northern Soul re-issue, and the best ever record to come out of that scene, R. Dean Taylor’s There’s A Ghost In My House is fabulous. One of the very few white singers on Motown, he was a busy songwriter and had a 1968 hit with Gotta See Jane. So good, The Fall covered this song, but the original is the best, stonkingly dancetastic and frantictastic. At 6, a Lynsey De Paul song, a cinematically epic record by popular back-up singers Thunderthighs (see Walk On The Wild Side, Mott The Hoople etc) it’s a dramatic story song, sweeping strings and it’s a forgotten classic. Lynsey, meanwhile, is in at 27 herself with a delightful 50’s-pop-styled ditty, but it was generous to give away the better song.

At 15 it’s a debut for First Class and the equally epic-sounding Beach Baby, a retro Beach Boys harmonies, Summer Of Love vibing and referencing, sweeping gem. Just as cinematic as Thunderthighs, it’s much poppier, romping along and reminding one of Let’s Go To San Fransisco by The Flowerpot Men, which featured Jon Lord of Deep Purple fame. Actually it samples it, virtually. Actually it’s the same bandmembers, John Carter (who wrote this hit with his wife), and Tony Burrows on vocals. Actually it’s not a debut hit at all for Tony Burrows, who’d topped my chart as Edison Lighthouse in 1970, charted as White Plains, Butterscotch, The Pipkins and long-before-Eurovision Brotherhood Of Man, and sung lead on all of them. His early band links with massive pop songwriters Roger Greenaway and Roger Cook obviously didn’t hurt his career, and to be fair he was a great singer. Still love this summer-sounding record, pure summer of 74 for me.

Other stuff: The Locomotion shoots up to 4. Mystifyingly. Bryan Ferry goes Top 10, 5th in a row for Roxy/Ferry. Aretha Franklin pops in at 28 with a sweet soul ballad, and Showaddywaddy almost get a top 10 hit at 11. They went no higher, at least not till 1975.

 

1 ( 28 ) THE STREAK Ray Stevens
2 ( 2 ) THE MAN IN BLACK Cozy Powell
3 ( 1 ) THIS TOWN AIN’T BIG ENOUGH FOR BOTH OF US Sparks
4 ( 16 ) THE LOCOMOTION Grand Funk Railroad
5 ( NEW ) THERE’S A GHOST IN MY HOUSE R. Dean Taylor
6 ( NEW ) CENTRAL PARK ARREST Thunderthighs
7 ( 6 ) SUMMER BREEZE The Isley Brothers
8 ( 3 ) JUDY TEEN Cockney Rebel
9 ( 4 ) LUCINDA Howard Werth
10 ( 13 ) THE IN CROWD Bryan Ferry

11 ( 17 ) HEY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Showaddywaddy
12 ( 12 ) AMERICA David Essex
13 ( 7 ) GO (BEFORE YOU BREAK MY HEART) Gigliola Cinquetti
14 ( 18 ) LOSE TO LOVE AGAIN Melanie
15 ( NEW ) BEACH BABY First Class
16 ( 14 ) THE BOOGIE MAN The Jackson 5
17 ( 5 ) SUGAR BABY LOVE The Rubettes
18 ( 10 ) WATERLOO Abba
19 ( 9 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL WINTER Wizzard
20 ( 23 ) ONLY FOR THE CHILDREN The Stylistics

21 ( 8 ) T.S.O.P. (THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA) M.F.S.B. (featuring the Three Degrees)
22 ( 24 ) I SEE A STAR Mouth and MacNeal
23 ( 11 ) HONEY PLEASE CAN’T YA SEE Barry White
24 ( 19 ) RED DRESS Alvin Stardust
25 ( 26 ) THE YEAR OF DECISION The Three Degrees
26 ( 15 ) SEE YA LATER (LITTLE BABY LOVE) Smiffy
27 ( NEW ) OOH I DO Lynsey De Paul
28 ( NEW ) I’M IN LOVE Aretha Franklin
29 ( RE ) GETTING OVER YOU Andy Williams
30 ( 37 ) THE JARROW SONG Alan Price

31 ( 20 ) TEEN WAVE Ricky Wilde
32 ( 21 ) BREAK THE RULES Status Quo
33 ( 22 ) A TOUCH TOO MUCH Arrows
34 ( 25 ) RHODE ISLAND RED Ike & Tina Turner
35 ( 27 ) THE SHOW MUST GO ON Three Dog Night
36 ( 29 ) IF YOU’RE READY (COME GO WITH ME) The Staple Singers
37 ( 30 ) I’LL TAKE YOU HOME AGAIN KATHLEEN Lieutenant Pigeon
38 ( 31 ) HOOKED ON A FEELING Blue Swede
39 ( 32 ) BENNY AND THE JETS Elton John
40 ( 33 ) MIDNIGHT FORTUNE Tranquility

28th May 1974

There was quite a strong Northern Soul movement around the lads who tended not to stay on at school after 16 (ROSLA kids who wanted to go at 15 – Raising Of School Leaving Age – and get an apprenticeship at the local big employer, or other stuff) so it was sort-of cool. R. Dean Taylor was cool. Deservedly a 60’s classic at the top, and joined by another 2- both of them The Monkees. I was getting fed up with limiting my charts with rules so I opened them up to anything that was available or new. I’d just bought The Monkees budget hits album and was loving every track, revisiting old faves from when I was a kiddie, and finding new gems. The single was out again, and the TV show may even have been having one it’s regular Beeb-edited selective repeats (so many episodes they never broadcast, so many they did broadcast had different songs). Net effect: I’m A Believer in at 4, as perfect as the day it was born, and Monkees Theme (from the TV show) at 22, incredibly every single classic record pre-dated my charts, so this was their chart debut, and the start of my voyage of 60’s rediscovery and discovery which is still ongoing.

Cozy Powell, 3 weeks at 2, all behind a different chart-topper…and he never did get there! The Streak proving to be a flash in the pan drops to 5, and Ronnie Lane’s gorgeous Poacher in at 9, already bigger than How Come. Band On The Run makes a proper entrance at 13 under the new rules, giving a belated follow-up to number 1 Jet for Macca & co. Deservedly, it’s brilliant, sprawling, varied and melodic. Lynsey gets her 4th top 20 hit (and at least 6th or 7th as songwriter), and soul classic Be Thankful is in at 23. Very much in the style of Timmy Thomas’ 1973 classic Why Can’t We Live Together, and almost as good. Smooth, jazzy, soulful, gospelly and wonderful.

Chart notes: 3 eurovision side by side 18,19,20, and two Elton side by side 38, 39. Yet another new underwhelming Elton turgid ballad (though I grew to love it 20 years later) being overshadowed by the ongoing brilliance of Bennie & The Jets, US monster hit single.

1 ( 5 ) THERE’S A GHOST IN MY HOUSE R. Dean Taylor
2 ( 2 ) THE MAN IN BLACK Cozy Powell
3 ( 3 ) THIS TOWN AIN’T BIG ENOUGH FOR BOTH OF US Sparks
4 ( NEW ) I’M A BELIEVER The Monkees
5 ( 1 ) THE STREAK Ray Stevens
6 ( 6 ) CENTRAL PARK ARREST Thunderthighs
7 ( 7 ) SUMMER BREEZE The Isley Brothers
8 ( 10 ) THE IN CROWD Bryan Ferry
9 ( NEW ) THE POACHER Ronnie Lane
10 ( 12 ) AMERICA David Essex

11 ( 11 ) HEY ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Showaddywaddy
12 ( 8 ) JUDY TEEN Cockney Rebel
13 ( RE ) BAND ON THE RUN Paul McCartney & Wings
14 ( 4 ) THE LOCOMOTION Grand Funk Railroad
15 ( 15 ) BEACH BABY First Class
16 ( 14 ) LOSE TO LOVE AGAIN Melanie
17 ( 27 ) OOH I DO Lynsey De Paul
18 ( 18 ) WATERLOO Abba
19 ( 13 ) GO (BEFORE YOU BREAK MY HEART) Gigliola Cinquetti
20 ( 22 ) I SEE A STAR Mouth and MacNeal

21 ( 19 ) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL WINTER Wizzard
22 ( NEW ) MONKEES THEME The Monkees
23 ( NEW ) BE THANKFUL FOR WAHT YOU’VE GOT William De Vaughan
24 ( 28 ) I’M IN LOVE Aretha Franklin
25 ( 16 ) THE BOOGIE MAN The Jackson 5
26 ( 17 ) SUGAR BABY LOVE The Rubettes
27 ( 30 ) THE JARROW SONG Alan Price
28 ( 29 ) GETTING OVER YOU Andy Williams
29 ( 36 ) IF YOU’RE READY (COME GO WITH ME) The Staple Singers
30 ( 35 ) THE SHOW MUST GO ON Three Dog Night

31 ( 9 ) LUCINDA Howard Werth
32 ( 20 ) ONLY FOR THE CHILDREN The Stylistics
33 ( 21 ) T.S.O.P. (THE SOUND OF PHILADELPHIA) M.F.S.B. (featuring the Three Degrees)
34 ( 23 ) HONEY PLEASE CAN’T YA SEE Barry White
35 ( 24 ) RED DRESS Alvin Stardust
36 ( 25 ) THE YEAR OF DECISION The Three Degrees
37 ( 26 ) SEE YA LATER (LITTLE BABY LOVE) Smiffy
38 ( 39 ) BENNY AND THE JETS Elton John
39 ( NEW ) DON’T LET THE SUN GO DOWN ON ME Elton John
40 ( 31 ) TEEN WAVE Ricky Wilde