Friday, October 31, 2008

Ray's Song Pick of the Day from Tuesday 28 October

The tease for Tuesday 28 October (Labour Monday the day before)
Tonight a US#1, 14 October 1972, NZ#12 from August and UK#7 from December 1972. Title song from the movie about a trained rat starring Joseph Campenella and tonight's artist’s 3rd million seller on his own.

The tease for Wednesday 29 October
US#1(2) from 6 October & NZ#1, 8 November 1973. Also a #1 in Canada, the song did not chart in the UK.
An ethnic lament, written by Mary Dean and Al Capps, that became the second US#1 and second million seller for tonight’s artist (The first on her new label - MCA).

The tease for Thursday 30 October
Tonight a US#1, 19 October 1974 that received the R.I.A.A. Gold Disc award on 16 October. Tonight’s artist “sings this in virtually a jazz style, and includes some very fine piano inserts and a fine rhythm and orchestra section. A worthy million-seller for this experienced artist.”

The tease for Friday 31 October
UK#1, 19 October 1974. like Showaddywaddy before them, this Manchester-based 8 man outfit, of four vocalists and four musicians, were winners of the ITV talent show ‘New Faces’. One of the panel of judges was Tony Hatch, who took the group under his wing to produce his seventh UK No. 1.

And the songs for this week
Tuesday, Michael Jackson – Ben. For more information, click Here
Wednesday, Cher – Half Breed. For more information, click Here
Thursday, Billy Preston – Nothing From Nothing. For more information, click Here
Friday, Sweet Sensation – Sad Sweet Dreamer. For more information, click Here

Monday, October 27, 2008

Ray's Song Pick of the Day from Monday 20 October

The tease for Monday 20 October 2008
Tonight another big hit for writers Norman Whitfield and Barret Strong, released 16 August 1969, this sold a million for this group that had also charted with songs done with Diana Ross & The Supremes around the same time. A US #1 in October 1969 and a UK#13 from January 1970.

The tease for Tuesday 21 October
With this song, from their musical ‘Promises Promises’ Bacharach and David achieved their sixth UK No. 1 composition, maintaining their third position in the league of most successful Number One songwriting partnerships.
The singer began playing piano at the age of seven, going on to study music at the Los Angeles Conservatory Of Music and by 1966 she was singing and writing songs for her own song and dance group.
She had approached Capitol Records with any eye to selling songs to other artists. Instead they asked her to sing them herself and her first big hit was her own composition.

The tease for Wednesday 22 October
Tonight a US#1(5) from 17 October 1970 from a quintet of brothers formed and managed by their father beginning in 1966 in Gary, Indiana. This fourth million for the group (all US#1 hits) was written by Berry Gordy Jr., B. West, W. Hutch and H. Davies. The quintet sold over 10 million singles in a nine month period from their first million seller.

The tease for Thursday 23 October
Tonight a UK#1(3) from 31 October 1970. Tonight's artist was born in Lincolnshire, England in June 1946. He left the folk-rock band he helped found, Fairport Convention in 1969, and his first solo album was released at the beginning of 1970. His band took the name of the album and this single was their only hit, making them at the time, the 15th member of that exclusive one-hit wonder group.

The tease for Friday 24 October
Tonight a US#1(2) from 21 October and UK#1(4) from 25 November 1972. Originally recorded by the artist as “My Tambourine” in 1966. The risqué novelty number was a surprise Anglo-American hit and in Britain aroused attack by Mrs. Mary Whitehouse, the ‘clean-up TV’ campaigner of the time.

And the songs for this week
Monday, Temptations – I Can’t Get Next To You
Tuesday, Bobbie Gentry – I’ll Never Fall In Love Again
Wednesday, Jackson 5 – I’ll Be There
Thursday, Matthews Southern Comfort – Woodstock
Friday, Chuck Berry – My Ding-A-Ling

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Ray's Song Pick of the Day from 13 October 2008

The tease for Monday 13 October 2008
US#1(5) from 12 October 1963 and the 1st million-seller for tonight’s artist who began singing as a youngster in La Grange, Illinois. He studied piano for four years and in 1957 organised his own rock 'n' roll band before meeting up with this group at a recording studio. The group had already had some success on record and our man teamed up with them as singer and rhythm guitarist. Also a Au#1(2) from 12 December 1963 and Monster Hit in NZ

The tease for Tuesday 14 October
The original version of the Rolf Harris song we played before in our CD of the week giveaway.

The tease for Wednesday 15 October
Tonight a US#1, 2 October 1965. One of two versions that sold a million in 1965 (the other by Ramsey Lewis Trio) and the first release for this group.

The tease for Thursday 16 October
Tonight a Huge Hit in N.Z. and the first UK chart success for Peggy Lee with the title song from a musical starring Sammy Davis Jr.

The tease for Friday 17 October
A US#1(1), 29 October 1966 and a Big Hit in N.Z. for a Mexican / American quintet out of Detroit via Acapulco. The lead singer joined the group one night while they were playing at Michigan's Mount Holly Ski Lodge. At the time, not even other members of group knew his real name or anything about his past. Part of his image was to wear dark glasses all the time and to live alone.

And the songs;
Monday, Jimmy Gilmer & The Fireballs – Sugar Shack
Tuesday, Lucky Starr – I've Been Everywhere. For more information, click Here
Wednesday, The McCoys Hang On Sloopy
Thursday, Peggy Lee – Mr. Wonderful. For more information, click Here
Friday, Question Mark & The Mysterians - 96 Tears

Friday, October 10, 2008

Ray's Song Pick of the Day from Monday 6 October 2008

The tease for Monday 6 October 2008
Tonight a UK#1(5) from 30 October, NZ#1 in November 1959. Tonight's artist's first four singles had all been uptempo and then he came out with his 5th single as an easy paced song, just like tonight's song.
And the song
Cliff Richard And The Shadows – Travellin’ Light. The previous ‘easy paced’ release referred to was, “Living Doll”.

The tease for Tuesday 7 October
Tonight a US#1, 24 October 1960 and Monster Hit in N.Z. An adaption of an Italian song 'Per Tutta La Vita', that came after two million sellers for the singer, from late 1959 and mid 1960. A professional singer since age six, who after she appeared on TV in Britain and elsewhere in Europe, she was described in France as ‘the most dynamic American artist since Judy Garland. Backing musicians included Floyd Cramer (piano), Bob More (bass), and Homer 'Boots' Randolph (sax)
And the song
Brenda Lee – I Want To Be Wanted

The tease for Wednesday 8 October 2008
Tonight a UK#1, 5 October 1961. This was the fifth hit for tonight's group and was their second to make the top of the charts. Written by Michael Carr, who also provided their follow-up to their first No. 1, with a UK#5 ‘Man Of Mystery’
And the song
The Shadows – Kon Tiki

The tease for Thursday 9 October
Tonight a US#1(2) from 20 October 1962 (14 weeks in Top 100) and a MONSTER HIT in N.Z. Tonight's artist began his recording career in Hollywood while aspiring to be an actor. Co-written with Leonard Capizzi, his song charted twice more, #91 in 1970 and #10 in 1973.
And the song
Bobby 'Boris' Pickett – Monster Mash

The tease for Friday 10 October
Tonight a UK#1(3) from 10 October, Au#1(3) from 20 December 1963. Initially doing session work, this group had some success with their cover of the Isley Brothers "Twist And Shout" (in competition with The Beatles) then struck it big with their cover of The Contours 1962 hit. This gave our group a #1 in 16 countries ( including the UK and Australia)
And the song
Brian Poole & The Tremeloes - Do You Love Me

Monday, October 6, 2008

Gordon Lightfoot's song on the wall

Whilst in Canada I saw a print of the Edmund Fitzgerald hanging on the wall of one of the Canadian cousins and thought that was special to the cousin, having been signed by Gordon Lightfoot. However when I asked about it, it seems these prints are available for sale to anyone.
"The painting was done by an artist in Essex, Ontario, the hometown of my husband. The main picture is of the ship sailing under the bridge near Detroit (at least I think that’s the bridge), and it is signed by Gordon Lightfoot. The smaller print is of the lighthouse at Whitefish Bay where the ship sank, and it is signed by Chief Jerry Cox, the man on duty the night the ship sank."

See also

Ray's Song Pick of the Day from Monday 29 Sept

The tease Monday 29 September 2008
A UK#1(1), 15 September 1966 Moderate Hit in N.Z. The nattily dressed group were led by a former child star who was later to admit he could barely play guitar in the early days of the group, but despite that he and fellow members provided the only real competition to the Who in the mid-60s.
And the song …
The Small Faces - ALL OR NOTHING

The tease for Tuesday 30 September
A US#1(1) 21 September 1968 and a Monster Hit in N.Z. A message song about a widowed wife and a real lucky break for this 22 year old singer who had only been in Nashville for a few months and whose experience had been limited to routine song-demo-sessions. Her superb performance of the song lead to a nation-wide round of TV appearances and $15,000 per night personal appearances.
And the song …
Jeannie C. Riley - HARPER VALLEY P.T.A.

The tease for Wednesday 1 October
A UK#1(4) from 19 October 1956. Written by Frank Loesser and produced by Mitch Miller and from the movie ‘Guys And Dolls’. This was tonight's artist's fourth and final UK No. 1. His total of 4 chart toppers established a record which was equaled, just over 6 months later, on 17 May 1957, by Guy Mitchell.
And the song …
Frankie Laine - A WOMAN IN LOVE.

The tease for Thursday 2 October
Two Leiber and Stoller songs from Presley's film Jailhouse Rock provided his 14th and 15th million-sellers. A HUGE HIT in N.Z. and as Mark Matheson said, tonight's song was actually the A side, not Jailhouse Rock
And the song …
Elvis Presley - TREAT ME NICE

The tease for Friday 3 October
US#1, 21 October 1957 (28 weeks in Top 100 from 16 September) and NZ#1 in February 1958 - HUGE HIT in N.Z. The artist was an all round High School athlete whose recording debut involved producing a whole album. This ended his plans of being a physical education teacher and he was sent on a nationwide tour, which included night clubs, concert halls and appearances on TV. He went on to become a big seller of albums.
And the song …
Johnny Mathis - CHANCES ARE. Written by Robert Allen (music) and lyrics by Al Stillman.