Thursday, May 28, 2015

#1 - 1964 - 1969

Our look back at the nation's #1 Records continues today in Forgotten Hits.  


Gross errors in 1964 include The Beatles' "Twist And Shout", #1 on nearly every chart we researched across the country (as well as Cash Box and Music Vendor) during our 50 Year Anniversary Salute to Beatlemania and The British Invasion last year ... but NOT in Billboard Magazine ... and "Last Kiss" by J. Frank Wilson and the Cavaliers, an absolutely deserving #1 Record that has stood the test of time ... it topped the charts everywhere but Billboard, too.    

Record World charted The Beatles at #1 for FIFTEEN straight weeks in 1964 ... "I Want To Hold Your Hand" (#1 for NINE weeks), followed by "She Loves You" (one week), "Twist And Shout" (one week) and "Can't Buy Me Love" (four weeks).  The Fab Four would hit the summit in Record World three more times before the year was over ... "Love Me Do" for a week in May, "A Hard Day's Night" for three weeks in July and August and "I Feel Fine" for two weeks in December.  That's 21 weeks on top in a 52 week year!  

Other records that topped two out of three charts include "My Guy" by Mary Wells (it missed in Record World), "A World Without Love" by Peter and Gordon (also cheated out of the top spot in Record World), "Everybody Loves Somebody" by Dean Martin (denied in ... you guessed it, Record World), "Ringo" by Lorne Greene (#1 everywhere except Record World) and "Mr. Lonely" by Bobby Vinton, which missed in Cash Box.  In hindsight, I suppose each of these records warranted a week at the top ... but even more so, I think the Mary Wells record, the Peter and Gordon hit and even Dino's comeback all deserved to be across-the-boards #1 hits. 

"Maybe" #1's for '64?  "She's Not There" for The Zombies ... it only reached the top in Cash Box Magazine.  I don't feel that "Popsicles And Icicles" by The Murmaids, "Bread And Butter" by The Newbeats or "We'll Sing In The Sunshine" by Gale Garnett were universally deserving, despite each spending a week at #1 in one national publication.  


#1 on two charts out of three include "Back In My Arms Again" by The Supremes, "A Lover's Concerto" by The Toys, "Get Off Of My Cloud" by The Rolling Stones and "Let's Hang On" by The Four Seasons.  I'll concede that each of these records probably deserved a week at #1.   

Other #1 Records that only topped ONE chart (and deserved a better showing across the boards) include "Love Potion Number Nine" by The Searchers, "My Girl" by The Temptations, "Wooly Bully" by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs (it was Billboard's Record Of The Year, for God's sake ... yet never made it to #1 in their magazine!), "Like A Rolling Stone" by Bob Dylan (an absolute classic) and "1, 2, 3" by Len Barry, which was ALL over the radio back in the day.  Questionable #1's?  How about "Can't You Hear My Heartbeat" by Herman's Hermits or "A Taste Of Honey" by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, both #1 in Cash Box only.  


"Barbara Ann" by The Beach Boys topped the national charts everywhere but in Billboard ... "My Love" by Petula Clark did the same thing ... but not in Cash Box.  "A Groovy Kind Of Love" missed in Billboard, as did "They're Coming To Take Me Away, Ha-Haa! by Napoleon XIV, "Little Red Riding Hood" by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs, "Sunny" by Bobby Hebb and "Yellow Submarine" by The Beatles.  "Reach Out, I'll Be There" topped the charts in Billboard and Cash Box ... but not in Record World.  The Napoleon XIV novelty hit was one of the fastest-rising records of all time ... even though its chart-life was short-lived, it absolutely deserved to be a #1 Record, as did "Barbara Ann", "A Groovy Kind Of Love" and probably "Sunny" (even though it's not one of my personal favorites.) 

Solitary #1's include "I Got You" by James Brown (Record World only), 19th Nervous Breakdown by The Rolling Stones (Cash Box), "Nowhere Man" by The Beatles (for two weeks, no less!, in Record World), "Daydream" by The Lovin' Spoonful (in Cash Box), "See You In September" by The Happenings (in Record World), "Mellow Yellow" by Donovan (another two week stint at #1 in Record World) and "That's Life" by Frank Sinatra (Record World only).  


1967 kicks off with a couple of records that probably should have been #1's across the board.  "I'm A Believer" was such a HUGE hit for The Monkees that it denied a couple of other deserving songs a week on top of the charts.  (It topped Billboard's survey for seven weeks, Record World's for five ... and spent EIGHT weeks at #1 in Cash Box).  As such "Snoopy Vs. The Red Baron" (#1 in numerous cities around the country) only reached #1 in Record World ... while "Georgy Girl" by The Seekers hit #1 everywhere except Billboard.  That's because The Buckinghams spent two weeks at #1 with their first hit, "Kind Of A Drag".  At the very least, that tally probably should have been reduced by a week to allow "Georgy Girl" to rank as an across-the-boards #1 Hit.  

After topping the charts with their first two releases, The Monkees got cheated out of a third straight #1 Record when Billboard didn't rank "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You" in the top spot.  It spent two weeks at #1 in Cash Box and a week on top in Record World.  It was definitely deserving of a #1 berth in all three publications ... but Billboard ranked the Nancy and Frank Sinatra duet "Somethin' Stupid" at #1 for four weeks instead.  (Maybe they received an offer they couldn't refuse???)   

Frankie Valli received the same fate with his smash "Can't Take My Eyes Off You", #1 for TWO WEEKS in both Cash Box and Record World ... but NOT #1 in Billboard ... absolutely a #1 Record in the eyes of all of America (and certainly portrayed that way in "Jersey Boys").  In fact, Frankie's solo hit may have been bigger than most of The Four Seasons' hits up to that point.  

Billboard ranked The Doors' hit "Light My Fire" at #1 for three weeks and then gave The Beatles a week on top with "All You Need Is Love".  The other publications saw it the other way around ... The Doors held the top spot for one week in both Cash Box and Record World ... and then The Beatles spent two weeks at #1 in those publications.  

Three records that probably deserved #1 status were "Little Bit O'Soul" by The Music Explosion, "Never My Love" by The Association and "The Rain, The Park And Other Things" by The Cowsills ... yet each of these reached #1 in only one of the national trades.  Sam and Dave's "Soul Man" hit the top spot in both Cash Box and Record World ... I don't know that this record was big enough to do so.  (It peaked at #2 in Billboard.)  


1968 kicked off with two records that reached #1 in Cash Box only ... Gladys Knight and the Pips' version of "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" (ironically, the year would close with the Marvin Gaye version on top of the charts) and "Chain Of Fools" by Aretha Franklin.  A couple of weeks later Chicago's own American Breed were at #1 in Record World only with their smash "Bend Me, Shape Me".  (Here is why I think Record World paid more attention to the Chicago charts than the other publications ... Dionne Warwick's "Theme from 'Valley of the Dolls'" also reached #1 in Record World only ... like "Bend Me, Shape Me", it, too, was a #1 Hit here in Chicago.  

Big discrepancy on just how big Paul Mauriat's hit "Love Is Blue" was ... five weeks at #1 in Billboard, SEVEN weeks at #1 in Cash Box ... but only THREE weeks at #1 in Record World.  It was followed by Otis Redding's "(Sittin' On The) Dock Of The Bay", which spent FOUR weeks at #1 in Billboard ... but never reached the top spot in either of the other publications.  Now THAT kind of discrepancy is just HUGE!!!  (Especially since Billboard didn't rank another Stax / Volt artist, Sam and Dave, at #1 for their hit "Soul Man" the previous year, after it topped the charts in both Cash Box and Record World.  I don't see how ANY records sits at #1 in Billboard without reaching the top in Cash Box or Record World, too ... something just doesn't feel right about this one!  

The Monkees were denied AGAIN of a sure-fire #1 spot in Billboard when "Valleri" reached the top in both Record World and Cash Box ... and spent two weeks on top of both of those charts.  Without question, this was ABSOLUTELY a #1 Record ... everywhere but Billboard.  Billboard also denied Gary Puckett and the Union Gap a #1 Hit when "Young Girl" topped the charts in both of the other publications ... but not in Billboard.  

The same thing happened with their follow-up release ... "Lady Willpower" hit the top spot in both Cash Box and Record World ... but did NOT hit #1 in Billboard.  What's up with that???   

Billboard had a couple more large discrepancies regarding a given record's popularity later that year ... The Rascals' hit "People Got To Be Free" topped the chart for five weeks in Billboard ... but only held the #1 position for three and two weeks in Cash Box Magazine and Record World, respectively.  "Hey Jude" is another classic example ... nine weeks on top in Billboard but only FOUR weeks at #1 in Record World.  (Cash Box fell somewhere in the middle with seven weeks at #1).  Their Apple Records signee Mary Hopkin deserved a universal #1 Hit with her first record, "Those Were The Days" ... it topped the chart for four weeks in Record World, two weeks in Cash Box ... but never hit the summit in Billboard due to "Hey Jude"'s run at the top.  

Finally, Marvin Gaye's version of "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" was a seven week Billboard chart-topper ... but only spent ONE week at #1 in Record World.  Again Cash Box fell somewhere in the middle, with five weeks on top of the charts. 


One reason "Grapevine" only spent a week on top in Record World is because it was knocked out of the top spot by the killer Supremes / Temptations duet "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me".  This record topped the chart for three weeks in Record World ... and spent a week at #1 in Cash Box as well ... but never reached the top of the charts in Billboard.  It absolutely should have been an across-the-boards #1 Hit. 

"Build Me Up Buttercup" by The Foundations spent two weeks at #1 in both Cash Box and Record World but never reached #1 in Billboard.  Hindsight has proven it to be one of the biggest hits of the '60's ... as such, it deserves recognition as a #1 Record.  

Another good example is "Hair" by The Cowsills.  This record topped the charts all over the country ... and spent three weeks at #1 on the Record World chart and two weeks at #1 in Cash Box ... but did NOT reach #1 in Billboard ... and that's just wrong.  It absolutely should be considered a #1 Record.  

Same thing for Elvis' hit "In The Ghetto", number one in both Cash Box and Record World but not in Billboard.
Meanwhile, Billboard ranked The Temptations' hit "I Cant Get Next To You" at Number One for two weeks ... yet it never reached the top in either of the other national trade publications.  Instead, they assigned two weeks at #1 to Elvis again for "Suspicious Minds", a song we STILL hear three or four times a day some 46 years later.  

And here's an odd one ... we talked about "Something" / "Come Together" just recently in Forgotten Hits.  Well, in Record World Magazine, "Something" topped the charts for two weeks before being replaced by its B-Side, "Come Together", giving the record a total of FIVE weeks on top of the charts.  (That's because "Something" cut into the #1 run of "Wedding Bell Blues" by The Fifth Dimension, which topped the charts for three weeks in both Billboard and Cash Box Magazine.)  As far as The Beatles' two-sided hit, Cash Box simply gave "Come Together" a three week run at the top ... while Billboard delegated only one week to "Come Together".   

Once again, we consulted Randy Price's SUPER CHARTS.  This research takes into consideration every record's performance in all THREE national trades, thus utilizing the statistics used to compile each magazine's individual weekly charts, increasing the research database by perhaps as much as ten fold!)  I wondered if HIS chart research agreed with many of our assessments shown above.   

"They're Coming To Take Me Away," "The Rain, The Park And Other Things" and "In The Ghetto" all peaked at #2 on the Super Charts ("In The Ghetto" dropped to #7 in Billboard the week it reached #1 in Cash Box and Record World). Some of your other chart examples are shown below.
– Randy   

Here are a few SUPER CHARTS reflecting records that absolutely deserve certification as "Official" #1 Records in the USA ...


Tomorrow in Forgotten Hits ... a look at the #1 Hits of the '70's.
Meanwhile, you can pick up your OWN copy of Joel Whitburn's Chart Comparison book here ...

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

#1 - 1955 - 1963

Because I didn't really discover the radio until 1964, it's hard for me to accurately describe the relative popularity of songs and how they charted before this date.  Everything I know about the popularity and success of these records (as far as chart history is concerned anyway) I've learned from books like the ones offered through Joel Whitburn's Record Research Company.

From 1964 on, I can speak pretty intelligently on the relative popularity of these tunes ... and will do so in the upcoming chapters of this new Forgotten Hits series.  

Meanwhile, for the years 1954 - 1962 (covered in Joel's brand new "Chart Comparison" book), I can only report the facts as he shows them in his book.  

Here goes:  

We don't really hit our first #1 chart discrepancy until 1957.  In July of that year, The Everly Brothers hit #1 in both Cash Box and Music Vendor Magazine with their first big hit, "Bye Bye Love".  It failed to reach #1 in Billboard.  That's because Elvis' "Teddy Bear" topped the Billboarod chart for seven weeks.  By comparison, Cash Box showed it at #1 for three weeks and Music Vendor showed it at #1 for four weeks.  As such, it's kinda hard to imagine a record as big as The Everly Brothers' first big hit NOT reaching #1 in all three publications.  

Billboard also awarded extra weeks at #1 to "Jailhouse Rock", which also topped their chart for seven weeks, compared to just three weeks in Cash Box.  Incredibly, it didn't reach #1 at all in Music Vendor.  Two other records that reached #1 that year in Billboard without doing so in either of the other publications in 1957 both belonged to Pat Boone ... "Don't Forbid Me" for one week ... and "April Love" for six.  (How does a record big enough to top Billboard's Chart for SIX WEEKS not register a #1 ranking in either of the other major trade publications???)  Perry Como also hit the top spot in Billboard with "Round And Round" without climbing that high in Cash Box or Music Vendor ... so did Buddy Holly's "That'll Be The Day" ... certainly a "perceived" #1 Record if there ever was one.  A record that MAY have deserved a #1 showing, topping the charts in both Music Vendor and Cash Box but NOT in Billboard, was "Raunchy" by Bill Justis.  Again I can't speak for the TRUE popularity of this record at the time because I wasn't there to witness it.  Hindsight, however, tells me probably not ... although it WAS his ability to play this tune that earned a young George Harrison a spot in The Quarrymen, the group that would evolve into The Beatles several years later!  

We saw another example of this kicking off 1958 when "The Stroll" by The Diamonds made it to the #1 spot in both Cash Box and Music Vendor ... for two weeks, no less ... without ever doing so in Billboard.  Incredibly, this was the only instance in 1958 where this occurred.   

There were times when a record topped the chart in Billboard but never reached #1 in the other publications.  These include "Hard Headed Woman" by Elvis, "Poor Little Fool" by Ricky Nelson (the very first #1 Record on the brand new Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart), "Little Star" by The Elegants and "Bird Dog" by the aforementioned Everly Brothers.  The main culprit here depriving these records a #1 showing in Cash Box and Music Vendor seems to be "Patricia" by Perez Prado, which held down the top spot for four consecutive weeks in both publications, despite a one week showing at the top in Billboard.  

1959 gave us a two-week chart-topper by Della Reese, "Don't You Know" that never reached #1 in Billboard.  It did rank as the top record in both Cash Box and Music Vendor, however.  The only Billboard #1 Hit that year NOT to reach #1 in at least one other publication belonged to Elvis Presley ... his "A Big Hunk O'Love" topped the Billboard Chart for two weeks in August of that year.  Elvis DID top the Music Vendor chart for two weeks with "(Now And Then There's) A Fool Such As I" without doing so in Billboard or Cash Box ... and "My Heart Is An Open Book" by Carl Dobkins, Jr. spent THREE weeks at #1 in Music Vendor without hitting the top in either of the other trade publications.  

Billboard had FOUR #1 Records in 1960 that didn't top the chart in any other publications.  They were "Mr. Custer" by Larry Verne, "I Want To Be Wanted" by Brenda Lee, "Georgia On My Mind" by Ray Charles and "Stay" by Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs.  There was never an instance in 1960 when records topped the other two charts without hitting #1 in Billboard.   

That being said, "Georgia On My Mind" and "Stay" were both monster hits ... and well deserving of their #1 berths.  They failed to reach the top in the other two publications because The Drifters' "Save The Last Dance For Me" occupied that position ... for six weeks in Cash Box and five weeks in Music Vendor.  By comparison, it only held the #1 spot in Billboard for three weeks.  In hindsight, "I Want To Be Wanted" and "Mr. Custer" may not have deserved their #1 status, although "Mr. Custer" WAS a pretty big novelty hit at the time.  

1961 saw TWO instances where a record topped the chart in both Cash Box and Music Vendor but failed to do so in Billboard.  "Exodus" by Ferrante and Teicher kicked off the year this way ... and then in October of that year it happened again when Roy Orbison hit the #1 spot with "Crying".  

Once again Billboard ranked Pat Boone at #1 while the other two publications took a pass ... this time it was "Moody River" that received this honor.  At year's end, The Marvelettes also had a Billboard-only #1 Hit with "Please Mr. Postman".  Honestly, I believe that ALL of the above-named titles are worthy of at least a week's worth of #1 status.
1962 shows two records topping the charts in Cash Box and Music Vendor without doing so in Billboard.  The first one to do so was "Mashed Potato Time" by Dee Dee Sharp.  It happened again with Elvis' "Return To Sender" toward the end of the year.  (I just HAVE to believe that "Return To Sender" deserved a universal #1 showing.  It missed in Billboard because of The Four Seasons hit "Big Girls Don't Cry".) 

Joey Dee and the Starliters had a three-week #1 run in Billboard without ever reaching the top spot in the other trade publications.  Tommy Roe achieved the same honors for two weeks with "Sheila" ... and Connie Francis spent a solo week at #1 in Billboard only in March with "Don't Break The Heart That Loves You".   


Probably the most OBVIOUS omission from 1963 would have to be "Louie Louie" by The Kingsmen.  It was everything that "Dominique" by The Singing Nun wasn't ... and despite supposedly being banned from any number of radio stations around the country, it still managed to top the charts in both Cash Box (two weeks) and Music Vendor.  Only Billboard denied it its rightful berth at #1.   

Another #1 Record from 1963 that topped two out of the three national charts was "Hello Mudduh, Hello Fadduh" by Allan Sherman (an absolutely deserving novelty hit, big as it was at the time).  Again, Billboard was the lone hold-out.  The Tymes hit #1 in both Billboard and Music Vendor with "So Much In Love", topping the chart for a week in each of those publications.     

There were other assorted #1 Records that year that topped at least one of the charts ... "The End Of The World" by Skeeter Davis was probably the most deserving.  (It hit #1 in Music Vendor but stopped at #2 in both Billboard and Cash Box).  Other debatable #1's include "Sally Go 'Round The Roses" by The Jaynetts (#1 in Music Vendor only) and "Be My Baby" by The Ronettes (#1 in Cash Box only and, in hindsight, a very deserving #1 record.  The impact of this record was enormous.)   

I asked Randy Price, curator of The Super Charts, a ranking that takes into consideration a record's overall chart performance based on all three major trade publications, if some of OUR "worthy #1's" would have hit the top when weighted by the full scope of research used by all three trades.  Here are a couple of examples he sent me ...   

Bye Bye Love by The Everly Brothers - #2 (for 5 weeks!)
Raunchy by Bill Justis - #2
The Stroll by The Diamonds - #2
Louie Louie - #2
The only two titles from your list to actually hit #1 on The Super Charts are 
Exodus by Ferrante and Teicher
and Crying by Roy Orbison

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Being #1

There's long been a long, universally accepted adage when it comes to the pop charts ...   

"It Ain't #1 Till It's Number One In Billboard" ... 

And that distinction (or perhaps PERCEIVED distinction) always kept Billboard Magazine head and shoulders above its weekly trade publications competition, Cash Box Magazine and Record World Magazine.   

I personally have always wondered how three magazine charting the exact same music from relatively the exact same sources could sometimes have such a wide discrepancy when it came time to publishing their results each week.   

Sure, the top ten was pretty much a given ... while not necessarily in the exact same order, the ten biggest sellers for the week really could not be denied.  But further down the charts we often found discrepancies of 20+ points between a record peaking in Billboard and in one of he other trades.  (Good example:  Paul Revere And The Raiders ... their records always seemed to have a wider spread than many others when you compare them side by side with their counter-part charts.)   

"Like Long Hair" finished 14 points higher in Cash Box than it did in Music Vendor (with Billboard smack in the middle).  "Louie Louie" placed 26 points higher in Billboard than it did in Music Vendor ... unusual because moving forward, their records always seem to place lower in Billboard Magazine when compared to the other two trade publications.  Early hits like "Louie Go Home", "Over You" and "Steppin' Out" each had spreads of 13 points, 18 points and 17 points (respectively) between their best and worst chart showings.   

The trend continued once the hit records started ... "Just Like Me" (#11) placed seven points higher in Billboard than it did in Record World.  Paul Revere and the Raiders were cheated out of an "official" Top 40 Hit when Cash Box and Record World both placed "Peace Of Mind" at #35 and #37 respectively, while Billboard showed it at #42.  "Too Much Talk" had an eight point spread, "Don't Take It So Hard" a nine point spread, "Cinderalla Sunshine" had a 16 point spread and "We Gotta All Get Together" had a 25 point spread ... in all cases Billboard ranking these records the lowest.  The same happened with "Birds Of A Feather" (#13 in Cash Box vs. #23 in Billboard) and "Country Wine" (#28 in Cash Box and #51 in Billboard!) ... and yet another Top 40 non-hit according to "the musical bible".   

Another group short-changed has to be Chicago's own Cryan' Shames (who also just happened to record for Columbia Records ... think there might be a connecton there???)  

WLS-AM, The Big 89, had a HUGE national following ... with their 50,000 watt signal you could pick them up on a clear night in nearly every state from coast to coast.  As such, fans all over the country discovered songs recorded by our local heroes ... but they couldn't always find those records to buy in the record stores because the Mom and Pop shops typically only stocked what was performing well on their own local surveys and local market.   

As such, Cryan' Shames Top Ten Hits in Chicago like "Sugar And Spice", "I Wanna Meet You" and "It Could Be We're In Love" (#1 for four weeks during the Summer of '67) went virtually nowhere on the national charts.  Despite all its grandeur, Chicago's WLS just didn't have enough clout to make a noticeable difference on the national trades.   

That is until Joe Whitburn's new Comparison Chart Book came out, allowing us to shed another light on this topic.  "Sugar And Spice", a #4 hit here in Chi-Town, peaked at #52 in Billboard ... but came in 13 places higher (and actually made The Top 40) in Record World.  "I Wanna Meet You" peaked at #62 in Record World, despite a #85 showing in Billboard.  Even "Mr. Unreliable" dented Record World's Top 100 when it spent at week at #100 ... 27 places higher than it ever managed to rise in Billboard's Bubbling Under Chart.  Both of these records were Top Ten Hits here in Chicago.   

Four-week chart-topper "It Could Be We're In Love" stopped at #85 in Billboard ... but reached #52 in Record World ... that's a spread of 33 points!!!  I don't know what kind of research would result in THAT large a discrepancy!  And isn't it just a LITTLE bit odd that three straight Cryan' Shames records all reached #85 as their peak position in Billboard ... when in fact reach record performed far differently here in Chicago at the time, which would have been the primary basis for ANY chart activity monitored on a national level?   

Now one could argue that while all three trades used similar methods to determine their charts, I would still think airplay would have to be the greatest factor ... followed by sales reported by record stores all over the country.  (I suppose if Record World had a heavier concentration of outlets reporting from the midwest, THAT could explain why our Chicagoland hits always fared better in their publication.)   

But we also heard about all kinds of "Piggy-back" deals going on with distributors at the time ... yes, we'll ship you 200 copies of Record "A" (which you really want) but then you've also got to take 100 copies of "Record B" (which is kind of a dog but we're trying to drum up some airplay for it.)  It wasn't at all unusual to see MAJOR shipments one week for particular records, giving them a HUGE boost up the charts ... only to see these very same records come back in massive returns a week or two later because the record store hadn't sold a single copy.  Didn't matter ... by then, the "sale" had been recorded ... and the record earned a "bullet" in the process.   

There was also another fairly common trade.  (We all know about payola in the disc jocky booth ... but do you really think it ended there?)  How many times do you think THESE words were offered?:  "Take out a full page ad in next week's issue and we'll make sure your record jumps ten points and earns a bullet."  My guess is FAR more times than you can count ... like let's say EVERY week for DECADES as a label was trying to cut its losses and salvage an investment in some "hot new band" who never really had the tools to make it ... but "their lead singer was kinda cute so we thought we'd give it a shot.")   

That's the beautiful thing about Joel Whitburn's new book ...   

With a simple turn of the page you can see ALL of the records that made it to #1 in all three national trade publications ... as well as all of the ones that didn't ...but deserved to, most likely the result of some backroom politics sealing its fate with the artist none the wiser.  (And that's not to say that many of these artists themselves wouldn't have jumped at the chance to make a deal with the devil if it meant scoring a hit record in the process.)   

Rich Appel recently did his annual I.R.S. Countdown, highlighting records that readers and listeners feel were short-changed on the charts ... The It Really Shoulda ... Been A Top Ten Hit series has become quite popular with our readers and oldies fans all over the country.   

Meanwhile, over the next few days we're going to take a look at the #1 Records of the '50's, '60's, '70's and '80's ... and see of we can come up with more accurate list to share with our readers.  From time to time we'll refer back to Randy Prices's Super Charts, a conglomeration of facts collected for each week's chart based on research information from all three chart sources available at the time.   

If you're a chart-aholic like me, this should prove to be a very interesting series.  Hope you'll join us for this one!

Meanwhile, you can pick up a copy of Joel Whitburn's new Chart Comparison book here ...  

I can promise you endless hours of chart discovery enjoyment as you peruse these pages!

Monday, May 25, 2015

50 Year Flashback - May 25th, 1965

Some big movers on this week's KFXM Chart ...

The Supremes jump from #6 to #1 with their latest, "Back In My Arms Again" ... The Byrds are up nine places (from #13 to #4) with their first major chart hit, "Mr. Tambourine Man", Ian Whitcomb climbs ten spots (from #16 to #6) with his quirky but infections "You Turn Me On" and The Guess Who are up eight (from #18 to #10) with "Shakin' All Over" ... and that's just The Top Ten!  (Quite a bit of a shake-up for just one week!!!)

You'll find The Beach Boys at #12 with "Help Me Rhonda" (up from #21) and the latest from Them, "Here Comes The Night", climbs from #27 to #15 ... that's a jump of twelve places.  ("Here Comes The Night" was Them's first big national hit ... but as we've seen recently, their original version of "Gloria" topped the charts in a few major cities, despite its poor showing in Billboard Magazine.)

Right behind Them you'll find The Four Tops with the biggest chart mover of the week ... "I Can't Help Myself" is up twenty places to #16.  Tony Clarke isn't doing to badly with "The Entertainer" ... it's up from #34 to #21 this week ... and Freddie and the Dreamers climb ten places with "You Were Made For Me", a song recently featured in this very series.

Jackie DeShannon is up 13 spots with the '60's love anthem "What The World Needs Now Is Love", another great Hal David - Burt Bacharach tune ... and brand new on the chart we find Herman's Hermits' tribute to Sam Cooke, "Wonderful World".  We lost Sam a few months before ... in fact, check out the Spotlight LPs List and you'll see The Supremes' album "We Remember Sam Cooke" listed, too!

Several years ago Peter Noone told us (in our exclusive Forgotten Hits interview ... here):

The Herman's Hermits version of WONDERFUL WORLD was recorded as a tribute, the day after Sam was murdered in the USA. At the same recording session THE ANIMALS recorded BRING IT ON HOME TO ME. A tribute !!! We were fans of his music so we did tributes.  We didn't want to make the best recording as we all knew that SAM'S recording WAS and ALWAYS will be the BEST recording.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Sunday Comments ( 05 - 24 - 15 )

re: The Wrecking Crew:  
I bet this doesn't show up on any of their bios or discographies but in this 50th Anniversary of "The Arrows" I can't help but mention that Carol Kaye, Hal Blaine, Larry Knechtel, Billy Strange, Joe Osborne, Don Randi and others were "Arrows" on a few tracks.  
Davie Allan  
P.S. I'm trying to get a new album placed with Curb (he shares in this anniversary when we started "The Arrows") but ... stay tuned!  
Congratulations on your 50th Anniversary, Davie ... and Good Luck with the whole Mike Curb thing. 
Do you remember any particular tracks The Wrecking Crew played on?  And was this something that you knew about or had prearranged?  Or just a surprise when you got to the studio that day?  (kk)  
Carol, Hal and Larry were on a few of the soundtracks I did, most notably, as far as "Arrows" go, "Devil's Angels" so they were on the soundtrack and the single which was my follow-up to "Blues' Theme". Billy Strange was on two tracks: "War Path" (that was a pre-Arrows single on the Marc label in '63) and "The Unknown Rider" that appeared on "The Wild Angels" soundtrack. I knew they were booked for the various films before the sessions. I also recorded a couple of Jerry Naylor sessions with them. Another session was the score for the award winning short, "Skaterdater". I played lead on those tunes with Al Casey, Jim Horn, Larry Brown and Larry Knechtel. I wish I had taken pictures and kept a log on all those sessions (in the studio daily for five years). Thanks,  

Eric Ekstrand and I play two gigs every week as a duo. (Together on one for about ten years, the other for about two yrs). We have a monthly Thursday PM gig and Eric is taking that night off to do the Don Peake gig.
I first met Don when our band, the Portraits, was signed to Mike Curb in '67. Our manager was married to Albeth Paris of the Paris Sisters and Don was dating Priscilla Paris. Don arranged the strings, French horn and chimes on our record of "Over The Rainbow".

Gary E. Myers / MusicGem    

This group of cracker jack musicians created musical magic (and history) on a near daily basis, sitting in on sessions for ALL of the biggest artists recording in and around the Los Angeles area during the 1960's.  All were highly accomplished players (most with JAZZ backgrounds, believe it or not ... and not necessarily big fans of rock and roll other than as a means to earn a living) who were able to grab a sense of what a particular piece of music needed in a matter of just a few run-throughs ... most of the biggest hits of this era were committed to wax in as few as three or four takes.  Because of their ability to capture the "hit" sound so quickly, all were in hot demand.  A typical session might run 3-4 hours ... and during that span of time (depending on what the producer brought with him to the session), they might record a single, a b-side or maybe three or four album tracks ... then move on to their next session.  (Some did three or four three-hour sessions per day!!!  They might record with The Beach Boys, The Fifth Dimension and Frank Sinatra all in the same day!  Then get up in the morning and do it again for The Mamas and the Papas, The Monkees and Johnny Rivers!)  Studio time was expensive, even back in those days, so there was no time to waste ... they had to grasp it ... and nail it ... very quickly.)  Their input was held in the highest regard based on their proven track record. 
Keep in mind that there was NO advance rehearsal time for these sessions ... each and every time they came in "blind" and could be asked to play in virtually any style during each subsequent session.  These guys weren't in a regular band out playing in the clubs each night, honing their skills and arrangements ... in fact, it wasn't even the same players every time ... they just jelled in the studio, putting their own touches on whatever charts happened to be laid out in front of them that particular day. 
Each producer had their favorites ... but if somebody wasn't available to provide guitar or piano for a particular session, there were literally DOZENS of others who could step in and lend their own style to any given record.  The goal was to "mass produce" ... lay down as many backing tracks as possible in a three hour session.  Vocals could always be added later ... and typically the REAL band (or touring band) would have to come in later and then learn their "own" songs from the records!  (It didn't pay for these Wrecking Crew musicians to tour ... they could earn CONSIDERABLY more money doing session work than they ever could out on the road!) 
And, on top of that, they were "unsung heroes" ... rarely (if ever) receiving credit on the albums and singles they played on.  Nobody wanted to break the illusion that the artists we loved were playing their own instruments on all these radio hits that shaped the soundtrack of our lives.  Incredibly, The Monkees were ripped apart when it came to light that they weren't playing their own instruments on their records ... CRUCIFIED in the press ... when, in fact, those EXACT SAME MUSICIANS were also providing the backing sounds for The Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, The Mamas and the Papas, The Byrds, The Turtles, The Fifth Dimension, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Sonny and Cher and COUNTLESS others.  The Monkees just happened to take the brunt of it ... and eventually learned how to play their own instruments at the insistence of Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork. 
The movie and book point this out in clear, concise facts ... members of The Wrecking Crew played on more hit records than ANYBODY else in the business ... they were unparalleled. 
The era of the studio musician came to an end as more and more "self-contained" groups who were writing their own songs and playing their own instruments came into fashion.  But think about that for a second, too ... Major Acts like Fleetwood Mac would take YEARS between albums, crafting every nuance in search of that perfect sound ... The Eagles might work on a backing track for a week and a half before they felt they had finally captured the sound they were looking for ... spending nine or ten DAYS to fine-tune it to perfection.  The Wrecking Crew accomplished this in three or four hours ... and recorded another three or four songs in that same time period, too!!!  In hindsight, it truly is amazing! 
You will DEFINITELY want to check out the DVD, available June 16th (with an incredible 6+ HOURS of Bonus Material!!!)  Even if you've seen the film in a theater or at a film festival, this new release will contain VOLUMES of material you've never seen before. 
And I can't recommend the book highly enough ... page after page of tidbits in the words of the players, the producers and the artists themselves, talking about what it was like to record in this bygone era ... BEAUTIFULLY illustrated with photos and session logs .. a MUST HAVE for any '60's fan's collection. 
Both items are available through the links shown below:   

re:  Clark Weber:  
Hey Kent,  
I had the good fortune to attend Clark Weber's last public appearance (so he says) today.  He was speaking at Chestnut Square retirement home in Glenview.  I saw Clark right at the door when I walked in and he graciously signed my copy of his book "Clark Weber's Rock and Roll Radio".  He looked great, not ready for retirement, in my opinion!  He pleased the crowd with many stories of his glory days at WLS.  I saw a few fans with Silver Dollar Surveys ready to get signed.  He mentioned meeting many great artists BEFORE they were famous, including Barbara Streisand, Neil Diamond, the Supremes, Sonny and Cher and, of course, the Beatles.  What an interesting life he has led.  He mentioned he was once at a Paul Revere and the Raiders concert at a local high school and looked at me and said maybe I was there!  I told him I was!  Back then, it was the biggest deal for the Raiders to be at our local high school.  I still have my Raider hat I wore to that show.  Next, he mentioned introducing the Beatles when they played here in Chicago at Comiskey Park in the early l960's.  I had to laugh, because I was there, too!  I was lucky to have a very hip mother who dragged my brother and I to this concert, taking the Halsted Street bus.  I'll never forget it.  I'm sure Clark Weber had many, many more stories to relate.  I recommend anyone getting a copy of his book.  It's great reading about the early days of rock and roll in Chicago.  The crowd really enjoyed this blast from the past with Clark Weber!  
How VERY cool!  Clark is a GREAT storyteller and, like I said, still sharp as a tack!  I've been to a couple of his library appearances ... and was there at The Hard Rock Cafe in Downtown Chicago a couple of summers ago when we he appeared at the Ringo Starr Art Exhibit.  I also highly recommend his book for those of you out there who grew up listening to Top 40 Radio in the '60's.  (kk)   

Many people wonder what Clark will live on now that he has retired.  I'm sure, like me, that he plans on living off all the Weber Moola he has from his days at the Big 89 when he was "Emporer Weber."  Sure the station gave away tons of real Silver Dollars, but getting Weber Moola was much cooler!  I was SO stupid as a kid!  :)  
Clark Besch

Clark told us years ago that the station passed out REAL silver dollars during their surprise and remote appearances ... often at the beaches along Lake Michigan where they'd find literally THOUSANDS of kids lying there under the sun with their transistor radios tuned in to WLS!  (kk)   

The WLS survey pictured today dated September 16, 1961, brought two recollections to my mind. The song coming in at #21, JOHNNY WILLOW, peaked at #2 here in OKC and the song coming in at #35 by the Untouchables charted here in OKC but it was the flip, a song called LOVELY DEE which made the survey.  
Fred Darian's "Johnny Willow" peaked at #14 here in Chicago on The WLS Silver Dollar Survey while The Untouchables' track "You're The Top" topped out at #35 in its two weeks on the chart.  (kk)   

re:  The Buckinghams / Susan:
>>>The moment of magic ... FOUR of Chicago's best-known Buckinghams on stage together performing their hits again for the first time in 45+ years.  "Back In Love Again" (written by Marty) was the PERFECT opening song. (kk)  
Thanks for all the great video /photos / set list / reviews of the Marty Grebb party.  It all is great!  I am SOOO glad they chose to do "Back in Love Again."  I felt it was just as good as any of their hits and deserved top 10 status.  A Marty classic!  
-- Clark Besch
I agree 100% ... always one of my favorites, too.  (kk)

I remember the Buckinghams playing in Lisle, Il, at Jakes Pizza in the basement called the Snooty Fox. I was a waitress and stayed and had drinks with them.  
Linda Royer  
There was a stretch there in the mid-to-late 80s when they were doing a lot of the neighborhood fests, playing all kinds of hits from the '60's and squeezing their own hits in between songs by The Beatles, The Hollies and others. Since reforming, Carl and Nick have been successfully touring as headliners for about 35 years now! And the fans have stayed loyal. There's a very simple reason for that ... you just can't beat good music!  (kk)   

Didn't see any mention of Marty Grebbs wonderful version of Herbie Hancock's Canteloupe Island, one of the best songs of the evening. 
Dean Milano 
I asked Marty to verify the titles of the songs he performed as part of his official set and this one wasn't even mentioned or on this list.  The original titles given me were (from the original show outline) were: "Take It Easy", "50 / 50", "Come Rain Or Come Shine" and "Latin Medley".  Since he never offered up any alternative titles, this is what I went with.  (kk)  
Weird. He definitely did Cantaloupe and he even smiled when I told him it was the best tune of the night.  Oh well, no biggie. 
Your article was great, by the way! 
Listening to Herbie Hancock's version, I definitely remember hearing this, too ... just not sure if this is the correct title for "50/50" or what was simply referred to as "Latin Medley".  (kk)   

 Some time ago FH Reader Clark Besch (who posed the question about your "Susan" preference in the first place) sent us this brief interlude, showing the source of James Guercio's inspiration for the timely psychedelic edit.  Of course The Bucks were shocked when they first heard it as this was all edited in by Guercio without their knowledge after they'd left the studio.  Truly, I don't mind it ... the short edit is just too sharply cut for my ears.  (Talk about crazy edits ... The Cryan' Shames absolutely RUINED the prettiest song they ever recorded on the album version of their Chicagoland #1 Smash "It Could Be We're In Love" ... talk about unnecessary gibberish!  Thankfully the folks at Columbia were smart enough to see the hit potential of the song on its own merits, edited it out and released it as a single.  It peaked at #52 nationally ... but topped the charts here in Chicago for four straight weeks during the Summer of Love, 1967.)  kk

The Exceptions:
With Carl talking up the great Exceptions, here's a tidbit that's not even in my original long draft of the Bucks.  BTW, when speaking with Bob Stroud and Jim Peterik years ago, I brought up the Exceptions and both said they were blown away by the band.  Marty had great company and it was really a supergroup BEFORE there were supergroups.  The band at times included Marty as well as Billy Herman, Kal David, Jimmy Vincent, Peter Cetera.  When I spoke with Dunwich's Bill Traut when working on the Dunwich compilations CDs, he told me that David and Vincent were the top guitarists in the city at the time.  High praise for this band that never could crack the vinyl hit parades.  Personally, I LOVE the Exceptions' "As Far as I Can See" single which did get played on WLS' Dex Card show, because I taped it off his show in 1967!  
When Marty joined the Bucks, he brought two original songs to the band that he recorded with the Exceptions earlier.  His 1965 Tollie 45 "Come on Home" with Kal David & the Exceptions was reworked and recorded for the Bucks' 1968 "Portraits" album as "C'mon Home."  Can you believe the difference?  Also, he took another Exceptions 45, their first 1967 Quill / Capitol 45, the psychedelic "As Far as I Can See" and re-recorded it in 1969 with the Bucks for their A side single "This is How Much I Love You."  There's lots of tidbits about the band that are quite interesting.   
Clark Besch

re:  The Chicago Experience:  
You got any knowledge on where Chicago Experience may be playing? Would love to see them ... jeez, they were terrific!  
Chet Coppock    
Couldn't agree with you more ... check out their website for upcoming dates ... a couple of outdoor gigs at some of the neighborhood festivals this summer ... and we will definitely be there.  (I told my wife during their appearance at The Marty Grebb Benefit Concert that they performed "Dialogue" better than ANY time I've ever seen Chicago do it ... and I've seen Chicago at least a dozen times!)  kk

And how cool is this?  After his performance at The Marty Grebb Benefit Concert, original Chicago Drummer Danny Seraphine was honored with a street-naming ceremony at Cornelia and Normandy on the Northwest side of Chicago, the city he was born in and called home.  Congratulations, Danny!  

(For the record, I'm STILL waiting for an alley ... a driveway ... ANYTHING recognizing Forgotten Hits Way!!!)  kk

re:  This And That:  
Kent -  
This weekend WCBS-FM is counting down The Top 500 Memorial Day Countdown ... ...  
Care to guess what # 1 will be?
Nowadays I haven't got a clue!
Frank B. 
We'll let you know when the final list is posted.  When I tuned in on Saturday I heard (in order) "Out Of Touch" by Hall and Oates, "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown", "Dreamlover" by Mariah Carey, "Who Loves You" by The Four Seasons , "Hot Stuff" by Donna Summer, "She Drives Me Crazy" by Fine Young Cannibals, "Upside Down" by Diana Ross, "Hungry Like The Wolf" by Duran Duran, "Silly Love Songs" by Paul McCartney and Wings, "Urgent" by Foreigner, "Heart Of Glass" by Blondie and Barry White's "You're The First, The Last, My Everything"  (#'s 192 - 181 ).  Definitely a younger audience voting this year ... I'm guessing you're not going to hear too many tunes from before 1968 on this countdown!!!  (kk)

I believe radio stations first started this tradition on Memorial Day, tying in with The Indianapolis 500.  Then it expanded (and/or moved) to Labor Day.  Ron Smith publishes The Labor Day Top 500 (as voted on by his readers and website visitors) every other year ... so this will be the year to cast your votes again.  You can vote by visiting the website here ...
(To confirm, voting starts in August)  kk

>>>Paul McCartney -- available for bar mitzvahs, parties, circus tours.  (I can see the ad now!)  Clark Besch
You guys left out a gig for Sir Paul’s new  venue list: “WEDDINGS”!   
I’ve played a few of those through the years to those who had the bucks. 
Ex Letterman, 
Gary Pike

From about a decade ago.  Small world.
- Bobby Scammell

Hi Kent -  
Just spotted a piece you wrote about Roger Cook in January, 2009.
Thought you might appreciate this story that appeared today.

>>>The Freddie & Dreamers' "You Were Made for Me" track you featured recently has different edits and I cannot remember now if the one you played is the 45 version or not.  Capitol actually released this in 1963, but it was a hit on Tower over a year later in 65.  However, to elongate the song, they re-edited it, if I remember correctly.  (Clark Besch)
>>>I've heard at least three edits of "You Were Made For Me" over the years.  Quite honestly, I've lost track myself as to which is which!  (lol)  But I'll betcha FH Reader John LaPuzza can tell us!  (Hey John, if you're reading this, can you send me a clean MP3 of the hit single mix???  Thanks!)  kk
Hey Kent,  
I really don't know if there is a clean, mp3 copy of the Capitol Records 45, "You Were Made For Me" by Freddie and the Dreamers, but I'll keep looking. The song was recorded in England and was introduced on the Columbia UK label. I am trying to find the connection of Capitol with Columbia. I don't know if the two record companies had an agreement to share royalties (which I doubt) or Capitol "buying" the recording from Columbia, after the song made its European run in '63, and later appeared on Capitol, the same year. There are other 45s, like "I'm Telling You Now", that went though the same process. The EMI double CD set, "The Ultimate Collection" of Freddie and the Dreamers is supposed to contain the original Columbia recording, but who knows? Its liner notes have some inaccuracies, here and there, even calling the song, "You Were Meant For Me". However, I read somewhere that the word, "Meant" was part of the first working title of the song, written by Mitch Murray and Freddie. Thanks for giving me a shout!
- John LaPuzza

More Bobby Hart coverage in this interesting piece from Jeremy Roberts ...   
We're seeing LOTS of press for Bobby's new book, out now.  (kk)    

If you listen to classic rock radio on a daily basis, you'd be hard-pressed to go a full day without hearing the distinctive and powerful vocals of Lou Gramm blasting through your speakers.  
As the voice of Foreigner, one of rock's most popular and successful bands, Lou can be heard on every single one of the band's classic hits, which includes sixteen Top 30 songs and nine Top 10's over the years. For those into chart success, that's one less than the Eagles and the same as Fleetwood Mac.   
 Here are the Top 10's: "I Want To Know What Love Is," "Waiting For A Girl Like You," "Double Vision," "Hot Blooded," "Urgent," "Feels Like The First Time," "I Don't Want To Live Without You," "Say You Will" and "Cold As Ice."
 You know them well.
 And let's not forget "Head Games," the rock anthem, "Juke Box Hero" and other rockers such as "Dirty White Boy," "That Was Yesterday," "Blue Morning, Blue Day," "Long Long Way From Home" and "Break It Up" that cracked the Top 30.
By 1980, Foreigner's first eight singles (from their first three albums, Foreigner, Double Vision and Head Games) entered the Billboard Top 20 charts, making them the first band to achieve that feat since the Beatles.                     
 On Friday, June 5, fans are in for a real rock and roll treat as Lou will performing a vast selection of those Foreigner hits, along with such solo hits as "Midnight Blue" and "Just Between You and Me," with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (Guest Conductor: Brent Havens) and his band at the Delta Classic Chastain Park Amphitheater in Atlanta, Georgia.         
One hit after another.
In 1978, shortly after the release of "Hot Blooded," Circus magazine remarked that Lou had a voice that Robert Plant might envy.
Of course, the rest was rock and roll history as when all might have been said but not yet done, Foreigner would join Led Zeppelin on the Atlantic Records label as one of the most successful artists ever on the imprint.                 
In May of 2013, Lou, with the help of writer Scott Pitoniak, released a must-read autobiography titled, Juke Box Hero: My Five Decades in Rock 'n' Roll (Triumph Books).
A month later, he would be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.       
Lou and his band -- currently comprised of brother Ben Grammatico on drums, Michael Staertow on guitar, AD Zimmer on bass and Andy Knoll on keyboards -- have been on the road since the beginning of the year and have already performed a few dozen shows to date.
After the Chastain Park Amphitheater performance in early June, Lou will continue to tour throughout the year (see current itinerary below).
Come out and hear the voice behind the songs that have propelled Foreigner's worldwide album sales to exceed 75 million units, making them one of the world's best-selling artists of all-time.     
Get your tickets now!      
Lou Gramm Official Website and Links
Lou Gramm Tour 2015*
Thursday, May 21 - Snoqualmie Casino in Snoqualmie, Washington
Saturday, May 23 - Bakersfield Rockin Country Festival in Bakersfield, California
Friday, June 5 - Chastain Amphitheatre with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in Atlanta, Georgia
Saturday, June 6 - Old Shawnee Days Festival in Shawnee, Kansas
Saturday, June 20 - Hard Rock Rocksino in Northfield, Ohio
Saturday, June 27 - Rockin Ribs Festival in Augusta, New Jersey
Saturday, July 4 - Sun Peaks Concert Series in Sun Peaks Village, British Columbia, Canada
Friday, July 10 - Peacefest in Peace River, Alberta, Canada
Saturday, July 11 - BobStock in Fort Morgan, Colorado
Thursday, July 16 - La Fete Du Lac Nations in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
Sunday, July 19 - Great S. Bay Music Fest in Patchogue, New York     
Monday, July 27 - Olds Agricultural Grandstand in Olds, Alberta, Canada
Friday, July 31 - Rockin on the River Series in North Tonawanda, New York     
Friday, August 14 - Wisconsin State Fair in West Allis, Wisconsin
Friday, August 28 - Beacon Theatre in Hopewell, Virginia
Saturday, August 29 - DeKalb Corn Festival in DeKalb, Illinois
Wednesday, September 2 - Minnesota State Fair in St. Paul, Minnesota
Thursday, September 3 - Minnesota State Fair in St. Paul, Minnesota
Saturday, September 12 - Clovis Music Festival in Clovis, New Mexico          
*Additional dates to be announced    

Sixties Music Legends The Chocolate Watchband Releases New Greatest Hits Album I'm Not Like Everybody Else 
Los Angeles, CA – When discussing legendary psychedelic garage bands of the 1960's, the Chocolate Watchband is at the top of the list. Much to the elation of fans and music critics, this famed sixties group has recorded a new album of their greatest and most popular tunes entitled “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” to be released May 26 on Purple Pyramid Records. Recorded at KVP Studio in Santa Clara, CA, the focus on this album was to faithfully reproduce the sound of the Chocolate Watchband in the 60's with the rawness and energy of the originals. Also added were bonus verses and extended track mixes of 13 personal and fan favorites. “The Chocolate Watchband is back on the scene and ready to rock!” says Tim Abbott, guitarist and producer of the album.   
“This release is all new recordings from The Chocolate Watchband. I had the privilege of premiering some of these songs on the 2010 Bay Area Garage Band Marathon on KKUP Cupertino. This is an incredible set of vintage garage from one of the true legends of the sixties. With this album, there can no doubt the power of their music still speaks to a whole new generation,” says Phil Dirt radio DJ

The goal was to re-create the sound and energy of the sessions with producer Ed Cobb, from the first three Watchband albums that were recorded for Tower Records in 1966, '67, and '68. Electronically reproducing the reverb of the old 'Echo Chamber' from American Recording studio in Studio City, CA, different percussion instruments were added including sleigh bells, tambourines, chimes, temple bells and more exotic instruments like sitars, harpsichords, theremin and bouzouki that gave the original recordings their distinctive sound.  
David Aguilar - Vocals, Harmonica, Percussion
Bill Flores - Bass
Gary Andrijasevich - Drums and Background Vocals
Tim Abbott - Lead Guitar, Keyboards, Sitar, Flute, Bazooki, Harmonica and Background Vocals.
Alby Cozzette - Electric, Acoustic, and 12 string Guitars, and Background Vocals. 
The Chocolate Watchband formed in San Jose in 1965. The band's music was described as “a blend of 1960s-style garage and psychedelic rock with a distinguishable ‘Rolling Stones’ San Francisco sound.” Produced by Ed Cobb, the group's early music combined the influences of blues with a psychedelic edge that featured terse lyrics and instrumental experimentation. The Chocolate Watchband appeared in the 1967 film 'Riot On Sunset Strip' and the 1968 film 'The Love Ins'. The band released three highly acclaimed LPs from 1967 to 1969 before disbanding in 1970. In 1999, they reunited at the San Diego event 66/99 in San Diego, CA, organized by musician/journalist Mike Stax. They continue to play today at garage rock festivals in Europe as well as the States with Little Steven, The Yardbirds, Love, The Zombies, Bo Diddly, Iggy Pop, the Strawberry Alarm Clock and the Electric Prunes.   
1. Expo 2000
2. Gone and Passes By
3. It's All Over Now Baby Blue
4. Are You Gonna' Be There (At The Love-in)
5. No Way Out
6. Misty Lane
7. I Ain't No Miracle Worker
8. Sitting There Standing
9. Sweet Young Thing
10. Don't Need Your Lovin'
11. I'm Not Like Everybody Else
12. Let's Talk About Girls
13. Inner Mystique   
Chocolate Watchband "I'm Not Like Everybody Else" is available on
To purchase “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” on CD:  
To purchase “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” on Vinyl:   
To purchase “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” on iTunes: