Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Saturday Surveys (June 14th)

June 11th, 1956, marked a major turning point in radio in Chicago ... that's the week that WJJD issued their very first Top 40 Radio Survey Chart (shown below ... as you can see, listed as "Survey No. 1"!!!)

As far as I know, this was the very first Top 40 Rock and Roll Chart to hit our city (although you don't REALLY get a rock and roll track until you hit #7 on the list with Carl Perkins' classic "Blue Suede Shoes".)

Elvis Presley and Bill Haley and His Comets are each represented with two tracks this week ... and Pat Boone's got THREE!!!

There would be other Top 40 Stations in Chicago during the '50's ... and even WJJD themselves would abandon the format a few years later, becoming one of the biggest Country Radio Stations in America ... but this is VINTAGE '50's stuff here ... and a GREAT way to kick off this week's edition of The Saturday Surveys!

George Cates held the #1 spot on the very first WJJD Chart with "Moonglow" ... and The McGuire Sisters are at #29 with "Picnic".  Morris Stoloff combined these two tracks into a chart-topping instrumental hit of his own ... but that version didn't chart here in Chicago!

Now HERE'S something you didn't see very often in 1964 ... 

A Top Ten Chart with only ONE British Act listed!!!

Leave it to The Dave Clark Five and their #10 Hit "Can't You See That She's Mine" to mess up what could have been an All-American Countdown ... but there are some REAL surprises listed in this Top Ten as well.

Sure, the usual suspects are there ... The Four Seasons at #2 with "Rag Doll", Johnny Rivers at #8 with "Memphis" and The Beach Boys at #9 with "I Get Around" ... all major summer fare in 1964 ... but check out the rest of The Top Ten!

Sitting at #1 are The Jelly Beans with what used to be our traditional, annual Easter Feature here in Forgotten Hits, "I Wanna Love Him So Bad".  Barbra Streisand sits at #3 with her "Funny Girl" classic "People".  (Man, I've ALWAYS hated this song ... during the Summer of '64, my parents took us up to some cottage up in Wisconsin for a vacation ... and the ONLY redeeming thing about the whole trip was the fact that the on-site restaurant had a GIANT Jukebox.  Except SOMEBODY in the joint LOVED this song ... and one night played it at least twenty times while we were there.  Ruined it forever for me ... I hated it BEFORE that night ... but have DESPISED it ever since!!!  lol)

You'll also find some soft-rock schmaltz at #5 ("Love Me With All Your Heart" by The Ray Charles Singers ... a song I actually had to learn on the organ when my Mom made me take lessons) ... and "Remember Me" by Rita Pavone.  (Actually, we don't ... I'll bet there aren't six Forgotten Hits Readers who could sing a refrain from THAT one!!!)

However, the chart ALMOST redeems itself with the unexpected "Hey Harmonica Man" by Stevie Wonder at #7 and one of my all-time faves, "She's The One" by The Chartbusters all the way up at #4!  (This one stopped at #33 in Billboard.  I guess if you couldn't have The Beatles in The Top Ten, then the next best thing was having a group that sounded just LIKE The Beatles up there instead!)

In fact, you won't find The Beatles on this chart at all!!!  And that HAS to be a first for 1964!!!

Finally, another trip out to California for this Top 40 Chart from KFXM.

You'll find some typical Summer of Love tracks here ... "Light My Fire" by The Doors, of course ... "Windy" by The Association,  "San Francisco" by Scott McKenzie, "White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane and "A Whiter Shade Of Pale" by Procol Harum ... but you'll also find "The Flower Children" by Marcia Strassman (she'd go on to play Gabe Kaplan's wife on the "Welcome Back Kotter" television series a few years later) ... and one of MY all-time psychedelic favorites, "My World Fell Down" by Sagittarius.  (Cool to see The Buckinghams charting with a two-sided hit, too!)  Some of these jocks look pretty "square" to be playing all these heavy hits, don't they???

Here's another one of my 1967 favorites ... the seldom-played "C'mon Marianne" by The Four Seasons ... with The Jersey Boys movie opening next weekend, this seemed like a great one to feature today.