Saturday, January 20, 2018

The Saturday Survey - January 20th, 1968


1-19-68 KGAR Portland, Oregon

Although licensed to Vancouver, Washington, KGAR was actually broadcasting to and based in Portland!  
In this very cool chart, we are finding many local northwest US artists including local Portland boys, the New Yorkers.  Their very British poppy sounding  "Show Me The Way To Love" was attempting to break nationally 50 years ago, but it would be several years before a name change to the Hudson Brothers gained them widespread fame as music and TV stars.  
Note that another up and coming star is the top chart debut here at #29.  Following their 1967 breakthrough, "Live," Emitt Rhodes and the Merry-Go-Round try for more success with "Come Ride, Come Ride." 

Although these aren't by any means the best way to represent them, I have to admit it is pretty cool to see two of my favorite '70's artists represented here on this 1968 chart.

Emitt Rhodes won me over with his 1971 self-titled LP ... so much so that I sought out all of his earlier work.  And I found The Hudson Brothers especially entertaining when they broke thru in the mid-'70's ... but this lame attempt at fake British accents on an otherwise not all-that-bad tune is almost embarrassing.  They were SO much more talented than this.

Some odd selections near the top of the list on this week's Oregon chart ... The Rolling Stones had the former #1 Record with "She's A Rainbow" (not typically considered to be one of their bigger hits) ... and Ed Ames is up at #2 with "Who Will Answer" ... again, not two songs you would typically associate with one another.

We're only three weeks into our cross-country journey and we've already had our third different #1 Record as this week The Lemon Pipers make a huge leap to #1 (from #6 the week before.)  We've also now seen a couple of examples of Lulu's "Best Of Both Worlds" in or near The Top Ten ... quite surprising for a song that barely made The Top 40 nationally.  (Could you find two better examples of chart diversity than this?  "Green Tambourine" grabs you immediately with its infectious grip of the latest Top 40 trend ... Bubble Gum Music ... while "Best Of Both Worlds" is an almost over-the-top, James Bond-type full production theme that takes advantage of Lulu's powerful, booming voice in ways that her recent #1 Hit "To Sir With Love" barely hinted at ... and not necessarily in a good way!)

John Fred's "Judy In Disguise" is about to fall out of The Top 20 after just topping the chart in Virginia a couple of weeks ago ... more evidence of how a record's overall chart position could be affected by the momentum it received in major markets across the country.  (A record could be Top Ten in 30 major cities ... but if it wasn't Top Ten in MOST of them at the same time, it probably didn't fare that well on the charts, despite being proven a bonafide hit from coast to coast.)

"It's A Gas" is a HORRIBLE rip-off of The Hombres' own earlier hit "Let It Out" ... (I was hoping they had cut a version of the Alfred E. Newman / Mad Magazine flexi-disc ... but Nooooo!) ... so I'm going with "Some Velvet Morning" by Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood as MY pick-hit for the week ... not because it's one of my favorites ... (in fact, it just may be my LEAST favorite by them!) ... but because over the years I have heard from SO many readers out there who absolutely LOVE this song.  (So this one's for YOU!!!)

This Week in 1968:

1/14/68:  Vanilla Fudge performs “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” on The Ed Sullivan Show (Harvey Kubernik)


1/20/68:  Bob Dylan and The Band debut at Carnegie Hall as part of a Woody Guthrie tribute.  (Harvey Kubernik)