As great as the songs listed below are, they either weren't good enough to be true #1 hits on the Billboard Pop Charts, or there were other songs at #1 and #2 that deserved to be there more. Or the factors that be were just plain wrong. Seeing as to how readers didn't care much when I gave them the actual #1 hits in my previous blog about #2 hits, I've decided to provide the least amount of information possible! So you can complain! Unlike some other blogs around here, I give the people what they want!
24) Can't Smile Without You -- Barry Manilow: I will never come to terms with the idea that Barry Manilow albums had a symbol next to them denoting "portions may offend sensitive listeners" when his records were offered through those six-for-a-penny record clubs. Did he have Tourette's?
22) Lay Down Sally -- Eric Clapton: At Classic Rock Radio, this was a #1 in spirit. Insider tip: the best way to hear this song is in a hall with a natural echo. It makes the rhythm sound like horses clopping through the auditorium. Nobody could dance to it. Hire me to DJ your next wedding!
20) Tell Me Something Good -- Rufus featuring Chaka Khan: Honestly, I'm a little surprised this did so well. It's a great song, don't get me wrong. But there are plenty of great songs that don't make the charts. This one is slow and funky and weird and just not what my golden ears would figure for mass consumption.
18) Wildfire -- Michael Murphey: It was an Adult Contemporary #1 hit, which gives you some idea just how smooth it is. I've seen people get annoyed with this song, but unless you live somewhere where the radio is too high on the shelf for you to reach, I think you can control your own destiny!
16) Fire and Rain -- James Taylor: Well, "Sweet Baby James," the song, didn't even make the Top 40. But this staple of campfire singers, hippie school psychologists and youth group counselors the world over surely deserved to be #1. It has both fire and rain covered. Edwin Starr's "War" went to #1 and he didn't even think to include the "and Peace" part!
14) The Devil Went Down To Georgia -- The Charlie Daniels Band: I was always convinced the only reason people liked this song was to hear the words "son of a bitch" come over the radio. But maybe not. I was little.
12) Touch Me -- The Doors: I remember thinking this song was a #1 hit in 1981! And in 1989! And in…you get the idea. If you listened to classic rock radio in the 1980s for even a few minutes, you came away thinking, "Touch Me," "All Right Now" by Free (a #4 hit in 1970) and "Layla" were all #1 hits for a full decade. I remember it as the years when time stood still.
10) The Safety Dance -- Men Without Hats: The Doroschuk Brothers Band were techno before techno was cool? Try before anyone knew what techno was, period.
8) Pleasant Valley Sunday -- Monkees: All things considered #3 isn't a bad placing. The pop Svengali overlooking the project (morning, Mr. Kirshner!) was probably frustrated. We all know the band were, but for completely opposite reasons.
6) Peggy Sue -- Buddy Holly: With his second charting single, after the #1 hit "That'll Be the Day," Buddy Holly was quickly losing his chart appeal. "Oh, Boy!" would be his last top 10 single at #10. And he didn't even get a posthumous bump to #1 after "The Day The Music Died." He might've had to wait until about 1972 and have a hit with "My Dong-A-Long" had he lived.
4) Let 'Em In -- Paul McCartney and Wings: "Silly Love Songs" took #1 and this follow-up single settled for #3. Maybe were people were a little exhausted. The Adult Contemporary crowd didn't feel that way, putting both songs at #1. But that crowd is too busy working to make any real judgements.
2) My Life -- Billy Joel: Once the theme for Bosom Buddies, a sitcom so great it only lasted two seasons and launched the career of Peter Scolari, "My Life" was also a radio hit that if you were alive in 1978 you probably heard a thousand times on the AM radio. As a moderately terrible piano player, I am often scoffed at for not knowing how to play this song. Because it's what the people want to hear.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Elvis Presley
- Elvis Presley