Monday, March 31, 2014

Mar 29th, 2014 - JR - 1973

Rockin' Remnants

Rockin' Remnants is broadcast from WVBR-FM Ithaca. Check out our 
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Date:  Mar 29th, 2014

Host:  JR

Feature: 1973

It’s the great Billboard Hot 100 sounds of March, 1973! Hear the scintillating chart sounds of The O’Jays, The Temptations, Lou Reed, Johnny Nash, Four Tops, and lesser lights like Deodato, Vicki Lawrence, Gallery and Loudon Wainright III in the Top 40 this week! Also, chart debuts this week from The Blue Ridge Rangers, Gunhill Road, The J. Geils Band and Billy Preston.  This week for the Birthday Calendar we pay tribute to three all time greats: Aretha Franklin, Elton John and Diana Ross.

Birthday Calendar

March 25th – Aretha Franklin, 72

                       Elton John (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight), 67

March 26th – Diana Ross (born Diane Earle), 70

 [songs in bold are from the spotlight date of 3-29-73;
 yellow song titles are YouTube links; songs with * were requests.  All chart information comes from the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles, 11th edition.


Killing Me Softly With His Song – Roberta Flack – BB Hot 100 #1, 5 weeks

The Billboard #1 single of 1973!  This was second year in a row for Ms. Flack (“The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”, 1972).

Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001) – Deodato – BB Hot 100 #2

Is this the third oldest cover version ever?  Maybe.  Written by classical composer Richard Strauss in 1896 performed by Brazilian keyboardist Eumir Deodato.


Neither One Of Us (Wants To Be The First To Say Goodbye) – Gladys Knight & The Pips – BB Hot 100 #3

Love Train The O’Jays – BB Hot 100 #4

The first #1 single for the Philadelphia International imprint of producers Kenny Gamble  and Leon Huff.  There were more to follow.


Ain’t No Woman (Like The One I’ve Got) – Four Tops – BB Hot 100 #5

After leaving Motown in the early 70’s, the Four Tops scored 4 Top 40 singles on ABC/Dunhill for producers Dennis Lambert, Brian Potter and Steve Barri (Grass Roots).


TheNight The Lights Went Out in Georgia Vicki Lawrence – BB Hot 100 #10

This sly tale of murder and deception in the Deep South was written by Bobby Russell, who was married to Ms. Lawrence at the time.

Dueling Banjos (45 version) – Eric Weissberg and Steve Mandell – BB Hot 100 #12

From the movie Deliverance starring Burt Reynolds and Jon Voigt, this 45 was originally credited to just Deliverance before any artist information was revealed. This original promo 45 version not available on CD.


Dead Skunk – Loudon Wainwright III – BB Hot 100 #16

This novelty tune gave a breath of fresh air to the Hot 100 in the Spring of ’73, and peaked this week.  Unfortunately, Loudon was never able to follow this up and never charted another single on the Hot 100.

Masterpiece(45 version)The Temptations – BB Hot 100 #18

One of producer Norman Whitfield’s best and most dramatic productions for The Tempts, the 45 version trimmed over 9 minutes from the LP version.  Both versions are available on CD.

Stir It Up (45 remix version) – Johnny Nash – BB Hot 100 #19

 Written by Bob Marley, the original 45 version was released in 1972 and DNC.  On re-release in 1973, the remix version peaked at Hot 100 #12.  This remix version is only available on 45 vinyl and features a percussion and instrumental overdub not on the original.


HummingbirdSeals & Crofts – BB Hot 100 #20

 The second 45 released on Warner Bros. Records by this Texas due peaked on the Hot 100 this week.

Cisco KidWar – BB Hot 100 #21

Peaceful – Helen Reddy – BB Hot 100 #26

Written by Kenny Rankin, this version peaked at Hot 100 #12.  Kenny’s version, released on Mercury Records, DNC.


Big City Miss Ruth Ann – Gallery – BB Hot 100 #27

The last chart gasp for this Detroit Band (“Nice To Be With You”, “I Believe In Music), peaked at Hot 100 #23 on the Sussex Records label.

7pm (Birthday Calendar)

“One Step Ahead”– Aretha, 1965

 One of her last releases on  Columbia Records charted at Bubbling Under at #119.


“Lady Samantha /It’s Me That You Need” – Elton, 1969

First released in the U.S. on Congress Records DNC.  Second 45 release in the U.K. on DJM also DNC.  Young Elton and Bernie Taupin pictured below.


“I Want A Guy” – The Supremes, 1961

The first single release by The Supremes failed to chart.  Motown Chairman Berry Gordy, Jr. took them in a different direction after this, although it would take 3 years to find the right formula for chart success.


“I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)” – Aretha, 1967

Her first 45 release on Atlantic Records, produced by Jerry Wexler with The Muscle Shoals Sound.  Peaked at Hot 100 #9.

“Friends” – Elton, 1971

Title track from the movie of same name.  Elton and Bernie did the whole soundtrack, originally released on Paramount Records.


“You Can’t Hurry Love” – The Supremes, 1966

#1 on the Hot 100 for two weeks on September 10th.

“Border Song (Holy Moses)” – Aretha, 1970

This is a cover of Elton’s debut 45 on the Hot 100.  Peaked at #37, 55 spots higher than Elton (#92).

*”Country Comfort” – Elton, 1971

From Elton’s 2nd U.S. LP Tumbleweed Connection.  Also covered by Rod Stewart on his LP Gasoline Alley.

“The Happening” – The Supremes, 1967

Title track of the movie of the same name starring Anthony Quinn, Michael Parks and George Maharis.


“The House That Jack Built” – Aretha, 1968

Peaked at Hot 100 #6, with the flip side “I Say A Little Prayer” also charting at #10.

*“Candle In The Wind” – Elton, 1973

The original version of this was an LP track from Goodbye Yellow Brick Road as a tribute to Marilyn Monroe.  First release as a 45 was a live version recorded in Australia and peaked at Hot 100 #6 in 1987.  The second release as a 45 was a tribute to Princess Diana and titled “Candle In The Wind 1997”, where it was #1 for 14 weeks and according to Whitburn’s Top Pop Singles it is the biggest selling single of all time.

“Someday We’ll Be Together” – Diana Ross And The Supremes, 1969

The last 45 recorded by Miss Ross with The Supremes peaked at Hot 100 #1 on December 27th for 1 week.

“Rock Steady” – Aretha, 1971


“Part Time Love” – Elton, 1979

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Diana Ross, 1970

Diana’s second solo 45 release peaked at Hot 100 #1 on September 19th for 3 weeks.

“Spanish Harlem” – Aretha, 1971

This Ben E. King cover version peaked at Hot 100 #2, 8 spots higher than the original version.

“I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues” – Elton, 1983

After a fallow period of record sales in the early 80’s, Elton rebounded with this ballad, which peaked at Hot 100 #4 and features Stevie Wonder on harmonica.


“I’m Coming Out” – Diana Ross, 1980

Produced by legendary soul producer Nile Rodgers (Chic, David Bowie, Duran Duran, Madonna).


Walk On The Wild Side (45 version) – Lou Reed – BB Hot 100 #31

The only charting 45 for the late Lou Reed peaked at Hot 100 #16. This version omits some “dirty” lyrics (“She never lost her head…”) and is only available on 45 vinyl.


StuckIn The Middle With You – Stealers Wheel – BB Hot 100 #34

The late Gerry Rafferty and Joe Egan were the men behind this Scottish band.  Peaked at Hot 100 #6.  Enjoyed a revival in the move Reservoir Dogs in 1992.

DriftAway – Dobie Gray – BB Hot 100 #36

Dobie only had a handful of charting singles in a 30 year chart career, but he really made them count, especially this one, which nowadays is in the rock and roll anthem stratosphere.  This version peaked at Hot 100 #5, and a cover version duet with Uncle Kracker peaked at #9 in 2003.  “Give me the beat, boys and free my soul, I want to get lost in your Rock and Roll, and Drift Away”.  Timeless.


One Less Set Of Footsteps – Jim Croce – BB Hot 100 #37

Chart Debuts

Back When My Hair Was Short – Gunhill Road– BB Hot 100 #97

The only Top 40 hit for this trio peaked at #40 on the Hot 100, but received a lot of local airplay here in Ithaca in 1973.  For more info on this band and this song, click on link below:


Give It To Me (45 edited version) – J. Geils Band – BB Hot 100 #98


Will ItGo Round In Circles – Billy Preston – BB Hot 100 #99

Despite low chart debuts, both these tunes rocked into the Top 40: J. Geils peaked at #30 and Billy Preston all the way to the top of the Hot 100 on 7/7/1973 for 2 weeks!

More Chart Hits from 03/29/1973

I’m Doing Fine Now – New York City – BB Hot 100 #58

Another stellar soul production from Thom Bell peaked at Hot 100 #17.


Love Is What You Make ItThe Grass Roots – BB Hot 100 #61

One of the last charting singles for this CA band, peaked at Hot 100 #55, but again received a lot of local airplay back in the day when that made a national flop a local hit!

Magic Woman Touch – The Hollies – BB Hot 100 #66

The only Hollies single to feature Mikael Rickfors, the Scandanavian singer who replaced Allen Clarke.  After a one year hiatus, Clarke returned in 1974.  Peaked at Hot 100 #60.


Frankenstein – Edgar Winter Group – BB Hot 100 #78

Another low debuting single that made it to #1, 5/26/1973, 1 week.  Dan Hartman and Ronnie Montrose were members of the band.

Next week: JS, feature 1964