Sunday, May 11, 2014

May 10, 2014 - JR - 1974/Country Story Songs

Rockin' Remnants

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Date:  May 10, 2014
Host:  John Rudan
Feature:  1974 and Country Story Songs


It’s the great Billboard Hot 100 sounds of May 1974... The fad du jour was “streaking”, basically, running through public naked!  And Ray Stevens, master of the novelty record, capitalized on the fad with the #1 record on this date. Also on the chart were 70’s stalwarts like Chicago, Three Dog Night, Grand Funk, The J5, and The O’Jays.
After the Birthday Calendar at 7pm, we’ll end the show with a special feature on “County Story Songs”.
A basic definition of a “story” involves 3 parts: the set up, the confrontation, and the resolution as the final part.
Most songs on this feature made both the BB Hot 100 and Country Charts, including Marty Robbins, Johnny Cash, Charlie Rich, Bobbi Gentry, Jeannie C. Riley, Tom T. Hall, Elvis… and more.

Birthday Calendar

May 5 – Tammy Wynette – born in 1942

May 6 – Bob Seger – age 69

May 7 – Jimmy Ruffin – age 75

May 8 – Rick Nelson – born in 1940

May 9 – Tommy Roe – age 75
            – Billy Joel – age 65

May 10 – Donovan (Leitch) – age 68
            – Dave Mason – age 68
            – Graham Gouldman – age 68
            – Larry Williams – born in 1935


[songs in bold are from the spotlight date of 5-10-1974; yellow song titles are YouTube links; songs with * were requests; all chart information comes from the Billboard Top 100 (for chart dates before/during July 1958) or Billboard Hot 100 (for chart dates during/after Aug 1958) unless otherwise noted]


OPENING THEME:  Good Old Rock ‘n’ Roll – Cat Mother & the All-Night Newsboys (1969, #29, produced by Jimi Hendrix)

The Streak Ray Stevens – BB Hot 100 #1, 3 weeks.  Ray’s chart history seemed to vacillate between serious numbers (“Mr. Businessman”, “Everything Is Beautiful”, “America, Communicate With Me”) and novelty numbers (“Ahab The Arab”, “Gitarzan”, “I Need Your Help Barry Manilow”).  This novelty song was his biggest hit.


Dancing Machine – The Jackson 5 – BB Hot 100 #2.  The last Motown Top 10 single for the J5 before they move to Epic Records, peaked this week at #2.  Inspired by the dance called “The Robot”, which you can see in the video link.

The Entertainer – Marvin Hamlisch – BB Hot 100 #3.  Won the 1974 Best New Artist Grammy Award; from the movie The Sting.

The Loco-Motion (45 version) – Grand Funk – BB Hot 100 #4.  Tumbling down from 2 weeks at #1, the original version was also #1 in 1962 by Little Eva, and #3 in 1988 by Kylie Minogue.


The Show Must Go On (45 version) – Three Dog Night – BB Hot 100 #5.  The first song penned by Leo Sayer to make the Top Ten in the U.S., this peaked at #3.


Band On The Run – Paul McCartney & Wings – BB Hot 100 #7.  Hot 100 #1 on 6/8/1974 for 1 week.

(I’ve Been) Searchin’ For So Long – Chicago – BB Hot 100 #9.  This has a great string arrangement by producer James William Guercio.

MFSB featuring The Three Degrees – TSOP (The Sound Of Philadelphia) – BB Hot 100 #11.  This studio band were the backbone sound of Gamble and Huff’s Philadelphia International label, and played on hits by the O’Jays, Billy Paul, Harold Melvin And The Blue Notes, and The Three Degrees, who sing vocals on this former #1 hit.


For The Love Of Money – The O’Jays – BB Hot 100 #19.  See MFSB above.

You Won’t See Me (45 version) – Anne Murray – BB Hot 100 #41.  This Beatles song, from the LP Rubber Soul, was never released as a single.  This cover version peaked at Hot 100 #8, and features some fine fuzz guitar!


I’m A Train (45 version) – Albert Hammond – BB Hot 100 #47.  Albert’s last Top 40 single peaked at Hot 100 #31.


If You Want To Get To Heaven – Ozark Mountain Daredevils – BB Hot 100 #65.  The debut charting single for this Missouri quartet peaked at Hot 100 #25.


Stand By Your Man – Tammy Wynette, 1969.  Biggest pop hit for “The First Lady Of Country Music” peaked at Hot 100 #19.

Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Man (45 version) – Bob Seger System, 1969.  First charting single in a long career for this Detroit native, was also one of the last 45’s issued on the Capitol Records yellow and orange “swirl label”, famous for most Beatles and Beach Boys releases in the 60’s.


Hold On To My Love – Jimmy Ruffin, 1980.  Older brother of the Temptations David Ruffin, this was his comeback record after a 13 year absence from the Top 40, peaking at #10.  Co-written and produced by Robin Gibb.

Poor Little Fool – Ricky Nelson, 1958.  Historically, the first #1 single on the new Billboard Hot 100 chart on August 4th, 1958.

Palace Guard – Rick Nelson and The Stone Canyon Band, 1973.  Rick’s last entry on the Hot 100, peaked at #65.


Sheila – Tommy Roe, 1962.  Tommy’s first charting single peaked at Hot 100 #1 on 9/1/1962, 2 weeks.

Worse Comes To Worst (45 version) – Billy Joel, 1974.  The second single released off the Piano Man LP, this 45 censored version bleeps out “son of a ____”.  Peaked at Hot 100 #80, but was played a lot locally during the Summer of ’74.


Catch The Wind (45 version) – Donovan, 1965.  Donovan’s first U.S. charting single peaked at Hot 100 #23.  Donovan would find more chart success when he broke out of his “Dylan” folk phase and became a psychedelic flower child.


Only You Know And I Know – Dave Mason, 1970.  Dave’s original version peaked at Hot 100 #42, while a cover version by his buddies Delaney & Bonnie peaked at Hot 100 #20 in 1971.

For Your Love / Heart Full Of Soul – Yardbirds, 1965.  While Graham Gouldman was a rather anonymous member of The Mindbenders, Hotlegs, and 10cc, he made his mark early in the British invasion by penning “Bus Stop”,  “Look Through Any Window”, “No Milk Today”, “Listen People”, and these two pop gems for the Yardbirds, both Top 10 hits in 1965.


Boney Moronie – Larry Williams, 1957.  Larry recorded his early Rock And Roll hits on Specialty Records in New Orleans, and was a big influence on The Beatles, who recorded his “Bad Boy”, “Slow Down” and “Dizzy Miss Lizzy”.

8-9pm Country Story Songs (each song has a video link, in case you missed the story the first time)

The Hanging Tree – Marty Robbins,BB Hot 100 #38, Country #15, 1959

The Three Bells – The Browns, BB Hot 100 #1, Country #1, 1959

Wolverton Mountain – Claude King, BB Hot 100 #6, Country #1, 1962

I’m The Girl (On Wolverton Mountain) – Jo Ann Campbell, #38, 1962


Miller’s Cave – Bobby Bare, BB Hot 100 #33, Country #4, 1964

Almost Persuaded – David Houston, BB Hot 100 #24, Country #1, 1966

Ode To Billy Joe – Bobbie Gentry, Hot 100 #1 Country #17, 1967


Harper Valley PTA – Jeannie C. Riley, BB Hot 100 #1, Country #1, 1968. 
Both Jeannie and Bobbie had that classic country female look of the 60's: big hair, big make-up and short skirts...


Sing Me Back Home – Merle Haggard, DNC, Country #1, 1968

The Carroll County Accident – Porter Wagoner, BB Hot 100 #92, Country #2, 1969


A Boy Named Sue – Johnny Cash, BB Hot 100 #2, Country #1, 1969

July 12th,1939 – Charlie Rich, BB Hot 100 #85, Country #47, 1970

Kentucky Rain – Elvis, BB Hot 100 #16, Country #31, 1970

Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine – Tom T. Hall, DNC BB Hot 100, Country #1, 1972


What’s Your Mama’s Name – Tanya Tucker, BB Hot 100 #86, Country #1, 1973

Wildwood Weed – Jim Stafford, BB Hot 100 #7, Country #57, 1974


Coward Of The County – Kenny Rogers, BB Hot 100 #3, Country #1, 1979

CLOSING THEME:  Sleepwalk – Santo & Johnny (1959, #1 for two weeks)

Host Next Week (May 17):  John Simon

Thanks for tuning in! You can listen to Rockin' Remnants every Saturday night from 6-9pm on WVBR (93.5 FM in Ithaca, NY) or at

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