Thursday, August 31, 2023

#TBT - The Name Game by Shirley Ellis


From my childhood way back in 1965 comes "The Name Game" by singer Shirley Ellis. We used to have this 45 on the old Congress label back in the day. My late sister and her friend used to love to sing this and substitute names of people they knew at the end of the song. This was a real long time ago... what almost 60 years now.

One thing I liked about "The Name Game" 45 was the killer B-side of that record. The song title was "Whisper To Me Wind". This could have also been a hit back in the day... though I never recall any radio station playing the song.

Shirley Ellis' real name was Shirley Marie O'Garra. She was born in 1929 and lived to 2005. During her career Shirley had three major Billboard Hot 100 hits. The first was "The Nitty Gritty" which came out in 1963 and topped off at the #8 position in October of that year. Her next hit single was "The Name Game" which peaked at #3, followed by "The Clapping Song (Clap Pat, Clap Slap)" which went to #8. Shirley Ellis had a total of 14 charted singles that appeared on the U.S. as well as the U.K. charts.

Check this playlist I created on Spotify featuring Shirley Ellis' music. The playlist tracks should play in full if you have a Spotify subscription.

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Elvis Presley - Are You Lonesome Tonight? | I Gotta Know

Throwback Thursday - 45 RPM Heaven

Much has been written about "The King of Rock n Roll", ELVIS PRESLEY. This little post on my music corner of nowhere is just another cog to add to that huge, growing wheel, more than 46 years ago today.

Elvis Presley passed away on August 16, 1977. He left a long musical legacy of hundreds of memorable singles and record albums, all of which have been brought up to date in the digital age when you can stream just about anything online.

One of the very first records I was exposed to in the rock n roll genre came very early in my life, probably before I was five years old. My Dad used to have a friend who ran a vending machine business. Among his many vending machines were jukeboxes that he loaned out to restaurants and other eating places. Periodically he would have to change out the records contained in the jukeboxes. Since he was a friend of my Dad, we would end up with dozens of old 45s that Dad brought home. How cool was that?

One of the first records I remember getting was Elvis Presley's single "Are You Lonesome Tonight" with "I Gotta Know" on the B-side. I think my Mom first played the record when we got it. She fell in love with the broken hearted ballad that was the featured A-side of the record. The song was one of several Elvis singles that went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

As a kid I found the other side of the record to be much better. "I Gotta Know" was an upbeat song, more to my early rock n roll liking of faster tunes. So I played that side of the record more than the A-side which my Mom loved. 

That all said, both "Are You Lonesome Tonight" and "I Gotta Know" both became radio hits, with "Lonesome" as previously stated peaking at #1 and "I Gotta Know" peaking at #20 on the Hot 100.

I love 45 rpm records, especially in the old days when both sides of a 45 could become hits. DJs had more flexibility in those days to flip a record over and figure that hey, the other side is just as good as the A-side being pushed by the record company.

The original 45 was on the black RCA label featuring Nipper the dog looking into the old gramophone record player. What a classic label and symbol. Sadly I no longer have that original 45.

Today "Are You Lonesome Tonight" and "I Gotta Know" exist on CD or a digital playlist like I have at. Spotify.

"Are You Lonesome Tonight" and "I Gotta Know" appear on the CD Elvis Golden Records Volume 3.

You can listen to both songs on my Digital 45 playlist on Spotify.

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Rich Men North of Richmond - Oliver Anthony


"Rich Men North of Richmond" is a rootsy, blue-collar song that came out of nowhere to become a huge viral video hit for its author and singer Oliver Anthony. Apparently this guy just does some home made recordings and this one has resonated a lot... so much that it debut at #1 on my country music chart. The song is available for streaming on various platforms as well as digital purchase on Amazon and iTunes.

"Rich Men North of Richmond" also tops the iTunes Top 100 and the iTunes Country Charts. Oliver Anthony's other songs are also charting on iTunes including "Ain't Gotta Dollar" which chimes in at #10 on my country chart. Check that out below:

The Country 5 + 5 Chart

As of August 15, 2023.

TW                TitleArtistLR
1Rich Men North of RichmondOliver Anthony Music     new
2Try That In A Small TownJason Aldean1
3Need A FavorJelly Roll2
4When I DieFanny Lumsden4
5Fast CarLuke Combs5
6Bury Me In GeorgiaKane Brown7
7White HorseChris Stapleton9
8Save Me The TroubleDan + Shay3
9Save Me (featuring Lainey Wilson)      Jelly Roll6
10Ain't Gotta DollarOliver Anthony Musicnew

You can listen to all ten of the Country 5 + 5 hits on Spotify.

Sunday, August 6, 2023

Try That In A Small Town


Jason Aldean Tops the Current Top 20, Country 5 + 5, Billboard's Hot 100 and More

Jason Aldean tops Mel's Current Top 20 with his high profile hit, "Try That in a Small Town." The track has been the #1 best seller on iTunes for the past few weeks, and topped the Billboard Hot 100 onTuesday for the week of August 1. I would be thrilled to see if "Try That in a Small Town" can hold on to #1 for a few more weeks, especially on the Hot 100 chart.

Here are this week's Current Top 20 hits as posted on August 4, 2023.

TW                      TitleArtistLW
 1Try That In A Small TownJason Aldean3
 2When I DieFanny Lumsden1
 3I Can See You (Taylor's Version)Taylor Swift5
 4VampireOlivia Rodrigo4
 5Heavenly Kind of State of MindLewis Capaldi2
 6Need A FavorJelly Roll7
 7Fast CarLuke Combs8
 8CurtainsEd Sheeran6
 9Loving YouCannons10
10Island in the Sun (feat. American Authors)     Smallpools11
11American Flags (with Adam Calhoun)Tom MacDonald19
12Save Me (with Lainey Wilson)Jelly Roll9
13Silver FishDengue Fever15
14A Beautiful GameEd Sheeran14
15I Won't Back DownGoo Goo Dolls & O.A.R.16
16Resolution/RevolutionThe Linda Lindasnew
17Save Me The TroubleDan + Shay20
18Until I Found You (Em Beihold Version)Stephen Sanchez & Em Beihold  12
19Karma / Karma (featuring Ice Spice)Taylor Swift13
20Barbie Girl (Tiësto Remix)Aqua + Tiëstonew

Jason Aldean and his #1 hit video.

The Country 5 + 5
As of August 1, 2023.

TW               Tit          leArtistLR
1Try That In A Small TownJason Aldean2
2Need A FavorJelly Roll3
3When I DieFanny Lumsden        1
4Save Me The TroubleDan + Shay6
5On The Boat AgainJake Owen5
6Save Me (featuring Lainey Wilson)       Jelly Roll4
7Fast CarLuke Combs7
8Bury Me In GeorgiaKane Brown9
9Good Lookin'Dixon Dallas8
10World on FireNate Smithnew

Listen to the Current Top 20 on Spotify.

Awaiting: New Dawn by Fanny Lumsden from Bandcamp.

Also waiting from Bandcamp: Reissue of The Connells' 1993 album Ring with bonus tracks.

Listen to the Country 5 + 5 on Spotify.

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Mel’s Top 100 Hits of 1969

 Get Back is My Favorite Song of 1969

I was only 12 back in 1969. The biggest event of that year was the manned landing on the moon by Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins. 

Music wise 1969 was another year of great rock and pop music that wrapped the decade of the 1960s up. We had some great big classic hits by The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Creedence Clearwater Revival and many others.

In retrospect my favorite songs from 1969 are those by The Beatles. My #1 song of the year is "Get Back" and I list it with its 45 rpm B-side "Don't Let Me Down". My #2 song of the year is another Beatles song that was never released as a single. It is George Harrison's greatest song of all time... "Here Comes The Sun" from the Abbey Road album. He also showed up with The Beatles at #12 with "Something". John Lennon had Beatles tracks on my top 100 with "The Ballad of John & Yoko" at #9, "Come Together" at #21 and his first solo track, "Give Peace a Chance" at #58, which is shown on the record's label at John Lennon / The Plastic Ono Band. 

The Rolling Stones had a couple of big hits in 1969, with my favorite being "Honky Tonk Woman" at #3 for the year.

Several songs in my Top 100 of 1969 were not in the Billboard Top 100 of 1969. They include It's a Beautiful Day's "White Bird" at #4, The Youngbloods' "Get Together" at #11 (originally released in 1967), and "The Boxer" and "Baby Driver" 45 from Simon & Garfunkel. Several other songs that did not score high enough on the year end Billboard Chart of 1969 made this chart.

All of the songs on this chart can be streamed on my Spotify playlist. The Top 100 Hits of 1969 list is posted below. Enjoy!

1Get Back / Don't Let Me DownThe Beatles
2Here Comes The SunThe Beatles
3Honky Tonk WomenThe Rolling Stones
4White BirdIt's A Beautiful Day
5In the Year 2525Zager & Evans
6OneThree Dog Night
7Crimson and Clover (album version)Tommy James and the Shondells
8Bad Moon Rising / LodiCreedence Clearwater Revival
9The Ballad of John & Yoko / Old Brown ShoeThe Beatles
10Time of the SeasonThe Zombies
11Get TogetherThe Youngbloods
12SomethingThe Beatles
13Everyday PeopleSly and the Family Stone
14Fortunate Son / Down on the CornerCreedence Clearwater Revival
15DizzyTommy Roe
16HairThe Cowsills
17Crystal Blue PersuasionTommy James and the Shondells
18Green River / CommotionCreedence Clearwater Revival
19Eli's ComingThree Dog Night
20I Heard It Through the GrapevineMarvin Gaye
21Come TogetherThe Beatles
22Proud Mary / Born on the BayouCreedence Clearwater Revival
23Love (Can Make You Happy)Mercy
24Suspicious MindsElvis Presley
25Put a Little Love in Your HeartJackie DeShannon
26Someday, We'll Be TogetherDiana Ross & The Supremes
27It's Your ThingThe Isley Brothers
28Sugar, SugarThe Archies
29These EyesThe Guess Who
30Sympathy for the DevilThe Rolling Stones
31Hawaii Five-OThe Ventures
32Touch MeThe Doors
33Lay Lady LayBob Dylan
34Easy to Be HardThree Dog Night
35Hot Fun in the SummertimeSly and the Family Stone
36Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him GoodbyeSteam
37A Boy Named SueJohnny Cash
38Soul DeepThe Box Tops
39Time Is TightBooker T. & the M.G.'s
40More Today Than YesterdaySpiral Starecase
41Sugar on SundayThe Clique
42Spinning WheelBlood, Sweat & Tears
43The Boxer / Baby DriverSimon & Garfunkel
44Whole Lotta LoveLed Zeppelin
45Marakesh Express / Helplessly HopingCrosby, Stills & Nash
47LaughingThe Guess Who
48I'd Wait a Million YearsThe Grass Roots
49I Can Hear MusicThe Beach Boys
50My Cherie AmourStevie Wonder
51What Does It Take (To Win Your Love)Jr. Walker & The All Stars
52You've Made Me So Very HappyBlood, Sweat & Tears
53You Showed MeThe Turtles
54Smile a Little Smile for MeThe Flying Machine
55TracesClassics IV
56Ramblin' Gamblin' ManBob Seger System
57Tell All The PeopleThe Doors
58Give Peace A ChanceJohn Lennon & the Plastic Ono Band
59Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to TownKenny Rogers and The First Edition
60Aquarius/Let the Sunshine InThe 5th Dimension
61Backfield in MotionMel and Tim
62I Can't Get Next to YouThe Temptations
63Wishful SinfulThe Doors
64Build Me Up ButtercupThe Foundations
65This Magic MomentJay and the Americans
66Maxwell's Silver HammerThe Beatles
67In the GhettoElvis Presley
68Everybody's Talkin'Harry Nilsson
69Baby It's YouSmith
70The River is WideThe Grass Roots
71Too Busy Thinking About My BabyMarvin Gaye
72Good Morning StarshineOliver
73Gimme Gimme Good Lovin'Crazy Elephant
74Wedding Bell BluesThe 5th Dimension
75It's Getting BetterMama Cass Elliot
76Sweet CarolineNeil Diamond
77Games People PlayJoe South
78Baby, Baby Don't CryThe Miracles
79Take A Letter MariaR.B. Greaves
80IsraelitesDesmond Decker & The Aces
81Jingle JangleThe Archies
82GalvestonGlen Campbell
83UndunThe Guess Who
84Octopus's GardenThe Beatles
85GoodbyeMary Hopkin
86I'm Gonna Make You Love MeThe Supremes & The Temptations
87Bella LindaThe Grass Roots
88That's the Way Love IsMarvin Gaye
89Hooked on a FeelingB.J. Thomas
90This Girl Is a Woman NowGary Puckett & The Union Gap
91Only The Strong SurviveJerry Butler
92Ruben JamesKenny Rogers and The First Edition
93Time MachineGrand Funk Railroad
94Try A Little TendernessThree Dog Night
95Baby, I Love YouAndy Kim
96Mr. Sun, Mr. MoonPaul Revere & the Raiders
97Can I Change My MindTyronne Davis
98GitarzanRay Stevens
99Grazing in the GrassThe Friends of Distinction
100Keem-O-SabeElectric Indian