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Posted by: In: Other 15 May 2021 Comments: 0


680-Gilbert Becaud-A Little Love and Understanding.

1975-Number 10 single.

Best Bit-At 2.57.Bon Chanson.

Gilbert Becaud was born Francois Gilbert Leopold Silly on 24th October, 1927, in Toulon, France, he died 18th December, 2001.Gilbert Becaud is one of France’s most celebrate artists, during his 53 year career he was a singer, composer, pianist, and actor, because of his energetic on stage performances, he earned the nickname ‘Monsieur 100,000 Volts.’While touring in 1953 as a pianist with the singer and actor Jacques Pills (1906-1970,) he was introduced to Edith Piaf (1915-1963) (see also best songs 178) the then wife of Pills, and on her recommendation he took up singing. Between 1953-1999 he recorded 23 studio Albums, and 15 live Albums, which were all recorded at his favourite venue, the Paris Olympia.He also wrote musicals, and film soundtracks, and as an actor appeared in seven films, and a French television series in 1995.

Gilbert Becaud had great success as a songwriter, his first hit in the English speaking world was Jane Morgan’s cover of ‘Le Jour la Pluie Viendra,’ as ‘The Days the Rain Came,’ (1958 UK Number 1 single) with English lyrics by Carl Sigman. Other notable songs Becaud wrote include,one of the biggest selling singles in French history,’Et Maintenant, which when given English lyrics once again by Carl Sigman has become one of the most covered songs in Pop music history. He also co-wrote with Neil Diamond, two of his best known songs, ‘Love on the Rocks,’ from ‘The Jazz Singer,’ and ‘September Morn.’

‘A Little Love and Understanding’ is Gilbert Becaud’s only international hit as a singer, as well as going top 10 in the UK, it spent three weeks at Number 1 in Australia.

‘Each night my voice happens to sneak through your transistor radio, I’m just a secret you can keep, and no one ever needs to know.

Posted by: In: Other 15 May 2021 Comments: 0


681-Ice Cube-It Was a Good Day.

1993-Number 27 single.

Best Bit-At 4.18.We all have our own idea of the perfect day, this is Ice Cube’s.

Ice Cube was born O’Shea Jackson on June 15th, 1969, in Los Angeles, California, United States.Evidently his stage name has nothing to do with him trying to portray a ‘cool’ gangster persona, Ice Cube explained that it was down to his elder brother,’He threatened to slam me into a freezer, and pull me out when I was an ice cube, I just started using that name, and it just caught on.’In 1987 he formed one of Rap music’s most influential groups N.W.A. with Eazy-E, and Dr.Dre (see also best songs 128 and 564,) he left in 1989 to start his solo career. To date he has released 10 solo studio Albums,’The Predator’ from where this track first appeared, gave him his only Number 1 Album on the ‘Billboard 200 Album chart’ in 1992.

‘It Was a Good Day heavily samples the song ‘Footsteps in the Dark,’ a 1977 song by The Isley Brothers (see also best songs 823-382 and 176) from their Album ‘Go For Your Guns’. The song has been covered and sampled by many other artists throughout the years, probably first by the American Gangsta Rap group ‘Compton’s Most Wanted’ on their 1991 Album ‘Straight Checkn ‘Em,’ calling the song ‘Can I Kill It?’

Ice Cube has explained his inspiration behind the songs lyrics.’I was at the top of the rap game. It was the summer of ’92, and I was in a hotel room, really in a state of euphoria. I had all the money I had dreamed of. I was in a good frame of mind, and I remember thinking,’Okay, there’s been the riots, people know how I will deal with that, that’s a given, but I rap all this gangsta stuff, what about all the good days I had?’

‘Hey wait, wait a minute fool, stop the s…, what the f… am I thinking about.’

Posted by: In: Other 13 May 2021 Comments: 0


682-Stevie Wonder-Boogie On Reggae Woman.

1975-Number 12 single.

Best Bit-At 1.51. We all have that fantasy of seeing you ‘In the raw under the stars above,’ but I bet Stevie wishes for it even more.’

Stevland Hardaway Morris (originally Judkins) was born on May 13th, 1950, in Saginaw, Michigan, United States. He was born six weeks premature which, along with the oxygen-rich atmosphere in the hospital incubator, resulted in ‘retinopathy of prematurity,’a condition in which the growth of the eyes is aborted, and causes the retinas to detach, resulting in blindness.

‘Boogie On Reggae Woman’ is taken from Stevie Wonder’s (see also best songs 920-843-834-570-503-366-205-152 and 65) 17th studio Album, and 19th overall,’Fulfillingness’ First Finale,’ and he was still only 23 years old. Along with his previous release ‘Innervisions’ (1973,) and future release ‘Songs in the Key of Life’ (1976,) the three Albums are considered as his ‘classic period.’By 1975 Wonder had won two consecutive ‘Grammy Awards’ for Album of the year. In 1976 when Paul Simon won Album of the year for ‘Still Crazy After All These Years,’ he said,’I’d like to thank Stevie Wonder, who didn’t make an Album this year.’

On ‘Boogie On Reggae Woman’ Stevie plays every instrument, with the exception of the congas. As well as the vocals, he plays the Fender Rhodes piano, harmonica, drums, and Moog bass. As well as writing the song, he also co-produced it with Robert Margouleff, and Malcolm Cecil.The congas were played by Rocky Dzidzornu (1935-1993,) his many credits include his conga drumming on The Rolling Stones ‘Sympathy for the Devil.’

‘I’d like to see both of us fall deeply in love, yeah, I’d like to see you in the raw under the stars above.’

Posted by: In: Other 13 May 2021 Comments: 0


683-Max Romeo-Wet Dream.

1969-Number 10 single.

Best Bit-At 1.52. A rough guide to ‘The birds and the bees.’

Max Romeo was born Maxwell Livingston Smith on November 24th, 1944, in St. D’Acre, St. Ann, Jamaica. He first found success as one third of the Jamaican trio ‘The Emotions,’ alongside Lloyd Shakespear, and Kenneth Knight, they had hits locally between 1965-1968, until he left to start a solo career. From 1969 to the present day he has released 28 studio Albums, and 73 singles, of which ‘Wet Dream’ is his only international hit. His subject matter over the years has covered sexual, political, and religion.

‘Wet Dream’ was one of the very first Reggae songs to come to the attention of the wider general public. Max Romeo who wrote the lyrics, initially offered them to the Jamaican artist Derrick Morgan, but he shied away from their suggestive nature, as did John Holt, and Slim Smith. Morgan using different lyrics released the track ‘Hold You Jack,’ while Romeo using the same melody (riddim) was persuaded by the songs producers Harry Robinson, and Junior Smith to record the song himself, only Romeo is officially credited with writing the song.

‘Wet Dream’ was banned by the media due to it’s explicit sexual nature. When Radio 1 were doing the chart countdown the DJ’s were instructed to refer to the song as ‘A record by Max Romeo,’ with no mention of the songs title. Initially in order to try to get the song played Romeo said the song was about ‘A leaky roof,’ but in 2007 he claimed to have started a ‘sexual revolution,’ asked why he wrote the song he replied,’The devil made me do it.’

‘You in your small corner, I stand in mine.Throw all the punch you want to, I can take them all.’

Posted by: In: Other 11 May 2021 Comments: 0


684-Lionel Richie-Truly.

1982-Number 6 single.

Best Bit-At 2.07.Argentinian footballer Lionel Messi is named after Lionel Richie, you learn something new everyday.

Lionel Richie was born Lionel Brockman Richie Jr. on June 20th, 1949, in Tuskegee, Alabama, United States, he is one of the worlds best selling artists, with sales in excess of 90 million records.Before going solo in 1982 Lionel Richie was a member of the Tamla Motown R&B, and Funk band The Commodores. Richie would share the songwriting with the other band members, and lead vocals with Walter Orange, who joined the band in 1972. Initially The Commodores were known for uptempo Funk songs such as ‘Machine Gun,’ and ‘Brick House,’but would change style for many of their later releases, finding greater success with the Richie written, and sung ballads, including ‘Three Times a Lady.’ and ‘Easy.’

After leaving The Commodores after 14 years, Richie kept on with the same theme, with the release of ‘Truly,’ from his self titled debut Album. The song went to Number 1 on Billboard, and his debut Album provided him with a further two top five singles, in the shape of ‘My Love,’ and ‘You Are.’ As with The Commodores, all the early solo Albums of Lionel Richie were produced by James Anthony Carmichael.Aside from his hits with The Commodores, and as a solo artist, other notable songs he has written include the charity single ‘We Are the World,’ with Michael Jackson, ‘Lady’ which provided Kenny Rogers with a Billboard Number 1 in 1980, and ‘Endless Love,’ the duet with Diana Ross.

‘Because I’m truly, truly in love with you girl, I’m truly head over heels with your love.’

Posted by: In: Other 11 May 2021 Comments: 0


685-Public Domain-Operation Blade (Bass in the Place.)

2000-Number 5 single.

Best Bit-At 0.59.’Everybody in the house make some noise’, and, ‘I want everyone in the house to say ‘Ho.’There’s a couple of crowd-pleasers for you party DJ’s to add to your repertoire.

Public Domain were formed in 1999 in Ayr, Scotland, by Mark Sherry, James Allan, and Alistair MacIssac, they were joined soon after by Mallorca Lee, and David Forbes. MacIssac, Forbes, and Lee have since left, with Neil Skinner joining the lineup. Their genre of music is Electronic, and they can be filed under ‘Happy Hardcore,’ Hard Trance,’ and Acid,’ In the UK they achieved three top 40 singles, in 2001 the follow up to this song ‘Rock Da Funky Beats,’ featuring Chuck D of Public Enemy (see also best songs 578 and 37) reached Number 19, and in late 2001 the double ‘A’ side release ‘Too Many MCs/Let Me Clear My Throat,’ made Number 31.They also released one Album ‘Hard Hop Superstars,’ featuring all four tracks in 2002.

‘Operation Blade’ was co-written, and produced by Sherry, MacIssac, and Allan, it heavily samples the ‘Pump Panel Reconstruction Mix’ of the New Order song ‘Confusion,’ which was featured in the 1998 superhero horror film ‘Blade,’ hence this songs title,’Operation Blade.’ Although members of the band New Order (see also best songs 885 and 619) wrote ‘Confusion,’ only Public Domain are officially credited as this songs writers.

‘Public Domain kickin’ it to you man. Bass in the place, London.’

Posted by: In: Other 09 May 2021 Comments: 0


686-Suzi Quatro-Can the Can.

1973-Number 1 single.

Best Bit-At-2.40. Many Pop stars need to choose a cool stage name in order to appear cool, Suzi Q was born with hers.

Suzi Kay Quatro was born on June 3rd, 1950, in Detroit,Michigan, United States. In 1964 she joined the all girl group ‘The Pleasure Seekers,’ which included two of her sisters, Patti, and Arlene, they released two singles without success.It was Suzi’s brother Michael who recommended her to Mickie Most (1938-2003,) the owner of the ‘RAK’ record label, who introduced her to the songwriters Nicky Chin, and Mike Chapman (see also best songs 860 and 773.)

Suzi Quatro led and others followed, she was the first female bass guitar player, and band front woman, to become a major Rock star, influencing future ladies of Rock, such as Joan Jett, The Runaways, and Girlschool. She has sold in excess of 50 million records worldwide, with her greatest success’ being achieved in Europe, and Australia, but never achieving a solo top 40 hit in the United States, although her 1979 duet with Chris Norman,’Stumblin’ In,’ did reach Number 4 on Billboard.In America she is best known for playing the character ‘Leather Tuscadero,’ in the television sitcom ‘Happy Days.’

Suzi Quartro has had 11 UK top 40 singles, with the first 10 all being co-written by Nicky Chin, and Mike Chapman. Nicky Chin has explained’Can the Can’s’ meaning,”It means something that is pretty impossible, you can’t get one can inside another if they are the same size, so we’re saying,you can’t put your man in the can, if he is out there. and not willing to commit.’

‘Well you call your mamma tiger, and we all know you are lying, and your boyfriend’s name is eagle, and he lives up in the sky.’

Posted by: In: Other 09 May 2021 Comments: 0


687-The Platters-Smoke Gets in Your Eyes.

1958-Number 1 single.

Best Bit-At 0.03.Jerome Kern’s widow disliked The Platters recording so much, she considered taking legal action, she thought the song was ‘Too Rock ‘N Roll.’

‘Smoke Gets in Your Eyes’ was written for the 1933 musical ‘Roberta,’by Jerome Kern (1885-1945) (see also best songs 82,) who provided the melody, and the lyricist Otto Harbach (1873-1963.) The song was first sung in the Broadway show by Tamara Drasin (1905-1943,) and first recorded by Gertrude Niesen (1911-1975.) Four different versions of the song reached the Billboard chart in 1934, with the most successful by Paul Whiteman (1890-1967) getting to Number 1.The song has been recorded by many artists over the years, including hit versions in the UK by Blue Haze (1972-Number 32,) Bryan Ferry (1974-Number 17,) and John Alford (1996-Number 13.)

The version which has become the definitive one is this by The Platters, which topped the charts on Billboard, and in the UK in 1958. The Platters were formed in 1952 in Los Angeles, California,United States. In the 1940’s, and 1950’s Disc Jockeys would call their records ‘platters,’ and that is from where the band took their name.None of the original lineup are still alive, and none of the accepted classic lineup (1955-1959) are either.Between 1953-1967 they achieved 21 top 40 singles on Billboard, including four Number 1’s. After the group began to splinter around 1960, legal battles ensued as past members sought the right to use the name, and a current act still tour to this day keeping the name alive.

‘They asked me how I knew my true love was true,I of course replied, something here inside, cannot be denied.’

Posted by: In: Other 07 May 2021 Comments: 0



1988-Has never been released as a single in the UK.

Best Bit-At 1.10. P.I.X.I.E.S. Surely I have no need to spell out to you how good this song is.

The Pixies were formed in Boston, Massachusettes, United States, in 1986, they were active until 1993, but did reform in 2004.The original lineup was Black Francis (born Charles Thompson) (vocals,) Joey Santiago (lead guitar,) Kim Deal (bass,) and David Lovering (drums.) They are considered one of the most influential acts of the 1990’s, in the field of ‘Alternative Rock,’ being an influence on acts such as Nirvana, Radiohead, and the Smashing Pumpkins. They have released seven studio Albums to date, the latest being ‘Beneath the Eyrie’ in 2019.They have only released 18 singles to date, and have never had a single enter the Billboard Hot 100. In the UK they have had three top 40 hits, with ‘Debaser’ from 1997, being their highest charting song, when peaking at Number 23.

‘Cactus’ is taken from the Pixies 1988 debut Album ‘Surfer Rosa,’ telling the story of a man in prison missing his wife. He wishes she would send him something with her scent on, hence the lyrics,’ Bloody your hands on a cactus tree, wipe it on your dress, and send it to me.Between the second verse and the chorus, the band can be heard chanting ‘P.I.X.I.E.S.,’ this pays homage to one of the band’s heroes, Marc Bolan, who chanted the word ‘T.R.E.X.’ on his song ‘The Groover.’ In 2002 David Bowie covered ‘Cactus’ for his ‘Heathen’ Album, and during the instrumental break he spells out ‘D.A.V.I.D.’

‘Sitting here wishing on a cement floor, just wishing that I had something you wore.’

Posted by: In: Other 07 May 2021 Comments: 0


689-Chris Rea-Road to Hell.

1989-Number 10 single.

Best Bit-At 3.09.Bloody speed cameras, traffic jams, roadworks, and middle lane drivers, he’ll be lucky to make it home for new year, let alone Christmas.

Christopher Anton Rea was born on March 4th, 1951, in Middlesbrough, England. He was a late starter in the world of ‘Pop,’ as he didn’t join his first band ‘Magdalene’ until he was 22 years old, and didn’t release his first solo Album ‘Whatever Happened to Benny Santini?’ until he was 27 years old.He has since released a further 25 Albums, the latest being ‘One Fine Day’ in 2019.He has also achieved 12 top 40 UK hit singles, of which only ‘The Road to Hell’ in it’s edited form (Part 2 only) reached the top 10.

Chris Rea wrote the lyrics to ‘The Road to Hell (Parts 1 & 2’) while feeling frustrated in peak hour traffic on the M25 Motorway.At the start of the song (Part 1) Rea imagines the ghost of his dead mother approaching his vehicle, and warning him he is on ‘The Road to Hell,’ and that he should chose a different path through life. Rea was never in love with the ‘Pop Star’ lifestyle, and all it entailed, and the song is a warning to himself to follow his own dreams, and not those of others.

‘Oh look out world, take a good look what comes down here, you must learn this lesson fast, and learn it well.’