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Posted by: In: Other 30 May 2021 Comments: 0


665-The Game featuring 50 Cent-Hate It or Love It.

2005-Number 4 single.

Best Bit-At 0.19.’Right, I had to get up in the morning at 10 o’clock at night, half an hour before I went to bed, drink a cup of sulphuric acid, work 29 hours a day down mill, and pay mill owner for permission to come to work, and when we got home, our dad and our mother would kill us and dance about on our graves singing hallelujah, and you try and tell young people of today that…they won’t believe you.’

In this song The Game and 50 Cent reminisce about their childhoods, and the problems they had to overcome in order to be where they are today. This is evidenced in the video, which shows the rappers being represented as kids, growing up in a tough neighbourhood.

The Game was born Jayceon Terrell Taylor on November 29th, 1979, in Compton, California, United States. Both his parents were members of the ‘Crips’ street gang, and he grew up in a primarily ‘Crip’ controlled neighbourhood known as Santana Blocc. Between 2003-2005 he was a member of the Hip-Hop group ‘G-Unit,’ which had been co-founded by 50 Cent in 1999. The Game got his stage name from his grandmother, who would call him ‘Game’ after the 1997 film ‘The Game.’

50 Cent was born Curtis James Jackson on July 6th, 1975, in Queens, New York City, United States.He rose to fame initially when being signed up to work with Eminem (see also best songs 936) and Dr Dre (see also best songs 564-544-482- 128 and 48.) In 2003, he released his debut Album ‘Get Rich or Die Tryin,” which has sold in excess of three million copies worldwide, and was certified nine times platinum in 2020 (see also best songs 189.)

‘Hate It or Love It’ was co-written by The Game, and 50 Cent, along with the songs producers Andre Lyon, and Marcello Valenzano, who work under the name ‘Cool & Dre’, the song also received additional production from Dr Dre. There is also a significant sample used, from the song ‘Rubber Band’, by the Soul/Disco group ‘The Trammps,’ from their 1975 Album ‘The Legendary Zing Album.’

‘Coming up I was confused, my mommy kissing a girl. Confusion occurs comin’ up in the cold world, daddy ain’t around, probably out committin’ felonies.’

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666-Iron Maiden-Can I Play with Madness.

1988-Number 3 single.

Best Bit-At 2.41.As the old saying goes,’It’s heads down and I’ll see you at the other end.’At least I think it’s an old saying, although it is just possible I made it up myself.

Iron Maiden were formed in 1975 in Leyton, London, England by Steve Harris, they have had 11 members come and go, and remain active to this day. The classic lineup would probably be, Steve Harris (bass and keyboards,) Dave Murray (guitars,) Adrian Smith (guitars and keyboards,) Bruce Dickinson (vocals,) Nicko McBrain (drums,) and Janick Gers (guitars.) They have released 16 studio Albums to date, five of which have reached Number 1 in the UK. They have also achieved 34 top 40 UK singles, including their 1990 Number 1,’Bring Your Daughter to the Slaughter.’

‘Can I Play with Madness’is taken from the bands seventh studio Album,’Seventh Son of a Seventh Son,’ from 1988. The Album in the main is a concept Album, with this song being part of it’s theme of the mysticism surrounding the folklore concept of being the ‘seventh sons of a seventh son, it is also the first Iron Maiden Album to include the use of keyboards.

The song was co-written by Smith, Dickinson and Harris, and tells the story of a young man wanting to learn his future from an old prophet with a crystal ball. The young man is suffering from visions and nightmares, and thinks he is going mad, but when the young man thinks that the prophets advise is lies, they become angry with each other.

‘Give me the sense to wonder, to wonder if I’m free. Give me a sense of wonder., to know I can be me.’

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667-Gladys Knight & the Pips-Midnight Train to Georgia.

1973-It was not a hit in the UK, until reissued in 1976, when reaching Number 10.

Best Bit-At 1.27.Back in 1952 when they first formed the band, Gladys Knight was also just a ‘Pip.’

Gladys Knight was born on May 28th, 1944, in Atlanta, Georgia, United States.Along with her brother Merald, sister Brenda, and cousins William Guest (1941-2015) and Eleanor, they formed the first incarnation of the ‘Pips,’ their stage name being inspired by another cousin’s nickname James ‘Pip; Woods. It wasn’t until 1959 that they officially became known as Gladys Knight & the Pips, and were active with personnel changes until 1989, when Gladys Knight pursued a solo career.

‘Midnight Train to Georgia’ was written by Jim Weatherly, who was born on March 17th, 1943, in Pontotoc, Mississippi, United States, he is a Country/Pop singer, as well as a songwriter.Before finding success in music he was a successful American footballer, playing quarterback at the University of Mississippi. Weatherly wrote, and recorded the original version of the song in the Country Music genre, calling it ‘Midnight Plane to Houston.’ Some months later the management of Cissy Houston (Whitney’s mother) got in touch, asking if they could record the song, and change the songs title, as they didn’t want the word ‘Houston’ appearing in both the artists, and song title’s name.Her version appeared on her 1970 Album ‘Presenting Cissy Houston.

‘Gladys Knight & the Pips (see also best songs 214) had already had success with a Jim Weatherly song,, having taken ‘Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye,’) to Number 2 on Billboard in 1972, which was their last single release on Motown records, before joining the Buddah label. ‘Midnight Train to Georgia’ gave them their first Billboard Number 1 single, and has become Gladys Knight’s signature tune, a lovely coincidence as she hails from Georgia.

‘I’d rather live in his world, than live without him in mine.

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668-Siouxie and the Banshees-Peek-a-Boo.

1988-Number 16 single.

Best Bit-At 2.32. On the Beavis and Butt-Head episode ‘Sperm Bank,’ Beavis noted while watching the video, that,’this is music for people who don’t have any friends.

‘Siouxsie Sioux was born Susan Janet Ballion on May 27th, 1957, in London, England, she is one of the most influential artists in Pop Music history, with fellow musicians such as Bono, Robert Smith, Peter Hook, and many many more praising her influence. Siouxie herself has credited watching David Bowie on television, and attending a Sex Pistols Concert, for her own inspiration. Siouxsie Sioux (see also best songs 238) formed Siouxie and the Banshees with Steven Severin after they met at a Roxy Music concert in 1975, a dozen other members came and went until the band split in 1996 after releasing 11 studio Albums, and achieving 17 top 40 singles in the UK. Siouxie and Severin also worked on a side project ‘The Creatures,’ releasing three studio Albums.

‘Peek-a-Boo’ was written as an experimental song, built on a loop, played in reverse, of a brass part with drums, which the group had recorded in 1987, for their cover of the John Cale song ‘Gun.’The band selected different parts of that tape when played backwards, editing and re-recording on top of it, adding an accordion, a one note bass, and distorted guitar.

As well as the current band members at that time receiving writing credits, the writers of the 1938 song ‘Jeepers Creepers,’ who were Harry Warren and Johnny Mercer were also added as to avoid potential legal action.The lyrics ‘Golly Jeepers, where’d you get those weepers? Peepshow, creepshow, where did you get those eyes?’ were considered too similar.

On what the song is about Siouxsie has said,’It’s about the way women are portrayed in our fascist media,Peek-a-Boo is a reaction against the conformist images that the media puts on women, and equates it to ‘The Stepford Wives.”

‘Creeping up the backstairs, slinking in to dark stalls, shapeless and slumped in bathchairs, furtive eyes peep out of holes.’

Posted by: In: Other 26 May 2021 Comments: 0


669-Kay Starr-Comes A-Long A-Love.

1953-Number 1 single.

Best Bit-At 0.31.It’s the song people could jive to, while they were patiently waiting for Rock ‘N Roll to be invented.

The very first official UK singles chart was published on the 16th November, 1952, and on the then fledgling chart in January 1953, this song became only the third different UK Number 1.

Kay Starr was born Catherine Laverne Starks on July 21st, 1922, in Dougherty, Oklhoma, United States, she died on November 3rd, 2016, from complications of Alzheimer’s disease.In 1939 she sang for the bandleaders Glenn Miller, and Bob Crosby, before signing a contract as a solo artist with Capitol Records in 1946. Between 1950-1981 she released 31 studio Albums, and had 34 top 40 hits on Billboard between 1948-1957. In the UK she charted five times, scoring a second Number 1 song in 1956 with ‘The Rock and Roll Waltz.’

‘Comes A-Long A-Love’ was written by the former ‘Tin Pan Alley’ songwriter Alan Sherman, it was the last hit he wrote before concentrating his efforts on the careers of his sons Bob and Dick Sherman. He was born Avrum Sherman on September 7th, 1897 in Kiev, The Russian Empire, he died on September 16th, 1973. At the age of 11 he emigrated with his parents, and four siblings to New York City, one of his first jobs was appearing in silent movies,which was where he met his future wife, but he quickly rose to become one of ‘Tin Pan Alley’s’ most sought after songwriters, his most recognisable songs include ‘You Gotta Be a Football Hero,’ and ‘Lindbergh (The Eagle of the U.S.A.) although it is often said his greatest achievement was the mentoring of sons the ‘Sherman Brothers,’

‘Comes a long a love suddenly brother are you happy and excited, comes a long a love suddenly everywhere you go you feel invited.’

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670-The Jam-The Eton Rifles.

1979-Number 3 single.

Best Bit-At 2.57.A song about class war, from a class act.

The Jam (see also best songs 94 and 59) were formed as far back as 1972 at Sheerwater Secondary School, Woking, Surrey, England, by the classic lineup of Paul Weller, Bruce Foxton, and Rick Butler, along with Steve Brookes, and Dave Waller.Brookes and Waller would leave before the band found success, and were not replaced. The Jam were active until Weller left to form The Style Council in 1982, having recorded six studio Albums, and achieved 18 top 40 singles in the UK, including four Number 1’s.

‘The Eton Rifles’ is the only single released from The Jam’s fourth studio Album ‘Setting Sons,’ released in 1979, and gave then their first UK top 10 single.As with many songs written by Paul Weller when with The Jam, it is about the political happenings of that era.The lyrics recount the difficulties faced by the working class, in protesting against a system seen by them as being unjust.The song tells of a street battle Weller had read about in a newspaper concerning a ‘rights to march’ through Slough in 1978, breaking off to attack pupils from Eton College who had been jeering the lunchtime marchers. Weller has said,’There was a lot of class hatred in my songs at the time. Eton Rifles would be an obvious example of that, we used to go on Sunday drives with my uncle, and we’d drive through Eton, and I remember seeing the young chaps.’

‘Sup up your beer and collect your fags, there’s a row going on down near Slough.’

Posted by: In: Other 24 May 2021 Comments: 0


671-Drowning Pool-Bodies.

2001-Number 34 single.

Best Bit-At 0.18.This is their church. This is where they heal their hurts.

Drowning Pool were formed in 1996 by guitarist C.J.Pierce, and drummer Mike Luce, in Dallas, Texas, United States, they were soon joined by bassist Stevie Benton, they took their name from the 1975 film ‘Drowning Pool,’ starring Paul Newman. The trio just performed instrumentals until the arrival of singer Dave Williams (1972-2002) in 1999. Williams was found dead in the band’s tour bus in Manassas, Virginia, with an autopsy establishing that he died from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease,)which had been undiagnosed until his death. Since then the band have used three different singers on their five studio Album releases since his death.

‘Bodies’ was the first single release from Drowning Pool’s debut Album ‘Sinner,’C.J.Pierce came up with the riff, and Williams with the lyrics, but all four original band members each receive writing credits.The song tells of the experiences you can have in a ‘Moshpit.’Williams explained ‘It’s about forgetting everything that has happened to you that week, leave your bulls..t at the door, and get it all out, but you have to have respect for the others in the pit. If you push them down, you have to pick them back up. I’m not going to get behind the violence thing, it is violent, but there is a certain amount of respect, and a code.’

‘Skin against skin, blood and bone, you’re all by yourself, but you’re not alone.’You wanted in, and now you’re here, driven by hate, consumed by fear.’

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672-Sonny & Cher I Got You Babe.

1965-Number 1 single.

Best Bit-At 0.01.Groundhog Day.

Sonny Bono was born Salvatore Phillip Bono on February 16th, 1935, in Detroit, Michigan, United States, he died on January 5th, 1998, of injuries incurred when he hit a tree while skiing at Heavenly Mountain Resort in South Lake Tahoe, California, United States. Bono started his music career as a songwriter at ‘Speciality Records,’before going on to work for Phil Spector in the early 1960’s.His first major success as a songwriter was co-writing ‘Needles and Pins,’initially a hit in Canada for Jackie De Shannon, and in the UK for The Searchers. He first met Cher in a Los Angeles coffee shop in 1962, and recommended her to Spector, initially as a session singer, among the songs Cher sang backing vocals on include ‘Be My Baby,’ and ‘You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling.'(see also best songs 782-737-192 and 127.)

Cher was born Cherilyn Sarkisian on May 20th, 1946, in El Centro, California, United States, she was married to Sonny Bono, officially between 1969-1975. Her career has covered Folk-Rock in the 1960’s, Disco in the 1970’s, Rock music in the 1980’s, and Pop, in the 1990’s, with record sales in excess of 100 million she is one of the worlds best selling artists, and the only artist to have had Billboard Number 1’s in six different decades.

‘I Got You Babe’ topped the chart on both sides of the Atlantic, and was taken from the duo’s 1965 debut Album ‘Look At Us.’Bono was somewhat inspired to write the song after hearing Bob Dylan’s 1964 song ‘It Ain’t Me Babe,’ he wrote ‘I Got You Babe’ with his own opposite sentiment, using for that time, the unusual song lyric ‘Babe.’In 1985 the British Reggae band UB40, with the American singer Chrissie Hynde took their version of the song to Number 1 in the UK, and in 1993 Cher recorded a cover version with the animated characters Beavis and Butt-Head, and that version reached Number 35 in the UK, but best performed in Poland, where it peaked at Number 2.

‘I got flowers in the spring, I got you to wear my ring, and when I’m sad, you’re a clown, and if I get scared you’re always around.’

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673-The Smiths-Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now.

1984-Number 10 single.

Best Bit-At 1.53.The ultimate ‘Marmite’ band, and the ultimate ‘Marmite’ song.

Johnny Marr who was a founding member of The Smiths, and co-writer of this song remembers well how composing it came about. Seymour Stein who co-founded ‘Sire Records,’ and was vice president of ‘Warner Brothers’ records, had already in his illustrious career signed artists such as The Ramones, and Madonna, and was now chasing The Smiths, and in an attempt to persuade them to sign with him, bought Johnny Marr a red ‘Gibson ES-355’ guitar, on which Marr composed the music to this song. Marr has recalled sitting in a New York hotel room on January 2nd, 1984, and coming up with the songs riff, getting inspiration from his new guitar.After finishing the song he then wrote the songs ‘B-side,”Girl Afraid,’ the same evening, and considers the two songs ‘a pair.’

The lyrics were later added by Morrissey (see also best songs 940-222-167-72 and 42) and went a long way to defining the general public’s opinion of him, as he sings about being depressed, and miserable. Morrissey has said,’Years ago I sang a song called ‘Heaven knows I’m Miserable Now,’and it’s like an old school uniform. People insist I wear it, but I’m really not that miserable. I’m not an unhappy person, not in the least. I’m certainly very surprised, and very pleased to still be here.’ Morrissey had always been a big fan of the singer Sandie Shaw, and this songs title was inspired by her 1969 single ‘Heaven Know’s I’m Missing Him.’

‘What she asked of me at the end of the day, Caligula would have blushed.’

Posted by: In: Other 21 May 2021 Comments: 0


674-Billy Ocean-Love Really Hurts Without You.

1976-Number 2 single.

Best Bit-At 0.43. If your a wedding DJ, and you play this, and your crowd still wont dance, then it’s not your fault.

Billy Ocean was born Leslie Sebastian Charles on January 21st, 1950, in Fyzabad, Trinidad and Tobago, he moved with his family to Romford, England, at the age of 10. He took his stage name ‘Ocean’ from a local football team in his home town of Trinidad and Tobago, who called themselves ‘Oceans 11.’

Before finding success with ‘Love Really Hurts Without You,’ he had struggled for many years, recording as Les Charles, and Scorched Earth. This song was his 10th attempt at getting a hit, and he has been quoted as considering himself,’The most surprised person in the world,’ as he was on the verge of giving up the music business.

‘Love Really Hurts Without You’ in it’s original form had been written many years earlier by Ocean when he was working at a ‘fashion house’ on Savile Row, London, as a pattern cutter. A co-worker was selling her piano, and Ocean bought it to compose on, for the princely sum of £23.Ocean has said that the song was inspired by the Donny Elbert 1972 re-make of the Four Tops Motown track ‘I Can’t Help Myself.’Billy Ocean had a further three top 40 UK hits in the 1970’s,co-written with his producer Ben Findon, but he would have to wait until 1984 for international success, when ‘Caribbean Queen’ gave him the first of his three Billboard Number 1’s. In the UK he topped the chart in 1986 with ‘When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going,’ which again topped the chart in 1999 when Boyzone covered it for ‘Comic Relief.’ Billy Ocean has released 11 studio Albums to date, the first which includes this song was his self titled ‘Billy Ocean’ in 1976, and the latest was ‘One World’ in September 2020.

‘You run around town like a fool, and you think that it’s groovy.’