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One-Hit Wonders

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  • One-Hit Wonders

    What's some of your favorite (and least favorite) songs by one-shot artists that hit the American Billboard Top 40 Singles charts only once in their career? There have been some good ones that made it only once and it boggles your mind why they didn't have a more successful charting career. And others who should have stayed away from the recording studio, but somehow managed to get tons of people to buy their album and request their song on the radio.

    All right, so here's my top 10 BEST:

    Crabby Appleton - "Go Back" (1970)
    Ten Years After - "I'd Love to Change the World" (1971)
    Blues Image - "Ride Captain Ride" (1970)
    Aldo Nova - "Fantasy" (1982)
    Shocking Blue - "Venus" (1970)
    After the Fire - "Der Kommissar" (1983)
    The Crazy World of Arthur Brown - "Fire" (1968)
    Mungo Jerry - "In the Summertime" (1970)
    Autograph - "Turn up the Radio" (1985)
    Spacehog - "In The Meantime" (1996)


    ...and here's my top ten WORST:

    Les Crane - "The Desiderata" (1971)
    C.W. McCall - "Convoy" (1975)
    Alicia Bridges - "I Love the Nightlife (Disco 'Round)" (1978)
    Bow Wow Wow - "I Want Candy" (1982)
    Don Johnson - "Heartbeat" (1986)
    Patrick Swayze & Wendy Fraser - "She's Like the Wind" (1987)
    Billy Falcon - "Power Windows" (1991)
    The Heights - "How Do You Talk To An Angel" (1992)
    Right Said Fred - "I'm Too Sexy" (1992)
    Los Del Rio - "Macarena" (1996)

    Now it's your turn!
    If I were Ed Carpenter and you were a lady...

  • #2
    Mine are all going to be from the 70s and 80s because those are the decades when I listened to Top 40 radio (and not much in the 80s).

    5 Best:
    Saga - "On the Loose" (1983)
    Mountain - "Mississippi Queen" (1970)
    Danny O'Keefe - "Good Time Charlie's Got the Blues" (1972)
    Maria Muldaur - "Midnight at the Oasis" (1974)
    Free - "All Right Now" (1970)

    5 Worst:
    Rex Smith - "You Take My Breath Away" (1979)
    Morris Albert - "Feelings" (1975)
    Minnie Riperton - "Lovin' You" (1975)
    Terry Jacks - "Seasons in the Sun" (1974)
    Starbuck - "Moonlight Feels Right" (1976)

    If you're having trouble remembering one hit wonder songs (as I was), this web site may help: One Hit Wonder Central
    "If there is a place on Earth synonymous with race cars, it is Indianapolis." -- Bernie Ecclestone

    "No matter where you go in the world, you say Indianapolis and they don't think about football or basketball, they think about the race." -- Richard Petty

    Comment


    • #3
      Mountain- Mississippi Queen
      ? and mysterians - 96 tears
      Little Bit of Soul - Music Explosion.
      Summertime Blues- Blue Cheer
      San Francisco - Scott McKenize
      Pushin Too Hard- Seeds
      Tobacco Road - Nashville teens
      Pictures of Matchstick Men- Status Quo

      Comment


      • #4
        Favorite
        -----------------------
        Why Me - Planet P Project

        867-5309 - Tommy Tutone

        Fantasy - Aldo Nova

        Wouldn't It Be Good(Pretty in Pink Soundtrack) - Danny Hutton Hitters

        Something's Going On - Frida

        This Is My Life - Talk Talk

        Comment


        • #5
          Jimbo, Tommy Tutone is technically disqualified per richie's criteria because they had another Top 40 hit with "Angel Say No" in 1980. No question that 867-5309/Jenny is a great song, though.
          "If there is a place on Earth synonymous with race cars, it is Indianapolis." -- Bernie Ecclestone

          "No matter where you go in the world, you say Indianapolis and they don't think about football or basketball, they think about the race." -- Richard Petty

          Comment


          • #6
            However, would The Grateful Dead or Jimi Hendrix count as One-Hit wonders?
            If I were Ed Carpenter and you were a lady...

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by indysteve
              Jimbo, Tommy Tutone is technically disqualified per richie's criteria because they had another Top 40 hit with "Angel Say No" in 1980. No question that 867-5309/Jenny is a great song, though.
              '

              Really?! I never heard of "Angel Say No." If that's the case, then I'll replace 867-5309 with "Come On Eileen" by Dexie's Midnight Runners. On second thought, maybe not...

              Comment


              • #8
                Here's a few more good ones...

                Bloodrock - "D.O.A."
                I have that album, and that song just creeps me out. Gee, I don't know why!

                Knickerbockers - "Lies"
                I can't believe I forgot this one, it would have been in my top 10 had I remembered it. This song could easily be confused as a Beatles tune.

                Buffalo Springfield - "For What It's Worth"
                Yeah, you know this song. This group of Stephen Stills, Neil Young, Richie Furay, and others obviously went on to gain more stardom in new bands.
                If I were Ed Carpenter and you were a lady...

                Comment


                • #9
                  My 10 best (in no particular order):

                  Mickey - Toni Basil
                  Come On Eileen - Dexy's Midnight Runners
                  They Don't Know - Tracey Ullman
                  Ring My Bell - Anita Ward
                  Sky High - Jigsaw
                  Pop Music - M
                  Tainted Love - Soft Cell
                  Get a Job - The Silouhettes (Sp)
                  Mmm Mmm Mmm - Crash Test Dummies
                  Der Kommisser - After the Fire

                  10 worst (ditto)

                  I've Never Been to Me - Charlene
                  In the Year 2525 - Zager & Evans
                  Seasons in the Sun - Terry Jacks
                  Chevy Van - Sammy Johns
                  Heart Beat - The DeFranco Family
                  The Night Chicago Died - Paper Lace
                  The Safety Dance - Men Without Hats
                  Groove is in the Heart - Deelight
                  Turn Up the Radio - Autograph
                  You Light Up My Life - Debby Boone

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by stockblock
                    Mountain- Mississippi Queen
                    ? and mysterians - 96 tears
                    Little Bit of Soul - Music Explosion.
                    Summertime Blues- Blue Cheer
                    San Francisco - Scott McKenize
                    Pushin Too Hard- Seeds
                    Tobacco Road - Nashville teens
                    Pictures of Matchstick Men- Status Quo
                    A couple corrections:

                    ? and the Mysterians had two hits: Both in 1966, "96 Tears" went to #1 and their follow up single "I Need Somebody" went to #22.

                    Scott McKenzie had two hits as well: "San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers In Your Hair)" went to #4 and the next single "Like an Old Time Movie" went to #24. Both songs were released in the "Summer of Love" in 1967 and were both produced by John Phillips.

                    Man, I'm sure glad I have a great reference book!
                    If I were Ed Carpenter and you were a lady...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Wow, no love for Terry Jacks, go figure...anyway here is my two cents...

                      David Essex - Rock on
                      I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) - The Proclaimers
                      Up all Night - Boomtown Rats
                      Electric Avenue - Eddy Grant
                      Tainted Love - Soft Cell
                      Get what you give - New Radicals
                      Anything by Hootie and the Blowfish (they were all the same song right?)
                      The Message - Grandmaster Flash, Mellie Mel and the Furious Five
                      Bust a Move - Young MC
                      Rebirth of Slick - Digable Planets
                      Wild Wild West - Kool Moe Dee
                      Spooky - Classics IV
                      Dirty Water - Standells
                      5 O'Clock World - The Vouges
                      Informer - Snow
                      Does DEVO Count?
                      Unbelievable - EMF
                      Your Love - The Outfield
                      Let's Go All the Way - Sly Fox
                      and Finally...
                      Back home again in Indiana - Jim Neighbors...(it counts darnit)

                      P.S. CONVOY RULES!!!
                      Still looking for Carmen San Diego....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        anytime I get a chance to rag on Bo Donaldson and the Heywoods 'Billy don't be a hero' I'm more than happy to oblige.

                        precious and few by climax - I really don't know if I like that or not?

                        Smoke from a Distant Fire - Sanford Townsend Band - love it. Saw them open for Heart and Dave Mason in 77 they were EXCELLENT

                        Afternoon Delight - love the song, love the subject matter, thank you Starland Vocal Band

                        how bout 'hocus pocus' by Focus I'mm always out of breath every time I hear that song.

                        Would Rush qualify here? have they had any top 40's ? if so I imagine new world man would be it.

                        what else......crash test dummies yah man great song.


                        did 'the pursuit of happiness' chart with 'I'm an adult now'?

                        if not, that's a crime. we should start a thead called 'best power pop songs to not chart' if so....
                        It's a brand new day.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Kid_Charlemange
                          Up all Night - Boomtown Rats
                          Hmm, I'm thinking "I Don't Like Mondays" was a Top 40 hit for the Rats as well. Maybe richie can confirm.
                          "If there is a place on Earth synonymous with race cars, it is Indianapolis." -- Bernie Ecclestone

                          "No matter where you go in the world, you say Indianapolis and they don't think about football or basketball, they think about the race." -- Richard Petty

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Kid_Charlemange
                            Your Love - The Outfield
                            Hey now. The Outfield had five Top 40 hits. One that's not included is the song "Winning It All." I saw this song used in a video montage for Tony Stewart winning the USAC Triple Crown in 1995. Was pretty good!
                            If I were Ed Carpenter and you were a lady...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I'm not proud of 'em but I love 'em:

                              Popcorn by Hot Butter

                              Ariel by Dean Friedman

                              Center Grove Trojans
                              2008 5A Football State Champs
                              2015 6A Football State Champs
                              2011 Track State Champs

                              Center Grove Jr. Trojans
                              2014, 2015 & 2017 IEFA State Champs

                              Comment

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