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Sunday Singles! #2

In 1950s, 1970, 1970s, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, 45 r.p.m., country, pop, record collecting, records, Rich's House of Vinyl, singles, soul, soundtracks, Sunday Singles! on February 5, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Each weekend I play a few 45 r.p.m. singles and report on them. Here is this week’s report:

“Rose Garden”/”Nothing Between Us”-Lynn Anderson (1970/peaked at #3 on Billboard‘s “Hot 100”). We begin where we left off last week: with country singer Lynn Anderson. The single covered last time was a hit on the country charts, but did not have the massive crossover success of the opening track on this volume, the iconic Joe South tune, “Rose Garden.” The “Rose Garden” single was the first record my wife Donna ever owned.  

“The Hokey Pokey”/”The Bunny Hop”-Ray Anthony (1953/not sure of chart position). What if “The Hokey Pokey” really is what it’s all about?

“Walkin’ My Baby Back Home”/”You Rascal You”/”All of Me”/”Shine”-Louis Armstrong (originally recorded in the 1930s, single is from the ’50s/not sure of chart position). I think Armstrong recorded at least a few of these tunes more than once in his long, historic career, but I’m fairly certain that that these versions were originally recorded in the 1930s and released as 78s, with this 45 being a reissue from the ’50s. I’ve had this 45 since I was a kid and I’ve loved it since then as well. I think there is something about Armstrong that kids just “get.” I remember being entranced and hugely entertained by it then and this evening Jimmy mentioned that he enjoyed hearing these songs as well. Louis Armstrong–the most influential singer (let alone trumpet player) of the 20th century?

“Close (To The Edit)”/”doDONNAdo”-Art of Noise (1984/did not chart). Though it was not a huge hit single, “Close(To The Edit)” did its part to put Art of Noise on the pop music map back in 1984. Noted producer Trevor Horn was involved in this single, which shouldn’t be surprising given its very “busy” sound.

“Kiss”/”E.F.L.”-Art of Noise featuring Tom Jones (1988/peaked at #31 on “Hot 100”). The meeting of Art of Noise, Tom Jones and a killer Prince tune was as inspired and fun as it was inevitable. Tom’s performance of this was a highlight of the TJ concert Donna and I saw one night back in the ’90s. I wonder what Prince thinks of it?

“Solid”/”Solid (dub)”-Ashford & Simpson (1985/peaked at #12 on the “Hot 100”, but also spent three weeks at #1 on R&B chart). “Solid” is, to me, a rarity–a really good, non-rap-influenced, non-disco-influenced 1980s soul tune. Even in 1985, they weren’t making them like this all that much anymore. I saw Ashford & Simpson perform this at Live Aid that year (more on Live Aid in a moment…)

“Deep & Wide & Tall”-Aztec Camera (1987/did not chart).
“Somewhere In My Heart”-Aztec Camera (1988/did not chart). I enjoy both of these uptempo singles, though both are just slightly tinged with that “’80s production” sound that ruined many a good song back in the latter half of that particular decade. I never really looked too deep into the Aztec Camera catalog (love their version of Van Halen’s “Jump” though) but I think I would have enjoyed their work had I dug deeper.

“Cruel Summer”/”Cruel Dub”-Bananarama (1984/peaked at #9 on “Hot 100”). This was the first of three Top Ten hits for Bananarama and probably my favorite. Good frothy fun.

“Do They Know It’s Christmas?”/”Feed The World”-Band Aid (1984/peaked at #13 on the “Hot 100”). Released in late 1984, Band Aid’s record didn’t actually chart until the first week of 1985. This song and USA for Africa’s “We Are The World” were the preludes for the Live Aid concert, held in Philadelphia, London and other cities throughout the world on July 13, 1985. 

“Hazy Shade of Winter”-The Bangles/”She Lost You”-Joan Jett & the Blackhearts (1987/peaked at #2 on the “Hot 100”). I’ve always loved the Bangles’ cover of this Simon and Garfunkel song, though I once heard a DJ say she hated it. The b-side is an odd, but appealing little Joan Jett song. Both sides were from the soundtrack of  Less Than Zero, a movie I’ve never seen and have never cared to see based on a book I’ve never read and don’t plan to. Cool soundtrack though.

Thanks for tuning in!

 [Check out the original version of this entry on my Dichotomy of the Dog blog to see a video interview with Donna about the single: http://marimbadog.livejournal.com/248455.html]

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