Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Various Artists - Billboard #1 Hits Of The '70s (2002)

A budget-priced compilation of songs that hit #1 on the Billboard chart in the 1970's. One per calendar year, presented in chronological order. A mixed bag, for sure.

  • 1970: Make It With You - Bread: I loves me some '70s soft rock and David Gates had one of the smoothest voices of his time. The song first appeared on Bread's 1970 album On the Waters. Released as a single in June 1970, it would become the group's first top ten and only number-one single on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the U.S., spending the week of August 22, 1970, at the top spot.
  • 1971: Theme From Shaft - Isaac Hayes: Awesome. Legendary. That wah-wah guitar is one of my favorite '70s sounds. The intro alone is over 2 minutes long, even on the single edit. It went to number one in November 1971
  • 1972: I'll Take You There - Staple Singers: This awesome funk/soul song, written with only two chords (C & F), features lead singer Mavis Staples inviting her listeners to seek heaven. It spent the week of June 3, 1972, at the top spot.
  • 1973: Bad, Bad Leroy Brown - Jim Croce: It IS bad, but somehow spent two weeks at #1 in July, 1973. When I was 7 years old, I remember being shocked upon hearing the word "damn" on the radio. Outrage!
  • 1974: Cat's In The Cradle - Harry Chapin: Not very subtle. Perhaps the most irritating song of the '70s. It is hard to listen to; I would normally skip this track. Chapin's only#1, it topped the charts for one week in December, 1974. I remember John Davidson singing a gawd-awful arrangement of this tune when he had a syndicated talk show in the early '80s. Man, I guess TV was slim pickings back then if that's what I was watching.
  • 1975: That's The Way (I Like It) - KC & The Sunshine Band: Disco! Now that's more like it! The song was considered risqué at the time because of the obvious meaning behind the title as well as its chorus with multiple "uh-huhs" and its verses. Actually reached #1 two times, once in November and again in December of 1975.
  • 1976: December, 1963 (Oh What A Night) - The Four Seasons: I would go wild when this song would come on my AM radio. Even today, I start dancing at the first sound of that distinctive piano/bass part in the intro. It hit #1 the week of March 13, 1976, remaining in the top spot for three weeks
  • 1977: You Make Me Feel Like Dancing - Leo Sayer: I've never heard any of Sayer's music apart from his singles, but I remember always enjoying them. Of course, I was 11 years old. #1 the week of January 15, 1977.
  • 1978: Le Freak - Chic: you can read about my unconditional love for disco music and Chic here. This song was so good that it hit #1 three times: December 9, 1978; December 23, 1978 – December 30, 1978; and January 20, 1979 – February 3, 1979.
  • 1979: Ring My Bell - Anita Ward: Even though this song is considered a disco classic, it's not one of my favorites. It knocked Donna Summer out of the top spot for two weeks: June 30 - July 7, 1979
Personal Memory Associated with this CD: During most of the '70s, I really didn't have any choice over what I listened to. I simply found a radio station and listened for hours to whatever the program director wanted me to listen to. It wasn't until around 1978 that I started making my own decisions and buying LPs.

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