Friday, 6 November 2015

Collaborative Top 5 One Hit Wonders - RESULT

I thought this was a topic that would have fewer options and therefore make it easier to find a clear top five. Turns out I didn't take into account the broad gamut of tastes of those who contributed.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to vote, this really wouldn't work without you. There's a list of the tunes that received two or more votes at the bottom - if you voted for a song and it's not mentioned, you were on your own with your appreciation.

1. "99 Luftballons/99 Red Balloons" Nena - It's 1984 and floppy fringes, headless basses and key-tars are the height of fashion. It was only during the voting for this top five that I discovered the German language original which was also a hit in the USA. This made number 1 in the UK and I remember it being a massive hit at the time, a tune that I initially dismissed for being too poppy but worked it's way into my brain so that I ended up really liking it. It's an anti-war song and I suspect loses a bit of impact in translation though watching them sing it in German it's still sounds remarkably perky.

2. "Uptown Top Ranking" Althea & Donna - This came out in 1977 and was a little bit before my time, or at least passed me by. According to Wikipedia the song was played by accident by BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel leading to the single becoming a surprise hit in the UK Singles Chart, reaching number 1 in February 1978. Althea & Donna were 17 & 18 when it was recorded and became the youngest female duo to claim a UK number 1.

3. "Jilted John" Jilted John - I went to school with a kid called Simon Gordon and inevitably he took a bit of stick after this hit the charts due to the "Gordon is a moron" refrain. Actually I think I probably knew this song more from hearing kids sing it at school than from the actual song. It was a hit in September 1978 and I reckon I only started watching Top Of The Pops regularly in 1979. Back then of course TOTP was the ONLY way of finding out about bands.

4. "Echo Beach" Martha and the Muffins - I've clearly got readers of a certain age as this bit of New Wave Pop was a hit in 1980. I'll be revealing my personal top five next week but without wanting to spoil the suspense you'll be seeing this tune mentioned again. In fact it's the only one of my choices to make the collaborative list.

5. "I Won't Let You Down" Ph.D - Jim Diamond died only a few weeks ago and that might have contributed to this song's late surge into the top five. Ph.D were a British group comprised of Diamond on guitar & vocal, keyboardist Tony Hymas and drummer Simon Phillips. This was the band's only hit in April 1982, though Diamond later launched a solo career and scored a number one single with I Should Have Known Better.

Here's the full list of tunes that received two or more votes;

1 Nena 99 Red Balloons/99 Luft Balloons
2 Althia & Donna Uptown Top Ranking
3 Jilted John Jilted John
4 Martha & The Muffins Echo Beach
5 PhD I Won't Let You Down
6 The Passions I'm In Love with a German Film Star
7 Thunderclap Newman Something In The Air
7 Norman Greenbaum Spirit In The Sky
9 Trio Da Da Da
9 Fontella Bass Rescue Me
11 Tubeway Army Are Friends Electric?
11 Wild Cherry Play That Funky Music
13 Len Steal My Sunshine
13 The Las There She Goes
13 Chesney Hawkes The One & Only
13 M/A/R/R/S Pump Up The Volume
13 Lilys Nanny In Manhattan
18 Modern English Melt With You
18 Zager & Evans In The Year 2525
18 Brian Protheroe Pinball
21 The Knack My Sharona
22 White Town Your Woman
22 New Radicals You Get What You Give


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