The Top Ten Fifty Years Ago Today on WLS Radio 89, Chicago


I got this idea from the Oldiesloon website and from a group I belong to on Facebook. Oldiesloon maintains an archive of all the Top 40 surveys from Chicago, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, and Albany, New York, as well as links to radio stations in many other cities.

WLS, my choice of radio stations when I was growing up, issued “The Silver Dollar Survey,” a weekly survey of the top 40 hits in Chicago, every Friday. Starting in sixth grade, my “start of the weekend” ritual was to leave church after Benediction (or Stations of the Cross), run home (we lived a block away) to drop off my books, tie and suit jacket, make the trek up Glenwood Avenue to Morse, where the record store was, and get the surveys. I’d spend the walk home wondering why the songs I liked were slipping off the chart and why songs I hated were so popular. I was so into the surveys that I even kept up a modified ritual during the summer, going to get the surveys sometime early Friday afternoon.

July 2, 1965, exactly fifty years ago today, was a Friday. Here are the top ten hits in Chicago that week.

#10 – Horst Jankowski, “A Walk In The Black Forest”

#9 – Herman’s Hermits, “I’m Henry the Eighth, I Am”

#8 – Elvis Presley, “Crying In The Chapel”

#7 – The Yardbirds, “For Your Love”

#6 – Herman’s Hermits, “Wonderful World”

#5 – The Rolling Stones, “Satisfaction”

#4 – The Strangeloves, “I Want Candy”

#3 – The Four Tops, “I Can’t Help Myself”

#2 – Sam The Sham and the Pharaos, “Wooly Bully”

#1 – The Byrds, “Mr. Tambourine Man”

So there’s your Thursday Ten for this week. I created a playlist with all of the songs on the Survey; you can find it here. You’ll note there are 42 songs on the list; The Byrds (#30) and Elvis (#24) had two-sided hits (i.e. both the A and the B side were in the Top 40). Enjoy!

3 thoughts on “The Top Ten Fifty Years Ago Today on WLS Radio 89, Chicago

    1. Check out my playlist of the whole Top 40 that week. There are some excellent songs that were either on their way up or on their way down. The link is in the post, and there’s another link to the survey itself, if you’d just like to see it. A lot of songs I don’t remember, or maybe they were on the chart for a couple of weeks and got pushed off by something else.


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