I have these sort of magpie tendencies where I collect things I think I might want in the future or that are shiny or whatever, put them away, and never look at them again. Then, one day I find my little stash and start going through it, and don’t quite remember why I saved it, but finding it makes me happy. There were especially difficult times in my life when I would collect YouTube videos and save them in a folder on my hard drive, then forget I had them. Well, I turned up a trove of them today, and saw that many were song videos. I chose ten of them and built a playlist, for your listening enjoyment. There’s no rhyme nor reason to the choices, no theme to tie all of them together, just songs I liked enough to want to save.
- Vincent Bell, “Airport Love Theme” I’ve never seen the movie Airport, but I’ve read the book by Arthur Hailey and heard the music by Vincent Bell, who invented the “guitar under water” sound. (Or, at least, perfected the technique…) He sold quite a few records with this one back in 1970.
- The Intruders, “Cowboys To Girls” Often I’ll go out to YouTube with the idea that I’m going to look for a song that I think I remember but can’t say for sure if it was real. This is one of them. The Intruders took this Gamble and Huff song to #1 on the R&B chart and #6 on the Hot 100 in 1968. I guess it was real.
- Jerry Reed, “Eastbound and Down” From the 1977 movie Smokey and the Bandit, the second highest-grossing movie that year after Star Wars, which should tell you something. Jerry Reed wrote this song under his real name (Jerry Hubbard) and plays the hot guitar solo in the middle. It reached #2 on both the US and Canadian Country charts, but only rose as far as #103 on the Billboard “Bubbling Under” chart.
- Georgie Fame and The Blue Flames, “Yeh Yeh” I talked about Georgie back when I was covering the British Invasion artists on Two for Tuesday. It was #1 for 2 weeks in the UK in 1965.
- Nilsson, “Everybody’s Talkin'” From the soundtrack of the 1969 movie Midnight Cowboy, which received an X rating back then, not so much for what happened, but for what the censors believed happened in the film. Under further review, it received an R rating, and given some of the R-rated movies today, even that might be a little restrictive. The song reached #6 on the Hot 100 and #2 on the Adult Contemporary chart and earned Nilsson a Grammy in 1970.
- Hedgehoppers Anonymous, “It’s Good News Week” Originally known as The Trendsetters, the band adopted the name The Hedgehoppers in 1964 and added “Anonymous” when Jonathan King took over as producer. The song reached #5 in the UK but only #48 in the US, which surprises me, because I remember hearing this all the time.
- Keith, “98.6” Keith took this to #7 in the US and earned a gold record for his efforts. “98.6” refers to human body temperature in degrees Fahrenheit; in those countries that have gone metric, the name of the song is “37.5”…
- The Kinks, “Dedicated Follower of Fashion” I enjoy the music of The Kinks for the satire inherent in their songs. For all the fun that this record poked at the whole Carnaby Street scene rampant in England in those days, it did surprisingly well, reaching the top 5 in the UK, topping the chart in The Netherlands and New Zealand. It only got to #36 in the US. Guess we didn’t get the joke, although I’m willing to bet the censors kept it off the air.
- Maria Muldaur, “Midnight At The Oasis” I was seventeen when this song came out, so this song had a profound effect on me. ‘Nuff said. The guitar solo in the middle of the song is played by Amos Garrett, who was a member of Paul Butterfield’s Better Days with Maria’s ex-husband Geoff. It reached #6 in the US and #2 in Canada and resulted in a lot of intimate evenings.
- Ray Stevens, “Misty” You wouldn’t think that a country version of this song would sound that good, but Ray Stevens took this to #14 and made it sound perfectly normal.
And that’s your Friday 5×2 for January 26, 2018.