The Friday 5×2: Top 10 From WJJD On This Day In 1959

Before we get started, I have a Battle of the Bands that I started Tuesday, “Battle ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’: Stanley Jordan & Chet Atkins vs. Lennie Breaux and Chet Atkins,” that I’d like to invite you to vote in, if you haven’t already done so. You don’t have to be part of the Battle of the Bands crowd to vote, you don’t even need to know anything more about music than what you like to vote.

The recently-completed A to Z Challenge is now in the books, and I’m in the process of recovering from that, so I’m going to do another of my survey posts, this time the Top 10 from WJJD in Chicago on May 4, 1959, 59 years ago, before today was known as Star Wars Day. My thanks to the good folks at Oldiesloon for the great job they do gathering and typing in these surveys and to the many posters who added the various songs to YouTube so that I can share them with you.

#10: Ricky Nelson, “It’s Late” No doubt a nod to the Everly Brothers, who did the very similar “Wake Up, Little Susie” a couple of years earlirer. In its 11th week on the charts, it fell from #5.

#9: Martin Denny, “Quiet Village” Title track from Martin’s 1959 album, it was composed by Les Baxter in 1951 and released as a single in 1952. Martin’s cover reached #4 on the pop charts. On the ‘JJD charts for just 4 weeks, it jumped from #15 the week before.

#8: Dave “Baby” Cortez, “The Happy Organ” Composed by Cortez with assistance from celebrity photographer James J. Kriegsmann and Kurt Wood. It reached #1 on the Hot 100 the following week. In Chicago, it was already headed down the chart after 8 weeks, down from #7 the week before.

#7: Dion & The Belmonts, “Teenager In Love” Considered one of the greatest songs in rock & roll history, it reached #5 on the Hot 100. After just three weeks on the chart in Chicago, it jumped from #17 the week before.

#6: Fabian, “Turn Me Loose” This was Fabian’s first Top 10 hit nationwide, reaching #5 on the Hot 100. It was on its way back down the chart already on WJJD after 7 weeks, falling from#4.

#5: The Skyliners, “Since I Don’t Have You” A beautiful song and a personal favorite, it was up from #6 the week before, in its 5th week on the chart.

#4: Wilbert Harrison, “Kansas City” Written by Lieber & Stoller in 1952 and originally done by Willie Littlefield, this was a #1 hit for Wilbert. Jumped from #8 the week before in its 4th week on the chart.

#3: Dodie Stevens, “Pink Shoelaces” I thought the name was familiar: I profiled Dodie during my series on Chanteuses. This was recorded when she was just 13 years old, and peaked at #3 on the Hot 100. We liked it better in Chicago, where it had peaked at #1 the week before.

#2: Edd “Kookie” Byrnes with Connie Stevens, “Kookie, Kookie (Lend Me Your Comb)” Edd had become something of a teen idol from his work on 77 Sunset Strip, while Connie (no relation to Dodie) had made a number of appearances on the show. The song peaked at #4 nationally, and had stalled at #2 in Chicago in its third week.

#1: The Impalas, “Sorry (I Ran All The Way Home)” This song peaked at #2 nationally, but went all the way to #1 on WJJD in its 5th week on the chart.

And there’s your Friday 5×2 for May 4, 2018.

6 thoughts on “The Friday 5×2: Top 10 From WJJD On This Day In 1959

    1. My exact reaction the first time I heard the name. Good song, though.

      The late 50’s and early 60’s were a time between the birth of rock & roll and the British Invasion. Music was going in all different directions. It’s one of my favorite periods, actually.


  1. Ha! I knew eight of them! And I was ONLY eight that year. But that’s what happens when you have teenage cousins who love to sing and dance. That was really fun, John.


  2. These were all “golden oldies” when I got my first radio (1963), so I heard most of them. A few of them seem to have fallen off the playlists over the years.


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