Let’s go back to the Netherlands and Radio Veronica, broadcasting from a ship near Hilversum. Here’s their Top 10 for this week in 1970. I like this because there are a lot of songs I’ve never heard before today, which means they’ll probably be new to you too.
- Soulful Dynamics, “Mademoiselle Ninette” Soulful Dynamics was a septet that was formed in 1965 in Liberia and moved to Hamburg in 1969. This is the song they’re best known for.
- Blue Mink, “Good Morning Freedom” A sextet from England, Blue Mink had six Top 20 hit records in the UK between 1969 and 1974. One song, “Our World,” reached #64 on the Hot 100 and got some airplay in the US in 1971.
- The Shoes, “Osaka” The Shoes were a Dutch “Nederbeat” band; here in the US we call them “garage rock.” They started in 1963 as The White Shoes, and are still performing, 56 years later.
- Norman Greenbaum, “Spirit In The Sky” Finally, a song you might have heard before. This was a huge hit in the US, where it reached #3 nationally and occupied the #1 spot in Chicago on WCFL on March 16 and at WLS on March 23. Not bad for a good Jewish boy…
- Earth and Fire, “Ruby Is The One” Earth and Fire was a Dutch progressive and symphonic rock band that was fronted by Christina Henriette “Jerney” Kaagman, who later headed the Dutch musician’s union BV Pop (so saith Wikipedia).
- Frijid Pink, “House of the Rising Sun” A psychedelic rock band from Detroit, this was the third single issued by the band in 1969, and as they say, third time’s a charm. It reached the Top 10 in the US, #4 in the UK, and #3 in Canada. The band continues to perform and record, albeit with non of its original members.
- Steve Rowland and The Family Dogg, “Sympathy” The Family Dogg was a British vocal group that included Albert “It Never Rains in Southern California” Hammond.
- Creedence Clearwater Revival, “Up Around The Bend” Was a double-sided single in the US with “Run Through The Jungle,” and it reached #4 here.
- Simon and Garfunkel, “Cecilia” I remember that most of my friends and I despised this song in eighth grade, and today, almost 50 years later, I’m still not especially fond of it. Nevertheless, it reached #4 in the US and topped the chart in The Netherlands.
- Simon and Garfunkel, “El Condor Pasa” I had to look twice at the chart to see if this was a double-sided hit for S&G with ‘Cecilia,” but no, they were two separate records. This only reached #18 in the US but, again, topped the chart in The Netherlands.
And that’s The Friday 5×2 for May 24, 2019.