Top Ten Tuesday: KDWB (630 kHz AM, Minneapolis, MN), 8/18/69

KDWB is now “101.3 KDWB” on the FM dial, but up until 1976 it was at 630 on the AM dial. The FM station began simulcasting the AM broadcast on September 16, 1976, and three years later began programming on its own. Anyway, here’s their Top Ten from this date in 1969, courtesy of Oldiesloon.

# “>Song
10 A Boy Named Sue
Johnny Cash
Shel Silverstein wrote this and Johnny Cash performed it at San Quentin. At around 3:00, a sound covers the phrase “son of a bitch.” Silverstein had written “heartless hound,” and Johnny changed it on the fly. The song reached #2 on both the Hot 100 and Cash Box 100, #1 on the Adult Contemporary and Country charts in both the US and Canada, and #3 on the Canadian singles chart.
9 Give Peace A Chance
John Lennon
Recorded in Montreal during John and Yoko’s “Bed-In For Peace,” they’re joined by, among others, Tom Smothers of the Smothers Brothers. The single reached #14 in the US and #2 in the UK.
8 Ballad of John & Yoko
The Beatles
John wrote this on his honeymoon with Yoko, and he and Paul recorded it without George and Ringo. The references to Christ and the crucifixion resulted in some stations refusing to play the record, and it never appeared on either the WLS or WABC surveys. As such, it only reached #8 on the Hot 100 and #10 on the Cash Box 100, and #7 in Canada, while topping the charts in most of the rest of the world.
7 Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town
Kenny Rogers & The First Edition
Written by Mel Tillis, it reached #6 on the Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary chart, but only #39 on the Country chart. It fared better in Canada, whre it reached #4 on the Singles chart, #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and #2 on the Country chart, and also reached #2 in the UK. It inspired several “answer” songs, one done by Geraldine Stevens, who as Dodie Stevens recorded the 1959 song “Pink Shoelaces,” which reached #3 on the Hot 100. She was one day shy of 13 when she recorded that song.
6 Baby I Love You
Andy Kim
Canadian singer Andy Kim had recorded several songs before this, but reached the Top 10 in the US (#9) and Canada #1) with this one. Originally done by The Ronettes in 1964, it was written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich and phil Spector.
5 My Cherie Amour
Stevie Wonder
Stevie had recorded this in 1967 but it wasn’t released until 1969, because he was dealing with voice issues he had in 1968. He reached #4 on both the Hot 100 and the R&B chart in July.
4 Sweet Caroline
Neil Diamond
A popular song that’s sung during Boston Red Sox games in Fenway Park, Diamond originally stated that the song was about Caroline Kennedy, who was 11 when the song was written, but later said the song was inspired by his wife Marcia and the only reason he used the name Caroline was because he needed a three-syllable name. It reached #4 on the Hot 100 and #3 on the Adult Contemporary chart. Diamond recently rewrote portions of the song to encourage people to wash their hands and maintain social distances to combat Covid-19.
3 Honky Tonk Women
The Rolling Stones
Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards and issued as a single only in July 1969, the song topped the charts in both the US and the UK and was a Top Ten single in most of the rest of the world.
2 It’s Getting Better
Cass Elliot
Written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil and not to be confused with a song with a similar name that appeared on the Sergeant Pepper album, this is sunshine pop at its finest. It was first recorded by The Vogues and Leonard Nimoy (!) in 1968, and appeared on Mama Cass’s album Bubblegum, Lemonade, and …. Something For Mama. It reached #13 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
1 Pain
Michael’s Mystics
A perfect example of a local hit topping the chart. Michael’s Mystics, or just The Mystics, were a garage soul band from East St. Paul, Minnesota. As local bands go, they’re actually pretty good…

And that’s Top ten Tuesday for August 18, 2020.

15 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: KDWB (630 kHz AM, Minneapolis, MN), 8/18/69

  1. Hi, John!

    I enjoyed your radio station top 10 list from this date in 1969. The fabled “Summer of ’69” was one of the greatest and most memorable of my life. I was working on a construction crew most of that summer, digging trenches to lay sewer pipe, steam cleaning heavy equipment like graders and backhoes, applying roof sealant in 100 degree heat and even painting barns. When working outdoors I carried my transistor radio along and most of these songs played in heavy rotation on my local station. The only one that is brand new to me is the #1 sound there in the Twin Cities – “Pain” by Michael’s Mystics. I went to youTube and listening to it. The ultra-fast paced single starts out sounding like the theme from Hawaii 5-0 or similar cop/detective/spy television series. I can’t imagine how dancers could keep up the frantic pace of that record. I prefer a somewhat slower groove rhythm.

    Thanks for this educational post, good buddy John, and enjoy the rest of your week!


    1. I always thought it was great that radio stations would promote local bands and that sometimes the locals would have pretty big hits. In some cases, that would launch their national careers. Thanks for stopping by!


  2. Another great top 10 list. I have not thought about Andy Kim for a very long time, but that was one of those teen tearjerkers I was so fond of. I had to go to YouTube to listen to Michael’s Mystics. They definitely had the sound, but I had never heard that one before. I was never a fan of Yoko’s music.


    1. I think the Michael’s Mystics song was a local favorite. You might have seen it on surveys from LaCrosse, Wisconsin and maybe Fargo or Sioux Falls, but that would be about it. WLS used to play a lot of records from the local bands (e.g. The Buckinghams, The Cryan Shames, The New Colony Six etc.) that later became national stars, but many, like The Neighborhood, never went too far.

      I’m not a fan of Yoko’s singing, either, but I do think she got a bum rap for breaking up The Beatles. Her coming between John and the rest of the band was John’s doing. I could be wrong about that, but she’s not solely to blame. You could see the cracks long before that.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I could care less about the relationship woes of John and Yoko. The Beatles were not going to last forever. I just never liked her music.


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