Top Ten Tuesday: WRSU (680 kHz, New Brunswick, NJ), 9/21/63

I don’t think we’ve done a college station here in all the time I’ve been doing The Friday 5×2 and Top Ten Tuesday. WRSU broadcasts from the campus of Rutgers University in beautiful New Brunswick, New Jersey. Currently, they operate on 88.7 MHz on the FM band, but in 1963 they were an AM station broadcasting on 680 kHz. Here’s their Top Ten from 1963.

# Song/Artist Comments
10 Honolulu Lulu
Jan & Dean
The follow-up to “Surf City” (which it sounds almost like), “Honolulu Lulu” reached #11 on the Hot 100 and #10 on the Cash Box Hot Singles chart.
9 Then He Kissed Me
The Crystals
Produced by Phil Spector, who brought along his “Wall O’ Sound” and made these girls from New York City sound just like The Ronettes. Not that anyone complained: it reached #6 in the US and #2 in the UK.
8 Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright
Peter, Paul & Mary
The group later christened as Pizza, Pooh and Magpie by John Lennon had hits with several early Bob Dylan tunes. This was the follow-up to “Blowin’ In The Wind” and did pretty well, reaching #9 on the Hot 100 and #2 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
7 Surfer Girl
The Beach Boys
The follow-up to “Surfin’ USA,” it had a pretty good run on the chart, reaching #7. Its flip side, “Little Deuce Coupe,” reached #17, so in all, another success from these California boys.
6 Donna The Prima Donna
Dion’s song compares Donna to “Za Za Gabor,” which I find hilarious. No matter: it reached #6 on the Hot 100, #9 on the Cash Box Hot Singles, and #17 on the R&B chart.
5 Sally, Go Round The Roses
The Jaynetts
A somewhat odd song that was written by Zelma “Zell” Sanders and the wife of producer Abner Spector (no relation), recorded by The Jaynetts, who had recorded “Be My Boyfriend” in 1958. In addition to the five Jaynetts, there were at least five other singers on the track. The song peaked at #2 (behind Bobby Vinton’s “Blue Velvet”) and has been covered by the likes of Tim Hardin and Grace Slick, and for some reason I remember Pentangle did this one as well.
4 Blue Velvet
Bobby Vinton
Speak of the devil… Originally recorded by Tony Bennett in 1950 and many times since, Bobby Vinton took it the furthest, reaching #1.
3 If I Had A Hammer
Trini Lopez
We used this a couple of weeks ago, didn’t we?
2 Washington Square
The Village Stompers
“Washington Square” and Village Stompers probably told you that this folk/Dixieland band comes from Greenwich Village in New York. This was the first of several hits for them, and th one that reached the highest chart position, #2 on the Hot 100 and #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
1 Be My Baby
The Ronettes
What more can I say? Ronnie Spector was married to Phil, who recorded and produced this, Wall O’ Sound and all.

And that’s Top Ten Tuesday for September 22, 2020.

4 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: WRSU (680 kHz, New Brunswick, NJ), 9/21/63

  1. I was a big Jan and Dean fan back in those days. Recently I watched the film The T.A.M.I. Show and enjoyed seeing the duo as the show hosts. There were some great acts in that show.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


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