Top Ten Tuesday: WAIT (820 AM, Chicago), 10/6/56

WAIT in Chicago is now WCPT, "Chicago’s Progressive Talk," and during the ’60’s and ’70’s it was a daytime-only "beautiful music" station, but in the mid-’50’s it was a Top 40 station. Here’s their Top 10 from 64 years ago today.

# Song/Artist Comments
10 Ka Ding Dong
The Diamonds
Fame and fortune in the form of their hit “Little Darlin'” was still a few months off, but this made it to #8 on the R&B chart and Cash Box ranked this #17, well above its peak on the Hot 100 (#35).
9 Green Door
Jim Lowe
I’m certain Jim had no intention of having his #1 hit become the name of a particularly raunchy “adult film,” but since he hadn’t written it, there wasn’t much he could say about it. Lowe was also a disk jockey and was considered an expert on the music of the ’40’s and ’50’s.
8 Friendly Persuasion (Thee I Love)
Pat Boone
Pat was incredibly successful in the ’50’s and early ’60’s. I think he still holds the record for most consecutive weeks with a record on the Hot 100. This was the theme song for the 1956 movie of the same name that starred Gary Cooper, Dorothy McGuire and Anthony Perkins, and Pat’s version reached #5 nationally.
7 See Saw
The Moonglows
An R&B group from Cleveland, the Moonglows reached #5 on the national R&B chart and #25 on the Hot 100 with this song. That it did well in Chicago is no surprise.
6 Tonight You Belong To Me
Patience & Prudence
Patience (age 14) and Prudence (age 11) McIntyre grew up in Southern California. Their father Marks was an orchestra leader and brought them to Liberty Records, where they made a demo record of this song. They were signed and the record was released, climbing to #4 on the US charts. It was their greatest success on the chart. Both are living in Wisconsin now.
5 Hound Dog
Elvis Presley
A song by Lieber and Stoller that was recorded first by Big Mama Thornton. Elvis’s version was quite a bit different, and became one of the best-selling singles of all time, simultaneously reaching #1 on the Pop, R&B, and Country charts. Rolling Stone ranks this at #19 on their list of the greatest songs of all time, which leads me to wonder what the 18 songs above it are.
4 Canadian Sunset
Andy Williams
Both Andy’s vocal version and Eddie Heywood’s instrumental version were on the WAIT chart at the same time, and as was usually the case in those days, both songs were listed together on the chart. Andy’s version reached #7 on the Pop chart. Continued below…
4 Canadian Sunset
Eddie Heywood & Hugo Winterhalter
Heywood wrote this song, with lyrics by Norman Gimbel. His version with the Hugo Winterhalter Orchestra reached #2 on the Pop chart and #7 on the R&B chart. Vocal or instrumental, it’s a great song, isn’t it?
3 The Fool
Sanford Clark
Country and rockabilly singer Clark had his greatest chart success with this Lee Hazlewood song, reaching #7 on the Hot 100, #14 on the Country chart, and #5 on the Black Singles chart. He’s still going at the tender age of 85.
2 Don’t Be Cruel
Elvis Presley
A song written by Otis Blackwell, this was the flip side to “Hound Dog.” As “Hound Dog” peaked and started descending the chart, stations began playing “Don’t Be Cruel,” and it peaked at #1.
1 Honky Tonk (Part 1 & 2)
Bill Doggett
Jazz and R&B keyboardist Bill Doggett reached #2 on the Hot 100 and #1 on th R&B chart with this instrumental, which was the biggest R&B record of 1956. Billy Butler plays guitar and Clifford Scott plays tenor saxophone; Part 1 was the A side and Part 2 was the B side.

And that’s Top Ten Tuesday for October 6, 2020.

5 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: WAIT (820 AM, Chicago), 10/6/56

    1. These aren’r ones that you generally hear, though I’ve heard Lonnie Mack’s version of “Honky Tonk” and “Canadian Sunset” is the kind of thing I like to toss out here every once in a while…

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