We’re up to 1968 on out tour through the next ten (i.e. #11-20) on each year’s year-end Hot 100. The Top Ten always get all the attention…
#20 – Sly & The Family Stone, "Dance To The Music": Released in November 1967, this peaked at #8 on the Hot 100 and was the first to popularize "psychedelic soul."
#19 – The Grass Roots, "Midnight Confessions": Never released on any of the band’s studio albums, it nevertheless reached #5 on the Hot 100.
#18 – Hugh Masakela, "Grazing In The Grass": South African trumpeter Hugh Masakela had a #1 hit with this instrumental version, while the Friends of Distinction had a vocal version that reached #6 the following year. Hugh’s was a little more laid-back…
#17 – The Fifth Dimension, "Stoned Soul Picnic": Laura Nyro is to The Fifth Dimension what Bacharach and David are to Dionne Warwick: money in the bank. It reached #3 on the Hot 100, #2 on the R&B chart, and reached Platinum status.
#16 – The Box Tops, "Cry Like A Baby": Kept out of the top spot by Bobby Goldsboro’s "Honey," the blue-eyed soul group out of Memphis reached #2 and achieved Gold status.
#15 – Gary Puckett & The Union Gap, "Young Girl": This was also stuck at #2, in this case behind Otis Redding’s "Dock of the Bay," but it also achieved Gold status.
#14 – The Doors, "Hello, I Love You": From their 1968 album Waiting For The Sun, it reached #1. While The Doors are credited as the songwriters, there are multiple people who dispute it.
#13 – Tommy James & The Shondells, "Mony Mony": Was inspired by the Mutual of New York (MONY) sign across from their New York Hotel. It reached #3 in the US and #1 in the UK.
#12 – O. C. Smith, "Little Green Apples": Some smooth soul from O. C., on a song tat both Roger Miller and Patti Page covered in ’68. O. C. had the highest chart position at #2. Bobby Russell, the author, received two Grammy Awards for this in 1969, for Song of the Year and Best Country Song.
#11 – Jeannie C. Riley, "Harper Valley P. T. A.": Tom T. Hall wrote this song about a Southern mama exposing what she called a "Peyton Place" of indiscretions among the members of the Harper Valley P. T. A. It went to #1 on the Hot 100, the Country chart, and in Canada and Australia. And it was her only Top 40 hit…
Next week, 1969!