The Friday 5×2: KNUZ (1230 AM Houston, TX) On This Day In 1957

KNUZ sounds like it should be an all-news station, but it was a Top 40 station in the ’50’s and ’60s and into the ’70’s, when it lost the Top 40 market to KILT. It was a country station from the ’70’s until 1989, when it changed its callsign to KQUE (to match with its sister FM station at 102.9) and became a news-talk station. It’s been through multiple changes since then and is now KCOH, which had broadcasted at 1430 AM, returning to that station’s Urban format. Anyway, KNUZ was doing Top 40 in 1957, so let’s see what they were playing 62 years ago/

  1. Nat King Cole, “Send For Me” Nat doing something a little more Rock & Roll landed him a #6 on the Pop chart and #1 on the R&B chart.
  2. The Coasters, “Searchin'” Another one that eventually made it to #1 on the R&B chart, it climbed as high as #3 on the Billboard Pop Chart and #7 on the Cash Box chart.
  3. Little Richard, “Jenny Jenny” This was Richard’s first Top 10 hit on the Pop chart (it went to #10) and climbed to #2 on the R&B chart, as well as reaching #11 on the UK chart.
  4. Pat Boone, “Love Letters In The Sand” Mr. White Bucks was always on the charts in the ’50’s and early ’60’s, and usually at or close to the top. This reached #1 in the US and #12 in the UK, as well as #12 on the R&B chart.
  5. The Del Vikings, “Whispering Bells” Doo-wop was still as popular as ever, and the Del Vikings reached #9 on the Pop chart and #3 on the R&B chart with this one. It was their last Top 10 single.
  6. Everly Brothers, “Bye Bye Love” Another from Felice and Boudleaux Bryant, it went to #2 in the US and Canada, as well as #1 on the Country chart and #5 on the R&B chart. Not bad for your first chart experience.
  7. Ricky Nelson, “A Teenager’s Romance” Ricky’s first single was a top 10 hit, reaching #8 according to both Billboard and Cash Box. The weekly exposure on his parents’ TV show didn’t hurt…
  8. Elvis Presley, “Teddy Bear” Elvis was at the stage of his career where everything he touched turned to gold. This was a #1 on the Billboard and Cash Box Pop and Country charts and also a #1 on the R&B chart and the Canadian Pop chart.
  9. Jimmy Dorsey, “So Rare” One of Jimmy’s last major recordings, as he died the week before. It reached #2 on the Pop chart.
  10. Larry Williams, “Short Fat Fannie” Larry was a singer and songwriter, and this was his first and only Top 10 hit, reaching #5 on the Pop chart andf #1 on the R&B chart.

And that’s The Friday 5×2 for June 21, 2019.

The Friday 5×2: CHUM’s Top 10 from 1957

CHUM (1050 kHz in Toronto, Ontario, Canada) is now a news-talk station, but from the late ’50’s into the ’80’s played a Top 40 format, which in 1957 meant a lot of country. If you’re like me, you haven’t heard most of these before.

  1. Alvadean Coker & The Coker Family, “There’s A Tear In The Eye Of The Man In The Moon” Now, that’s what I call the name of a country song.
  2. Marty Robbins, “Singing The Blues” The legendary Robbins had a #1 hit with this in late 1956, and it was just making its way down the charts.
  3. Hylo Brown, “The Prisoner’s Song” Brown’s from Johnson County, Kentucky, so you just know you’re going to hear some bluegrass here. Features the great Earl Scruggs on banjo. I hope Shirley got her record back…
  4. King Ganam, “Josh Brown’s County Breakdown” Ameen Seid “King” Ganam was from Swift Current, Saskatchewan, the son of Syrian-English parents. He was considered “Canada’s King of the Fiddle.” His playing sounds like it was influenced by Scottish and Irish fiddlers. You’ll love it, I promise.
  5. Bobby Lord, “Without Your Love” From Tampa, Florida, he was discovered by country songwriter Boudleaux Bryant and signed with Columbia. This was a #10 hit for him, the only time in his career he reached the Top 10.
  6. George Morgan, “There Goes My Love” Considered a “country crooner” because he sounded more like Perry Como than most popular country singers, George is best known for his first hit, “Candy Kisses,” which reached #1. This reached #15.
  7. Johnny Cash, “There You Go” Another single from his days at Sun Records, this was his followup to “I Walk The Line,” and like its predecessor, it reached #1.
  8. Sonny James, “Young Love” The only song I recognized on the survey, this was a big crossover hit for Sonny in ’57.
  9. Elvis Presley, “When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold Again” Another great name for a country song, this comes from Elvis’s Sun Records days, when he did a lot of country.
  10. Leroy Van Dyke, “The Auctioneer” Almost a novelty record, it features some fast-talkin’ from Leroy.

And that’s The Friday 5×2 for January 11, 2019.