Apologies for this one being up a day late - hectic work schedule.
The year is now 1963, the year before the dam broke. In the #1s chart this was a pretty eclectic year, but looking at the rest of the Top 40 (our list goes to #42 today because of the number of eliminations) we see two big things - this was the year that surf music exploded, and the year that the folk revival of the early '60s broke into the mainstream in a big way. This one was an easy call for me as soon as I saw a certain song on the list - what’s your favorite?
“End of the World” gets the highest score in the world-famous** Ponch8 Music Rating System**, slightly ahead of “Our Day Will Come.” This is a much stronger set of choices than the 1962 NIT poll, where I didn’t vote at all.
Is anyone else surprised that “Blowin’ in the Wind” came out this early? I always thought it was an anti-Vietnam War song.
The song itself was already a year old by this time; Bob Dylan first performed it in April of 1962 and recorded it a few months later, though the PP&M version was the one that made it big.
My choice for this poll was that particular trio’s other contributon to the charts this year, Puff the Magic Dragon. I’ve loved that song since I was little and it still makes me tear up listening to it today. In its absence, I could have easily gone for “Rhythm of the Rain”, “Heat Wave”, or “Wipeout”.
I went with PP&M too, because it’s probably the last chance I get to give them a legit vote.
I’ve been struck by the much greater diversity in the ‘best of the rest’ hits during these pre-Invasion years, compared to the #1s. It’s made it a lot easier to think well of the music from this period.
A few years back in this sequence, I would have voted for The Four Lads’ “Standing On The Corner” if I’d noticed it before I voted, because it was a favorite of my father’s. But this year - sorry Dad! - I’m still not voting for Trini Lopez. He actually did have some good songs, but IMNSHO, “If I Had A Hammer” wasn’t a song that was exactly crying out to be done in his style.
I assume you mean the version by the Kingsmen, and I’m surprised, too. That’s pretty much THE song that summarizes rock music to me. I’m surprised, but it appears not to have made the year-end Hot 100.
Unfortunately, yes. The only other song of theirs that charted in the year-end Hot 100 is “I Dig Rock & Roll Music”, which made #91 in 1967 (and is just plain unusually mean-spirited coming from a band like PP&M).
Somehow, “Leavin’ On A Jet Plane”, which made #1 in 1969, didn’t even appear on the year-end chart.
Actually, there was a band called “Jack Bedient and the Chessmen” that hailed from the Pacific Northwest and recorded a cover of Louie Louie in the early '60s (as did pretty much every rock band in the PNW at the time), though I’ve yet to find a recording of it online.