Best of the Rest of the Top 40: 1966

The year is now 1966. In the #1 polls, this year was the peak of psychedelia, and the Top 40, though less so, is certainly a grab bag. This is one of the first years with a really significant number of #1 eliminations - I had to go all the way to #10 to find a song that wasn’t a #1, and all the way to #50 to get the 25 songs for this poll.

What’s your favorite?

Previous polls: 1956 1957 1958 1959 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965

Best #1 single polls: 1955-56 1957 1958 1959 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s All-time

You’ve got the wrong song name for The Outsiders’ song; it’s Time Won’t Let Me.

I went with California Dreamin’. Even though it’s overplayed on oldies stations, it remains a great song from a good album and was iconic to the hippie era. I will note with pride that I saw Sam The Sham live at the armory in Anchorage when I was in high school.

You’re right. How did I miss that? I was looking directly at my list while typing out the poll options.

There were a number of songs back then with “time” in the title or lyrics. There was one where the band members would shout TIME! and there was some clock-like syncopation on the cowbell going in the background. It was a solid rock tune and I can’t remember the artist or the name of the tune for the life of me.

Chambers Brothers, Time Has Come Today

It was a toss up between the Mamas and Papas and Bob Lind, but I went for Bob Lind because it was one of the first great lyrically psychedelic songs. The music was very beautiful too.

I despise “California Dreamin’.”

I went to the other coast (Boston) and picked the Standells’ “Dirty Water.” Great riff (loved it since I was about six years old), nasty vocals, captures a '66 vibe that was sort of a Stateside version of the Yardbirds thing going on across the pond.

Had to pick that one too. There are quite a few here that i hope someone votes for.

Mitch Ryder. That’s one hell of a committed performance.

“Sunny” by Bobby Hebb.

I went with Bus Stop. It’s a wonderful song.

I voted for “Walk Away Renee,” one of the saddest songs I’ve ever heard. Other contenders were “California Dreamin’” and “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted,” but they weren’t quite highly-rated enough in the world-famous Ponch8 Music Rating System to win my vote.

“Sweet Pea” is dead-ass last. What a horrible record that was.
I’m a year late, but some of these songs remind me of this 1965-style cover of “Flagpole Sitta” by Harvey Danger.

So much awesomeness in 1966.

Like Leaffan, I went with Bus Stop although it’s not going to win the popular vote. It has a lovely, nostalgic feel to it (for me). Just a sweet and intimate song that evokes a time and place when people actually used the bus and formed relationships doing that very mundane thing.

I can easily vote for either Lovin Spoonful or Outsiders, but I will give them all a listen tonight in case there is one I like better.

It actually reminds me of an early McCartney song. I’m not musically inclined, so I can’t explain exactly why.


Runners up: Dusty; Standells

The Temptations almost got it, but “California Dreamin’” is such a perfect song it had to get my vote.

I might not vote for that one. It always reminds me of the bathroom stall graffiti, “…Came to shit, but only farted.”

That’s it! HEY!

It’s the Outsiders for me.