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10 interesting musical facts

12 hours of music are uploaded to SoundCloud every minute.

The oldest artist to have a UK number one is Tom Jones who was 68 years, Nine months and two weeks old when he topped the chart in 2009 with Barry Islands In The Stream alongside Robin Gibb, Vanessa Jenkins and Bryn West.

Status Quo’s 1979 hit Living On an Island was not as exotic as it sounds, it was written about Jersey where Rick Parfitt was resident at the time for tax purposes.

The longest marathon karaoke ever was attempted by Leonardo Polverelli in Italy on 23 Sep 2011. The performance lasted for five days and around 101 hours, 59 minutes and 15 seconds.

The musicians on Johnny Nash’s 1972 hit I Can See Clearly Now is the Average White Band.

Midnight Oil’s 1988 hit Beds Are Burning is about displaced aboriginals in Australia.

In 2015, Adele refused to let her 25 album be used on any streaming services and so if you wanted her album you had to buy the CD or download it. She sold 5 million discs in a month. It probably earned her more money in the process.

Harpo’s 1976 hit Movie Star features Abba’s Frida on backing vocals.

The Greek national anthem is the longest with 158 verses.

The Sue in Dion’s Runaround Sue was Susan Butterfield – his girlfriend at the time.

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The benefit of a re-mix

So many songs have been re-mixed, usually by a producer or DJ, but only 28 have benefitted from a higher chart position, here is the list:

Artist Title Original year Original Position Re-mix year Re-mix position
Climie Fisher Love Changes (Everything) 1987 67 1988 2
New Order Blue Monday 1988 1983 12 1988 3
Desireless Voyage Voyage 1987 53 1988 5
Bill Withers Lovely Day (Sunshine Mix) 1978 7 1988 4
Jeff Wayne The Eve Of The War 1978 36 1989 3
Freddie Mercury Living On My Own 1985 50 1993 1
D:Ream Things Can Only Get Better 1993 24 1994 1
D:Ream U R The Best Thing (2nd Re-Mix) 1992 72 1994 4
MC Sar And The Real Mccoy Another Night 1993 61 1994 2
N-Trance Set You Free 1993 39 1995 2
Nightcrawlers Push The Feeling On 1994 22 1995 3
Berri The Sunshine After The Rain 1994 26 1995 4
Everything But The Girl Missing 1994 69 1995 3
Underworld Born Slippy 1995 52 1996 2
Source Feat Candi Staton You Got The Love 1991 4 1997 3
The Shamen Move Any Mountain – Progen 91 1990 55 1991 4
Zoe Sunshine On A Rainy Day 1990 53 1991 4
Bizarre Inc Playing With Knives 1991 43 1991 4
Shanice I Love Your Smile 1991 55 1992 2
Sister Sledge We Are Family (2nd Re-Mix) 1979 8 1993 5
Wildchild Renegade Master 1995 11 1998 3
Corrs What Can I Do 1998 53 1998 3
Corrs Runaway 1996 49 1999 2
Moloko Sing It Back 1999 45 1999 4
Sonique It Feels So Good 1998 24 2000 1
Delerium Feat Sarah Mclachlan Silence 1999 73 2000 3
DJ Aligator Project The Whistle Song (Blow My Whistle Bitch) 2000 57 2002 5
Bodyrox Feat Luciana Yeah Yeah 2006 45 2006 2
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Most succesful one-hit-wonders

This week list was a suggestion from Kev who emailed me to say, “Recently, on Radio Two, someone said that the Archies’ Sugar Sugar was the most successful one hit wonder. Is that correct? What are the most successful one hit wonders?

Well Kev, it depends on what criteria is used to calculate that. Sales alone are not definitive because before digital compiling began, the method was a bit primitive and were not accurate. When I was producing and co-presenting shows on Capital Gold which included the 1000 number ones, most successful number twos and most successful one-hit-wonders, we used a method which was a points system devised and compiled by Neil Warwick who was my co-author on the Complete Book of the British Chart which involved giving EVERY songs that ever charted points. The higher up the chart the more points they got and bonus points for each week at number one. This was obviously linked to the sales that gave them the chart position. We couldn’t assume it was ok to use it without permission from the OCC (Official Charts Company), so we presented them with the system who agreed it was accurate and endorsed it and approved it for use on the air.

That one-hit-wonders programme was broadcast over 10 years ago, so I recently asked Neil to compile an up to date list and here is the top 30.

Position Act Title Chart Entry Year Weeks on Chart Peak Position
30 Tommy Dorsey Tea For Two Cha Cha 1958 19 3
29 Yolanda Be Cool vs D Cup We No Speak Americano 2010 22 1
28 Alan Walker Faded 2016 33 7
27 Mixtures The Pushbike Song 1971 21 2
26 Nico & Vinz Am I Wrong 2014 33 1
25 Lou Busch And His Orchestra Zambesi 1956 17 2
24 Simon Park Orchestra Eye Level 1972 24 1
23 Lee Marvin Wand’rin’ Star 1970 23 1
22 Al Hibbler Unchained Melody 1955 17 2
21 Muriel Smith Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me 1953 17 3
20 Bodyrockers I Like The Way 2005 40 3
19 Las Ketchup The Ketchup Song (Asereje) 2002 26 1
18 Vance Joy Riptide 2014 60 10
17 B. Bumble And The Stingers Nut Rocker 1962 26 1
16 Percy Faith And His Orchestra Theme From A Summer Place 1960 31 2
15 Magic! Rude 2014 31 1
14 Kalin Twins When 1958 18 1
13 Clive Dunn Grandad 1970 28 1
12 Kungs vs Cookin’ On 3 Burners This Girl 2016 28 2
11 Dream Weavers It’s Almost Tomorrow 1956 18 1
10 Jane Birkin And Serge Gainsbourg Je T’aime…Moi Non Plus 1969 34 1
9 Lilly Wood & Robin Schulz Prayer In C 2014 47 1
8 Wink Martindale Deck Of Cards 1959 41 5
7 Portugal The Man Feel It Still 2017 45 3
6 Archies Sugar Sugar 1969 26 1
5 Walk The Moon Shut Up & Dance 2015 48 4
4 Lumineers Ho Hey! 2012 50 8
3 Kitty Kallen Little Things Mean A Lot 1954 23 1
2 Obernkirchen Children’s Choir The Happy Wanderer (Der Frohliche Wanderer) 1954 26 2
1 Gotye feat Kimbra Somebody That I Used To Know 2012 53 1

 

 

 

 

My thanks, as ever to Neil Warwick who has spent endless years, months, day and hours accumulating the mammoth database.

 

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Acts with the most UK number two albums

21 acts had charted four or more albums that have peaked at number two. This does include Greatest Hits/Best Of packages. Here’s the list:

Act Album Titles Year
4
David Bowie David Live 1974
Young Americans 1975
Changesonebowie 1976
Low 1977
4
Iron Maiden Powerslave 1984
Live After Death 1985
No Prayer For The Dying 1990
Dance Of Death 2003
4
The Jam Sound Affects 1980
Dig The New Breed 1982
Snap! 1983
Greatest Hits 1991
4
James Gold Mother 1990
Seven 1992
Millionaires 1999
Girl At The End Of The World 2016
4
Pet Shop Boys Actually 1987
Introspective 1988
Behaviour 1990
Alternative 1995
4
Status Quo Quo 1974
Never Too Late 1981
Rocking All Over The Years 1990
Don’t Stop – Status Quo 30th Anniversary Album 1996
4
The Who Tommy 1969
Quadrophenia 1973
The Story Of The Who 1976
Face Dances 1981
5
Madonna I’m Breathless 1990
Erotica 1992
Bedtime Stories 1994
Ghv2: Greatest Hits Volume 2 – The Best Songs Of A Decade 2001
Rebel Heart 2015
5
Manic Street Preachers Everything Must Go 1996
Know Your Enemy 2001
Send Away The Tigers 2007
Futurology 2014
Resistance Is Futile 2018
5
Queen Sheer Heart Attack 1974
Jazz 1978
The Works 1984
Live At Wembley ’86 1992
The Platinum Collection – Greatest Hits I Ii & Iii 2000
5
Cliff Richard Cliff Sings 1959
Me And My Shadows 1960
Listen To Cliff! 1961
Cliff’s Hit Album 1963
Wonderful Life (Original Soundtrack) 1964
5
Frank Sinatra Sinatra-Basie 1963
Come Fly With Me 1958
Come Dance With Me! 1959
Close To You 1957
My Way 1969
5
The Smiths The Smiths 1984
The Queen Is Dead 1986
The World Won’t Listen 1987
Strangeways, Here We Come 1987
Rank 1988
5
Britney Spears …Baby One More Time 1999
Oops!…I Did It Again 2000
Greatest Hits: My Prerogative 2004
Blackout 2007
Glory 2016
5
Rod Stewart Vagabond Heart 1991
Unplugged…And Seated 1993
When We Were The New Boys 1998
Merry Christmas, Baby 2012
Another Country 2015
7
Bon Jovi Bounce 2001
Greatest Hits 2002
Have A Nice Day 2005
Lost Highway 2007
One Wild Night – Live 1985-2001 2009
The Circle 2010
What About Now 2013
7
Elton John Tumbleweed Connection 1971
Honky Chateau 1972
Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy 1975
Breaking Hearts 1984
The One 1992
Songs From The West Coast 2001
Rocket Man – The Definitive Hits 2007
7
Cliff Richard & The Shadows Cliff Sings 1959
Cliff Richard & The Shadows Me And My Shadows 1960
Cliff Richard & The Shadows Listen To Cliff! 1961
Cliff Richard & The Shadows Cliff’s Hit Album 1963
The Shadows The Shadows’ Greatest Hits 1963
Cliff Richard & The Shadows Wonderful Life (Original Soundtrack) 1964
The Shadows Dance With The Shadows 1964
7
Paul Weller Wild Wood 1993
Heavy Soul 1997
Heliocentric 2000
Studio 150 2004
Wake Up The Nation 2010
Saturns Pattern 2015
True Meanings 2018
8
Elvis Presley Elvis’ Christmas Album 1957
Elvis’ Golden Records 1958
Something For Everybody 1961
Girls! Girls! Girls! (Film Soundtrack) 1963
Elvis – Nbc Tv Special 1969
Elvis Sings ‘Flaming Star’ 1969
On Stage, February 1970 1970
The 50 Greatest Hits 2000
9
Rolling Stones Steel Wheels 1989
Forty Licks 2002
Martin Scorsese – Shine A Light 2008
Out Of Our Heads 1965
It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll 1974
Black And Blue 1976
Some Girls 1978
Tattoo You 1981
A Bigger Bang 2005
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Hit singles with a number reflecting their chart position

Here is a list of UK top 20 hits with a number in the title which matches the chart position it reached. I have discounted any tracks that is part of a longer number ie one and two is not included as part of Azealia Banks’ hit 212. Also songs with a part one/part two where there are another parts which is why Ian Dury does feature and also discounted are songs with a year reflecting a re-issue/re-mix.

Position Artist Title Year
1 Elvis Presley One Night 1959
1 Cliff Richard & The Shadows The Young Ones 1962
1 John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John You’re The One That I Want 1978
1 Lena Martell One Day At A Time 1979
1 St. Winifred’s School Choir No One Quite Like Grandma 1980
1 Michaael Jackson One Day In Your Life 1981
1 Whitney Houston One Moment In Time 1988
1 Chensey Hawkes The One And Only 1991
1 Spice Girls 2 Become 1 1996
1 Eternal Feat Bebe Winans I Wanna Be The Only One 1997
1 Britney Spears …Baby One More Time 1999
1 Robbie Williams She’s The One 1999
1 Daniel Bedingfield If You’re Not The One 2002
1 Tinchy Stryder Feat N-Dubz Number 1 2009
1 Avicii Vs Nicky Romero I Could Be The One 2013
1 One Direction One Way Or Another (Teenage Kicks) 2013
1 Drake Feat Wizkid & Kyla One Dance 2016
1 DJ Khaled Feat Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance The Rapper & Lil Wayne I’m The One 2017
1 Calvin Harris Feat Dua Lipa One Kiss 2018
2 Cappella U Got 2 Let The Music 1993
2 Blur Song 2 1997
2 Will Smith Just The Two Of Us 1998
2 S Club 7 Two In A Million 1999
2 Ann Lee 2 Times 1999
2 Will Smith Feat Kc-I Will 2k 1999
2 Booty Luv Boogie 2nite 2006
3 Len Barry 1-2-3 1965
3 Ian Dury & The Blockheads Reasons To Be Cheerful (Part 3) 1979
4 Irv Gotti Pts Ja Rule, Ashanti, Charli Baltimore & Vita Down 4 U 2002
4 Mark Owen Four Minute Warning 2003
4 Hi-Tack Say Say Say (Waiting 4 U) 2006
5 Manfred Mann 5-4-3-2-1 1964
7 Dubliners Seven Drunken Nights 1967
7 Madness The Return Of The Los Palmas 7 1981
7 White Stripes 7 Nation Army 2003
8 Avril Lavigne Sk8er Boi 2002
16 Chuck Berry Sweet Little Sixteen 1958
19 Courteeners Not Nineteen Forever 2008
20 Coronets Twenty Tiny Fingers 1955

 

 

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