Category Archives: 1977

American Top 40 – May 28, 1977: Songs 10-1

Welcome back as we wrap up this week’s Top 40 Countdown! If you missed the previous songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31, 30-21 and 20-11. This week has been a little different as we stretched all the way back to the ’70s. Now, let’s Return to the week ending May 28, 1977, and see what was at the top of the charts the weekend that Star Wars opened.

10. “Feels Like the First Time” by Foreigner

What an awesome way to start the Top 10! This was Foreigner’s debut single. It is a perfect Foreigner song, as it has a rockin’ guitar, soaring vocals, just about every instrument is on full display, and the harmonies are great.

9. “Lonely Boy” by Andrew Gold

This is a pretty good song that I had not heard before today. I like the piano and guitars in this song. This was Andrew Gold’s biggest U.S. hit, peaking at #7. Linda Ronstadt sings a blink-and-you-miss-it background vocal in the second verse.

8. “Lucille” by Kenny Rogers

Kenny Rogers picked a fine time to leave The First Edition. This was Kenny’s first solo hit of many in his incredible career.

7. “Couldn’t Get It Right” by The Climax Blues Band

This is a pretty good song by the British blues band. This song seems like it could have been a hit in any decade.

6. “Gonna Fly Now (Theme from “Rocky”)” by Bill Conti

Here is a Rocky theme we all know and love. It is a great song for a blockbuster film. After this weekend in 1977, this song was overshadowed by the soundtrack of a new little independent film called Star Wars.

5. “Got To Give It Up (Part 1)” by Marvin Gaye

indexThis was a huge, worldwide hit by Marvin Gaye. This is a pretty cool funk/disco tune. Unfortunately, this is the song that brought us the (song thieves) Robin Thicke and Pharrell 2013 hit, “Blurred Lines“.

4. “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac

This is hard to believe. This song was Fleetwood Mac’s only U.S. #1 hit. This was a Stevie Nicks penned song from the legendary Rumours album.

3. “I’m Your Boogie Man / Wrap Your Arms Around Me” by K.C. and the Sunshine Band

111050114This is a fun dance song by K.C. and the Sunshine Band. This song was a #1 hit on this chart, and a #3 hit on the R&B chart.

2. “When I Need You” by Leo Sayer

This is a really nice ballad by the British singer=songwriter Leo Sayer. It had also been a #1 hit on this chart. I have no idea why he is wearing a Buffalo Sabres jersey in the video, other than he must be performing in Buffalo.

Before we see our #1 song, let’s see what was topping some of the other charts this week in 1977:

The top Country single was “Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)” by Waylon Jennings

The #1 Adult Contemporary song was “Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffett

The best Dance single was “Devil’s Gun”/”We Got Our Own Thing”/”Sure Can’t Go to the Moon” by C.J. & Company

The #1 album this week is one that you may have heard of – Rumours by Fleetwood Mac

And the topping the R&B chart is our #1 song this week:

1. “Sir Duke” by Stevie Wonder

What a way to close out the week! As much as I like a lot of Stevie’s songs in the ’80s, I prefer his ’70s work. This song is a tribute to Duke Ellington, who was an influence on Stevie Wonder, and had just died three years earlier. This song is instantly recognizable by it’s horn section that begins the track. Wonder also refers to other jazz legends Count Basie, Glenn Miller, Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald.

Well, that wraps up this week’s Top 40. I hope you enjoyed this. Let me know what you think. Even though this is an ’80s site, do you mind venturing over to a different decade, occasionally?

I don’t think I’m going to be able to see the new Star Wars movie this weekend. I still have shopping to do, and a family Christmas party to go to. So, I am going to be offline until I see the movie. Most people are good at not spoiling movies. But, all it takes is one idiot to post something that will ruin the experience for me. The next couple of weeks will be short due to the holidays. So, the next Top 40 countdown will be in the new year. So, “if you’ll not be needing me, I’ll close down for a while.”

I hope you all have a totally awesome and peaceful holiday season! Until next time, Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

American Top 40 – May 28, 1977: Songs 20-11

Hi Everybody! Welcome back to the Countdown! If you missed the earlier songs, you can go back and check out songs 40-31 and 30-21. Today, we have another mix of songs that I am very familiar with, and songs I had never heard before today. Since we are getting to the bigger hits, I’m hoping some of these unfamiliar songs are good. So, let’s Return back to the weekend that Star Wars opened (May 25, 1977), and check out more Top 40 songs from the week ending May 28, 1977.

20. “Jet Airliner” by The Steve Miller Band

I know that this may be blasphemous, but I don’t really care much for The Steve Miller Band. The reason is probably that our local rock radio station always played them at least once an hour. This song isn’t as irritating to me as some of the others. I do love the guitar in this song.

19. “Right Time of the Night” by Jennifer Warnes

File this song in the department of “Oh, I forgot about this one!” I know Jennifer Warnes from her movie soundtrack duets with Joe Cocker (“Up Where We Belong“) and Bill Medley (“(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life“). I remember hearing this song, but never knew that it was by her. I like this one a lot. It’s one of those nice singer/songwriter ballads.

18. “Lido Shuffle” by Boz Scaggs

Oh yeah! Lido! Whoah-oh-oh-oooh! This is my pick of the day, unless there is a new song that is better. Whenever I’m on a cruise ship, and I hear that there is an activity on the Lido deck, I sing this song. And I just learned this fact, that may explain why I like this song so much: two of the members of the band on this song includes David Paich (keyboards) and Jeff Porcaro (drums), who would later go on to form the band Toto.

17. “Heard It in a Love Song” by The Marshall Tucker Band

downloadI thought I knew about The Marshall Tucker Band, but I guess I don’t This song was the country rock band’s biggest hit, reaching up to #14. After a quick scan of their discography, none of their song titles sound familiar to me. I like this one. It’s a very good mid-tempo country-crossover song.

16. “Ain’t Gonna Bump No More (With No Big Fat Woman)” by Joe Tex

This is definitely one of the most interesting song titles I have ever seen. In this politically correct world we live in right now, there is no way this song would get released. But, the ’70s were a different time. Not only was this song released, but it was a hit. And not only was it a hit, but it was nominated for a Grammy Award (for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance)!

15. “Hello Stranger” by Yvonne Elliman

I recognized this song as soon as it started (She-bop, she-bop, my baby). This was a cover of Barbara Lewis’ 1963 hit, that reached #3 on the mainstream chart, and #1 on the R&B chart. The song was covered many times, but this version by Yvonne Elliman was the most successful since the original, peaking right here at #15. It only charted at #57 on the R&B chart. But, it was #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart for four weeks.

14. “Undercover Angel” by Alan O’Day

This one was a pleasant surprise for me. This is an uptempo easy listening song. This was a #1 for Alan O’Day, even without an album to support it. This was his only hit song in the U.S. However, that was not the end of Alan O’Day. He would go on to write over 100 songs for the Muppet Babies cartoon.

13. “Angel in Your Arms” by Hot

We have another winner here! Although this was by an R&B girl group, this song has a country music vibe to it. Apparently, the country music industry also felt the same way, as there have been several country artists who covered this song. The most notable version was by Barbara Mandrell. In July 1985, it was her first recorded song following her horrible September 11, 1984 car accident. As much as I love the Hot version, I think I may even like the Barbara Mandrell version even better.

12. “Southern Nights” by Glen Campbell

Oh, duh! I had totally forgotten about this song! Man, this is classic! This was a #1 smash hit on this chart, the country chart, and the adult contemporary chart, It would be Campbell’s fifth and final #1 country hit.

11. “Hotel California” by The Eagles

This trademark Eagles tune goes into my Overplayed Songs in History Hall of Fame, along with “Margaritaville” and “Stairway to Heaven”.
I’m also a little bitter about this song because it was my high school ex-girlfriends song with her douchy rebound boyfriend. If you want to hear a far superior, long storyteller Eagles tune, check out “The Last Resort” which was also from their Hotel California album.

That wraps up today’s list of songs. This was my favorite day so far! So much so, that I can’t even pick a song of the day. I basically love every song between between “Jet Airliner” and “Hotel California”. Are you digging this songs? We will wrap this up on Friday. I’m not sure if I’m going to like it as much as today’s list, but there are some pretty good songs that I know in the Top 10. And I love the #1 song. So come back Friday and see what it is.

American Top 40 – May 28, 1977: Songs 30-21

Hi Everybody, welcome back to the Top 40 Countdown! If you missed yesterday’s list of songs, you can go ahead and check them out. Today should be interesting, as I only knew four of the songs before today. There is definitely one on here that I think just about everybody on the planet knows. So, let’s go into hyperspace this Star Wars week, take a trip in the way back machine, and Return to the week ending May 28, 1977, and continue the countdown.

30. “Do You Wanna Make Love” by Peter McCann

We’ll begin today with an interesting song that I like. To me, the verses sound like an easy listening late ’70s/early ’80s song that you may hear on the soundtrack of a comedy-drama film. Then the chorus sounds like a country-crossover type of song. This song would be a huge hit, peaking all the way up at #5.

29. “High School Dance” by The Sylvers

Here is another interesting song. This may sound really strange, but this sounds like a mashup of The Beatles and the Jackson 5. It starts off sounding like a Paul McCartney led Beatles tune. Then the rest of the family joins in singing, and it the style and sound kind of reminded me of the Jackson 5. I could see how this could have been a fun dance song back in the Disco era ’70s.
Oh man, I called that one! I just looked up information on the band. It is a The Sylvers were a band of 10 siblings (there was one family member that was not in the band). The lead singer, Edmund, was the voice of Marlon Jackson in the 1971-1973 Jackson 5ive cartoon series.

28. “Life in the Fast Lane” by The Eagles

Since I have the heart of a rocker, this was always one of my favorite Eagles songs. I love the hard driving guitar, Don Henley’s vocals, and the song’s story, which is about the excessive lifestyle of a couple – which is perfect for the ’80s. So I suppose the theme was ahead of it’s time.

27. “Slow Dancin’ Don’t Turn Me On” by The Addrisi Brothers

Here is another song that I had never heard before today. I had never heard of the Addrisi Brothers either, and they were somewhat local to me, as they came from my neighboring Winthrop, Massachusetts. When they were young, the two brothers, Don and Dick, were in their family’s acrobatic group, The Flying Addrisis. Then in the ’50s they got in touch with Lenny Bruce about starting a singing career and moved to California. They auditioned for the Mickey Mouse Club, but did not get in. They would go on to be songwriters. Their most successful song was “Never My Love” which was performed by The Association.
“Slow Dancin’ Don’t Turn Me On” isn’t bad, and isn’t great. It’s pretty much a song of its time.

26. “Uptown Festival (Motown Medley) (Part 1)” by Shalamar

Shalamar was a disco group created by Soul Train creator/producer Don Cornelius.
“Uptown Festival” was Shalamar’s first single. It is a medley of Motown hits set to disco music. Here is the song list for this part of the song, which would peak at #22:

“Going to a Go-Go” / “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)” / “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” / “Stop! In the Name of Love” / “It’s the Same Old Song”

25. “Mainstreet” by Bob Seger

Next up is the classic rock radio staple by Bob Seger. This was the fourth single released from his Night Moves album, and would peak at #24. This is one of those songs that I don’t hate, but I really need to be in the mood for it to listen to it all the way through.

24. “Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffett

This is Jimmy Buffett’s signature hit, and the go-to song for anybody going on a tropical vacation. Not only does everybody know this song, but almost everybody probably knows all the lyrics. If I’m wrong about that, then it’s my own damn fault.

23. “Whodunit” by Tavares

Holy Cliché, Batman! This song starts off with the “Whodunit” notes, reminding me of Inspector Gadget. Then, thankfully, the song turns into a very good R&B/Funk/Disco song. I really like this one. Hmmm. This could possibly be my new song pick of the day.

22. “Calling Dr. Love” by Kiss

Alright! Another rock song! You know what Kiss’ problem is? They are just so subtle. Anyway, I usually prefer Paul’s songs to Gene’s. But this is one Gene Simmons song (along with “I Love It Loud“) that I absolutely love.

21. “So In To You” by The Atlanta Rhythm Section

maxresdefaultThe Atlanta Rhythm Section is a southern rock band. They weren’t as popular as Lynyrd Skynyrd or The Allman Brothers, but they are pretty good (well at least this song anyway). This was their biggest hit, peaking at #7.

Well, that wraps up today’s list of songs. I enjoyed it. I hope you’re enjoying this trip back to the ’70s. We’ll be back to continue the countdown tomorrow.

American Top 40 – May 28, 1977: Songs 40-31

We covered the Top 40 countdown for the weekend that Return of the Jedi came out, and the weekend that The Empire Strikes Back came out. Now, Return to the ’80s is going back to a long, long time ago, in a galaxy…well right here, and counting down the Top 40 songs from the weekend that Star Wars was released. The movie was released on May 25, 1977. This countdown is from the week ending May 28, 1977. Far out, man! Us older ’80s kids will remember a lot of these songs. If I had to watch movies only from one decade that wasn’t the ’80s, I personally would choose the ’70s over the ’90s. This should be an interesting week. I think I’ve only heard of 16 songs out of the 40 – and 6 of them are in the top 10. So, let’s Return to the week ending May 28, 1977, and begin this countdown of groovy tunes.

40. “My Heart Belongs to Me” by Barbra Streisand

Well, if you’re a Streisand fan, this is a great start to a countdown. I’m not a fan. I appreciate that she does have a beautiful voice. But, I can only take her in very small doses – as in a half a song at as time. This does sound like a typical late ’70s Babs. So, if you do like her, this is a very good song.

39. “I’ve Got Love On My Mind” by Natalie Cole

I had never heard this song before. I actually kind of like it. It has a timeless sound to it. It could have been released in the ’70s, ’80s, or even today if there was good music today. This was off of Natalie Cole’s third album, Unpredictable, it spent five weeks at #1 on the Hot Soul Singles chart and peaked at #5 on the Billboard Hot 100.

38. “Everybody Be Dancin'” by Starbuck

starbuckThis song “Everybody Be Dancin'” by the rock group Starbuck, is neither a dance song nor a rock song. There’s a reason why I never heard this song before now…it’s not that good, but it’s not horrible either. And there is not really any mistaking for which decade this song came from.

37. “I Just Want to Be Your Everything” by Andy Gibb

It only took a few songs to get to one that I know. I really like this song a lot. It would be a #1 hit on this chart for three weeks, beginning July 30. Then The Emotions took over the top spot for four weeks with “Best of My Love“. Then in September, “I Just Want to Be Your Everything” jumped back in to the top spot. Andy is credited as being co-songwriter with his brother Barry. Andy said the following in the book The Bee Gees – Tales of the Brothers Gibb by Melinda Bilyeu, Hector Cook, and Andrew Hughes:

So, once we discussed it all and got the deal together, me and Barry locked ourselves in a bedroom and Barry just started writing. When Barry writes, it is very hard to collaborate with him, because he is so quick. And before I knew it he was starting to do the chorus of [‘I Just Want to Be Your Everything’], and I thought, ‘Wow what a hook!’. He’s an expert at his craft. Within about 20 minutes, he’d written a number one record; and then we went right into another one, [‘(Love Is) Thicker than Water‘]

36. “Slowdown” by John Miles

This is the best song we’ve gotten to so far, which I had never heard before now. I think it has a funk rock sound. This was the biggest U.S. hit for John Miles. It would peak two spots further on this chart, at #34. However, it hit #2 on the Disco chart. Once again, there is no denying which decade this came from.

35. “Gonna Fly Now (Theme From “Rocky”)” by Maynard Ferguson

You know it. You love it. You may have run up the 72 stone steps leading to the entrance of the Philadelphia Museum of Art to it. But, wait. I thought Bill Conti did this song. Well, for the first time that I know of, the countdown is going to have the same song twice on the same countdown. Spoiler alert – You won’t hear Bill Conti’s version for a while. This version, by Maynard Ferguson is a jazz version of the song. Well, it sounds very much like the version you know, except this song has Maynard Ferguson playing some killer trumpet to give it more of a jazz sound than a disco sound.

34. “Back Together Again” by Daryl Hall and John Oates

downloadAlso known as (by me anyway) Hall & Oates do Disco. I had never heard this song before. It is the opening track of their album, Bigger Than Both of Us, which also contained the hit “Rich Girl“. This is not the classic Hall & Oates that we know. It does sound pretty good when Daryl Hall starts singing.

33. “Looks Like We Made It” by Barry Manilow

Growing up, before I started listening to my own music, there was a lot of Neil Diamond and Barry Manilow being played in my house. So, I am very familiar with this song. It’s a bit of a guilty pleasure for me. This is one of his better songs. It was a #1 hit on this chart and the adult contemporary chart. This song is a bit deceiving. From the title, it sounds like a couple has made it through a difficult time, and are happy together. But, no. They moved on with their lives separately, and thought they were happy, until they saw each other again.

Looks like we made it
Left each other on the way to another love
Looks like we made it
Or I thought so till today
Until you were there everywhere
And all I could taste was love the way we made it

32. “Ariel” by Dean Friedman

This song was Dean Friedman’s only hit in the U.S., peaking at #26. This song sounds like a poor man’s Billy Joel tune. There is one interesting fact about this song. It generated controversy because the song refers to Ariel as a Jewish girl. The record label wanted him to get rid of the verse, that mentions her being Jewish, because they felt that radio stations would use that as an excuse to not play the song. Dean stayed strong, and kept the verse.

31. “Love’s Grown Deep” by Kenny Nolan

downloadThis is a nice ballad, that is without a doubt, from the ’70s. This actually sounds like something Andy Gibb would sing. Kenny Nolan was mainly known as a songwriter. You may have heard of a couple of his songs – Frankie Valli’s “My Eyes Adored You” and Patti Labelle’s “Lady Marmalade“. Not a bad way to end the list of songs today.

Well that wraps it up for today. Do any of you have memories from 1977? Unfortunately for me, I have a feeling that there are a lot of you reading this, who weren’t born yet. Let me know what you all think of this countdown so far.