The project I started two weeks ago is to listen to all the singles that Dave Marsh ranked in his book from 1989- The Heart of Rock& Soul: The 1001 Greatest Singles Ever. I have had the book since it came out, have read it several times and it has been one of those books at times I will open up and just read a few entries. It occurred to me that there were a number of songs on his list that I had never heard. I started at the end- #1001 and am slowly working my way to the front of the book. As I do this I am also working on the side- of writing down singles/ songs that would be possibilities for my 1001 Greatest Singles/ Song. I still haven’t decided if I will like Marsh just go with released singles or include album cuts too. So many great songs. I wish Marsh or someone would release a book on the 1001 Greatest Singles of the past thirty years- because somewhere in the mid- 1990′ s I lost interest in current pop music. If I would look at today’s Hot 100 I’d probably not know many of the songs or even the artists other than having seen their names somewhere. Anyhow.
#869 “I’m Crying”- The Animals 1964. MGM Billboard #19. The Animals are one of those groups I tend to forget about when I think of British Invasion acts that I really like. The only albums by The Animals that I have ever owned have been greatest hits or best of collections. They made some great singles and this is one of them. This single was their second hit following “The House of The Rising Sun”- which went to #1. A handful of singles from The Animals would make my list- this song, “We’ve Gotta Get Out Of This Place”, ” It’s My Life”, “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood.”
#868- “My Little Red Book’- Love 1966. Elektra Billboard #52. Two things I can’t believe on this one- one is that it wasn’t a bigger hit than what it was- it didn’t crack the Top 40 and two is I keep forgetting that the song was written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David. In the hands of singer Arthur Lee it doesn’t sound remotely like anything say a Dionne Warwick would attempt to sing. I have heard this song over the years and it would make my 1001 singles list.
#867 “Soul Makossa”- Manu Dibango- 1973- Atlantic- Billboard #35. When I listened to this song I immediately thought- Michael Jackson lifted part of this for his ending to “Wanna Be Starting Somethin’- and when I did some research this was a fact. Dibango sued him and they settled out of court. At the time of the books writing in 1989 this was the only African record recorded by an African to make the American Top 40. I have no idea if it has happened in the past thirty years. I liked this song- especially the section that Michael lifted but I wouldn’t have it listed in my 1001.
#866- “When You Walk In The Room”- Jackie DeShannon- 1964- Liberty- Billboard #99. Barely cracked the Hot 100. I don’t understand why it wasn’t a hit- sure was a catchy tune. It is superior to the two biggest hits she had- “What The World Needs Now”- #7 in 1965 and “Put A Little Love In Your Heart”-#4 in 1969. She is one of those artist I have read about over the years but haven’t heard a lot on the radio. I wouldn’t have this record in my 1001 although it is a good one.
#865- “Whole Lotta Loving”- Fats Domino 1958 Imperial Billboard #6. The Fat Man was a consistent hit maker for over a decade from the mid-50’s until the mid-60’s. A lot of his songs tend to sound similar to each other. I think he is the most underrated performer of the 50’s- you don’t hear his name dropped with the other big stars of the era but he probably had more hits than most of them. Several of his songs would no doubt make my list of 1001 I am just undecided right now on which ones would make it.
#864- “Whole Lotta Love”- Led Zeppelin 1969 Atlantic #4. Led Zeppelin was the ultimate album artists- they didn’t seem concerned about having hits or releasing many singles. Their most famous song- and most overplayed song ‘Stairway To Heaven” was never a hit because it was never released as a single. This song is their biggest hit in America and of the well known Led Zeppelin songs it is probably my least favorite. I have always been lukewarm about it- and it wouldn’t make my 1001 list.