If You Go This Time by Platinum Blonde

#1011: If You Go This Time by Platinum Blonde

Peak Month: June 1988
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “If You Go This Time
“If You Go This Time” lyrics

Mark Holmes was born in the UK and lived in Manchester until the family moved to Toronto. He met several other musicians and formed a punk band that played covers to The Police and other new wave bands. After a lineup change, Holmes was playing guitar and the lead vocalist, Chris Steffler was the drummer and Sergio Galli was a second guitarist. The trio became Platinum Blonde. They got a record deal with CBS in 1983. Their debut album, Standing In The Dark, earned them two Video Of The Year nominations at the 1984 Juno Awards. But it was their second album, Alien Shores, which included “Crying Over You”, a #1 single on the Canadian RPM charts in 1985, and in Vancouver.

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Brian Wilson by Barenaked Ladies

#1110: Brian Wilson by Barenaked Ladies

Peak Month: March 1993
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #68 (in 1998)
YouTube.com: “Brian Wilson
“Brian Wilson” lyrics

Lloyd Edward Elwyn “Ed” Robertson was born in Scarborough, Ontario, in 1970. He began to play guitar when he was in grade five. Steven Jay Page was also born in Scarborough in 1970. He took piano lessons for ten years and was a member of the Toronto Mendelssohn Youth Choir. Page and Robertson crossed paths in elementary school. But they didn’t become friends until 1988 when they found themselves co-counsellors at a summer Scarborough Schools Music Camp. Later that year there was a charity and Robertson asked Page to join him in a performance. The duo named themselves the Barenaked Ladies.

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Out Of Left Field by Percy Sledge

#1123: Out Of Left Field by Percy Sledge

Peak Month: April 1967
5 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #9
1 week Hit Bound
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #55
YouTube.com “Out Of Left Field
“Out Of Left Field” lyrics

Percy Tyrone Sledge was born in 1941 in northwestern Alabama. His dad died while he was still an infant. From a young age he picked cotton and chopped cotton. He was raised on music in the church and also loved country music. Growing up Percy dreamed about playing baseball. But his classmates thought he’d be a singer. Percy Sledge worked as a hospital orderly and later at a chemical plant. He sang on weekends with a band called the Esquire Combos. The band traveled across Alabama and Mississippi. With his untended hair cut and gap-toothed smile, Sledge was not a typical recording artist, as record companies were increasingly scouting for attractive performers to showcase on TV, even though most households still had black and white televisions in 1966.

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Power Of Love by Frankie Goes To Hollywood

#1090: Power Of Love by Frankie Goes To Hollywood

Peak Month: January 1985
8 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Power Of Love
“Power Of Love” lyrics

William Johnson was born in 1960 in Liverpool, UK. Growing up, his nickname was Billy. In 1965 he wrote his first song on a glockenspiel. At the age of 13 he got the nickname Joyful Johnson and dyed his hair. He attended school with less frequency due to being bullied in response to his androgynous appearance. He was influenced by David Bowie, Marc Bolan, the Velvet Underground and Andy Warhol and bought a guitar through the sale of cigarettes. At the age of 14 he took the name Holly Johnson in tribute to the actress Holly Woodlawn, a Puerto Rican transgendered actress and friend of Andy Warhol. In 1976 Holly Johnson became part of the Demi Monde in Liverpool’s hedonistic counter-culture. In 1977, Johnson became part of the punk/new wave band Big In Japan. After that band split in 1979, Johnson continued to pursue a musical career. In 1980 he was invited to join Frankie Goes To Hollywood.

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I Should Have Known Better by The Beatles

#1106: I Should Have Known Better by The Beatles

Peak Month: September 1964
3 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #53
YouTube.com: “I Should Have Known Better
“I Should Have Known Better” lyrics

Paul McCartney was born in Liverpool in 1942. He attended the Liverpool Institute High School for Boys and met fellow classmates  George Harrison on a school bus. When Paul was 14 his mom died from a blockage in one of her blood vessels. In his early teens McCartney learned to play trumpet, guitar and piano. He was left-handed and restrung the strings to make it work. In 1957, Paul met John Lennon and in October he was invited to join John’s skiffle band, The Quarrymen, which Lennon had founded in 1956. After Paul joined the group his suggested that his friend, George Harrison, join the group. Harrison became one of the Quarrymen in early 1958, though he was still only 14. Other original members of the Quarrymen, Len Garry, Rod Davis, Colin Hanton, Eric Griffiths and Pete Shotton left the band when their set changed from skiffle to rock ‘n roll. John Duff Lowe, a friend of Paul’s from the Liverpool Institute, who had joined the Quarrymen in early 1958 left the band at the end of school. This left Lennon, McCartney and Harrison as remaining trio. On July 15, 1958, John Lennon’s mother died in an automobile accident.

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Gimmie Your Money Please by Bachman-Turner Overdrive

#1070: Gimmie Your Money Please by Bachman-Turner Overdrive

Peak Month:  October 1976
8 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #12
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com:”Gimme Your Money Please
“Gimme Your Money Please” lyrics

Randolph Charles Bachman was born in 1943 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. When he was just three years old he entered the King of the Saddle singing contest on CKY radio, Manitoba’s first radio station that began in 1923. Bachman won the contest. When he turned five years he began to study the violin through the Royal Toronto Conservatory. Though he couldn’t read music, he was able to play anything once he heard it. He dropped out of high school and subsequently a business administration program in college. He co-founded a Winnipeg band called The Silvertones with Chad Allan in 1960. In 1962 the band became Chad Allan and the Expressions, and was renamed The Guess Who? in 1965 with their first big hit, “Shakin’ All Over”. The Guess Who dropped the question mark in their title a few years later.

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Sound Of Love by The Five Americans

#1074: Sound Of Love by The Five Americans

Peak Month:  June 1967
5 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #7
1 Week Hit Bound
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #36
YouTube.com: “Sound Of Love
“Sound Of Love” lyrics

The Five Americans were originally a group called The Mutineers. They consisted of guitarist Mike Rabon, keyboard player Jim Durrill, guitar and harmonica player Norman Ezell, bass player Jim Grant and drummer Johnny Coble. From Durant, Oklahoma, they graduated as students from the local Southeastern State College and moved to Dallas, Texas. Coble was replaced by Jimmy Wright. Once in Texas their style shifted from mostly instrumental versions of tunes by Duane Eddy to a garage band sound. They recorded “I See The Light” in 1965 and it became a Top 30 hit in the USA the following year. It featured the Vox Continental electric organ and shouting out lyrics such as “you tried to fool me, but I got wise, now I won’t listen to none of your lies…. From now on baby, I’m gonna beware. I’ll be sorry baby, but I don’t care…”

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Sweet Dreams by Don Gibson

#1115: Sweet Dreams by Don Gibson

Peak Month: November 1960
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKWX chart
Peak Position #10
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #93
YouTube.com: “Sweet Dreams
“Sweet Dreams” lyrics

In 1928 Donald Eugene Gibson was born in Shelby, North Carolina. His family was poor and he stopped attending school in grade two to help out his sharecropping parents. He developed an interest in music at an early age and was inspired by recording artists like Tennessee Ernie Ford. Don Gibson began performing at local clubs before he was 18. In his late teens he held down a number of jobs including a as soda jerk, baby diaper deliveryman and dishwasher. A friend came home from Paris, France, after World War II with records by the jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. This enhanced Gibson who began to experiment with different styles by his mid-teens. In 1946, he became a regular with the Tennessee Barn Dance in Knoxville, but things weren’t what Gibson expected. The fans wanted old-time country, not Gibson’s brand of crooning. He hung on to the radio job but struggled on $30 a week earned playing beer joints.

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Ready by Trooper

#1112: Ready by Trooper

Peak Month: December 1976
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #18
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Ready
“Ready” lyrics

In 1967 Ra McGuire and Brian Smith played in a Vancouver band named Winter’s Green. The band recorded two songs, “Are You a Monkey” and “Jump in the River Blues” on the Rumble Records Label. “Are You A Monkey” later appeared on a rock collection: 1983’s “The History of Vancouver Rock and Roll, Vol. 3.” In the early seventies Winter’s Green changed their name to Applejack and added drummer Tommy Stewart and bassist Harry Kalensky to their lineup. Applejack became a very popular band in the Vancouver area, and began touring extensively in British Columbia. The band played a few original tunes such as “Raise A Little Hell” and “Oh, Pretty Lady”, as well as Top 40 songs by artists such as Neil Young, and Chicago.

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Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife ~ Glen Campbell/Wayne Newton

#1067: Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife ~ Glen Campbell/Wayne Newton

Peak Month: August 1968
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #32 (Campbell)/#60 (Newton)
YouTube.com: “Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife” Glen Campbell
YouTube.com: “Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife” Wayne Newton
“Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife” lyrics

Glen Travis Campbell was born in 1936 in the village of Billstown, Arkansas. His dad was a sharecropper. He moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, and at the age of 18 joined his uncle’s band, Dick Bills and the Sandia Mountain Boys. Campbell also had guest spots on a local KOB children’s TV show, K Circle B Time. In 1958, Campbell formed the Western Wranglers. In 1960 he moved to LA and joined The Champs of “Tequila” fame. Campbell also became a session musician in a group that would become known as The Wrecking Crew. During this time Glen Campbell played on recordings for Bobby Darin, Ricky Nelson, Dean Martin, Nat King Cole, The Monkees, Nancy Sinatra, Merle Haggard, Jan and Dean, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and others. He recorded his first single in 1961 titled “Turn Around Look At Me“. In the mid-60’s Campbell appeared as a regular on Shindig! and Hollywood Jamboree. He also was a studio musician for The Beach Boys 1966 album, Pet Sounds, and for four months was a member of The Beach Boys and went on tour with them when Brian Wilson was ill. That same year Campbell was part of a backing band for Rick Nelson on a tour of the Far East.

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