Fisherwoman by The Collectors

#1238: Fisherwoman by The Collectors

Peak Months: September 1967
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart “Fisherwoman

The Vancouver rock band The Collectors, was formerly named The Classics who were a Vancouver group led by Howie Vickers in the mid-60s. The Classics were part of the regular line-up on Let’s Go, a show on CBC TV. Though the Classics released several singles the group needed room to grow and reformed as The Collectors. They would become one of the most innovative of Vancouver’s recording acts through the rest 60s. In the spring of 1967, Vickers was asked to put together a house band at the Torch Cabaret in Vancouver. Along with Claire Lawrence on horns, they recruited guitarist Terry Frewer, drummer Ross Turney and Brian Newcombe on bass. Within a couple of months, fellow Classics member Glenn Miller replaced Newcombe on bass and Bill Henderson, a student at UBC, replaced Frewer on guitars. With Vickers now handling vocals, their sound changed from doing covers of R&B tunes to psychedelic rock. This led them to gigs along the Canadian and US west coast. Their strongest fan base in America was in California. There audiences welcomed their complex arrangements mixed with harmonies and extended solos and musical ad-libs.

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Hard To Cry ~ Northwest Company

#1250: Hard To Cry ~ Northwest Company

Peak Months: July & August 1967
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN ALL-CANADIAN TOP TEN chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart “Hard To Cry

The Northwest Company was a band in the Fraser Valley from the town of Haney, about 25 miles east of Vancouver. The bands members were bass player Gowan Jurgensen, lead vocalist Rick McCartie, lead guitar and vocalist Ray O’Toole, rhythm guitar player Vidor Skofteby and on drums and vocals, Richard Stepp. McCartie had been lead vocalist, and Richard Stepp the drummer, with the short-lived Vancouver band, The Questions, in 1965-66 (a group that won the Battle of the Bands in 1965 at the Pacific National Exhibition). The Northwest Company was originally named the Bad Boys. This was named after The Bad Boys Rag Shop, a trendy clothing store in Vancouver back in ’67. However, CFUN deejay Tom Peacock, encouraged the band to come up with another name that wouldn’t strike fear into parents of the groups female fan-base. It was Gowan Jurgensen who suggested to his bandmates the North West Company, based on the Montreal fur trading business founded in 1789. The band agreed, but distinguished themselves from the fur trading company with “Northwest” instead of “North West.”
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Power Of Love by Frankie Goes To Hollywood

#1084: 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 “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

#1100: 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 “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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Like A Cannonball by Van Morrison

#1207: Like A Cannonball by Van Morrison

Peak Month:  April 1972
6 weeks on CKVNs Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #16
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #119 “Like A Cannonball
“Like A Cannonball” lyrics

Sir George Ivan “Van” Morrison, was born in Belfast on August 31, 1945. He is a singer, songwriter and musician. He has received six Grammy Awards, the 1994 Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music, and has been inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 1996 he was given the Order of the British Empire for his service to music enriching the lives of people in the UK (and beyond). Since 1996 his formal title has been Sir “Van” Morrison, OBE. In 2016 he was knighted for his musical achievements and his services to tourism and charitable causes in Northern Ireland.

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Same Song by Digital Underground

#1182: Same Song by Digital Underground

Peak Month:  April 1991
8 weeks on CKLGs Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #18
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart “Same Song
“Same Song” lyrics

In 1987, Digital Underground formed in Oakland, California. The frontman for the group is Gregory Jacobs who is billed as Shock G. Jacobs was born in 1963 in Brooklyn, New York, and spent most of his childhood in Tampa, Florida. But after his parents divorce when he was age 12, he moved back to Brooklyn. At that time he discovered turntabling: the manipulation of phonograph records and needles and a mixer by a DJ. At that time he used the nickname MC Starchild. His nickname changed to Shah-G when his cousin, Shah-T gave him the name. It shifted in time from Shah-G to Shock G. Moving back to Tampa and then to Oakland, Shock G got work as a clerk in a music store. He met up with Chopmaster J and Kenny-K. The trio became Digital Underground.
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Ride My See-Saw by The Moody Blues

#1170: Ride My See-Saw by The Moody Blues

Peak Month:  November 1968
5 weeks on CKLGs Vancouver Charts
1 week Hit Bound
Peak Position ~ #12
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #61 “Ride My See-Saw
“Ride My See-Saw” lyrics

Born in 1941 in wartime England, Ray Thomas picked up harmonica at the age of nine. He was in the Birmingham Youth Choir and in October 1958 he joined a skiffle group called The Saints and Sinners. The band split up in June 1959. The Saints and Sinners helped Ray discover how well his vocals were received by audiences. Next, he formed El Riot and the Rebels, featuring Ray Thomas as El Riot dressed in a green satin Mexican toreador outfit. The band won a number of competitions in the Birmingham area. It was here that Ray became known for making an entrance onstage by sliding to center stage on his knees. On one occasion Thomas sent a row of potted tulips flying into the audience. El Riot and the Rebels appeared several times on a local variety show called Lunchbox. They made their debut on Lunchbox on November 14, 1962, and played “Guitar Tango” and “I Remember You.” Mike Pinder joined El Riot and the Rebels on keyboards. On April 15, 1963, El Riot and the Rebels performed at The Riverside Dancing Club in Tenbury Wells as the opening act for The Beatles. Pinder went off to serve in the British Army. When he returned, Thomas and Pinder left El Riot and the Rebels and formed a new band called the Krew Kats.
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Come On Down (From The Top of That Hill) by Jackie De Shannon

#1139: Come On Down (From The Top of That Hill) by Jackie De Shannon

Peak Month:  February 1967
8 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #121”Come On Down (From The Top of That Hill)

Sharon Lee Myers was born in Hazel, Kentucky, in 1941, a town on the Tennessee and western Kentucky border. When she was only two years old she received her first vocal training. By 1947, she was appearing on a local radio station as a child country and western singer. And by 1952, Sharon Lee Myers was hosting her own radio show. In 1954, with the family farm posing mounting challenges, the family moved to her mother’s home town of Aurora, Illinois, a seven hour drive north of Hazel. A year later, when she was in 8th grade, the family moved to nearby Batavia, Illinois. Her dad became a barber and young Sharon got instant recognition in the local paper. A headline in on May 5, 1955, in the Batavia Herald read “Sharon Lee Myers, Only 13, Is Talented Batavia Vocalist.” The paper enthused, “Though only 13, the youngster can boast almost 11 years of voice training and experience and in the past she has toured most of the south making personal appearances. Also she has sung on radio with a rhythm band for 2 years and has appeared on television 3 times.”
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Runnin' Out Of Fools by Aretha Franklin ~ EXTRA

#1249: Runnin’ Out Of Fools by Aretha Franklin ~ EXTRA

Peak Month: October 1964
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #57”Runnin’ Out Of Fools
“Runnin’ Out Of Fools” lyrics

Aretha Franklin born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1942. Her family moved to Detroit when she was four years old. Her father was a Baptist minister and she was raised in the church and sang in the choir. In 1956, at the age of 14, she released an live album of sacred music titled Songs Of Faith. It was recorded at the New Bethel Baptist Church where she worshipped. Sensing a call to share the gift of her voice with a wider audience, Aretha asked for her father’s blessing to go into the field of rhythm and blues and pop music. He told her he would do anything he could to support her, saying he wanted her to sign with a record label that could help her reach a wider audience. Aretha Franklin signed with Columbia Records in 1960. In 1961 she had a minor Top 40 hit on the Billboard Hot 100, a remake of the Al Jolson tune from the 1918 Broadway musical, Sinbad, titled “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody”. In 1962, Aretha was dubbed as the Queen of Soul by a Chicago DJ named Pervis Spann on WVON. The nickname stuck even though she was only twenty years old.
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Tall Men by Johnny Cash

#1234: Tall Men by Johnny Cash

Peak Month: November 1961
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKWX chart
Peak Position #17
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart link: “Tall Men
“Tall Men” lyrics

John R. “Johnny” Cash was born in Kingsland, Arkansas, in 1932. At the age of five he started working with his sharecropping parents and siblings in the cotton fields. During his childhood his family home was flooded twice. He began singing and playing guitar by the age of 12. He moved to Detroit in his late teens for work. He was drafted and served in the U.S. Air Force as a Morse Code Intercept Operator for Soviet Army transmissions at a base in Germany from 1950 to 1954. When he was discharged from the military he and his new wife, Liberto, moved to Memphis. Cash worked as an appliance salesman while trying to get a break in the music industry. Cash got to audition with Sun Records in 1954. He had his first charting single on the Billboard Country charts in 1955 titled “Cry! Cry! Cry!” Subsequently single releases, “So Doggone Lonesome” and “I Walk The Line” climbed to #4 and #1 on the Country charts. The latter hit also was his first debut on the Billboard pop charts where it made it to #17 in 1956.
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