Holiday by Nazareth

#478: Holiday by Nazareth

Peak Month: March-April 1980
12 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #87
YouTube.com: “Holiday
Lyrics: “Holiday

William “Dan” McCafferty was born in 1946 in Dunfermline, near Fife, Scotland. His musical influences include Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Elvis Presley and Otis Redding. He learned to play the bagpipes and the talkbox in his teens, as well as becoming a singer. He formed a band in 1961 called the Shadettes. By 1963 McCafferty was performing professionally full time before audiences. Manuel “Manny” Charlton was born in 1941 in La Línea de la Concepción on the Bay of Gibraltar in Spain. In his youth he learned to play guitar. Charlton was in the Mark 5 and the Red Hawks before joining the Shadettes. Pete Agnew was born in Dunfermline in 1946. He learned to play rhythm guitar and bass guitar in his youth. Agnew joined the Shadettes in 1961. Darrell Antony Sweet was born in 1947 in the South Coast of England in Bournemouth. He was a piper in his youth and also learned to play drums.

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All Those Lies by Glenn Frey

#514: All Those Lies by Glenn Frey

Peak Month: February 1983
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #41
YouTube.com: “All Those Lies
Lyrics: “All Those Lies

Glenn Lewis Frey was born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1948. He was raised in the suburb of Royal Oak and learned to play piano from the age of five. He later learned to play guitar. Frey was a member of a number of bands: the Subterraneans, the Four Of Us, the Mushrooms and the Heavy Metal Kids. At the age of 19 Frey played acoustic guitar and backing vocals for the 1968-69 Bob Seger System Top 20 hit single “Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Man”. In 1969 Glenn Frey moved to Los Angeles and became part of a band named Longbranch Pennywhistle with J.D. Souther. The band folded by the end of 1970. That year Frey met drummer Don Henley. The pair were both hired as part of a backing band for Linda Ronstadt. While touring with Ronstadt, Frey and Henley decided to form a band the soon named the Eagles.

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In Your Letter by REO Speedwagon

#542: In Your Letter by REO Speedwagon

Peak Month: October 1981
9 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #20
YouTube.com: “In Your Letter
Lyrics: “In Your Letter

Neal Allan Doughty was born in Evansville, Indiana, in 1946. Growing up he learned to play piano, organ and keyboards. He attended the University of Illinois in Champaign, Illinois, in 1966. At the start of the school year he met Alan Gratzer. Alan Franklin Gratzer was born in Syracuse, New York, in 1948. He learned to play drums when he was given a toy drum set at the age of seven. He was in several rock bands during high school before moving to Champaign for university. Gary Dean Richrath was born in Peoria, Illinois, in 1949. He learned to play saxophone and then switched to guitar, adding slide guitar to his resume. He joined REO Speedwagon in 1970. Kevin Patrick Cronin was born in 1951 in Oak Lawn, Illinois. He learned to play piano and guitar. He joined the band in 1972-73, and was invited back in 1976. Bruce William Hall was born in Champaign in 1953. He learned to play bass guitar in his teens and joined REO Speedwagon in 1977. These five musicians became the core of REO Speedwagon. But along the way there were ten other bandmates that came and went between 1967 and 1977.

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Wheels Of Life by Gino Vannelli

#970: Wheels Of Life by Gino Vannelli

Peak Month: May 1979
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #78
YouTube.com: “Wheels Of Life
Lyrics: “Wheels Of Life

Gino Vannelli was born in Montreal in 1952. During his childhood he was exposed to jazz music and cabaret. His father was a cabaret singer and his mother had a good ear for music. Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich and Ed Thigpen were among the drummers that inspired young Gino. At the age of eleven, Gino was one of a group of elementary school-age drummers trying to audition for a Montreal band named The Cobras. He arrived home from school later than usual to announce he had been picked to be the new drummer for the band after impressing them with his rendition of “Wipeout”. In 1964, five years prior to the Jackson 5’s debut hit “I Want You Back” on Motown, Gino Vannelli happened to join a band in Montreal called the Jacksonville Five. And that Montreal band happened to tailor itself to Motown-sound-alike tunes when The Supremes, The Miracles, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Stevie Wonder and Mary Wells were all topping the charts. By 1966, Gino Vannelli became the lead singer of the Jacksonville Five when he replaced the current lead singer who couldn’t hit the high notes on Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual”.  He was fourteen.

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I Thank You by ZZ Top

#417: I Thank You by ZZ Top

Peak Month: March 1980
12 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #34
YouTube.com: “I Thank You
Lyrics: “I Thank You

ZZ Top was formed in 1969 in Houston, Texas. The band has had three members since it began. Guitar player, Billy Gibbons, is the lead vocalist for the trio. Dusty Hill also shared lead vocals and plays bass guitar. The bands’ drummer is Frank Beard. Gibbons and Hill wear beards, however Frank Beard is clean-shaven. The band has sold over 25 million records of their blues-rock infused recordings. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. They credit the rock group Cream as one of their major influences. William Frederick Gibbons was born in Houston (TX) in December 1949. He saw Elvis Presley in concert when he was just five years old in 1955, when Elvis was with Sun Records. In 1957 Billy Gibbons was taken to a recording studio to hear BB King. Gibbons learned to play percussion and got his first electric guitar in 1963 while he was still 13-years-old. He was in a number of bands while in art college in Hollywood. Back in Houston, Gibbons founded a psychedelic band named The Moving Sidewalks, who opened a concert for the Jimi Hendrix Experience and also The Doors.

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Tempted by Squeeze

#648: Tempted by Squeeze

Peak Month: August 1981
11 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #49
YouTube.com: “Tempted
Lyrics: “Tempted

Squeeze was a new wave-synth pop band from the UK. Christopher Henry Difford was born in South East London in 1954. Glenn Martin Tilbrook was born in London in 1957. Julian Miles “Jools” Holland was born in South East London in 1958. The trio formed Squeeze in 1974 in London. After a year Squeeze settled on Gilson Lavis as the bands drummer. David Leslie Gilson Lavis was born in 1951 and Bedford, England. Before he joined Squeeze in 1975 he toured with Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Skeeter Davis and Dolly Parton. In 1978 Squeeze released their debut self-titled album which included their UK Top 20 hit “Take Me I’m Yours”.

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Martika's Kitchen by Martika

#547: Martika’s Kitchen by Martika

Peak Month: February 1992
13 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #93
YouTube.com: “Martika’s Kitchen
Lyrics: “Martika’s Kitchen

In 1969 Marta Marrero was born in Whittier, California. Her parents were born in Havana, Cuba. At the age of 12 she had an uncredited role in the comedy-musical film based on the Broadway show Annie. From 1984-86 she was cast as Gloria in the children’s television show Kids Incorporated. In 1984 she appeared, along with other Kids Incorporated cast members in the motivational video Be Somebody… or Be Somebody’s Fool! hosted by Mr. T. In the video Ice T and New Edition were also featured. In 1987 she signed a record deal with Columbia.

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Joan Of Arc by Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark

#1123: Joan Of Arc by Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark

Peak Month: April 1982
9 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Joan Of Arc
Lyrics: “Joan Of Arc

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) is a band that formed in 1978 in the Liverpool suburb of Wirral, UK. The bands’ co-founder, George Andrew “Andy” McCluskey, was born in 1959 in the town of Heswall on The Wirral peninsula. In primary school McCluskey met Paul Humphreys. The two teamed up in their teens to play in the bands Hitlerz Underpantz, VCL XI and the Id. The latter was a synth-pop band that also included future OMD member Malcolm Holmes. Paul David Humphreys was born in 1960 Merseyside. He was influenced by Kraftwerk and Brian Eno.  Malcolm Holmes was born in a suburb of Merseyside in The Wirral in 1960. When the Id was founded in 1977, Holmes became the band’s drummer. He joined OMD in 1980. Martin Cooper was born in 1958 and joined OMD in 1980.

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Come As You Are by Nirvana

#506: Come As You Are by Nirvana

Peak Month: April 1992
11 weeks on CKLG’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #32
YouTube.com: “Come As You Are
Lyrics: “Come As You Are

Kurt Donald Cobain was born in 1967 in Aberdeen, Washington. By age two he was singing and at age four started playing piano. His parents divorced when he was nine. Before the end of grade nine Cobain dropped out of school and lived homeless for several years. His uncle gave him a guitar for his 14th birthday. In 1985 Cobain fronted a punk band from Aberdeen named Fecal Matter. One of his friends in the punk scene was Krist Novoselic, who listened to a demo by Fecal Matter. Novoselic convinced Cobain to join with him in a band they called the Sellouts, a Creedence Clearwater Revival tribute band. The band was short-lived as Cobain wrote new material and they subsequently formed a band they called Nirvana. But before they settled on this name, the band was variously called Skid Row and Ted Ed Fred.
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Time Out Of Mind by Steely Dan

#446: Time Out Of Mind by Steely Dan

Peak Month: June 1981
9 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #22
YouTube.com: “Time Out Of My Mind
Lyrics: “Time Out Of My Mind

Donald Jay Fagen was born into a Jewish household in Passaic, New Jersey, in 1948. The first record he bought was “Reelin’ and Rockin'” by Chuck Berry in 1958. In 1959, when he was eleven years old, a cousin of Donald Fagen suggested he explore jazz music. So he attended the Newport Jazz Festival. Fagen recalled later “I lost interest in rock ‘n’ roll and started developing an anti-social personality.” By 1960, after he’d turned twelve, Fagen began frequenting the Village Vanguard jazz club. He was able to see Charles Mingus, Thelonius Monk, and Miles Davis. He learned to play the piano, and he played baritone horn in the high school marching band. Fagen also drew inspiration from the Boswell Sisters, Henry Mancini, Ray Charles, Sly and the Family Stone and a variety of Motown recording acts.

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