Baby Elephant Walk by Lawrence Welk

#29: Baby Elephant Walk by Lawrence Welk

City: Calgary, AB
Radio Station: CFAC
Peak Month: June 1962
Peak Position in Calgary ~ #7
Peak position in Vancouver ~ #22
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #48
YouTube: “Baby Elephant Walk

Lawrence Welk was born in 1903 in the hamlet of Strasburg, North Dakota. His German-speaking parents emigrated to American from Odessa, Russian Empire (now Ukraine). The Welk family lived in a homestead in Strasburg that is now a tourist attraction. When he was nine years old, Lawrence Welk left public school to work full-time on the family farm. Welk decided on a career in music and persuaded his father to buy a mail-order accordion for $400 (equivalent to $5,843 in 2023). He promised his father that he would work on the farm until he was 21, in repayment for the accordion. He was good on his word and after reaching age 21, he set his sights on a music career.

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Dear One by Darrell McCall

#15: Dear One by Darrell McCall

City: Calgary, Alberta
Radio Station: CFAC
Peak Month: May 1962
Peak Position in Calgary ~ #1
Peak position in Vancouver ~ did not chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Dear One
Lyrics: “Dear One

Darrell McCall was born in 1940 in New Jasper Township, Greene County, Ohio. He was a childhood friend of future country music star Johnny Paycheck. At the age of 15, he landed a job as a disc jockey at a local Ohio radio show on Saturday mornings. During this time, he also performed as a musician at dances and other events. After graduating from high school, McCall joined the military and was stationed in Kentucky. In 1957 he appeared on an episode of Country Style U.S.A. In 1958, after finishing his duty in the army, McCall moved to Nashville with Paycheck to record as a duo. The duo failed, but McCall soon found work as a background singer during recording sessions for various artists including Faron Young, George Jones, and Ray Price. Next, he began to tour with the bands of Young, Price and Hank Williams Jr.

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Surfin' Safari by the Beach Boys

#30: Surfin’ Safari by the Beach Boys

City: Calgary, Alberta
Radio Station: CFAC
Peak Month: October 1962
Peak Position in Calgary ~ #1
Peak position in Vancouver ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #14
YouTube.com: “Surfin’ Safari
Lyrics: “Surfin’ Safari

Brian Wilson was born in Inglewood, California, in 1942. In biographer Peter Ames Carlin’s book, Catch a Wave: The Rise, Fall, and Redemption of the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, he relates that when Brian Wilson first heard George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” it had a huge emotional impact on him. As a youngster, Wilson learned to play a toy accordion and sang in children’s choirs. In his teens he started a group with his cousin, Mike Love and his brother, Carl. Mike was born in Los Angeles in 1941 and Carl was born in 1946 in Hawthorne, California. Brian Wilson named the group Carl and the Passions in order to convince his brother to join. They had a performance in the fall of 1960 at Hawthorne High School, where they attended. Their set included some songs by Dion and the Belmonts. Among the people in the audience was Al Jardine, another classmate. Jardine was born in Hawthorne in 1942. He was so impressed with the performance that he let the group know. Jardine would later be enlisted, along with Dennis Wilson to form the Pendletones in 1961. Dennis was born in Inglewood in 1944.

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Fortune Teller/Johnny Take Your Time by Bobby Curtola

#11: Fortune Teller/Johnny Take Your Time by Bobby Curtola

A-side: “Fortune Teller”
Peak Month: March 1962
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #41
YouTube.com: “Fortune Teller
Lyrics: “Fortune Teller

B-side: “Johnny Take Your Time”
Peak Month: May 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Johnny Take Your Time

Bobby Curtola was born in Port Arthur, Ontario, in 1943. (The town would become amalgamated into the city of Thunder Bay in 1970). His cousin Susan Andrusco remembers “Bobby would always be singing at our family gatherings. The family loved him. And he loved being the centre of attention. He would sing Oh My Papa, and my grandpa would cry.” Oh My Papa was a number-one hit for Eddie Fisher in January 1954, when Bobby Curtola was still ten-years-old. In the fall of 1959, sixteen-year-old high school student Bobby Curtola went from pumping gas at his father’s garage in Thunder Bay, Ontario, to the life of a teen idol. Within a year he went from playing in his basement band, Bobby and the Bobcats, to recording his first hit single in 1960, “Hand In Hand With You”, which charted in June ’60 in Ontario, but not in Vancouver.

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Lana by Roy Orbison

#15: Lana by Roy Orbison

Peak Month: April 1962
Peak Position #1
14 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Lana
Lyrics: “Lana

Roy Kelton Orbison was born in Vernon, Texas in 1936. When he turned six his dad gave him a guitar. Both his dad, Orbie Lee, and uncle Charlie Orbison, taught him how to play. Though his family moved to Forth Worth for work at a munitions factory, Roy was sent to live with his grandmother due to a polio outbreak in 1944. That year he wrote his first song “A Vow of Love”. The next year he won a contest on Vernon radio station KVWC and was offered his own radio show on Saturdays. After the war his family reunited and moved to Wink, Texas, where Roy formed his first band, in 1949, called The Wink Westerners.

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Follow That Dream by Elvis Presley

#18: Follow That Dream by Elvis Presley

Peak Month: May 1962
Peak Position #1
15 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~  EP – did not chart
YouTube.com: “Follow That Dream
Lyrics: “Follow That Dream

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon Presley, was stillborn. When he was eleven years old his parents bought him a guitar at the Tupelo Hardware Store. As a result Elvis grew up as an only child. He and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948. The young Presley graduated from high school in 1953. That year he stopped by the Memphis Recording Service to record two songs, including “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin”. Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager. In 1954, Elvis began his singing career recording “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” at Sun Records in Memphis.

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Leah by Roy Orbison

#21: Leah by Roy Orbison

Peak Month: October 1962
Peak Position #1
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #25
YouTube.com: “Leah
Lyrics: “Leah

Roy Kelton Orbison was born in Vernon, Texas in 1936. When he turned six his dad gave him a guitar. Both his dad, Orbie Lee, and uncle Charlie Orbison, taught him how to play. Though his family moved to Forth Worth for work at a munitions factory, Roy was sent to live with his grandmother due to a polio outbreak in 1944. That year he wrote his first song “A Vow of Love”. The next year he won a contest on Vernon radio station KVWC and was offered his own radio show on Saturdays. After the war his family reunited and moved to Wink, Texas, where Roy formed his first band, in 1949, called The Wink Westerners.

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Conscience by James Darren

#37: Conscience by James Darren

Peak Month: May 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #11
YouTube.com: “Conscience
Lyrics: “Conscience

James William Ercolani was born in 1936 in Philadelphia. From a young age he wanted to be an actor. He recalls, “I wasn’t really a singer. I was a kid in Philly whose dad would take him to bars and nightclubs and I would get up and sing two songs.” Just after he turned twenty, Ercolani went to the Brill Building in Manhattan and was instantly offered a contract with Columbia Pictures. He was quickly given the stage name James Darren. His first film was a crime film noir in 1956 titled Rumble on the Docks. Darren was given the lead role as a young man caught up in the rivalry between two gangs, who eventually changes his ways and gets work in his father’s print shop. In 1957, Darren starred in the military comedy Operation Mad Ball  with Jack Lemmon. That year, James Darren was cast in the laundry business meets crime syndicate film noir The Brothers Rico. His third film noir was in 1957 titled The Tijuana Story, and Darren was given second billing. In 1958, it was the western film Gunman’s Walk where James Darren appeared with top billing on the movie poster along with Tab Hunter and Van Hefflin.
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Bonnie B by Jerry Lee Lewis

#79: Bonnie B by Jerry Lee Lewis

Peak Month: January 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Bonnie B
Lyrics” “Bonnie B

In 1935 Jerry Lee Lewis was born in Ferriday, Louisiana. On a 1961 album liner note, it was written “From the time he was big enough to reach the keyboard he has been playing and singing.” At the age of nine he started playing the piano. He imitated the styles of preachers and black musicians that passed through his community. His playing style was creative and outrageous. Jerry Lee Lewis rose to become one of rock ‘n rolls’  first showman in the mid-50s. He incorporated some of what he heard into his musical style from listening to radio shows like the Grand Ole Opry and Louisiana Hayride. Among his influences were Jimmie Rodgers, Hank Williams and Al Jolson. At the age of ten his dad decided to mortgage the family farm so he could purchase a piano for Jerry Lee to play. Lewis first performed in public when he was fourteen years old at the opening of a local car dealership. At age fourteen he quit school and honed his musical skills. But before he became a famous recording act, Lewis sold sewing machines to help make some money.

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Shy Guy by the Crystalettes

#139: Shy Guy by the Crystalettes

Peak Month: October 1962
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Shy Guy

The Crystalettes initially recorded under the name The Dispoto Sisters. They grew up in Reseda, California, a suburb of Los Angeles. The sisters began singing at a very young age, and performed in the Wee Voice group in 1957. At the time Patty (born 1950) was 7, Diana (born 1947) was 10, and Tina (born 1945) was 12. They took part in numbers of choral events while, including at Whitney High School in Los Angeles. They performed with Martha Tilton and many others. They recorded their first single in 1959 on the Verve label, credited to The Dispoto Sisters. It was a two-sided Christmas disc: “Whistling Neath’ The Mistletoe/ Will Clause”. A local paper ran a photo with the byline “Pleasing Voices: The three young daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Carl Dispoto are well on the way to a career as a trio. Patty, 9, Diane, 13, and Tina, 14.”

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If I Didn't Have A Dime (To Play The Jukebox) by Gene Pitney

#1151: If I Didn’t Have A Dime (To Play The Jukebox) by Gene Pitney

Peak Month: September 1962
Peak Position ~ #11
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #58
YouTube: “If I Didn’t Have A Dime (To Play The Jukebox)
Lyrics: “If I Didn’t Have A Dime (To Play The Jukebox)

Gene Pitney was born in 1940 in Hartford, Connecticut. He was a songwriter who became a pop singer, something rare at the time. Some of the songs he wrote for other recording artists include “Rubber Ball” for Bobby Vee, “He’s A Rebel” for The Crystals and “Hello Mary Lou” for Ricky Nelson. Pitney was more popular in Vancouver than in his native America. Over his career he charted 14 songs into the Top Ten in Vancouver, while he only charted four songs into the Top Ten on the Billboard Hot 100. Curiously, only two of these songs overlap: “(The Man Who Shot) Liberty Vallance” and “I’m Gonna Be Strong”. Surprisingly “Only Love Can Break A Heart”, which peaked at #2 in the USA, stalled at #14 in Vancouver, and “It Hurts To Be In Love” stalled at #11 in Vancouver while it peaked at #7 south of the border.

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Aladdin by Bobby Curtola

#194: Aladdin by Bobby Curtola

Peak Month: October 1962
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #92
YouTube: “Aladdin
Lyrics: “Aladdin

Bobby Curtola was born in Port Arthur, Ontario, in 1943. (The town would become amalgamated into the city of Thunder Bay in 1970). His cousin Susan Andrusco remembers “”Bobby would always be singing at our family gatherings. The family loved him. And he loved being the centre of attention. He would sing Oh My Papa, and my grandpa would cry.” Oh My Papa was a number-one hit for Eddie Fisher in January 1954, when Bobby Curtola was still ten-years-old. In the fall of 1959, sixteen-year-old high school student Bobby Curtola went from pumping gas at his father’s garage in Thunder Bay, Ontario, to the life of a teen idol. Within a year he went from playing in his basement band, Bobby and the Bobcats, to recording his first hit single in 1960, “Hand In Hand With You”, which charted in June ’60 in Ontario, but not in Vancouver.

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Ginny In The Mirror by Del Shannon

#210: Ginny In The Mirror by Del Shannon

Peak Month: March 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #117
YouTube: “Ginny In The Mirror
Lyrics: “Ginny In The Mirror

Charles Weedon Westover was born on December 30, 1934. He was known professionally as Del Shannon. Westover was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He learned ukulele and guitar and listened to country music. He was drafted into the Army in 1954, and while in Germany played guitar in a band called The Cool Flames. When his service ended, he returned to Battle Creek, Michigan. There he worked as a carpet salesman and as a truck driver in a furniture factory. He found part-time work as a rhythm guitarist in singer Doug DeMott’s group called Moonlight Ramblers, working at the Hi-Lo Club. Ann Arbor deejay Ollie McLaughlin heard the band. In July 1960, Westover signed to become a recording artist and composer on the Bigtop label. Westover changed his name to Del Shannon. It was a combination of Shannon Kavanagh (a wannabe wrestler who patronized the Hi-Lo Club) with Del, derived from the Cadillac Coupe de Ville, which Westover’s carpet store boss drove.

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Torture by Kris Jensen

#218: Torture by Kris Jensen

Peak Month: October 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #20
YouTube: “Torture
Lyrics: “Torture

In 1942, Peter Jensen was born in New Haven, Connecticut. From a young age, Pete was a big fan of the singing cowboys, Gene Autry and Roy Rogers. When Pete was sixteen years old, he met Denise Norwood. She was a songwriter who penned “The Garden Of Eden.” This was a hit for Joe Valino. Between the ages of sixteen and nineteen, Jensen collaborated with Denise Norwood. He recorded numbers of her songs at her home studio. In 1959, Colpix Records released Jensen’s recording of “Bonnie Baby”. The tune made the local charts on WHIL Boston. Jensen variously recorded for Leader, Kapp, Hickory and finally White Whale. Jensen could not only sing, but also play the guitar and bass guitar. Though he would release at least sixteen singles between 1959 and 1966, he is remembered in America as a one-hit wonder. But not in Vancouver where he charted three songs on the local pop charts.

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Sugar Plum by Ike Clanton

#271: Sugar Plum by Ike Clanton

Peak Month: August 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #95
YouTube: “Sugar Plum
Lyrics: “Sugar Plum

Ike Clanton was the brother of teen idol Jimmy Clanton, and was born in 1940 in Raceland, Louisiana. In September 1958, Ike Clanton was part of a band that backed then 17-year-old John Fred in Fred’s first recording studio. Fats Domino, who had just recorded “Whole Lotta Lovin'” was also in the studio backing John Fred. The setting was Cosimo Matassa’s J&M Studio in New Orleans. Nine years later in 1967, John Fred & his Playboy Band had a #1 hit with “Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)”. In 1958 Ike Clanton was in Duane Eddy’s band when they recorded “Rebel Rouser” and Eddy’s proto-surf-rock instrumental album Have ‘Twangy’ Guitar Will Travel. “Rebel Rouser” climbed to #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #2 in Vancouver. Ike Clanton was also part of Eddy’s band when the singles “Cannonball”, “Peter Gunn”, and “Forty Miles Of Bad Road” were recorded. The latter was a #9 hit on the Billboard Hot 100.

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Mr. Songwriter by Connie Stevens

#275: Mr. Songwriter by Connie Stevens

Peak Month: August 1962
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #43
YouTube: “Mr. Songwriter
Lyrics: “Mr. Songwriter

Concetta Rosalie Ann Ingolia was born in 1938 in New York City. Her father, Teddy Stevens, was born Pietro Ingoglia. Teddy Stevens was a jazz musician in Manhattan, and adopted an anglicized name. In 1950, at the age of 12, she witnessed a murder in Manhattan. Her parents decided to send Concetta to rural Missouri to live with relatives. Three years later in 1953, she moved with her father to Los Angeles, after her parents got a divorce. She enrolled at the Sacred Heart Academy for Girls, and later transferred to the Hollywood Professional School when her talents as an actress looked promising. In the mid-50s Concetta Ingolia formed a vocal quartet called “The Foremost” where she was joined by three men: Tony Butala, Mike Barnett, Dick Stewart. (Butala and Barnett and went on to form the close-harmony group The Lettermen which Barnett left after 1958). Concetta’s first professional acting job was early in 1957 when she was featured in a TV commercial for a local Los Angeles bakery.

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She Can't Find Her Keys by Paul Peterson

#330: She Can’t Find Her Keys by Paul Peterson

Peak Month: February 1962
9 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #1
6 weeks on CKWX’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #19
YouTube: “She Can’t Find Her Keys
Lyrics: “She Can’t Find Her Keys

Paul William Petersen was born in Glendale, California, in 1945. He  started his career at the age of eight and began appearing on the Mickey Mouse Club in 1955. From there he was cast as Jeff Stone on the Donna Reed Show where he starred in that role from 1958 to 1966. When he first started playing Jeff Stone, Paul was just 4’3″ tall, which is one reason he got the job. Donna herself was a petite 5’4″. Paul got this part the day after he turned thirteen. While appearing on the Donna Reed Show both he and his sister, Mary Stone, sang songs that would become hit singles. The actress playing Mary Stone was child actor Shelley Fabares who had a number one hit in 1962 called “Johnny Angel.” Paul Petersen also sang songs in the Donna Reed Show including “She Can’t Find Her Keys”, “My Dad” and “Keep Your Love Locked”.

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Ponchinello by Frankie Avalon

#399: Ponchinello by Frankie Avalon

Peak Month: March 1962
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Ponchinello
Lyrics: “Ponchinello

Francis Thomas Avallone was born in Philadelphia in 1940. When he was 12-years-old, he appeared in a Christmas episode on The Jackie Gleason Show, playing trumpet in a Honeymooners sketch. RCA signed Frankie Avalon to the label and in 1954 released the trumpet solo he performed in the December 1952 Honeymooners sketch. “Trumpet Sorrento” climbed to #42 on the Cashbox Best Selling Singles chart in March 1954. Avalon also appeared on The Perry Como Show where he played trumpet. With Bobby Rydell, Avalon was in a doo-wop group called Rocco and the Saints. They were backing vocalists for his debut single in 1957, “Cupid”, written by Peter DeAngelis. He appeared in the 1957 rock and roll film Jamboree and performed “Teacher’s Pet” (also written by DeAngelis, and different from “Teacher’s Pet” recorded by Doris Day in 1958). In the film Jamboree, Frankie Avalon got to meet other pop stars in the cast including Fats Domino, Connie Francis, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Jimmy Bowen, Buddy Knox, Charlie Gracie, and jazz singer Joe Williams. Continue reading →

My Boomerang Won't Come Back by Charlie Drake

#405: My Boomerang Won’t Come Back by Charlie Drake

Peak Month: January 1962
9 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #2
1 week Hit bound
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #21
YouTube: “My Boomerang Won’t Come Back
Lyrics: “My Boomerang Won’t Come Back

Charles Edward Springall was born in 1925 in the London neighborhood of Elephant and Castle. In 1933, at the age of eight he began to perform comedy and song at “working men’s clubs,” social clubs for working class men in England. This continued until the start of World War II when Drake served in the Royal Air Force. After the war he eventually pursued a career in entertainment, becoming professional in 1954 with an appearance in a British version of the comedy-crime film Fast and Loose. In 1957 and 1958 he starred in his own BBC comedy show Drake’s Progress. This was followed by Charlie Drake in… which aired from the fall of 1958 to the early spring of 1960. His growing name recognition as a TV star was a catalyst for recording a cover of the Bobby Darin song “Splish Splash”. Drake’s cover climbed to #7 on the UK Singles chart. He followed this with a campy cover of “Volare”, which made the Top 30 in the UK. Drake also covered Frankie Ford’s “Sea Cruise”, with little commercial success. But in February 1960, Drake was back in the Top 20 in the UK with a cover of Larry Verne’s “Mr. Custer”.

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Girls Girls Girls by Elvis Presley

#421: Girls Girls Girls by Elvis Presley

Peak Month: December 1962
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN’s chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Girls! Girls! Girls!
Lyrics: “Girls! Girls! Girls!

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon Presley, was stillborn. When he was eleven years old his parents bought him a guitar at the Tupelo Hardware Store. As a result Elvis grew up as an only child. He and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948. The young Presley graduated from high school in 1953. That year he stopped by the Memphis Recording Service to record two songs, including “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin”, song #1196 on this Countdown. Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager. In 1954, Elvis began his singing career recording “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” at Sun Records in Memphis.

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Forget Me Not by Eden Kane

#430: Forget Me Not by Eden Kane

Peak Month: April 1962
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #5
Twin Pick ~ March 9, 1962
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Forget Me Not
Lyrics: “Forget Me Not

Richard Graham Sarstedt was born in 1942 in New Delhi, India. His parent ran a tea plantation and after his father died when Richard was 12-years-old, the family moved to the UK. He excelled in cricket and delivered milk and newspapers to make extra money for his family. He soon learned to play skiffle music after being turned on to rock music by exposure to Bill Haley and His Comets in 1955 at a live concert in Croydon, England. Sarstedt formed a skiffle band named the Fabulous 5, which included his younger brother Peter and Clive.

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The Actress by Roy Orbison

#465: The Actress by Roy Orbison

Peak Month: April 1962
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “The Actress
Lyrics: “The Actress”

Roy Kelton Orbison was born in Vernon, Texas in 1936. When he turned six his dad gave him a guitar. Both his dad, Orbie Lee, and uncle Charlie Orbison, taught him how to play. Though his family moved to Forth Worth for work at a munitions factory, Roy was sent to live with his grandmother due to a polio outbreak in 1944. That year he wrote his first song “A Vow of Love”. The next year he won a contest on Vernon radio station KVWC and was offered his own radio show on Saturdays. After the war his family reunited and moved to Wink, Texas, where Roy formed his first band, in 1949, called The Wink Westerners.

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Too Late To Worry by Babs Tino

#472: Too Late To Worry by Babs Tino

Peak Month: July 1962
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
1 week Hit Bound
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Too Late To Worry

There is next to nothing online to be found about Babs Tino. She was from Philadelphia and composed her debut single, on Cameo Records, titled “My Honeybun” in 1957. One of the few narrative threads is found in the liner notes from the 1997 Ace Records album, Early Girls Vol. 2. The liner notes reveal: “Babs Tino had the looks and the talent but failed to get the breaks and therefore barely qualifies as a footnote to a footnote in the history books. Having made a solitary single for Cameo Records in 1957, it seems she did not record again until 1961 when she signed with Kapp Records and had six singles released between then and 1963. Owner Dave Kapp was a pillar of New York’s musical establishment, a man with strongly held views on the linear alignment of musical notes in relation to pitch and tempo, and no-one got through the door at Kapp unless they could count bars and sing in tune. The best arrangers/songwriters (including Bacharach and Leiber & Stoller) were assigned to Tino’s sessions but only her third single, ‘Forgive me’, made any sort of impression ‘bubbling’ under the Hot 100 for one week in 1962 and gaining a UK release.”

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King Of The Whole Wide World by Elvis Presley

#475: King Of The Whole Wide World by Elvis Presley

Peak Month: October 1962
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #30
YouTube.com: “King Of The Whole Wide World
Lyrics: “King Of The Whole Wide World”

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon Presley, was stillborn. When he was eleven years old his parents bought him a guitar at the Tupelo Hardware Store. As a result Elvis grew up as an only child. He and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948. The young Presley graduated from high school in 1953. That year he stopped by the Memphis Recording Service to record two songs, including “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin”, song #1196 on this Countdown. Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager. In 1954, Elvis began his singing career recording “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” at Sun Records in Memphis.

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Rock-A-Hula Baby by Elvis Presley

#490: Rock-A-Hula Baby by Elvis Presley

Peak Month: January 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #23
YouTube.com link: “Rock-A-Hula Baby
Lyrics: “Rock-A-Hula Baby”

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon Presley, was stillborn. When he was eleven years old his parents bought him a guitar at the Tupelo Hardware Store. As a result Elvis grew up as an only child. He and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948. The young Presley graduated from high school in 1953. That year he stopped by the Memphis Recording Service to record two songs, including “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin”, song #1196 on this Countdown. Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager. In 1954, Elvis began his singing career recording “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” at Sun Records in Memphis.

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He's A Rebel by Vikki Carr

#503: He’s A Rebel by Vikki Carr

Peak Month: October 1962
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN’s chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #115
YouTube.com link: “He’s A Rebel” Vicki Carr
YouTube.com link: “He’s A Rebel” The Crystals
Lyrics: “He’s A Rebel”

Florencia Bisenta de Casillas-Martinez Cardona was born in 1941. Her parents were both from Mexico, and she was born in El Paso, Texas. Her parents moved to the San Gabriel Valley in California, where she grew up. She began performing at the age of four. In an interview many years later, she remembers “my father, being Mexican American, was very, very strict. He never allowed us to hear rock ‘n roll or anything on the radio. Anything that had to do with music was the Big Band era with the records they had and / or the ranchera Mexican American music and the Mexican artists.” By her late teens she was performing at Florence Cardona, because her birth name was too long for people to remember or fit on a marquee. She next went by the name of Carlita, a female version of her fathers’ name, Carlos. In 1959, Florencia Cardona turned eighteen. She decided to pursue a career as a singer in the music business.

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Midnite Blues by Charlie Rich

#1356: Midnite Blues by Charlie Rich

Peak Month: May 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #19
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Midnite Blues
Lyrics:: “Midnite Blues”

Charles Allan Rich was born in 1932 in eastern Arkansas, in the village of Colt (population 267 in 1930, and 378 in 2017). His father was a hard-drinking sharecropper and his mother was a Bible-thumper. From the third grade he studied piano. As he grew into his youth, Charles became an athlete and played football. He was also raised on gospel, country, jazz and blues, and learned to play the saxophone. After graduating from high school he began to study music in college. During the Korean War he was drafted into the United States Air Force and posted in Oklahoma. In Oklahoma Rich joined a group called the Velvetones who played jazz and R&B. Alan Cackett writes that Charlie Rich’s group played in “hard-nosed joints.” Cackett explains, “A hard-nosed joint is one in which the musicians perform behind poultry wire for their safety.”

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Lemon Tree by Peter, Paul and Mary

#572: Lemon Tree by Peter, Paul and Mary

Peak Month: May 1962
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #35
YouTube.com: “Lemon Tree
Lyrics: “Lemon Tree”

Peter Yarrow was born in Manhattan in 1938 to Ukranian Jewish immigrants. His mother and father arrived in 1922, and his father Bernard Yaroshevitz anglicized his name in 1925 in order to get into Columbia University. During World War II Bernard Yarrow was recruited to work for the OSS (Office of Strategic Services), the forerunner to the CIA. Peter’s parents divorced in 1943. After World War II, Bernard Yarrow worked in the lawfirm Sullivan and Cromwell, where Alan Dulles and John Foster Dulles had been employed. In 1952 Bernard Yarrow became a senior vice-president of the CIA-funded Radio Free Europe. Yarrow was a bright student and attended Cornell University where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1959. Yarrow’s classmate, Richard Fariña, went on to be a folk singer and wrote numerous protest songs. Yarrow performed in public at Cornell in 1958-59 while attending Professor Harold Thompson’s popular American Folk Literature course. On June 25, 1960, Peter Yarrow performed at the second Newport Folk Festival.

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I'm A Dreamer, Aren't We All by Marcy Jo

#1274: I’m A Dreamer, Aren’t We All by Marcy Jo

Peak Month: September 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Lyrics: “I’m A Dreamer, Aren’t We All”

In 1944, Marcy Rae Sockel was born in Pittsburgh. She grew up in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh. In her teens, each Saturday, for four consecutive years she took transit to the city center. At the Carlton House Hotel she’d take singing lessons from songwriter and co-owner of Robbee Records, Lennie Martin. The year before Martin had produced the Top 30 hit “Pennies From Heaven” by The Skyliners. When she turned seventeen, Marcy Joe wrote a song about her boyfriend Howard. She called it “Ronnie”. Martin was impressed with the song and quickly composed an arrangement for the tune. He produced a recording session of “Ronnie” at Pittsburgh’s United Recording Service studio and got local Robbee Record artists Lugee & the Lions to sing back up. Lugee & the Lions were comprised of Lou “Lugee” Sacco (later known as Lou Christie), Amy Sacco (Lou’s older sister), Kay Chick and Bill Fabec. In March 1961 the song was released.

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Patti Ann by Johnny Crawford

#904: Patti Ann by Johnny Crawford

Peak Month: January 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #5
1 week Twin Pick Hit of the Week
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #43
YouTube.com: “Patti Ann
Lyrics: “Patti Ann”

John Ernest Crawford was born in 1946 in Los Angeles. He got into acting as a child star and by the age of  nine was one of the Mouseketeers in the first season caste of the The Mickey Mouse Club in 1955. Crawford was asked in 1982 about how he got picked for the show. He recalled, “I went on the audition and I did a tapdance routine with my brother, and we also did a fencing routine. Then they asked if we had anything else we could do. My grandmother told me to tell them that I imitated ’50s singer Johnny Ray. I stepped forward and did my imitation of him singing “Cry” and that was what got me into the Mouseketeers.” Though he was cut from the show in 1956 after Disney cut the caste from 24 to 12, Crawford continued to get acting roles. Between 1956 and 1958 he appeared in episodes of The Lone Ranger, The Loretta Young Show, Sheriff of Cochise, Wagon Train, Crossroads, Whirlybirds, Mr. Adams and Eve and Dick Powell’s Zane Grey Theater. The latter featured an episode that became a syndicated TV show called The Rifleman. Johnny Crawford played Mark McCain, son of Lucas McCain (Chuck Connors). In 1959 Crawford was nominated for an Emmy Award for his role in The Rifleman. The show ran from 1958 to 1963.

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Suspicion by Elvis Presley

#970: Suspicion by Elvis Presley

Peak Month: July 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #9
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #103
YouTube.com: “Suspicion” – LP Cut
Lyrics: “Suspicion”

Elvis Aaron Presley was born on in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon Presley, was stillborn. When he was eleven years old his parents bought him a guitar at the Tupelo Hardware Store. As a result Elvis grew up as an only child. He and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948. The young Presley graduated from high school in 1953. That year he stopped by the Memphis Recording Service to record two songs, including “That’s When Your Heartaches Begin”, song #1196 on this Countdown. Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager. In 1954, Elvis began his singing career recording “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” at Sun Records in Memphis.

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Memories Of Maria by Jerry Byrd

#649: Memories Of Maria by Jerry Byrd

Peak Month: January 1962
7 weeks on CKWX’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #74
YouTube.com: “Memories Of Maria

Gerald Lester “Jerry” Byrd was born in Lima, Ohio, in 1920. As he retells it in his autobiography, Byrd was taken to a “tent” show at the age of 13. It was the during the Great Depression. But for his friend, Richard Bennett, who came from a wealthier family, Byrd would never have seen the show. His friend suggested they go and the friend told Byrd he would pay for the  “one dollar ticket” after Byrd told him “I can’t. I don’t have any money.” Byrd says at the age of eleven he had never seen a one dollar bill. In inflation adjusted dollars $1.00 in 1933 is equivalent to $19.40 in 2019. Byrd recalls “nobody has any money in those days. There would be maybe two shows a year that came to town, and the show would come for one day and be gone the next. So if you had the money to go, you went.” At the “tent” show he saw a band from Hawaii. Byrd recalls “There were six or eight of them, and the stage drop was a scene with palm trees along an ocean shoreline, and a volcano erupting. All that exotic stuff, like in the movies. And the music – you couldn’t have captured my attention any more if you hit me on the head with a hammer. But it was the sound of the steel guitar that captivated me the most.”

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Road Hog by John Loudermilk

#655: Road Hog by John Loudermilk

Peak Month: November 1962
8 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #65
YouTube.com: “Road Hog
Lyrics: “Road Hog

John D. Loudermilk was born in Durham, North Carolina, in 1934. Although he had a middle initial, D, the “D” wasn’t short for any middle name. His father was an illiterate carpenter, John D Loudermilk Sr. John D Jr. When he was seven his dad gave him a ukulele made from a cigar box. Young John D Jr. learned to play guitar in his youth and began to write poems and songs. His poetry was inspired after he began to read the works of Kahlil Gibran. In his late teens, in the early 50’s, John D Jr. wrote a poem titled “A Rose And A Baby Ruth.” It concerned a teenage couple who have a quarrel and the boy gives his girlfriend a rose and a Baby Ruth candy bar to make up. Loudermilk put notes to the poem and played the sung version on a local TV station. This caught the attention of country singer, George Hamilton IV. The song was published in 1956 and became a Top Ten hit on both the Country and Pop charts on Billboard Magazine. The following year, Loudermilk penned “Sittin’ In The Balcony” for Eddie Cochran. Once that became a hit, Loudermilk’s songwriting career was launched. He co-wrote “Waterloo,” a #1 country hit and #4 pop hit in 1959 for country singer, Stonewall Jackson.
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Afrikaan Beat by Bert Kaempfert

#668: Afrikaan Beat by Bert Kaempfert

Peak Month: February 1962
8 weeks on CKWX’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #42
YouTube.com:”Afrikaan Beat

In 1923, Berthold Heinrich Kaempfert was born in a village suburb of Hamburg, Germany, called Barmbeck. He learned piano, clarinet, accordion and saxophone during his childhood and youth. He had years of private music lessons at Wilhelm Witt’s private music school in Wilhelmsburg. He later studied at Die Musikschule HAMBURG (Hamburg School of Music). Kaempfert’s career began when his mother used a $285 insurance payment to buy a piano. Prior to the outbreak of World War II, while still 15 years of age, Kaempfert was hired to play with Hans Busch and his Orchestra. He was the youngest member of the band. But once Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, Kaempfert, along with all able-bodied young men, were drafted into the German military. Kaempfert became a bandsman in the  German Navy, initially playing on the Island of Salt on the Wadden Sea. In 1945, Kaempfert formed a band comprised of prisoners-of-war in Denmark. After the war ended, Kaempfert moved back to Hamburg. He was employed at the Esplanade Hotel and his performances were broadcast at the nearby British Forces Network. In 1959 Bert Kaempfert arranged and produced Die Gitarre und das Meer (The guitar and the sea) for Austrian Freddy Quinn. Quinn had recorded a German-language version of Dean Martin’s big hit in 1955, “Memories Are Made of This.” In 1959 Bert Kaempfert arranged and produced Die Gitarre und das Meer was a big seller in Germany in 1959.

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Moon River by Jean Thomas

#669: Moon River by Jean Thomas

Peak Month: May 1962
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Moon River
Lyrics: “Moon River”

Jean Thomas was born in Weymouth, Massachusetts, in the early 40’s. She grew up in Sarasota, Florida. Since her parents own a summer business in Nantasket Beach, one of the busiest beaches in the Greater Boston area, she returned with her family to Massachusetts each summer. At Sarasota High School, Jean was part of a singing group called Preacher John and the Five Saints. In the fall of 1959, she attended Florida State University in Tallahassee. In 1961, Jean and her brother Don went to New York City to pursue their dreams. They headed over to Paul Anka’s Spanka Publishing Company. They were promptly and signed to a songwriting contract. Jean Thomas did an audition in the Brill Building at 1650 Broadway.

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Mister Heartache by Pat Hervey

#700: Mister Heartache by Pat Hervey

Peak Month: July 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “Mister Heartache

Pat Hervey was born in Toronto in 1947. From the age of nine she appeared in public in choirs or at dances and parties. She sang at high school dances and was discovered by 1050 CHUM DJ Al Boliska, who anchored the stations morning show. He heard her at an amateur Rock n’ Roll show and connected her to a local CBC programmer. Standing five foot three, Hervey had a strong voice. CBC signed her and she was a regular feature on CBC TV shows Country Hoedown, While We’re Young, and Holiday Ranch. Art Snider owned Chateau Records and was musical director for the CBC TV show, Club Six.

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I Can't Stop Loving You by Roy Orbison

#710: I Can’t Stop Loving You by Roy Orbison

Peak Month: February 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “I Can’t Stop Loving You” Roy Orbison
YouTube.com link: “I Can’t Stop Loving You” Ray Charles
Lyrics: “I Can’t Stop Loving You”

Roy Kelton Orbison was born in Vernon, Texas in 1936. When he turned six his dad gave him a guitar. Both his dad, Orbie Lee, and uncle Charlie Orbison, taught him how to play. Though his family moved to Forth Worth for work at a munitions factory, Roy was sent to live with his grandmother due to a polio outbreak in 1944. That year he wrote his first song “A Vow of Love.” The next year he won a contest on Vernon radio station KVWC and was offered his own radio show on Saturdays. After the war his family reunited and moved to Wink, Texas, where Roy formed his first band, in 1949, called The Wink Westerners.

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Forgive Me by Babs Tino

#711: Forgive Me by Babs Tino

Peak Month: August 1962
10 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #117
YouTube.com: “Forgive Me
Lyrics: “Forgive Me”

There is next to nothing online to be found about Babs Tino. She was from Philadelphia and composed her debut single, on Cameo Records, titled “My Honeybun” in 1957. One of the few narrative threads is found in the liner notes from the 1997 Ace Records album, Early Girls Vol. 2. The liner notes reveal: “Babs Tino had the looks and the talent but failed to get the breaks and therefore barely qualifies as a footnote to a footnote in the history books. Having made a solitary single for Cameo Records in 1957, it seems she did not record again until 1961 when she signed with Kapp Records and had six singles released between then and 1963. Owner Dave Kapp was a pillar of New York’s musical establishment, a man with strongly held views on the linear alignment of musical notes in relation to pitch and tempo, and no-one got through the door at Kapp unless they could count bars and sing in tune. The best arrangers/songwriters (including Bacharach and Leiber & Stoller) were assigned to Tino’s sessions but only her third single, ‘Forgive me’, made any sort of impression ‘bubbling’ under the Hot 100 for one week in 1962 and gaining a UK release. Her fifth single, ‘Keep Away From Other Girls’, was successfully covered in the UK by Helen Shapiro.”

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Hark, Is That A Cannon I Hear by Bobby Vee

#743: Hark, Is That A Cannon I Hear by Bobby Vee

Peak Month: February 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Hark, Is That A Cannon I Hear

Bobby Vee was born in Fargo, North Dakota with the birth name Robert Thomas Velline. He was part of a highschool band that was asked to step in and perform for the concert that was to be headlined by Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper. Each had died in a small plane crash the day before. And the concert was held in Moorhead, Minnesota, across the Red River from Fargo. Fifteen year old Vee and his band were a hit and he got a contract with Liberty Records. It was his fourth single release, “Devil or Angel”, that catapulted him into the Top Ten and teen idol stardom. The single peaked at number-one in Vancouver on the C-FUN-TASTIC 50 on September 10, 1960. Other hits followed including “Rubber Ball” which peaked at #3 in Vancouver in December 1960. The B-side of “Rubber Ball”, a cover of the Buddy Holly tune “Everyday”, peaked at #7 on the CKWX Fabulous Forty in January 1961. “Take Good Care of My Baby” (#1), “Run to Him” (#2) “The Night Has a Thousand Eyes” (#3) and “Come Back When You Grow Up Girl” (#3).
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In My Baby's Eyes by Bobby Vee

#744: In My Baby’s Eyes by Bobby Vee

Peak Month: May 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “In My Baby’s Eyes
Lyrics: “In My Baby’s Eyes”

Robert Thomas Velline was born in Fargo, North Dakota. He was part of a highschool band that was asked to step in and perform for the concert on February 4, 1959, in Moorhead, Minnesota. The concert, across the Red River from Fargo, North Dakota, was to have featured Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper. However, the three died in a small plane crash the day before when the plane crashed into a cornfield near Mason City, Iowa. Fifteen year old Vee and his band, The Shadows, were a hit and he got a contract with Liberty Records. In August 1959, their debut single, “Suzie Baby”, made the Top Ten in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and the Top 20 in Des Moines, Iowa, and Boston, It was his fourth single release, “Devil or Angel”, that catapulted him into the Top Ten and teen idol stardom. It climbed to #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 in Vancouver. Other hits followed including “Rubber Ball” (#2),” Take Good Care of My Baby” (#1), “Run to Him” (#2) “The Night Has a Thousand Eyes” (#3) and “Come Back When You Grow Up Girl” (#3).
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Queen Of The Angels by Deane Hawley

#768: Queen Of The Angels by Deane Hawley

Peak Month: July 1962
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #9
CFUN Twin Pick May 26, 1962
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Queen Of The Angels

William Deane Hawley was born in Staten Island, New York, on December 18, 1937. He moved to California at the age of three. He attended USC and got a Masters in Human Behavior while also recording pop singles and appearing on several TV music shows. He recorded his first song in 1958, credited to Deane Hawley and The Crystals on the Valor label. He worked with a number of songwriters including Dorsey Burnette (“Bossman”) and Sharon Sheeley (“Don’t Dress the World in Black”) and Ben Wiseman and Fred Wise (“Pocket Full of Rainbows”).

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Calling Dr. Casey by John D. Loudermilk

#778: Calling Dr. Casey by John D. Loudermilk

Peak Month: July 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #83
YouTube.com: “Calling Dr. Casey
Lyrics: “Calling Dr. Casey”

John D. Loudermilk was born in Durham, North Carolina, in 1934. Although he had a middle initial, D, the “D” wasn’t short for any middle name. His father was an illiterate carpenter, John D Loudermilk Sr. John D Jr. When he was seven his dad gave him a ukulele made from a cigar box. Young John D Jr. learned to play guitar in his youth and began to write poems and songs. His poetry was inspired after he began to read the works of Kahlil Gibran. In his late teens, in the early 50’s, John D Jr. wrote a poem titled “A Rose And A Baby Ruth”. It concerned a teenage couple who have a quarrel and the boy gives his girlfriend a rose and a Baby Ruth candy bar to make up. Loudermilk put notes to the poem and played the sung version on a local TV station. This caught the attention of country singer, George Hamilton IV. The song was published in 1956 and became a Top Ten hit on both the Country and Pop charts on Billboard Magazine. The following year, Loudermilk penned “Sittin’ In The Balcony” for Eddie Cochran. Once that became a hit, Loudermilk’s songwriting career was launched. He co-wrote “Waterloo,” a #1 country hit and #4 pop hit in 1959 for country singer, Stonewall Jackson.
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#779: Dr. Kildare by Hank Levine Orchestra

Peak Month: June 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart

There was a British-born jazz and dance band leader named Henry Levine who was born in 1906. He moved to America when he was small and became a naturalized American citizen. But Hank Levine, who released the instrumental single, “Dr. Kildare”, in 1962, was a completely different person. (For excellent background about British-born Henry Levine, see Nick Dellow’s article under the Reference section at the bottom of this post). Hank Levine was born in the USA. He graduated at Peabody High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1944. He went on to study at Carnegie Mellon University, also in Pittsburgh, where he graduated in 1952. Hank Levine and His Orchestra made instrumental versions of pop tunes from the late 1950’s into the 1970’s. According to information at Discogs.com, these included “Tequila”, “Walk Right In”, “Michelle”, “Downtown”, “Georgy Girl”, “California Dreamin’’” and “Groovin'”, “Since I Fell For You”, “Elusive Butterfly” and “59th Street Bridge Song”. He was also an arranger, composer and conductor for over four decades.

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Summertime Guy by Eddie Rambeau

#792: Summertime Guy by Eddie Rambeau

Peak Month: August 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Peak Position Music Vendor ~ #127
YouTube.com link: “Summertime Guy”
Lyrics: “Summertime Guy

“Eddie Rambeau was born Edward Cletus Fluri, in 1943. His birthplace was Hazelton, Pennsylvania. He is an singer, songwriter, actor and author. Rambeau sang at record hops in Hazelton where he impressed deejays with his talent. One of the deejays, Jim Ward, set up an audition for Rambeau at Swan Records. He was signed to the label and released his first single, “Skin Divin’”, under his new name, Eddie Rambeau, on graduation day in June 1961. The song made the Top 20 in several radio markets in Idaho and Massachusetts.

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Tell Me What He Said by Helen Shapiro

#833: Tell Me What He Said by Helen Shapiro

Peak Month: May 1962
8 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
CFUN Twin Pick April 11, 1962
YouTube.com link: “Tell Me What He Said
Lyrics: “Tell Me What He Said”

In 1946 Helen Kate Shapiro was born in East End, London. She is the granddaughter of Russian Jewish immigrants and her parents, who were piece-workers in the garment industry, attended Lea Bridge Road Synagogue. Although too poor to own a record player, Shapiro’s parents encouraged music in their home. Helen had to borrow a neighbor’s record player to hear her first hit single. Shapiro played banjolele as a child and sang occasionally with her brother, Ron, in his youth club skiffle group. Helen had a deep timbre to her voice, atypical in a girl who was still a child. Her elementary school friends gave her the nickname “Foghorn.” When she turned ten years old, Helen Shapiro became a member of Susie and the Hula Hoops, with her cousin, 60’s pop singer, Susan Singer. Shapiro also participated in a school band which included Marc Bolan (then using his real name of Mark Feld, and later founder of glam rock group T. Rex) as guitarist.
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That Greasy Kid Stuff by Janie Grant

#841: That Greasy Kid Stuff by Janie Grant

Peak Month: June 1962
7 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #74
YouTube.com: “That Greasy Kid Stuff
Lyrics: “That Greasy Kid Stuff”

Rose Marie Casilli was born in Patterson, New Jersey in 1945. A promotional piece for Janie Grant in Billboard Magazine from June 23, 1962, stated that her hobbies were “dancing, swimming and collecting records.” Billboard wrote, “she started singing when she was only 8, making her professional debut at a local dance revue. Gerry Granahan… was instrumental in capturing a recording contract for Miss Grant. He heard her singing at a party and brought her to Caprice where she auditioned for the company’s execs.” The Billboard article noted that she played guitar and wrote songs, including her Top 30 hit, “Triangle”, which peaked on the Billboard Hot 100 at #29. The person who “discovered” Janie Grant, Gerry Granahan, had a minor hit in 1958 called “No Chemise Please.” Granahan started a record label called Caprice. Janie Grant was 16 when her debut single – “Triangle” – made the Top Ten in Chicago, San Diego, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Tampa (FL), Vancouver (BC), Arkon and Columbus (OH), and Tucson and Phoenix (AZ).

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Yessiree-Yessiree by Ray Whitley

#845: Yessiree-Yessiree by Ray Whitley

Peak Month: April 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Yessiree-Yessiree

Ray Whitley was born in Columbus, Georgia, in November, 1943. In 1958, at the age of fourteen, Ray Whitley formed his own band. He soon caught the attention of Producer Felton Jarvis who introduced Ray to Bill Lowery. Whitley was offered work as a staff songwriter for Bill Lowery’s publishing company, Lowery Music Publishers of Atlanta, Georgia. When he was 17 years old, Ray Whitley recorded his first record, “I Wasn’t Sure”. Deejays weren’t sure about the single and gave it a pass. His second attempt, “Yessiree – Yessiree”, got airplay in San Francisco, Seattle and Vancouver (BC).

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Oh You Beautiful Doll by Donnie Brooks

#869: Oh You Beautiful Doll by Donnie Brooks

Peak Month: June 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #9
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Oh You Beautiful Doll

In 1936 John Dee Abohosh was born in Dallas, Texas. His family moved to Ventura, California when he was in his youth. In his teens he was adopted by his stepfather, John D. Fairecloth, who supported young John in developing his voice. John Dee Abohosh was than given the surname Fairecloth. While growing up in southern California, he studied under the same vocal coach who previously instructed Eddie Fisher. In high school John Dee Fairecloth made his professional debut on a classical music showcase broadcast by Ventura-based station KBCC. After graduating from high school, Fairecloth earned his living singing at local clubs, fairs, and weddings, embracing rock & roll and in 1957 signing to local indie Fable Records to cut his debut single, “You Gotta Walk The Line”, credited to Johnny Faire. He was twenty-one years old.

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Swiss Maid by Del Shannon

#884: Swiss Maid by Del Shannon

Peak Month: September 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #64
CFUN Twin Pick August 4, 1962
YouTube.com: “Swiss Maid
Lyrics: “Swiss Maid”

Charles Weedon Westover was born on December 30, 1934. He was known professionally as Del Shannon. Westover was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He learned ukulele and guitar and listened to country music. He was drafted into the Army in 1954, and while in Germany played guitar in a band called The Cool Flames. When his service ended, he returned to Battle Creek, Michigan. There he worked as a carpet salesman and as a truck driver in a furniture factory. He found part-time work as a rhythm guitarist in singer Doug DeMott’s group called Moonlight Ramblers, working at the Hi-Lo Club. Ann Arbor deejay Ollie McLaughlin heard the band. In July 1960, Westover signed to become a recording artist and composer on the Bigtop label. Westover changed his name to Del Shannon. It was a combination of Shannon Kavanagh (a wannabe wrestler who patronized the Hi-Lo Club) with Del, derived from the Cadillac Coupe de Ville, which Westover’s carpet store boss drove.

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Chattanooga Choo Choo by Floyd Cramer

#907: Chattanooga Choo Choo by Floyd Cramer

Peak Month: February 1962
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKWX chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #36
CKWX Top of the Hot Prospects ~ January 13, 1962
YouTube.com: “Chattanooga Choo Choo
Lyrics: “Chattanooga Choo Choo”

In 1933 Floyd Cramer was born outside of Shreveport, Louisiana. He grew up in Huttig, Arkansas. At the age of five he taught himself to play piano after his parents bought him the keyboard. Before he started grade school, young Floyd was performing in front of audiences in public. After high school he moved back to Shreveport and got a gig with KWKH radio and the Louisiana Hayride. Country stars like Webb Pierce and Red Sovine would appear on the show. Cramer on piano, and guitar players, Faron Young and Jimmy Day, were a trio that backed up ‘Hayride performers. In the early 50’s Cramer toured with Hank Williams and next with Elvis Presley. Cramer released his first single record in 1953.
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Route 66 by Nelson Riddle

#936: Route 66 by Nelson Riddle

Peak Month: May 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #5
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #30
YouTube.com: “Route 66

Born in 1921, Nelson Smock Riddle, Jr. was born in Oradell, New Jersey. He learned the piano at eight and the trombone at age 14. By his late teens he was arranging for local dance bands. He began to play with the Charlie Spivak Orchestra. In 1943 he joined the Merchant Marine and in 1944 began to play in the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra until he was drafted into the U.S. Army in April 1945. He finished serving in the Army in June 1946 and move to Hollywood. Within a few years he had arranged his first Top Ten hit single, a tune sung by Doris Day titled “Again.” Riddle pursued his multiple talents as an arranger, composer, bandleader and orchestrator.

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Cry Myself To Sleep by Del Shannon

#960: Cry Myself To Sleep by Del Shannon

Peak Month: July 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #99
YouTube.com: “Cry Myself To Sleep
Lyrics: Cry Myself To Sleep

Charles Weedon Westover was born on December 30, 1934, in Coopersville, Michigan. He was known professionally as Del Shannon. He learned ukulele and guitar and listened to country music. He was drafted into the Army in 1954, and while in Germany played guitar in a band called The Cool Flames. When his service ended, he returned to Battle Creek, Michigan. There he worked as a carpet salesman and as a truck driver in a furniture factory. He found part-time work as a rhythm guitarist in singer Doug DeMott’s group called Moonlight Ramblers, working at the Hi-Lo Club. They renamed themselves Big Little Show Band, and Westover took on the stage name of Charlie Johnson. Ann Arbor deejay Ollie McLaughlin heard the band. In July 1960, Charlie Johnson signed to become a recording artist and composer on the Bigtop label. His name was changed once again, this time to Del Shannon. It was a combination of Shannon Kavanagh (a wannabe wrestler who patronized the Hi-Lo Club) with Del, derived from the Cadillac Coupe de Ville, which Westover’s carpet store boss drove.
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The Young Ones by Cliff Richard

#963: The Young Ones by Cliff Richard

Peak Month: March 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #10
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “The Young Ones
Lyrics: “The Young Ones”

Cliff Richard was born Harry Roger Webb on October 14, 1940, in the city of Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh, India. In 1940 Lucknow was part of the British Raj, as India was not yet an independent country. Webb’s father worked on as a catering manager for the Indian Railways. His mother raised Harry and his three sisters. In 1948, when India had become independent, the Webb family took a boat to Essex, England, and began a new chapter. At the age of 16 Harry Webb was given a guitar by his father. Harry then formed a vocal group called the Quintones. Webb was interested in skiffle music, a type of jug band music, popularized by “The King of Skiffle,” Scottish singer Lonnie Donegan who had an international hit in 1955 called “Rock Island Line.”

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Milk And Honey by Eddie Fisher

#994: Milk And Honey by Eddie Fisher

Peak Month: March 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Peak Position on Cashbox chart ~ #104
Peak Position on Music Vendor ~ #107
YouTube.com: “Milk And Honey
Lyrics: “Milk And Honey

Edwin John “Eddie” Fisher was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1928 in Russian Jewish immigrants. His father’s surname was originally Tisch, but was changed to Fisher by the time of the 1940 USA census. From childhood Eddie had a vocal talent. He made his radio debut on WFIL, a local Philadelphia radio station. He also performed on Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts, a popular radio show that later moved to television. Because he became a local star, Fisher dropped out of high school in the middle of his senior year to pursue his career. By 1946, Fisher was crooning with the bands of Buddy Morrow and Charlie Ventura. He was heard in 1949 by Eddie Cantor at Grossinger’s Catskill Resort Hotel in the Borscht Belt. Cantor’s so-called discovery of Fisher was later described as a totally contrived, “manipulated’ arrangement by Milton Blackstone, Grossinger’s publicity director. After performing on Cantor’s radio show he was an instant hit and gained nationwide exposure. He then signed a recording contract with RCA Victor.

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A-Rab by The Titans

#1004: A-Rab by The Titans

Peak Month: February 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #10
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “A-Rab

The Titans were a group from McCleary, Washington, who played rock ‘n roll from 1959 to 1964. Their members included vocalists Willie Washington and Sandy Faye, saxophonist Walt Ratenbury, guitarist Gary Buchanan, pianist Rudy Volkman, Walt Newman and Nick Burris both on bass and Jim Wroughton on drums. On a YouTube post is found this comment: “McCleary, Washington, a small town west of Olympia would produce the very popular Titans. In early 1962, their fantastic instrumental, “A-Rab” would go top ten in Vancouver, BC. I do remember airplay in Seattle, but it didn’t receive the support that it deserved. My older brother saw them one time and he raved about them. They were never able to break into the Seattle dance circuit, so were mostly unheard north of Tacoma.” The Titans gave concerts in places like the Civic Auditorium in Chehalis (WA) and the Red Carpet in Tacoma. The band was inter-racial, with Willie Washington being a featured lead vocalist. From 1960 to 1961, Nick Burris had been part of a band called The Wander’ers, based in Hoquiam, Washington.

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Poor Little Puppet by Cathy Carroll

#1009: Poor Little Puppet by Cathy Carroll

Peak Month: August 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #8
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #91
YouTube.com: “Poor Little Puppet
Lyrics: “Poor Little Puppet

Wikipedia says Cathy Carroll was born Carolyn Stern in 1939. However, both Billboard Magazine and Radio Television Daily wrote in 1963 that Carroll was 17 years old at the time. Doing the math, that puts Carolyn Stern’s birth around 1946. Cathy Carroll seemed from the start to be aiming for an award for drama queen among girl singers in the early rock ‘n roll era. In the previous decade Johnnie Ray would tear at his hair and fall on the floor sobbing before his fans as he sang his 1951 million selling hits “Cry,”and “The Little White Cloud That Cried.” From his histrionic performances Ray earned the nicknames the “Nabob of Sob” and “Mr. Emotion”. Cathy Carroll would later record “Cry” as well, perhaps as a nod to her musical soulmate.

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Come Outside by Mike Sarne

#1029: Come Outside by Mike Sarne

Peak Month: July 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Come Outside
Lyrics: “Come Outside”

Michael Scheuer was born in London, UK, in 1940. He learned to become an actor and adopted a stage name. In 1961 Mike Sarne starred in a minor role in the film Invasion Quartet, a parody of The Guns of Navarone. The parody was about two wounded officers, one British and one French who are deemed unfit and surplus to requirements. They leave their hospital and together with an explosives expert suffering from mental illness, and a Colonel thought too old to serve in the Army, make their way to France to destroy a long range German artillery piece.
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Along Came Linda by Tommy Boyce

#1036: Along Came Linda by Tommy Boyce

Peak Month: February 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #118
YouTube.com: “Along Came Linda

Sidney Thomas “Tommy” Boyce was born in 1939 in Charlottesville, Virgina. He was one half of the pop duo with Bobby Hart. The two wrote numbers of songs for other recording artists including The Monkees, Jay and The Americans and Little Anthony and The Imperials. Boyce was separately pursuing a career as a singer. After being rejected numerous times, Boyce took his father’s suggestion to write a song called “Be My Guest” for rock and roll star Fats Domino. He waited six hours at Domino’s hotel room to present him with the demo, and got Domino to promise to listen to the song. In 1959 the song hit #8 in the US and #11 in the UK, becoming Domino’s biggest hit there in several years, and sold over a million copies.

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I'm Not A Bad Guy by The Crickets

#1409: I’m Not A Bad Guy by The Crickets

Peak Month: May 1962
7 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #17
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “I”m Not A Bad Guy

The Crickets became a rock ‘n roll/rockabilly group in 1957. They are credited with influencing a whole range of recording artists including Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones and the Beatles. In fact, the Beatles got the idea for their name as a riff off of another insect, cricket, just going up one letter of the alphabet from C to B for Beatles. Paul McCartney once told the press, “If it wasn’t for the Crickets, there wouldn’t be any Beatles.”The Crickets were initially the backing band for Buddy Holly and among their hits are “That’ll Be The Day”, Peggy Sue”, “Oh Boy”, “Not Fade Away”, “Maybe Baby”, “It’s So Easy”, “Rave On”, “I Fought The Law” and “More Than I Can Say”.

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Lovely Little Lady/Little Miss Twist by The Beau-Marks

#1399: Lovely Little Lady/Little Miss Twist by The Beau-Marks

Peak Month: January 1962
7 weeks on CKWX chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “Lovely Little Lady
YouTube.com link: “Little Miss Twist

Originally named the Del Tones when they formed in Montreal in 1958, the groups’ first single, called “Moonlight Party”, climbed to #1 in Montreal in May 1959. However, there were other bands with the same name. The Deltones had a single on Vee-Jay Records that was a minor hit in Chicago. That group had a minor hit in Philadelphia on another label in 1960 called “Strollin’ the Blues”. There was also a band from Australia called the Delltones. To avoid confusion, the Del Tones from Montreal changed their name to the Beau-Marks in 1959 in response to a political controversy. Their new name was a pun on the Bomarc, the worlds first supersonic long-range, anti-aircraft missile, developed by Boeing. The development of the Bomarc missile was accompanied by problems with its propulsion system. In 1958 the Conservative Government, led by Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, was faced with two strategies for Canadian air defense. One was to produce the Avro Arrow, a very fast missile at a cost of over 12 Million per aircraft. It was created by the Canadian company, Avro Canada. The other option was to purchase Bomarc missles made by Boeing in Seattle, Washington, for 2 Million. The later missiles would be tipped with nuclear warheads. However, the Conservatives opted eventually not to have nuclear tipped missiles in Canada. With the cancellation of the Avro Arrow, the company lost over 14,000 jobs.

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You're Everything by Bob Luman

#1391: You’re Everything by Bob Luman

Peak Month: December 1962
8 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #20
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “You’re Everything
Lyrics: “You’re Everything”

Bob Luman was born in Blackjack, Texas, in 1937. Before 1955 the only hits Bob Luman had were on the baseball field. He was an outstanding baseball player for his school team in Kilgore, Texas. He also fronted a band that performed the country hits. But after seeing Elvis Presley perform in Kilgore in May 1955, Luman was resolved that his hits going forward would be “Rockabilly hits.”

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Dear Abby by Buddy Knox

#1376: Dear Abby by Buddy Knox

Peak Month: November 1962
7 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #16
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Youtube: “Dear Abby

Buddy Wayne Knox was born in 1933 Happy, Texas, a small farm town in the Texas Panhandle a half hour south of Amarillo. During his youth he learned to play the guitar. He was the first artist of the rock era to write and perform his own number one hit song, “Party Doll“. The song earned Knox a gold record in 1957 and was certified a million seller. Knox was one of the innovators of the southwestern style of rockabilly that became known as “Tex-Mex” music.

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If The Boy Only Knew by Sue Thompson

#1374: If The Boy Only Knew by Sue Thompson

Peak Month: June 1962
7 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #18
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #112
YouTube.com link: “If The Boy Only Knew
Lyrics: “If The Boy Only Knew”

Eva Sue McKee was born in Nevada, Missouri on July 19, 1925. By 1932, at the age of seven, she was playing guitar and singing on stage. She got married at the age of 17 in 1942. But by 1945 was divorced and a single mother. Sue‘s first successful fling in show business was with the “Dude Martin Show” on KYA Radio in San Francisco, and KGO TV in 1950. The Dude Martin Show moved to TV station KTTV in Los Angeles in 1951. She performed with Dude at the Palamino Club in Los Angeles. Between 1950 and 1954 she recorded thirteen 78 RPMs as the featured vocalist with Dude Martin and His Roundup Gang. “If You Want Some Lovin” from 1950 is an example of the country records she was releasing under the stage name, Sue Thompson. She was nominated for an Emmy award in 1954 for her work on the Dude Martin Show, but lost out to Lucille Ball.

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D-Darling by Paul Evans

#1119: D-Darling by Paul Evans

Peak Month: November 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
CFUN Twin Pick October 13, 1962
YouTube: “D-Darling

Paul Evans was born in Queens, New York, in 1938. Although he got some fame with his modest success as a teen idol, Evans is more well known for his songwriting for other performing artists. The list of artists in the music industry who’ve recorded a song by Paul Evans include LaVern Baker, Tab Hunter, Cliff Richard, Sammy Turner, Elvis Presley (“I Gotta Know”) Pat Boone (“Johnny Will”), Siw Malmkvist, Bobby Vinton (“Roses Are Red”), The Platters, Mario Lanza (“Lady Of Spain”), Hank Locklin, Johnny Tillotson, Bobby Sherman, Chad & Jeremy, Lulu, Kalin Twins (“When”), Ray Coniff, Paul Anka and the Shocking Blue. However, unlike in his native country of America where his chart success was uneven, Evans charted seven songs into the Top 20 in Vancouver. So, in the period between 1959 and 1962, Paul Evans was better known in Vancouver as a teen idol than for his compositions for other recording artists.
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But You Lied by Cathy Carroll

#1139: But You Lied by Cathy Carroll

Peak Month: December 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
CFUN Twin Pick Hit ~ November 24, 1962
YouTube.com: “But You Lied

Wikipedia says Cathy Carroll was born Carolyn Stern in 1939. However, both Billboard Magazine and Radio Television Daily wrote in 1963 that Carroll was 17 years old at the time. Doing the math, that puts Carolyn Stern’s birth around 1946. Cathy Carroll seemed from the start to be aiming for an award for drama queen among girl singers in the early rock ‘n roll era. In the previous decade Johnnie Ray would tear at his hair and fall on the floor sobbing before his fans as he sang his 1951 million selling hits “Cry,”and “The Little White Cloud That Cried”. From his histrionic performances Ray earned the nicknames the “Nabob of Sob” and “Mr. Emotion”. Cathy Carroll would later record “Cry” as well, perhaps as a nod to her musical soulmate.

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Hitchhiker by Bobby Curtola

#1150: Hitchhiker by Bobby Curtola

Peak Month: January 1962
10 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Hitchhiker

Bobby Curtola was born in Port Arthur, Ontario, in 1943. (The town would become amalgamated into the city of Thunder Bay in 1970). His cousin Susan Andrusco remembers “”Bobby would always be singing at our family gatherings. The family loved him. And he loved being the centre of attention. He would sing Oh My Papa, and my grandpa would cry.” Oh My Papa was a number-one hit for Eddie Fisher in January 1954, when Bobby Curtola was still ten-years-old. In the fall of 1959, sixteen-year-old high school student Bobby Curtola went from pumping gas at his father’s garage in Thunder Bay, Ontario, to the life of a teen idol. Within a year he went from playing in his basement band, Bobby and the Bobcats, to recording his first hit single in 1960, “Hand In Hand With You”, which charted in Ontario, but not in Vancouver. After performing on the Bob Hope Show in 1960, the charismatic teenager, with his handsome boy-next-door looks was quickly finding himself within a whirlwind called “Curtolamania.”

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My Friend the Sea by Petula Clark

#1181: My Friend the Sea by Petula Clark

Peak Month: April 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #16
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “My Friend The Sea
Lyrics: “My Friend The Sea”

Born November 15, with “a voice as sweet as chapel bells,” Petula Clark first broke into the limelight during World War II when as a child she entertained the troops, both on radio and in concert. She is said to have performed in over 200 shows for the forces all over England before the age of nine and by war’s end, Petula Clark–the British “Shirley Temple” who had come to represent childhood itself–was so popular in England she was asked to sing at a national victory celebration at Trafalgar Square. In 1944, Petula made her first movie and has since appeared in over 30 British and American films.

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If Only by Jack Scott

#1220: If Only by Jack Scott

Peak Month: December 1962
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “If Only
Lyrics: “If Only”

Giovanni Dominico Scafone Jr. was born in 1936 in Windsor, Ontario, and spent some of his years growing up in the Detroit suburb of Hazel Park, Michigan. In 1954 he formed a band called the Southern Drifters. In 1957 he got a record deal with ABC-Paramount. He scored four Top Ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100 and two more in the Top 30 in the USA. In Vancouver Jack Scott was a teen idol with his good looks and classic rock ‘n roll. He enjoyed eight Top Ten hits on the Vancouver charts including  “What In The World’s Come Over You” and his most successful hit in town, “Goodbye Baby” that peaked at #2 and spent 17 weeks on the CKWX charts in 1958. At the time, Scott had more US singles in the Billboard Hot 100 (19), in a shorter period of time (41 months), than any other recording artist – with the exception of The Beatles, Elvis Presley, Fats Domino and Connie Francis. Scott charted twenty songs on the local record surveys in Vancouver between July 1958 and November 1962.

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Keep Your Love Locked by Paul Petersen

#1229: Keep Your Love Locked by Paul Petersen

Peak Month: June 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #58
Peak Position on Cashbox ~ #95
YouTube.com link: “Keep Your Love Locked
Lyrics: “Keep Your Love Locked”

Paul William Petersen was born in Glendale, California, in 1945. He  started his career at the age of eight and began appearing on the Mickey Mouse Club in 1955. From there he was cast as Jeff Stone on the Donna Reed Show where he starred in that role from 1958 to 1966. When he first started playing Jeff Stone, Paul was just 4’3″ tall, which is one reason he got the job. Donna herself was a petite 5’4″. Paul got this part the day after he turned thirteen. While appearing on the Donna Reed Show both he and his sister, Mary Stone, sang songs that would become hit singles. The actress playing Mary Stone was child actor Shelley Fabares who had a number one hit in 1962 called “Johnny Angel.” Paul Petersen also sang songs in the Donna Reed Show including “She Can’t Find Her Keys”, “My Dad” and “Keep Your Love Locked”.

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I Cry and Cry by Bobby Curtola

#1301: I Cry and Cry by Bobby Curtola

Peak Month: September 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “I Cry And Cry

Bobby Curtola was born in Port Arthur, Ontario, in 1943. (The town would become amalgamated into the city of Thunder Bay in 1970). His cousin Susan Andrusco remembers “”Bobby would always be singing at our family gatherings. The family loved him. And he loved being the centre of attention. He would sing Oh My Papa, and my grandpa would cry.” Oh My Papa was a number-one hit for Eddie Fisher in January 1954, when Bobby Curtola was still ten-years-old. In the fall of 1959, sixteen-year-old high school student Bobby Curtola went from pumping gas at his father’s garage in Thunder Bay, Ontario, to the life of a teen idol. Within a year he went from playing in his basement band “Bobby and the Bobcats” to recording his first hit single in 1960, “Hand In Hand With You,” which charted in Ontario, but not in Vancouver. After performing on the Bob Hope Show in 1960, the charismatic teenager, with his handsome boy-next-door looks was quickly finding himself within a whirlwind called “Curtolamania.”

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Boys' Night Out by Patti Page

#1337: Boys’ Night Out by Patti Page

Peak Month: August 1962
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #49
Peak Position on Cashbox ~ #60
YouTube.com: “Boys Night Out
Lyrics: “Boys Night Out

Patti Page was born on November 8, 1927. The New York Times writes “She was born Clara Ann Fowler in Claremore, Oklahoma, the second youngest of 11 children of a railroad laborer. Her mother and older sisters picked cotton. She often went without shoes. Because the family saved money on electricity, the only radio shows Miss Page heard as a child were Grand Old OpryThe Eddie Cantor Show and Chicago Barn Dance.”

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Mr. Piano Man by Annette

#1340: Mr. Piano Man by Annette

Peak Month: October 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Mr. Piano Man

Annette’s solo music career began in 1958 while her serial Annette, was airing on The Mickey Mouse Club. During a hayride scene in one of the episodes, Annette sang what was meant to be a hokey ballad called “How Will I Know My Love”, complete with juice harp and miniature accordion. As a result of Annette’s rendition her friend Laura apologizes for being previously critical of the song.

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You Must Belong To Me by Bobby Curtola

#1342: You Must Belong To Me by Bobby Curtola

Peak Month: May 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #16
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “You Must Belong To Me

Bobby Curtola was born in Port Arthur, Ontario, in 1943. (The town would become amalgamated into the city of Thunder Bay in 1970). His cousin Susan Andrusco remembers “”Bobby would always be singing at our family gatherings. The family loved him. And he loved being the centre of attention. He would sing Oh My Papa, and my grandpa would cry.” Oh My Papa was a number-one hit for Eddie Fisher in January 1954, when Bobby Curtola was still ten-years-old. In the fall of 1959, sixteen-year-old high school student Bobby Curtola went from pumping gas at his father’s garage in Thunder Bay, Ontario, to the life of a teen idol. Within a year he went from playing in his basement band “Bobby and the Bobcats” to recording his first hit single in 1960, “Hand In Hand With You”, which charted in Ontario, but not in Vancouver. After performing on the Bob Hope Show in 1960, the charismatic teenager, with his handsome boy-next-door looks was quickly finding himself within a whirlwind called “Curtolamania.”

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Teenager's Dream by Les Vogt

#1348: Teenager’s Dream by Les Vogt

Peak Month March 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #12
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Teenager’s Dream

Les Vogt was the lead singer for the premier local rock n’ roll band in Vancouver called The Prowlers. As described in his bio, he writes “I was a tall, shy kid that became interested in music at the age of 13 when my older brother (Ed) took me to a few “live” concerts… Louis Armstrong and Wilf Carter were the most memorable. After seeing a Wilf Carter concert in 1951, I took my older brother’s hand-me-down guitar and learned to play and yodel in the confines of my bedroom.” At the time, Vogt was a Grade Eight student at John Oliver High School. By 1953, Vogt became part of the Fraserview Drifters, along with his friend Larry Tillyer (guitar), Laurie Bader (drums), Eric Olsen (accordion) and for awhile Wayne Dinwoodie (fiddle). As country music was the only alternate to the big band sound, the Fraserview Drifters played covers of Eddy Arnold, Hank Thompson, Marty Robbins, Guy Mitchell, Frankie Laine and others. By 1954, the set shifted to covers of “Sh-Boom” by the Crew Cuts, “Three Coins In The Fountain” by the Four Lads, and other pop tunes. By 1956, a guitar player from Nova Scotia, Fred Bennett, had moved to Vancouver. And he joined the band.

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Comfy 'N Cozy by Conway Twitty

#1350: Comfy ‘N Cozy by Conway Twitty

Peak Month: May 1962
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Peak Position on Music Vendor ~ #120
YouTube.com: “Comfy ‘N Cozy
Lyrics: “Comfy N Cozy

Conway Twitty was an American Country and Western singer with three crossover pop hits on the US charts and five crossover hits on the pop charts in Vancouver. He went on to chart 58 songs in the Canadian Country charts between 1968 and 1990 (61 songs on US Country & Western charts). Born Harold Lloyd Jenkins, in 1957 he decided his real name didn’t have the right stuff for the music business and becoming a star. He looked on a map and finding Conway, Arkansas and Twitty, Texas, he put the two towns names together and became Conway Twitty. From his initial #1 hit in 1958, “It’s Only Make Believe,” 25 year old Conway Twitty became known for his blend of country, rockabilly and rock n’ roll.
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I've Been Everywhere by Hank Snow

#1395: I’ve Been Everywhere by Hank Snow

Peak Month October 1962
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 #68
YouTube.com: “I’ve Been Everywhere
Lyrics: “I’ve Been Everywhere”

Clarence Eugene “Hank” Snow was born in the small community of Brooklyn, Nova Scotia, on May 9, 1914. He was the fifth of six children, the two eldest died in infancy. His nickname growing up in his family was Jack. At age 12 he weighed only 80 pounds and was frail. It was at this time that his mother ordered a Hawaiian steel guitar advertised in a magazine along with free lessons and several 78rpm gramophone records .

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