Right Down The Line by Gerry Rafferty

#4: Right Down The Line by Gerry Rafferty

Peak Month: November-December 1978
Peak Position #1
22 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #12
YouTube.com: “Right Down The Line
Lyrics: “Right Down The Line

Gerry Rafferty was born in Paisley, Scotland, in 1947. From the age of 17 he got work variously in a butcher’s shop, as a civil service clerk, and in a shoe shop. Once Beatlemania took hold, he formed a band called the Maverixs, who were a cover band singing songs by the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. In the mid 1960s Rafferty earned money as a busker on the London Underground. In 1966, Rafferty joined the band The Fifth Column. The group released the single “Benjamin Day”/”There’s Nobody Here”. However it was a commercial flop. In 1969 he joined the folk group the Humblebums, and remained with them, performing at numbers of folk festivals into 1971.

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Ebony Eyes by Bob Welch

#14: Ebony Eyes by Bob Welch

Peak Month: April-May 1978
Peak Position #1
16 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #14
YouTube.com: “Ebony Eyes
Lyrics: “Ebony Eyes

Robert Lawrence Welch Jr. was born in Hollywood, California, in 1945. His father was a producer and screenwriter who produced the 25th Academy Awards in 1953. His mother, Templeton Fox, was an actress who worked with Orson Welles Mercury Theatre in Chicago. Welch learned to play the clarinet during his childhood, and picked up guitar in his teens. From 1964 o 1969, Welch was part of an L.A. band called The Seven Souls. From 1969 to 1971, he headed up a band in Paris, France, named Head West. In 1971, he joined Fleetwood Mac. After touring and contributing to five Fleetwood Mac studio albums, Welch left the band in December 1974. He formed a band called Paris, which released two albums. When that band dissolved later in 1976, Bob Welch went solo.

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Mull Of Kintyre by Wings

#66: Mull Of Kintyre by Wings

A-side: “Mull Of Kintyre”
Peak Month: January 1978
14 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG Chart
Peak Position #1
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Mull Of Kintyre
Lyrics: “Mull Of Kintyre

B-side: “Girl’s School”
Peak Month: January 1978
14 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #33
YouTube.com: “Girl’s School
Lyrics: “Girl’s School

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

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She's Always A Woman by Billy Joel

#68: She’s Always A Woman by Billy Joel

Peak Month: November 1978
17 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #17
YouTube.com: “She’s Always A Woman
Lyrics: “She’s Always A Woman

William Martin Joel was born in 1949 in The Bronx. His father, Helmut “Howard” Joel, was born in Nuremberg, Germany, and sold his textile business at a fraction of its value to be able to move to Switzerland. From there his father traveled to Cuba and was able to enter the United States from the Caribbean. Billy Joel’s mother, Rosalind Nyman, was born in Brooklyn, also to Jewish parents. Young William was coerced by his mother to take piano lessons at the age of four. He kept taking piano lessons until he was sixteen. His parents divorced when he was eight, and in his later years in high school Billy Joel played at a piano bar to make some extra income to support his single mother, his sister and himself. Though his parents were Jewish, Billy Joel did not identify as Jewish and began to attend a Roman Catholic parish at age eleven.

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Here Comes The Night by Nick Gilder

#84: Here Comes The Night by Nick Gilder

Peak Month: December 1978
18 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN Survey
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #44
YouTube.com: “Here Comes The Night
Lyrics: “Here Comes The Night

In 1951 Nick Gilder was born in London, England. In his childhood he moved to Canada and grew up in Vancouver. In the summer of 1973, when he was 22 years old, vocalist Gilder and fellow former high school classmate and guitarist, Jim McCulloch, founded a band called Rasputin. John Booth on drums, Bud Marr on bass and Dan Gaudin on keyboards rounded our the band. Shortly afterward they took the name Sweeney Todd. Their name was inspired by the 1846-47 Victorian penny dreadful The String of Pearls: A Domestic Romance credited to James Malcolm Rymer and Thomas Peckett Prest. The main antagonist of the story is Sweeney Todd, “the Demon Barber of Fleet Street”. Todd is a barber who murders his customers and turns their bodies over to Mrs. Lovett, his partner in crime, who bakes their flesh into meat pies and sells them at her pie shop. A Sweeney Todd stage play by Stephen Sondheim appeared on Broadway in 1979.

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Sweet Talking Woman by Electric Light Orchestra

#147: Sweet Talking Woman by Electric Light Orchestra

Peak Month: April 1978
15 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #17
YouTube: “Sweet Talking Woman
Lyrics: “Sweet Talking Woman

Jeffrey Lynne was born in suburban Birmingham, England in 1947. His dad bought him a guitar when he turned twelve. In 1966 he formed a band that by 1968 called themselves the Idle Race. He left for another band by the end of the 60s named The Move. The latter development was a catalyst for working on a musical project combining rock with orchestration. Beverley “Bev” Bevan was born in Birmingham, UK, in 1944. He learned to play drums and in 1956 he joined a rock band named Denny Laine & the Diplomats. In 1965 he moved on to join Carl Wayne & the Vikings, and in 1966 The Move. Bevan went through the transition from the Move to Electric Light Orchestra with Jeff Lynne. By the end of 1970 the Electric Light Orchestra was born.

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Round Round We Go by Trooper

#153: Round Round We Go by Trooper

Peak Month: November 1978
17 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Round Round We Go
Lyrics: “Round Round We Go

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

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Hot Legs by Rod Stewart

#161: Hot Legs by Rod Stewart

Peak Month: April 1978
14 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #28
YouTube: “Hot Legs
Lyrics: “Hot Legs

Roderick David Stewart was born in London, England, in 1945. In 1956 he got introduced to rock ‘n roll when he saw Bill Haley and His Comets in concert, and heard Little Richard’s “The Girl Can’t Help It”. He was given a guitar by his dad in 1959, and he learned to play the Kingston Trio’s “A Worried Man”. He quit school at age 15 and worked as a newspaper boy. He auditioned with Joe Meek in 1961, but didn’t get a record deal. By 1963 he was part of an R&B band called The Dimensions. In 1965 he teamed up with Long John Baldry, Julie Driscoll and Brian Auger to form a blues band called Steampacket. This lasted another year. Eventually, Stewart became part of the Jeff Beck Group in 1967. When that band broke up in the fall of ’68, Rod Stewart got invited to join the reformed Small Faces, who were now just called Faces.

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Only The Good Die Young by Billy Joel

#164: Only The Good Die Young by Billy Joel

Peak Month: July 1978
14 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #24
YouTube: “Only The Good Die Young
Lyrics: “Only The Good Die Young

William Martin Joel was born in 1949 in The Bronx. His father, Helmut “Howard” Joel, was born in Nuremberg, Germany, and sold his textile business at a fraction of its value to be able to move to Switzerland. From there his father traveled to Cuba and was able to enter the United States from the Caribbean. Billy Joel’s mother, Rosalind Nyman, was born in Brooklyn, also to Jewish parents. Young William was coerced by his mother to take piano lessons at the age of four. He kept taking piano lessons until he was sixteen. His parents divorced when he was eight, and in his later years in high school Billy Joel played at a piano bar to make some extra income to support his single mother, his sister and himself. Though his parents were Jewish, Billy Joel did not identify as Jewish and began to attend a Roman Catholic parish at age eleven.

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Substitute by Clout

#197: Substitute by Clout

Peak Month: November 1978
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #2
1 week Playlist
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #67
YouTube: “Substitute
Lyrics: “Substitute

Clout was a rock band from South Africa. It was comprised of lead vocalist and guitar player Cindy Alter, who was born in Johannesburg, South Africa (1977–1981), bass player and backing vocalist Ilene “Lee” Tomlinson (1977–1980), backing vocalist and drummer Ingrid “Ingi” Herbst (1977–1981), guitar player and backing vocalist Jenni Garson (1977–1981), keyboard player and backing vocalist Ron “Bones” Brettell (1978–1981), and  guitar player and backing vocalist Sandy Robbie (1978–1981).

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Arms Of Mary by Chilliwack

#202: Arms Of Mary by Chilliwack

Peak Month: August 1978
15 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #6
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Arms Of Mary
Lyrics: “Arms Of Mary

Bill Henderson was born in Vancouver in 1944. He learned guitar and became the guitarist for the Panarama Trio that performed at the Panarama Roof dance club on the 15th Floor of the Hotel Vancouver. He formed the psychedelic pop-rock Vancouver band, The Collectors, in 1966.

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Mama Let Him Play by Doucette

#216: Mama Let Him Play by Doucette

Peak Month: June 1978
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG Chart
Peak Position #7
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube: “Mama Let Him Play
Lyrics: “Mama Let Him Play

In 1952 Jerry Doucette was born in Montreal into a musical family. At the age of four his family moved to Hamilton, Ontario. At the age of six got his first guitar. When he was eight he began to take guitar lessons. When he was eleven he joined a band called the Reefers. When he turned 16 he moved to Toronto and was a member of a number of bands including Brutus. He moved to Vancouver in 1972 and  played with the Alexis Radlin Band. Soon after he joined the Seeds of Time who were searching for a guitarist. In 1974 they changed their name to the Rocket Norton Band. Doucette remained with this band until he decided to go solo in 1977, after Mushroom Records expressed support for such a move.

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More Than A Woman by the Bee Gees

#220: More Than A Woman by the Bee Gees

Peak Month: May 1978
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG Chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart ~ LP cut
YouTube: “More Than A Woman
Lyrics: “More Than A Woman

Barry Alan Crompton Gibb was born in 1946 on the Isle of Man. Maurice Ernest Gibb and Robin Hugh Gibb were twins born on December 22, 1949, also on the Isle of Man. In 1955 Barry, who had learned to play guitar, convinced his younger twin brothers to form a skiffle band as vocalists, that he named The Rattlesnakes. Barry also got his young neighbors, Paul Frost (drums) and Kenny Horrocks (bass) to join. The Rattlesnakes played songs by Tommy Steele, Elvis Presley, Cliff Richard, Paul Anka, Buddy Holly and the Everly Brothers. In 1958, during a performance the Gibb brothers sang as a trio for the first time, performing the Chordettes Top Ten hit “Lollipop”. But The Rattlesnakes had to disband in the summer of ’58 when Gibbs parents announced that the family was moving to Australia.

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Werewolves Of London by Warren Zevon

#228: Werewolves Of London by Warren Zevon

Peak Month: June 1978
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #21
YouTube: “Werewolves Of London
Lyrics: “Werewolves Of London

Warren Zevon was born in Chicago in 1947. His father, William Zivotovsky, was a Jewish immigrant from Russia. Once in America, the surname was changed from Zitovsky to Zevon. William Zevon worked as a bookie who handled volume bets and dice games for the notorious Los Angeles mobster Mickey Cohen. He worked for years in the Cohen crime family, in which he was known as Stumpy Zevon, and was best man at Cohen’s first wedding. Young Warren Zevon studied classical music from age 13 with Igor Stravinsky, from time to time. But when his parents divorced when he was 16-years-old, Warren moved to Los Angeles and became a folk singer. In 1965 he formed a folk duo named Lyme (his mother’s maiden surname) & Cybelle. The single “Follow Me” became a Top Ten hit in San Jose and San Bernardino (CA), as well as climbing to #11 in Los Angeles.
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I Was Only Joking by Rod Stewart

#231: I Was Only Joking by Rod Stewart

Peak Month: July 1978
13 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #22
YouTube: “I Was Only Joking
Lyrics: “I Was Only Joking

Roderick David Stewart was born in London, England, in 1945. In 1956 he got introduced to rock ‘n roll when he saw Bill Haley and His Comets in concert, and heard Little Richard’s “The Girl Can’t Help It”. He was given a guitar by his dad in 1959, and he learned to play the Kingston Trio’s “A Worried Man”. He quit school at age 15 and worked as a newspaper boy. He auditioned with Joe Meek in 1961, but didn’t get a record deal. By 1963 he was part of an R&B band called The Dimensions. In 1965 he teamed up with Long John Baldry, Julie Driscoll and Brian Auger to form a blues band called Steampacket. This lasted another year. Eventually, Stewart became part of the Jeff Beck Group in 1967. When that band broke up in the fall of ’68, Rod Stewart got invited to join the reformed Small Faces, who were now just called Faces.

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Turn To Stone by the Electric Light Orchestra

#258: Turn To Stone by the Electric Light Orchestra

Peak Month: January 1978
11 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #2
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #13
Billboard 1978 Year-End #94
YouTube.com: “Turn To Stone
Lyrics: “Turn To Stone

Jeffrey Lynne was born in suburban Birmingham, England in 1947. His dad bought him a guitar when he turned twelve. In 1966 he formed a band that by 1968 called themselves the Idle Race. He left for another band by the end of the 60s named The Move. The latter development was a catalyst for working on a musical project combining rock with orchestration. Beverley “Bev” Bevan was born in Birmingham, UK, in 1944. He learned to play drums and in 1956 he joined a rock band named Denny Laine & the Diplomats. In 1965 he moved on to join Carl Wayne & the Vikings, and in 1966 The Move. Bevan went through the transition from the Move to Electric Light Orchestra with Jeff Lynne. By the end of 1970 the Electric Light Orchestra was born.

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(Boogie Woogie) Dancin' Shoes by Claudia Barry

#276: (Boogie Woogie) Dancin’ Shoes by Claudia Barry

Peak Month: December 1978
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
1 week Playlist
Peak Position #3
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #56
YouTube: “(Boogie Woogie) Dancin’ Shoes
Lyrics: “(Boogie Woogie) Dancin’ Shoes

Claudja Barry was born in Jamaica in 1952. At the age of six, Barry and her family emigrated from to Canada and settled in Scarborough, Ontario. From an early age she was inspired by the music of Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra and Nat “King” Cole. In her mid-teens she began to take vocal lessons and started dancing. In an interview on Extraordinary Women TV in 2013, Barry relates that after graduation from high school, she travelled to Europe to study classical voice. It was there that she got cast in the musical Hair. Subsequently, she was cast in in a  production of Catch My Soul which toured Europe in 1974-75. The rock musical is an adaption of Shakespeare’s Othello. In the spring of ’75 she ended up in West Germany. That same year she signed with Hot Foot label and released a single called “Reggae Bump”. In 1976 she released her debut album Sweet Dynamite.

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Josie by Steely Dan

#347: Josie by Steely Dan

Peak Month: December 1978
14 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Chart
Peak Position ~ #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #26
YouTube: “Josie
Lyrics: “Josie

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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Raise A Little Hell by Trooper

#544: Raise A Little Hell by Trooper

Peak Month: September 1978
12 weeks on CFUN’s Vancouver Charts
Peak Position ~ #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #59
YouTube.com: “Raise A Little Hell
Lyrics: “Raise A Little Hell”

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

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Pretty Girls by Lisa Dal Bello

#1373: Pretty Girls by Lisa Dal Bello

Peak Month: October 1978
5 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #17
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Pretty Girls
Lyrics: “Pretty Girls”

In 1959 Lisa Dal Bello was born in Weston, Ontario, a suburb of Toronto. At age 11, she taught herself to play the guitar and started writing her own songs. And she also started to perform at the Mariposa Folk Festival and the Fiddlers’ Green club in Toronto. The first song she wrote was a protest song called “Oh, Why?” In 1971 she got a summer job touring as part of a 35-member musical troupe sponsored by the Ontario Provincial Government. However, as she was only 13, she had to fib about her age to get hired for Summer Sounds ’71. The following year Lisa Dal Bello met singer-songwriter Ian Thomas at an audition. This led to her recording three songs she’d written for the CBC. The other person at the audition,  Jack Budgell got Lisa connected with jingle producer Tommy Ambrose. She also was introduced to numerous producers and got to be a back-up singer on studio recording sessions.

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One Night With You by Gino Vanelli

#1351: One Night With You by Gino Vanelli

Peak Month: March 1978
7 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #18
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “One Night With You
Lyrics: “One Night With You”

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 Vanelli 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 Vanelli 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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All I Wanna Do by Doucette

#1144: All I Wanna Do by Doucette

Peak Month: October 1978
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “All I Wanna Do
Lyrics: “All I Wanna Do”

In 1952 Jerry Doucette was born in Montreal into a musical family. At the age of four his family moved to Hamilton, Ontario. At the age of six got his first guitar. When he was eight he began to take guitar lessons. When he was eleven he joined a band called the Reefers. When he turned 16 he moved to Toronto and was a member of a number of bands including Brutus. He moved to Vancouver in 1972 and  played with the Alexis Radlin Band. Soon after he joined the Seeds of Time who were searching for a guitarist. In 1974 they changed their name to the Rocket Norton Band. Doucette remained with this band until he decided to go solo in 1977, after Mushroom Records expressed support for such a move.

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Never Be The Same by Chilliwack

#955: Never Be The Same by Chilliwack

Peak Month: December 1978
12 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position: #19
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com link: “Never Be The Same
Lyrics: “Never Be The Same”

Bill Henderson was born in Vancouver in 1944. He learned guitar and became the guitarist for the Panarama Trio that performed at the Panarama Roof dance club on the 15th Floor of the Hotel Vancouver. He formed the psychedelic pop-rock Vancouver band, The Collectors, in 1966. After a half dozen local hits including “Fisherwoman” and “Lydia Purple” the Collectors name was ditched in 1970. Henderson (vocals, guitar), Claire Lawrence (saxophone, keyboards), Ross Turney (drums) and Glenn Miller (bass) were all Collectors bandmates. After Howie Vickers left The Collectors, they changed their name to Chilliwack. The name was a Salish First Nations name that means “going back up” and is the name of a city in the Fraser Valley in British Columbia.
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Break It To Them Gently by Burton Cummings

#825: Break It To Them Gently by Burton Cummings

Peak Month: September 1978
10 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position ~ #10
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #85
YouTube.com link: “Break Hit To Them Gently
Lyrics: “Break It To Them Gently”

Burton Cummings is the former lead singer and keyboardist for the Winnipeg, Manitoba, based rock ‘n roll band The Guess Who. He was with the band from 1965 to 1975. Cummings sang, wrote or co-wrote many hit songs. These include “American Woman”, “Clap For The Wolfman”, “Hand Me Down World”, “Laughing”, “No Time”, “Share The Land”, “Star Baby” and “These Eyes”. His solo career includes many hit singles, including “I’m Scared”, “My Own Way To Rock” and “Fine State Of Affairs”. His first solo hit single was “Stand Tall”, in 1976, which was his biggest hit as a solo recording artist.Continue reading →

Your Back Yard by Burton Cummings

#951: Your Back Yard by Burton Cummings

Peak Month: January 1978
10 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Your Back Yard
Lyrics: “Your Back Yard

Burton Cummings is the former lead singer and keyboardist for the Winnipeg, Manitoba, based rock ‘n roll band The Guess Who. He was with the band from 1965 to 1975. Cummings sang, wrote or co-wrote many hit songs. These include “American Woman,” “Clap For The Wolfman”, “Hand Me Down World”, “Laughing”, “No Time”, “Share The Land”, “Star Baby” and “These Eyes”. His solo career includes many hit singles, including “I’m Scared”, “My Own Way To Rock” and “Fine State Of Affairs”. His first solo hit single was “Stand Tall,” in 1976, which was his biggest hit as a solo recording artist.

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I Need Somebody Tonight by Fosterchild

#986: I Need Somebody Tonight by Fosterchild

Peak Month: March 1978
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #13
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “I Need Somebody Tonight

James Edwin Foster was born in Victoria, Canada, in 1950. His family moved to Edmonton and then Calgary. There he met Vern Willis around 1970 and they played in a few bands and learned the ropes of performing in concert. Willis moved on to New York City while Jim Foster formed a quartet named Fosterchild where they were a regular band at Calgary’s the Scotch and Sirloin. The band went to Edmonton and recorded a demo of a song  Jim Foster wrote called “Let Me Down Easy.” On the strength of that demo the band got a record deal with CBS Records. However, CBS was unimpressed with the other three musicians in Fosterchild and got session musicians to work on the single release. Consequently, Jim Foster had a new record out to the general public but no intact Fosterchild band. It was 1976 and Vern Wills had come back to Calgary since his US visa had expired. Jim Foster recalls, “So I called Vern who was living in Edmonton. He said he’d just heard me on the radio. I said ” You wanna join forces?” and that was it. He’d always been one of my faves. Then we had to find more players and get an album together.”

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I Will Play A Rhapsody by Burton Cummings

#556: I Will Play A Rhapsody by Burton Cummings

Peak Month: December 1978
15 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “I Will Play A Rhapsody
Lyrics: “I Will Play A Rhapsody”

Burton Cummings is the former lead singer and keyboardist for the Winnipeg, Manitoba, based rock ‘n roll band The Guess Who. He was with the band from 1965 to 1975. Cummings sang, wrote or co-wrote many hit songs. These include “American Woman”, “Clap For The Wolfman”, “Hand Me Down World”, “Laughing”, “No Time”, “Share The Land”, “Star Baby” and “These Eyes”. His solo career includes many hit singles, including “I’m Scared”, “My Own Way To Rock” and “Fine State Of Affairs”. His first solo hit single was “Stand Tall” in 1976, which was his biggest hit as a solo recording artist.

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Come Right Down On Top Of Me by April Wine

#1046: Come Right Down On Top Of Me by April Wine

Peak Month: July 1978
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Come Right Down On Top Of Me
Lyrics: “Come Right Down On Top Of Me

April Wine is a Canadian rock band that has released 34 singles, 16 studio albums and 9 live albums. They formed in Waverly, Nova Scotia, in 1969. The founding members were brothers David Henman (guitar) and Ritchie Henman (drums) and Myles Goodwyn (lead vocals, guitar). The Henman brothers cousin Jim Henman was also part of the band, but was replaced by bass player Jim Clench in 1971, a year after the band moved to Montreal. They had a Top Ten hit nationally in Canada in 1972 with “You Could Have Been A Lady”.

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All I See is Your Face by Dan Hill

#1071: All I See is Your Face by Dan Hill

Peak Month: October 1978
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “All I See Is Your Face
Lyrics: “All I See Is Your Face”

Daniel Grafton Hill IV was born in 1954 in Toronto. He father, Daniel Hill, was s social scientist. Hill’s parents moved to Canada before he was born to live in a less racially charged setting where their interracial marriage would not be met with intolerance. Hill would later write about his parents exit from the USA in his song “McCarthy’s Day.” While young Dan was in his teens he learned the guitar and started to compose songs. When he was just 18 years old he got a songwriting contract with RCA Records. In 1975 Hill released his first album, but it would be his third album, Longer Fuse, that got the attention of deejays and record buyers. His #1 hit single from the album, “Sometimes When We Touch“, was co-written with Barry Mann, of Manhattan’s Brill Building’s songwriting fame. With the song came multiple Junos Awards: Composer, Male Vocalist, and Single of the Year. Hill also was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1978 for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, losing out to Barry Manilow’s “Copacabana“.

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Is The Night Too Cold For Dancing by Randy Bachman

#1086: Is The Night Too Cold For Dancing by Randy Bachman

Peak Month: July 1978
9 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Is The Night Too Cold For Dancing’?

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

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Oh Pretty Lady by Trooper

#1092: Oh Pretty Lady by Trooper

Peak Month: March 1978
8 weeks on CKLG chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Oh Pretty Lady
Lyrics: “Oh Pretty Lady

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

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Let the Song Last Forever by Dan Hill

#1143: Let the Song Last Forever by Dan Hill

Peak Month: July 1978
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ #91
YouTube.com: “Let The Song Last Forever
Lyrics: “Let The Song Last Forever

Daniel Grafton Hill IV was born in 1954 in Toronto. He father, Daniel Hill, was a social scientist. Hill’s parents moved to Canada before he was born to live in a less racially charged setting where their interracial marriage would not be met with intolerance. Hill would later write about his parents exit from the USA in his song “McCarthy’s Day.” While young Dan was in his teens he learned the guitar and started to compose songs. When he was just 18 years old he got a songwriting contract with RCA Records. In 1975 Hill released his first album, but it would be his third album, Longer Fuse, that got the attention of deejays and record buyers. His #1 hit single from the album, “Sometimes When We Touch“, was co-written with Barry Mann, of Manhattan’s Brill Building’s songwriting fame. With the song came multiple Junos Awards: Composer, Male Vocalist, and Single of the Year. Hill also was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1978 for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, losing out to Barry Manilow’s “Copacabana“.

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Daylight Katy by Gordon Lightfoot

#1155: Daylight Katy by Gordon Lightfoot

Peak Month: July 1978
7 weeks on CFUN chart
Peak Position #11
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Daylight Katy
Lyrics: “Daylight Katy”

Gordon Lightfoot was born in Orillia, Ontario, on November 17, 1938. His parents, Jessica and Gordon Lightfoot Sr., ran a dry cleaning business. His mother noticed young Gordon had some musical talent and the boy soprano first performed in grade four at his elementary school. He sang the Irish lullaby “Too Ra Loo Rah Loo Rah” at a parents’ day. As a member of the St. Paul’s United Church choir in Orillia, Lightfoot gained skill and needed confidence in his vocal abilities under the choir director, Ray Williams. Lightfoot went on to perform at Toronto’s Massey Hall at the age of twelve when he won a competition for boys who were still boy sopranos. During his teen years Gordon Lightfoot learned to play piano, drums and guitar.

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It's Over by Prism

#1165: It’s Over by Prism

Peak Month: May 1978
8 weeks on CFUN
Peak Position #15
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ no US chart
YouTube.com: “It’s Over
Lyrics: “It’s Over”

In 1967 a new rock group appeared on the Vancouver scene called the Seeds of Time. They had several local hits including “My Home Town” and “Crying The Blues”. There were a number of lineup changes, but the bands personnel included drummer Rocket Norton, guitarist Lindsay Mitchell, and bassist Al Harlow. These three reunited after the Seeds of Time disbanded in 1974. After a brief stint as an R&B band called Sunshyne, they became Prism under Lindsay Mitchell’s initiative. In the band were new singer Ron Tabak, bassist Tom Lavin (ex of Denise McCann), keyboardist John Hall, and drummer Rodney Higgs. Higgs was actually a pseudonym for Jim Vallance, the future songwriting partner of Bryan Adams. The band released a self-titled album in 1977 that included two local singles “Take Me To The Kaptin” and “It’s Over”.

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Take Me Away by Prism

#1189: Take Me Away by Prism

Peak Month: August 1978
8 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG chart
Peak Position #14
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Take Me Away
Lyrics: “Take Me Away”

In 1967 a new rock group appeared on the Vancouver scene called the Seeds of Time. They had several local hits including “My Home Town” and “Crying The Blues.” There were a number of lineup changes, but the bands personnel included drummer Rocket Norton, guitarist Lindsay Mitchell, and bassist Al Harlow. These three reunited after the Seeds of Time disbanded in 1974. After a brief stint as an R&B band called Sunshyne, they became Prism under Lindsay Mitchell’s initiative. In the band were new singer Ron Tabak, bassist Tom Lavin (ex of Denise McCann), keyboardist John Hall, and drummer Rodney Higgs. Higgs was actually a pseudonym for Jim Vallance, the future songwriting partner of Bryan Adams.  The band released a self-titled album in 1977 that included two local singles “Take Me To The Kaptin” and “It’s Over“.

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Rocky Mountain Way by Triumph

#1254: Rocky Mountain Way by Triumph

Peak Month: May 1978
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CFUN chart
Peak Position #17
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Rocky Mountain Way
Lyrics: “Rocky Mountain Way”

In 1975 three local Toronto rockers, guitarist Rik Emmett, drummer Gil Moore and bass and keyboard player Mike Levine decided to jam on a chance encounter at a club called the Hollywood Tavern on The Queensway in Toronto. They decided to form a band and started to perform in clubs in the local Toronto area. Moore and Emmett did the vocals for this hard rock trio. From their live performances they were able to secure a record deal with Attic Records.
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