Posts Tagged ‘Freda Payne’

We’re Back In 1970 Again

Friday, May 28th, 2010

This morning, I thought I’d sneak a look at the Billboard Hot 100 from this week in 1970 and see what might be found there. I was finishing my junior year of high school and was heading into my last year of summer freedom. The only remunerative work I would do that summer would be the four days I spent in the trap pits at the state trapshoot; in 1970, I would get sixty dollars for four days of dirty, somewhat dangerous work at the gun club.

Other than that, and the normal run of backyard chores, the summer was mine. I don’t recall that I had any special plans for it, just a lot of hanging around on the front porch and in the basement rec room. And looking back, I don’t recall that all that much happened.

But whatever did happen, music was no doubt a large part it. Here’s the Top Ten from May 30, 1970:

“Everything Is Beautiful” by Ray Stevens
“American Woman/No Sugar Tonight” by the Guess Who
“Love On A Two-Way Street” by the Moments
“Cecelia” by Simon & Garfunkel
“Up Around The Bend/Run Through The Jungle” by Creedence Clearwater Revival
“Which Way You Goin’ Billy” by the Poppy Family Featuring Susan Jacks
“The Letter” by Joe Cocker
“Turn Back The Hands Of Time” by Tyrone Davis
“Vehicle” by the Ides of March
“Let It Be” by the Beatles

Well, nothing there is truly awful except maybe “Which Way You Goin’ Billy,” although even after forty years, I am still weary of “Everything Is Beautiful.” The one record from that list that could likely use some more airplay is the Moments’ gorgeous “Love On A Two-Way Street.”

Oddly, I do not have that recording on either vinyl, CD or mp3, so I will have to assume that the video below includes the LP version. The record was the first of three hits for the Moments, and it was by far the most successful, peaking at No. 3 in the Top 40 and spending five weeks at the top of the R&B chart.

A little further down the list, at No. 37, we find a sad tale of a new marriage quickly gone bad. This was the first of fifteen weeks that Freda Payne’s “Band of Gold” would be in the Top 40, and it would peak at No. 3. (Through one of those bits of luck that sometimes happen, my copy of LP, Band of Gold, is autographed. I bought it at a garage sale from one of a quartet of sisters who had seen Payne perform in later years and had brought along the LP. The LP also includes “Deeper and Deeper,” which went to No. 24 in the autumn of 1970.)

The next title that caught my eye was “So Much Love” by a group called Faith, Hope & Charity, a Tampa trio whose tale is told here. “So Much Love” was at No. 70 in the last week of May. It went to No. 14 on the R&B chart and – to my ears – should have done much better than No. 51 on the Hot 100, which is where it spent the second and third weeks of July before falling back down the Hot 100.

And finally this morning, here’s a record I once quoted but I don’t think I ever posted it: “Freedom Blues” by Little Richard. It was part of the work he did for Reprise in the early 1970s: three released albums and one put on the shelves. The record peaked at No. 47 during the week of July 11, 1970, and two weeks later it was gone from the Hot 100. “Freedom Blues” did a little better on the R&B chart, peaking at No. 28.

See you tomorrow!