Saturday Single No. 301

And so we come to Saturday Single No. 301 . . .

What do we know about No. 301? Well, in the United States, the area code 301 is one of those assigned to the state of Maryland in the suburban areas of Washington, D.C. It was, says Wikipedia, one of the original area codes established in 1947.

What else does Wikipedia say about No. 301?

“301 = 7 × 43. 301 is the sum of three consecutive primes (97 + 101 + 103), happy number in base 10, and [an] HTTP status code, indicating the content has been moved and the change is permanent (permanent redirect). It is also the number of a debated Turkish penal code.”

Happy number? That’s a mathematical property that’s interesting but complex enough that I’m not going to get into it. You can read about it here.

The year 301, according to Wikipedia, “was a common year starting on Wednesday . . . of the Julian calendar.” At the time, says Wikipedia, it was known as the “Year of the Consulship of Postumius and Nepotianus.” Less frequently, it was called “Year 1054 Ab urbe condita” (meaning Year 1054 since the founding of the city of Rome). The year has been called 301 “since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.”

What happened in Year 301? Details are pretty skimpy, but here are some highlights: Emperor Diocletian issued his “Edict on Maximum Prices.” The edict, “rather than halting rampant inflation and stabilizing the economy,” added to inflationary pressures by flooding the economy with new coinage and by setting price limits too low. And King Tiridates III of Armenia proclaimed Christianity to be the official state religion, making Armenia the first such Christian nation.

So where’s the music in all that? I suppose I could dig around for some Armenian chants or folk music. I do have such stuff from Bulgaria, as readers likely – to their possible dismay – remember. I have some Estonian or Latvian folk music (perhaps both) but nothing, as far as I know, from Armenia. It’s easier to grab some reference books.

Dave Marsh, in 1989, ranked “Bad Luck, Part 1” by Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes at No. 301 in his listing of the 1,001 greatest singles of all time, The Heart of Rock & Soul.

In The New Rolling Stone Album Guide, released in 2004, the first album listed on Page 301 is Requestfully Yours, a 1960 effort by the Flamingos, a great doo-wop group likely most famous for the classic 1959 hit, “I Only Have Eyes For You.” Among the tracks on the 1960 album is a cover of Sam Cooke’s “Nobody Loves Me Like You Do,” which went to No. 30 (No. 23 on the R&B chart) in the spring of that year.

In the 2005 volume 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die, Page 301 shows listings for Steely Dan’s Countdown to Ecstasy and Waylon Jennings’ Honky Tonk Heroes, both from 1973.

Entry No. 301 in Craig Rosen’s Billboard Book of No. 1 Albums is Patti LaBelle’s Winner in You from 1986. In the Billboard Book of No. 1 Hits by Fred Bronson, entry No. 301 is Cher’s 1973 single “Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves.” In the Billboard Book of No. 2 Hits – Christopher G. Feldman’s accounting of those singles that peaked at No. 2 – entry No. 301 is the Georgia Satellites’ “Keep Your Hands to Yourself” (blocked from No. 1 in February of 1987 by Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer”).

(I think that last entry is correct; I counted by hand through the Table of Contents, and if this were a project that required absolute precision, I’d count again to double-check. But this is a blog, so . . .)

Let’s look at some of Joel Whitburn’s books. The first single mentioned on Page 301 of The Billboard Book of Top 40 R&B & Hip-Hop Hits is “One Hundred Ways,” a No. 10 single (No. 14 pop) from 1982 credited to “Quincy Jones featuring James Ingram.” In Whitburn’s Top 40 Country Hits, the first single mentioned on Page 301 is Linda Ronstadt’s “Love is a Rose,” which went to No. 5 (No. 63 pop) in 1975. And the first single mentioned on Page 301 of Whitburn’s Top Pop Singles is “Dance, Dance, Dance,” an effort by R&B singer Tommy Duncan that bubbled under at No. 133 during the summer of 1964.

At this point, regular readers probably know where I’ll go. Given all the choices above, the pretty darned good “Dance, Dance, Dance” is Saturday Single No. 301.

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One Response to “Saturday Single No. 301”

  1. Yah Shure says:

    Duke 301: “Sweet Home Chicago” – Little Junior Parker
    Shelter 301: “Roll Away The Stone”/”Hummingbird” – Leon Russell

    and a bit of a stretch:

    Reprise 0301: “Softly, As I Leave You” – Frank Sinatra

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