One Hit Wonders of 1969, by Rich Paschall
While some songs often come Home To You and say I Wanna Be Your Dog, the artists behind them may have faded into Echo Park. That’s why we are going to have a Birthday party and welcome them back for Apricot Brandy and Bubble Gum Music.
Now if Cinnamon will just let us in, we are ready to blast off into the past. We will bring along Bella Linda, Big Bruce and the California Girl. What is The Worst That Could Happen? I suppose there will be the Games People Play, but we will Kick Out The Jams. Pay no attention to that Hot Smoke and Sasafrass, it just means the party is starting to heat up and There’s Something In The Air.
Don’t worry, I Gotta Line On You, babe, and see that you are ready to Get Together. We will play More Today Than Yesterday because Tracy, when I’m with you, we have all the 45’s we need. Everyone will join in for our Simple Song of Freedom, as well as my top ten one hit wonders of a most memorable year. I see you have waited patiently for some Good Old Rock ‘N Roll, and we will Get It From The Bottom:
10. In The Year 2525, Zagar and Evans. I really liked this song in ’69 and bought the 45. Now I find it a bit obnoxious and repetitious.
9. Take A Letter Maria, R.B. Greaves. This was recorded in August, released in September and sold a million copies by November.
8. Sugar on Sunday, Clique. The song is a cover of an earlier Tommy James and the Shondells’ song.
7. Poke Salad Annie, Tony Joe White. The artist wrote and performed the hit. He found little success recording, but wrote other hits including “Rainy Night in Georgia.”
6. Baby It’s You, Smith. No, it’s not The Smiths. That was a later group. This short lived band is fronted by Gayle McCormick.
5. Love (Can Make You Happy), Mercy. The song was recorded at Sundi and released, and later recorded again at Warner Brothers where the band actually signed. Sundi was sued and their album was no longer allowed distribution. Which version do you hear? You have to check the label, they sound alike.
4. More Today Than Yesterday, Spiral Staircase. The hit was written by lead singer Pat Upton. The group did not last much longer after this million seller.
3. Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye, Steam. We may not have known the song or the fictitious band in ’69, but everyone in Chicago came to know it in 1977 and following years. The White Sox started using the tune to play off opposing pitchers who were being replaced. That was a hit. The group on the album cover and in the old video is a road group that had nothing to do with the recording and is, in fact, lip syncing.
2. Gimme Gimme Good Lovin’, Crazy Elephant. This was another short-lived band that was mainly a studio creation. The song failed to chart when first released, but was re-released a couple of months later and climbed the charts to number 12 in the US.
1. Morning Girl, The Neon Philharmonic. This group was around a few years, then sold off the name. It achieved the big sound by using members of the Nashville Symphony Orchestra. There are bigger hits on this list, as this one only climbed to number 17, but it is one of the ones I remember best.
The lack of good performance videos is due to the fact that many of these groups were not around for very long. Click on any song title to go to a video. Click here for the entire playlist of one hit wonders.
See also, THIS MAGIC MOMENT, The Golden Age of Rock Turns 50, 1969, Serendipity.
Sources include: 1969 One Hit Wonders & Artists Known For One Song, https://hotpopsongs.com/