27 December 1968


Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 8 Jesamine  – Casuals
2 3 5 Eloise  – Barry Ryan
3 2 8 My Little Lady  – Tremeloes
4 5 5 You Can Cry If You Want To  – Troggs
5 8 6 Bang-Shang-a-Lang  – Archies
6 7 3 Only One Woman  – Marbles
7 4 14 My Special Prayer  – Percy Sledge
8 18 2 Lily the Pink  – Scaffold
9 6 10 Your Time Hasn’t Come Yet, Baby  – Elvis Presley
10 9 12 Little Arrows  – Leapy Lee
11 10 10 The Red Balloon  – Dave Clark Five
12 16 3 Vin Rosé  – Stu Phillips
13 11 4 Listen to Me  – Hollies
14 13 4 On the Road Again  – Canned Heat
15 20 2 Elenore  – Turtles
16 New 1 Soul Coaxing  – Sounds Orchestral
17 12 12 I’ve Gotta Get a Message to You  – Bee Gees
18 New 1 Midnight Confessions  – Grass Roots
19 New 1 A Minute of Your Time  – Tom Jones
20 New 1 Not Enough Indians  – Dean Martin

And so we reach the end of 1968 and The Casuals’ ‘Jesamine’ held on to the top spot to spend a 2nd week there and be our final number 1 of the year. It held out against pressure from Barry Ryan’s ‘Eloise’ which climbed 1 more place to sit at 2.

‘Lily The Pink’ became the 26th song to climb 10 or more places in a week as it moved up from 18 to 8. This meant we saw the first occasion where were had a song climb 10 or more in 3 consecutive weeks. Acts from the UK sneaked ahead of those from the US for number of times with a 10 or more place climb as there had been 11 from the Brits and 10 from the Yanks now.

The Turtles’ ‘Elenore’ moved up 5 to 15 and Stu Phillips’ ‘Vin Rosé’ climbed 4 from 16 to 12 to be the other star raters this week.

The Bee Gees picked up their 6th biggest faller award as ‘I’ve Gotta Get A Message To You’ fell 6 places from 11 to 17. Of their biggest fallers so far, only ‘New York Mining Disaster 1941’ had managed it twice.

Percy Sledge’s ‘My Special Prayer’ continued on as the oldest on the charts as it ticked over to 14 weeks. This was the 130th week where we had seen a US act have the oldest on the charts and this took the Americans 1 week ahead of the UK acts for having the oldest.

The Cowsills’ ‘Indian Lake’ fell off the charts after a 12 week run in the top 20. It peaked at 4 during that time. This would not be the last we saw of the band.

Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich on the other hand were at the end of the SA Chart career as ‘The Wreck of the Antoinette’ failed to fire our imaginations and left the chart after just 2 weeks and a peak of 17, their worst performance of the 6 hits they managed to have with us. They spent 46 weeks in total on our charts with 2 of those being at number 1 with ‘Bend It’, their only chart topper. They sat 20th on the weeks count list.

We did not have a great Love Affair with ‘A Day Without Love’ as the song left us after just 2 weeks and a peak 15. This was a far worse performance than Love Affair’s other hit to date, ‘Everlasting Love’, which went to 9 during a 6 week run. The break up with Love Affair was just a trial separation as they would move back into our charts at a later date.

Last of the leavers this week was The Kinks’ ‘Days’ which gave us our 3rd equal weeks and peak hit in 7 weeks and 15th to date, as it climbed to number 8 in its 8 weeks with us. This made 8 the most popular for having as an equal week and peak as we had seen 4 songs manage this while there were 3 that had had 7 and another 3 that had had 9 as their weeks and peak figure. The Kinks still had some hits to come.

As the group’s name suggested, Sounds Orchestral brought us another instrumental hit in ‘Soul Coaxing’ which brought the vocal-less hits count up to 15. The piece, written by Frenchman Michael Polnareff, was originally called ‘Ame Câline’, and had lyrics, but a number of artists have recorded instrumental versions including The Raymond Lefévre Orchestra and Norrie Paramor (who produced ‘Lily The Pink’ by Scaffold which sat at number 8 on our charts this week). Sounds Orchestral’s version would not make the charts in either the UK or the US, but they did have a big hit on both sides of the Atlantic with ‘Cast Your Fate To The Wind’.

The Grass Roots 3rd hit, ‘Midnight Confessions’ was our second new entry this week. It would be their 6th US Hot 100 hit and their second to go top 10 there as it peaked at 5. It was produced by Steve Barri who had had song writer credits on a number of other SA chart hits, including songs by The Fantastic Baggys, Herman’s Hermits and The Grass Roots’ first SA chart hit ‘Where Were You When I Needed You’.

Any thoughts of keeping up with the (Tom) Jones(es) were thwarted this week as he moved on to 11 hits and went 2 ahead of second placed Petula Clark and The Hollies. His new one, ‘A Minute Of Your Time’ would also start his weeks count and points tally moving again and he already topped both those lists. He was also top of the number of number 1’s list and unsurprisingly also led the way for weeks spent at 1. ‘A Minute Of Your Time’ was Jones’ 15th UK hit which peaked at 14 there and ended his run of 7 straight top 10 hits. In the US it was his 16th hit, but did not fare too well, peaking at 48 there. Elsewhere it would make 2 in Belgium, 8 in Austria, 9 in Germany and Switzerland and 11 in Rhodesia.

The final new entry broke the record to date for gaps between hits as it had been 155 weeks since we last saw Dean Martin on the charts when ‘Houston’ spent its last week in the top 20 on 5 November 1965. This broke Jackie Trent’s 152 week gap record. Martin’s new one would be his second last US hit and would peak at 43 there. It wouldn’t chart in the UK.

The Hollies reached the 70 weeks in the chart milestone and moved into 6th place on their own on the weeks count list, shaking off Engelbert Humperdicnk who they had shared the spot with last week. The big news on that list was that we now had a new number 2 as The Troggs pulled 1 clear of The Rolling Stones as they ticked on to 92 weeks. This was the first time since the start of the charts that The Stones were not in the top 2 of this list.

There were 5 acts on this, the last chart of the year who also been on the first chart of 1968 and they were The Bee Gees, The Dave Clark Five, Tom Jones, The Tremeloes and The Troggs. The last 2 years had only seen 4 acts feature on the first and last charts of the year. There were 5 on the very first chart about halfway through 1965 that were also on the last chart of that year.

We were also experiencing our 2nd week with no women and no local hits on the top 20.

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