4 April 1969


Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 3 6 Dizzy  – Tommy Roe
2 1 7 Crimson & Clover  – Tommy James & The Shondells
3 4 5 What am I Living For  – Percy Sledge
4 2 6 Atlantis  – Donovan
5 5 5 Fox on the Run  – Manfred Mann
6 12 5 I Heard it Through the Grapevine  – Marvin Gaye
7 10 6 Touch Me  – Doors
8 6 7 I Started a Joke  – Bee Gees
9 7 11 Cry to Me  – Staccatos
10 17 2 Indian Giver  – 1910 Fruitgum Company
11 9 11 I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)  – Johnny Rivers
12 13 3 Monsieur DuPont  – Sandie Shaw
13 8 9 Something’s Happening  – Herman’s Hermits
14 14 5 I’ve Gotta be Me  – Sammy Davis Jnr
15 16 3 You Gave Me a Mountain  – Frankie Laine
16 18 2 Sorry Suzanne  – Hollies
17 11 7 The Way it Used to Be  – Engelbert Humperdinck
18 19 2 Chapel of Dreams  – Invaders
19 15 6 Quick Joey Small (Run Joey Run)  – Real McCoy
20 New 1 Little Red Boat On The River  – Spectrum

On 4 April 1969, the 200th SA Top 20 was broadcast and the song that was the most popular in SA that week was Tommy Roe’s ‘Dizzy’. It was a new number 1, replacing Tommy James & The Shondell’s ‘Crimson & Clover’ at the top of our charts. It had been 123 weeks since Roe last occupied the number 1 spot with ‘Sweet Pea’ (back in November 1966) and this was a new record gap between chart toppers, beating The Troggs record of 70 weeks. The other thing about the new number 1 was that it was the 9th song to top our charts that had also topped both the US and UK charts. Interestingly the previous song to top all 3 charts was Nancy & Frank Sinatra’s ‘Something Stupid’ which went to number 1 in SA exactly 100 weeks previously (i.e. on the 100th chart to be broadcast).

The 1910 Fruitgum Company picked up their 4th biggest climber award as ‘Indian Giver’ moved up 7 places this week to number 10 to be this week’s major mover. The 7 place jump would be their second best ever with only their hit ‘1-2-3- Red Light’ managing to go better with a 12 place climb.

The only other star rater this week was Marvin Gaye’s ‘I Heard It Through The Grapevine’ which climbed 6 places from 12 to 6.

Engelbert Humperdinck’s ‘The Way It Used To Be’ was the faller of the week as it dropped 6 places from 11 to 17. This was his 6th biggest faller to date and he was the 6th act so far to reach this many.

The Staccatos’ ‘Cry To Me’ and Johnny Rivers’ ‘I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)’ continued as the oldest on the charts. They had both been in the top 20 for 11 weeks.

Only 1 song left the charts this week and that was Oscar Toney Jr.’s ‘That’s All I Want From You’ which had lasted 7 weeks and peaked at 4, which was 1 week less and 1 place lower than his only other hit to chart, ‘For Your Precious Love’. We would not see Oscar on our charts again and he had managed a total of 15 weeks with his 2 hits and, if you can’t work it out from the previous sentence, his best peak was 3 with ‘For Your Precious Love’.

The newcomer was a band called The Spectrum. Record label RCA in London had put the band together in an attempt to create a kind of British Monkees, but they never really garnered much of a following in the UK. They had some success in Europe with their song ‘Headin’ For A Heatwave’ topping the charts in Spain and a cover of The Beatles ‘Ob-La-Di-Ob-La-Da’ going to 19 in Germany. ‘Little Red Boat On A River’ didn’t worry the charts in the UK or Europe as far as I can tell and even failed to chart in neighbouring Rhodesia as it was then. The song was written by Denise Gross and Paul Leka. It would be Gross’ only SA chart hit, but was the 3rd of 4 hits that Leka would have. His previous hits were the 2 different versions of ‘Green Tambourine’ (by The Lemon Pipers and Sun Dragon) which he co-wrote.

The average number of weeks that the artists on this week’s chart had been in the top 20 reached a new high of 38, beating last week’s new record of 37.75. This was helped by Percy Sledge and The Staccatos reaching 50 weeks with us and Tommy James & The Shondells hitting the 40 week mark. The Staccatos and Percy Sledge stayed 17th on the weeks count list, 2 behind 16th placed Jim Reeves. They did, however, move 1 ahead of The Mamas & The Papas, causing the latter to drop to 19. Donovan moved tied 12th with The Seekers, as he ticked over to 66 weeks.

We had 2 songs on the chart where part of the title was in brackets, these being Johnny Rivers’ ‘I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)’ and The Real McCoy’s ‘Quick Joey Smell (Run Joey Run)’. We had seen this phenomenon a few times previously and the record to date was 4 songs with part of the title in brackets which occurred on 26 April 1968.

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