20 March 1970


Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 4 Venus  – Shocking Blue
2 3 5 Holly Holy  – Neil Diamond
3 4 4 Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)  – Edison Lighthouse
4 2 14 Pretty Belinda  – Chris Andrews
5 5 5 Reflections of My Life  – Marmalade
6 12 3 Hitchin’ a Ride  – Vanity Fare
7 10 3 Love is a Beautiful Song  – Dave Mills
8 6 10 Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head  – B.J. Thomas
9 7 8 All I Have to do is Dream  – Bobbie Gentry & Glen Campbell
10 18 2 Arizona  – Mark Lindsay
11 8 7 Someday We’ll be Together  – Diana Ross & The Supremes
12 9 6 Whole Lotta Love  – Led Zeppelin
13 13 12 Without Love  – Tom Jones
14 New 1 Travellin’ Band  – Creedence Clearwater Revival
15 New 1 Bridge Over Troubled Water  – Simon & Garfunkel
16 11 10 Don’t Cry Daddy  – Elvis Presley
17 New 1 Ma Belle Amie  – Tee Set
18 15 38 Cry to Me  – Staccatos
19 New 1 Dankie  – Lance James
20 17 3 Rebecca Stein  – Bats

This week we celebrated hearing our 250th chart and Shocking Blue’s ‘Venus’ held on to the number 1 spot to mark the occasion. It had now been at the top of the charts for 3 weeks. Its main threat came from Neil Diamond’s ‘Holly Holy’ which climbed up from 3 to 2

Mark Lindsay’s ‘Arizona’ did something his previous composition (Paul Revere & The Raiders’ ‘Let Me’) couldn’t manage and that was pick up the biggest climber award. It did so with an 8 place jump from 18 to 10. The best ‘Let Me’ managed was a 4 place climb.

Vanity Fare’s ‘Hitchin’ A Ride’ was the only other star rater this week. It moved up 6 from 12 to 6 and was the second week running the song had claimed star rater status.

Elvis Presley became the 4th act and 1st American act to see 7 biggest fallers as ‘Don’t Cry Daddy’ took the honours this week dropping 5 from 1 1to 16. The only other acts to see this many so far were The Rolling Stones on 7, Tom Jones on 8 and The Bee Gees who led the way on 10.

The Staccatos’ ‘Cry To Me’ moved on to 38 weeks in total, 26 weeks in this run and the band now had seen 20 weeks with the oldest in the charts. This was the record to date weeks in the charts for a song, consecutive weeks in the charts for a song and number of weeks with the oldest for a group.

The Archies’ second run in the charts with ‘Jingle Jangle’ lasted just 1 week where the song sat at 20. Overall the song had spent a total of 4 weeks in the top 20 and peaked at 15. There was more to come from them.

We also bid farewell to The Dave Clark Five’s ‘Good Old Rock ‘n Roll’ which lasted 6 weeks and peaked at 16. It was the first of the 4 hits by them to chart that did not make the top 10. Like The Archies, they were not yet done with the SA Chart career.

Rolf Harris’ ‘Two Little Boys’ did not fare nearly as well in South Africa as it did in the UK. It topped the charts in Britain, but only spent 3 weeks in our top 20 and peaked at 16. Unlike the above 2 acts, this was the end of the road for Rolf in terms of SA chart hits and this had been his only entry.

Last to go, and one can guess their means of departure from the song title, was Peter, Paul & Mary’s ‘Leaving On A Jet Plane’. This was the most successful of the 4 songs leaving the chart this week as it lasted 10 weeks in the top 20 and peaked at 6. However, they were in a similar boat to Rolf Harris as this hit was the sum total of their SA chart action.

After their record run of consecutive weeks with a hit in the chart, we had been without Creedence Clearwater Revival now for 4 weeks, but this week they were back. Their new one was ‘Travellin’ Band’ which arrived at 14. It would be their highest ever debut position. It was the 4th of 5 songs that would go to number 2 in the US for a band that have never topped the charts there. It would also restore them to the top 10 in the UK where their previous 2 hits there (‘Green River’ and ‘Down On The Corner’) had faltered lower down the charts. It equalled their second highest UK peak to that date, going to number 8. It was their 5th SA chart hit.

Simon & Garfunkel returned to the charts with their 4th SA Chart hit to date and probably their best loved song, ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water’. The song would top the US charts for 6 weeks and the UK charts for 3 weeks. It would also go to the top of the charts in Canada, France and New Zealand. It is often cited as the reason for the breakup of the duo as Simon initially thought it was best suited for Garfunkel to sing it solo, but later, as the song began to get loads of accolades, he felt jealous of the attention the singing got.

For the first time since the charts started we saw 2 acts from The Netherlands in the top 20 in the same week as Tee Set joined their fellow countrymen Shocking Blue. Tee Set’s hit was ‘Ma Belle Amie’. The song would give them a number 5 hit in the US and go to number 6 in their native Holland where it sold over 100,000 units. They had 16 hits chart in The Netherlands, and ‘Ma Belle Amie’s peak of 6 would be their second best effort there, beaten by a chart topping song later in 1970 called ‘She Likes Weeds’. In the US their follow up to ‘Ma Belle Amie’, ‘If You Do Believe In Love’ would managed to get to 81 and would be their only other US chart entry. Tee Set lead singer, Peter Tetteroo, who co-wrote the song with keyboardist Hans van Eijck, would pass away in September 2002 from liver cancer.

Lance James brought us the 101st song by a local act and it was the 9th Afrikaans song to grace our charts. Of these 9 songs, ‘Dankie’ was the 5th to be a totally Afrikaans number with 3 of the previous being a mix of English and Afrikaans and 1 being an instrumental with an Afrikaans title. The song was originally written in German by Marty Schneider and translated into English (as ‘Thank You’) by Jack Fishman. In 1964 Petula Clark recorded an English version, but that failed to chart in the UK. According to the label of the single, the Afrikaans lyrics were provided by a certain D. Steyn. I’m guessing, but it probably wasn’t the South African fast bowler Dale Steyn.

This week was the 10th straight one without a solo female in the chart, but this was a little way off the longest period of 22 weeks we had gone with no solo females in the top 20.

Elvis Presley celebrated 70 weeks on the charts this week and this moved him into tied 12th place on the weeks count list, joining Donovan on that total. Dave Mills moved into tied 9 spot on the local weeks count list, his 23 to date putting him level with Dickie Loader.

A last few points about this week starting with Chris Andrews passing the 600 points mark, his 604 to date placing him 24th overall. Also, the average number of weeks the songs in the top 20 had been with us dropped below 7 for the first time in 8 weeks as it fell to 6.9. And lastly, the bottom 3 songs were by local acts. This was the 18th time we had seen at least 3 local songs sitting in adjacent positions and of those 18 times, there had been 3 occasions where there had been 4 sitting next to each other. This week was the 6th time the bottom 3 had been local and 2 of these 6 weeks had seen the bottom 4 being local.

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3 thoughts on “20 March 1970

  1. Die D. Steyn wat die Afrikaanse woorde vir Lance James se “Dankie” geskryf het was in werklikheid die bekende radio-omroeper Daniel Kirstein. Hy het die “skuilnaam” gebruik as liedjieskrywer en het talle trefferliedjies geskryf. Hy het in 1993 gesterf op die ouderdom van 69 in Johannesburg.

      • Groot plesier, en dankie vir die wonderlike info oor ons Top 20… ek geniet dit gate uit! Terloops, Daniel Kirstein het ook as Chris Steyn liedjies geskryf en ook die lirieke van Leonore Veenemans se grootste treffer, “Liefste Madelein”, geskryf.

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