24 January 1975

Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 8 Longfellow Serenade  – Neil Diamond
2 3 8 She’s a Woman  – Neil Herbert
3 2 6 You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet  – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
4 4 16 Kung Fu Fighting  – Carl Douglas
5 5 17 When Will I See You Again  – Three Degrees
6 6 12 Hasta Mañana  – ABBA
7 9 8 Help Me My Love  – After All
8 8 11 The Way I Am  – Lovelace Watkins
9 7 8 To the Door of the Sun  – Gigliola Cinquetti
10 15 3 Junior’s Farm  – Paul McCartney
11 10 9 I Honestly Love You  – Olivia Newton-John
12 11 14 Mama Tembu’s Wedding  – Margaret Singana
13 17 5 Another Saturday Night  – Cat Stevens
14 12 10 Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe  – Barry White
15 16 6 Whatever Gets You Thru the Night  – John Lennon
16 19 2 I Can’t Leave You Alone  – George McCrae
17 20 2 You Ask Me To  – Bobby Angel
18 New 1 Beach Baby  – First Class
19 New 1 Back Home Again  – John Denver
20 13 23 Rock Your Baby  – George McCrae

Neil Diamond was our new leader for weeks 1 by a song writer as his ‘Longfellow Serenade’ clocked up its 3rd week at the top of the charts and Diamond’s 16th as a song writer. Diamond moved 1 ahead of Maurice and Barry Gibb who dropped into tied second place. It was Diamond’s 7th week at 1 as an artist and he joined 8 other artists in tied 15th place for weeks at 1 by an artist. The Americans now led the way for weeks at 1 as they had spent a total of 190 weeks there compared to the Brits’ 189. This was the first time the Yanks had been ahead of the Poms since 15 December 1967, a total of 371 weeks previously. The Brits still led the way for number of number 1s with 67 to their name while the Americans had only seen 60.

Neil Herbert’s ‘She’s A Woman’ crept up 1 place to 2. It had been 10 months since we last saw a local song in the top 2 when Gwyneth Ashley-Robin’s ‘Little Jimmy’ was at 1 in March 1974.

Paul McCartney’s ‘Junior’s Farm’ took the climber of the week award for the second week running. It climbed 5 from 15 to 10. Cat Stevens picked up his 5th star rater with a 4 place climb by ‘Another Satruday Night’. It sat at 13.

It had been 9 weeks since George McCrae’s ‘Rock You Baby’ had been the faller of the week and it picked up the award again this week dropping 7 from 13 to 20. Only Alan Garrity’s ‘I Need Someone’ and Dickey Lee’s ‘Ashes Of Love’ had seen bigger gaps between biggest faller awards with the former picking up the award 15 weeks after having previously done so while the latter saw a 12 week gap. ‘Rock Your Baby’ was enjoying its 23rd week in the chart and its 6th as the oldest in the top 20.

Olivia Newton-John’s record for a female artist 8 weeks with 2 in the charts came to an end as ‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ fell off the top 20 after 20 weeks and spending 3 of those at number 1. This was 2 weeks more at 1 than her previous chart topper (‘If Not For You’) and double the weeks that ‘If Not For You’ (the second highest week count of her 3 hits to date) managed. There was still more to come from her.

We also bid farewell to Eric Clapton’s ‘I Shot The Sheriff’. Clapton’s cover of the Bob Marley song lasted 10 weeks in the chats and peaked at 9. This would be his only SA chart hit.

The first of the newcomers was First Class and their hit ‘Beach Baby’. The song was written by Shakespeare (Gillian Shakespeare that is) and husband John Carter. This song writing team had already brought us Kincade’s ‘Dreams Are Ten A Penny’ and for Carter it was his 9th hit as a songwriter, having brought us hits by The Ivy League, Manfred Mann, Herman’s Hermits and Mary Hopkins as well as the aforementioned Kincade hit. He also sang backing vocals on the song ‘Beach Baby’. Although this was First Class’ first SA hit, lead singer of the band, Tony Burrows, had already graced our charts as the singer on Edison Lighthouse’s ‘Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)’, The Pipkins’ ‘Gimme Dat Ding’ and White Plains ‘My Baby Loves Loving’. I haven’t got details of every lead singer of every hit, but I am sure this must be a record for the most number of acts to chart with. ‘Beach Baby’ made number 4 in the US, 13 in the UK and 11 in Australia.

Our other new entry was John Denver’s second SA hit, ‘Back Home Again’. The song topped the Country Music charts in both the US and Canada and made it to 5 and 10 respectively on those countries main charts. It would go on to win the Country Music Association’s Song Of The Year award where apparently Charlie Rich burnt the envelope after announcing the winner – it must have been a hot hit!

Neil Diamond moved into tied 13th place on the weeks count list, sharing the spot with Engelbert Humperdinck. Both acts had 84 weeks to their names.

Both Abba and Olivia Newton-John reached the 600 points mark with the former’s total moving on to 607 while the latter was on exactly 600. They were the 40th and 41st acts to reach this milestone.

This week saw the 3rd time we had acts at 1 and 2 who shared the same first name. The first 2 time had been when Tommy Roe was at 1 and Tommy James (and the Shondells) were at 2. This week was the time of the Neils as we had Neil Diamond at 1 and Neil Herbert at 2.

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