21 February 1975

Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 10 You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet  – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
2 6 4 You’re the First, the Last, My Everything  – Barry White
3 2 12 She’s a Woman  – Neil Herbert
4 3 12 Longfellow Serenade  – Neil Diamond
5 5 6 You Ask Me To  – Bobby Angel
6 7 7 Junior’s Farm  – Paul McCartney
7 16 3 You Make Me Feel Brand New  – Stylistics
8 8 5 Beach Baby  – First Class
9 4 12 Help Me My Love  – After All
10 18 2 I Can Help  – Billy Swan
11 13 3 Please Mr. Postman  – Carpenters
12 14 5 Back Home Again  – John Denver
13 10 6 I Can’t Leave You Alone  – George McCrae
14 19 2 Sad Sweet Dreamer  – Sweet Sensation
15 9 21 When Will I See You Again  – Three Degrees
16 12 12 To the Door of the Sun  – Gigliola Cinquetti
17 New 1 Dance the Kung Fu  – Carl Douglas
18 New 1 Only You (And You Alone)  – Ringo Starr
19 New 1 Costafine Town  – Splinter
20 New 1 Down on the Beach Tonight  – Drifters

It was now 3 weeks at 1 for Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet’ and while for the past 2 weeks it had had the previous chart topper, Neil Herbert’s ‘She’s A Woman’ sitting at 2, it now had a new challenger in the form of Barry white’s’ ‘You’re the First, the Last, My Everything’ which had a 3rd week as a star rater (the first of which was the biggest climber that week), climbing a further 4 from 6 to 2.

The Stylistics took the climber award with a 9 place climb by ‘You Make Me Feel Brand New’. It moved up from 16 to 7. Apart from this and the Barry White hit mentioned above we saw 2 other star raters. Billy Swan’s ‘I Can Help’ just missed out on also being the biggest climber as it moved up 8 from 18 to 10 while Sweet Sensation’s ‘Sad Sweet Dreamer’ climbed 5 from 19 to 14.

The Three Degrees’ ‘When Will I See You Again’ was the faller of the week as it dropped 6 from 9 to 15. It was still the oldest in the top 20 with 21 weeks to its name. It had been the oldest for 4 weeks.

It had been 30 weeks since we had last seen as many as 4 songs leave the chart in a week, but that drought was now broken as Margaret Singana’s ‘Mama Tembu’s Wedding’, Lovelace Watkins’ ‘The Way I Am’, Abba’s ‘Hasta Mañana’ and Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ all fell off the top 20 this week.

Singana’s hit lasted 17 weeks and peaked at 6. The only other local black woman who would chart, Letta Mbulu, also saw her first hit last 17 weeks, but her ‘I Need Your Love’ went as high as number 3. Like Mbulu, Singana would have more than 1 hit make our charts.

This was not the case for Lovelace Watkins for whom ‘The Way I Am’ would be his only hit. It spent 14 weeks in the charts and peaked at 4. Still he could claim that he had better chart success in South Africa than he did in his native US where he failed to make the Hot 100 with any of his hits.

Abba had now had 3 hits make our chart so far and all 3 of them had spent exactly 15 weeks in the top 20. The peaks for the 3 were different with their first hit, ‘Ring, Ring’ making it to 3, then ‘Waterloo’ topped the charts and now ‘Hasta Mañana’ gave them the missing peak of 2 to have the top 3 places covered for peaks. There was, of course, plenty more to come from the Swedish Fab Four.

Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ was the only ex-chart topper that left the top 20 this week. It had been with us for 19 weeks and spent 7 of those at 1. Despite the disappointment of not making the 20 week milestone, Douglas could take some comfort from the fact that he gave us the 18th occasion where an act replaced themselves in the charts as his ‘Dance The Kung Fu’ was the first of the new entries. Of the 18 previous times an act had replaced themselves, only 1 act (Cliff Richard) had managed it twice. Like Douglas’ previous hit, this new Kung Fu themed song was penned by Douglas and Biddu with the latter producing once again. The follow up was not nearly as successful, only peaking at 35 in the UK and 48 in the US. It also made 5 in Germany, 7 in Holland, 8 in Belgium and 19 in Austria. ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ had topped the charts in at least 10 countries.

Ringo Starr gave us the 15th hit by an ex-Beatle as ‘Only You (And You Alone)’ entered the charts at 18. This was Ringo’s 4th hit in SA and he pulled 1 clear of John who had had 3. Paul was still in the lead with 6 (4 with Wings and 2 solo) while George was only on 2. The song was a cover of a Buck Ram composition which was made famous in 1955 by The Platters who scored a number 5 hit with it in the US. Starr came close to emulating that success as his version made it to 6 on the Billboard Hot 100. In the UK it made 28, a peak that the UK shared with the German charts. In Belgium, it made 29. John Lennon played guitar on this single.

Despite lagging behind on the ex-Beatle hit front, George was back in the charts this week but this time with a production credit on ‘Costafine Town’ by Splinter which was a new entry at 19 this week. This meant that, with Wings at 6 this week, we had a full complement of the Fab Four on the chart, Paul and Ringo as artists, John as a musician on a track and George as producer. Splinter were a UK band consisting of Bill Elliott and Bob Purvis. ‘Costafine Town’ was their only hit on both sides of the Atlantic, peaking at 77 in the US and 17 in the UK. In New Zealand, they had a number 8 hit with it.

Last of the new entries was the second hit for the Drifters ‘Down On The Beach Tonight’. As with their previous hit, ‘Kissin’ In The Back Row Of The Movies’, the song was written by Roger Greenaway and Tony Macaulay. This moved Greenaway into tied 3rd place for hits by a songwriter alongside Jeff Barry as this was his 17th hit. Les Reed on 18 and Terry Dempsey on 24 were above him. For Macaulay, this was his 12th hit, placing him tied 14th for hits by a songwriter. The song failed to chart in the US, but gave The Drifters a number 7 hit in the UK.

Gigliola Cinquetti’s ‘To The Door Of The Sun’ clocked up the 61st week in the chart for acts from Italy. So what you may say, it’s not really a milestone now is it. Why it is significant is because it put the Italians level with the Jamaicans for weeks in the charts and the 2 nations shared 11th spot for weeks by a nation. And talking of weeks by a nation, the Americans, who led the way, celebrated their 3,500th week and counting the weeks from the top of the chart down, it was Neil Diamond’s ‘Longfellow Serenade’ which bagged that milestone for them. Their total actually ticked over to 3,508 while the Brits were lagging behind on 3,467.

Carl Douglas reached 20 weeks in the chart and was the 153rd act to reach this total.

The average weeks in the chart for the top 20 songs fell from 8.55 to 6.3, a drop of 2.25 which was the 4th biggest drop we had seen to date. Essentially a big drop in this average would require a high number of songs to fall off the charts and for them to have high weeks count. This week saw 4 hits leave with the lowest weeks count for them being the 14 that Lovelace Watkins’ hit managed. In total the 4 songs accounted for a total of 65 weeks.

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14 February 1975

Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 9 You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet  – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
2 2 11 She’s a Woman  – Neil Herbert
3 3 11 Longfellow Serenade  – Neil Diamond
4 4 11 Help Me My Love  – After All
5 6 5 You Ask Me To  – Bobby Angel
6 10 3 You’re the First, the Last, My Everything  – Barry White
7 8 6 Junior’s Farm  – Paul McCartney
8 11 4 Beach Baby  – First Class
9 7 20 When Will I See You Again  – Three Degrees
10 12 5 I Can’t Leave You Alone  – George McCrae
11 5 19 Kung Fu Fighting  – Carl Douglas
12 9 11 To the Door of the Sun  – Gigliola Cinquetti
13 18 2 Please Mr. Postman  – Carpenters
14 15 4 Back Home Again  – John Denver
15 14 15 Hasta Mañana  – ABBA
16 17 2 You Make Me Feel Brand New  – Stylistics
17 13 14 The Way I Am  – Lovelace Watkins
18 New 1 I Can Help  – Billy Swan
19 New 1 Sad Sweet Dreamer  – Sweet Sensation
20 16 17 Mama Tembu’s Wedding  – Margaret Singana

‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet’ by Bachman-Turner Overdrive spent a second week at 1 and put the Canadians just 2 behind the Dutch for weeks at 1 with the former now being on 11 while the latter were on 13 and they led the way for the non big 3 nations. The previous chart topper, Neil Herbert’s ‘She’s A Woman’ spent a second week at 2.

The Carpenters’ ‘Please Mr Postman’ was the climber of the week as it moved up 5 from 18 to 13. This was their first time with the award. Barry White’s ‘You’re the First, the Last, My Everything’ followed up last week’s biggest climber award with a star rater climb of 4 places from 10 to 6 while Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ was the faller of the week with a 6 place drop from 5 to 11.

The Three Degrees’ ‘When Will I See You Again’ continued its run as the oldest in the chart as it became the 37th song to make 20 weeks in the top 20. It was its 3rd week as the oldest in the charts.

‘Whatever Gets You Thru the Night’ by John Lennon was the first of 2 songs to leave the charts this week. It lasted 8 weeks in the top 20 and peaked at 15. Before this there had been 4 songs that peaked at 14 as the lowest peak for songs lasting 8 weeks in the charts, so Lennon had set a new record, peaking 1 place lower. There was more to come from Lennon.

Barry White’s 2 week run with 2 in the chart came to an end as ‘Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe’ dropped off the charts. It managed 12 weeks and peaked at 12. This was the 35th song to have an equal weeks and peak figure and the first to have that figure being 12. It was the second lowest peak for a song spending 12 weeks in the chart with Michael Jackson’s ‘Ben’, which peaked at 14 during its 12 week run beating it.

The first of our new entries this week was Billy Swan’s ‘I Can Help’. In South Africa the song, written and produced by Swan, replaced John Lennon’s ‘Whatever Gets You Thru The Night’ in the top 20 while in the US it had replaced Lennon’s hit as the number 1 song there. It also topped the US Country Singles charts. Apart from that, it topped the charts in Norway, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Australia, New  Zealand, Sweden, France and Zimbabwe (at least 12 countries!) as well as making top 10 in Canada (2), Spain (4) and the UK (6). Swan went on to have numerous hits on the Country charts in the US, but would only have 2 more make the main Hot 100 chart, and neither of those would get into the top 50.

Joining Billy Swan was the first hit by Manchester band Sweet Sensation. Their song ‘Sad Sweet Dreamer’ knocked John Denver’s ‘Annie’s Song’ from the top of the UK charts and spent a single week at the top there before being ousted by Ken Boothe’s ‘Everything I Own’. It also made number 3 in Belgium, 4 in the US, 5 in Holland and 29 in Germany.

Apart from having the number 1 hit, the Canadians were also celebrating their 200th week in the charts. They were the 4th highest nation for weeks (behind the US, UK and SA) and were 54 ahead of 5th placed Germany.

Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ became the 25th song to reach the 300 points mark. It was the 12th song by a solo male to manage this.

Youtube playlist:

7 February 1975

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

This week saw the 3rd song by a Canadian act to top the charts as Barchman-Turner Overdrive’s ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet’ took over the top spot from local lad Neil Herbert’s ‘She’s A Woman’ after the latter had been there for just a single week. The previous 2 Canadian chart toppers had both had the word ‘Sun’ in their titles – ‘Seasons In The Sun’ by Terry Jacks and ‘Sundown’ by Gordon Lightfoot’. This also accounted for the 10th week we had seen a Canadian act at 1 and they sat second for a non-big 3 nation for weeks at 1, 3 behind the Dutch who were on 13.

Climber of the week was Barry White’s ‘You’re the First, the Last, My Everything’ which moved up 10 from 20 to 10. This was the 56th time we had seen a climb of 10 or more places and the 24th time it had been by an American act (11th time by a solo male American).

Bobby Angel’s ‘You Ask Me To’ was the only other star rater this week. It moved up 5 from 11 to 6 while Abba’s ‘Hasta Mañana’ dropped 6 from 8 to 14 to give them their first biggest faller to date. Abba had managed 44 weeks in the chart before they saw their first biggest faller and this was the tied second best we had seen as they equalled the run that The Tremeloes had seen, but were a bit of a way off the best we had seen to date which was The Seekers’ 58 weeks.

The Three Degrees enjoyed a second week with the oldest in the charts as ‘When Will I See You Again’ ticked over to 19 weeks.

Cat Stevens’ ‘Another Saturday Night’ became his first song not to go top 5 as it dropped off the charts with a peak of 13. It was also his only song not to make double figures for weeks as it only managed 6. His first 3 songs had all managed 10, while his 4th hit, ‘Can’t Keep It In’ had managed 21. As this brought down the curtain on his SA chart career, his weeks count was 57 and he sat 33rd overall for weeks. ‘Can’t Keep It In’ was his only chart topper and it spent 5 weeks at number 1.

We also bid farewell to Olivia Newton-John’s ‘I Honestly Love You’ which had lasted 10 weeks in the charts and peaked at 5. This was half the weeks that her previous hit, ‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ had managed. There was plenty more to come from her.

The first of the new entries was The Sylistics ‘You Make Me Feel Brand New’. The song gave them a number 5 hit in the US while in the UK it made number 2 and was kept off the number 1 spot by The Three Degrees’ ‘When Will I See You Again’. It also made number 11 in Holland and 29 in Belgium. In 2003 Simply Red took a version of the song to number 7 in the UK.

The second new entry was the second SA hit for The Carpenters. ‘Please Mr. Postman’. The song was originally recorded by The Marvelettes in 1961 and was the first Motown single to top the US Charts. The Carpenter’s version emulated the success of that early version, and apart from topping the US charts also managed to get to number 1 in Australia and Canada and number 2 in the UK. There had been 141 weeks since The Carpenters had graced our charts and this was the 65th time we had seen a gap of 100 weeks or more between hits. In their early days The Beatles used to perform ‘Please Mr Postman’ regularly and a version of it made it on to their ‘With The Beatles’ album. Robert Bateman, who was one of 5 people listed in the song writing credits had already had a number 1 hit in SA as songwriter with After All’s version of ‘If you Need Me’ while Brian Holland another listed as song writer had seen SA hits with ‘I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)’ and Freda Payne’s ‘Band Of Gold’.

While the song writer on After All’s previous hit was enjoying having a new entry, the band themselves were enjoying being at the 2nd highest position to date for a re-entry as ‘Help me My Love’ made it to number 4. The best to date was ‘Cry To Me’ by The Staccatos which got to number 3.

This week was the 11th time we had seen 4 of the top 5 having been chart toppers as apart from the current number 1, ‘She’s A Woman’ at 2, ‘Longfellow Serenade’ at 3 and ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ at 5 had all been previous number 1s.

The American acts moved 8 ahead of the Brits for total number of hits with the former on 387 and the latter 379. This was the first time the gap had been this big since the beginning of November 1974.

Neil Diamond became the 14th act to clock up 1,000 points and the 6th American act to do so. Tom Jones was still miles ahead of everyone else with 2,169 points to his name while second placed The Hollies only had 1,647.

Youtube playlist:

31 January 1975

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

It was the 9th week in the chart for Neil Herbert’s ‘She’s A Woman’ and it took over the top spot from Neil Diamond’s ‘Longfellow Serenade’ which dropped to 3. So far 12 songs had been on 9 or more weeks when they first captured the top spot with 3 of those 12 being on a record to date 10 weeks. None of those on 10 weeks had been local acts, but 2 of the previous ones on 9 weeks were and they were Tidal Waves’ ‘Spider Spider’ and Gwynneth Ashley-Robin’s ‘Little Jimmy’.

Bobby Angel’s ‘You Ask Me To’ shared the climber of the week award with First Class’ ‘Beach Baby’ with both song climbing 6 places to land at 11 and 12 respectively. They would be the only songs that would make a 4 place or more star rater climb this week.

The fallers were Olivia Newton-John’s ‘I Honestly Love You’ and Cat Stevens’ ‘Another Saturday Night’ which both dropped 6 places to land at 17 and 19 respectively. It was a 4th time with the faller for Newton-John and a 5th time for Stevens.

After 23 weeks with us, George McCrae’s ‘Rock Your Baby’ finally left the charts. It had peaked at 2, spending 1 week there and being kept off the top spot by Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’. This had been the oldest on the charts last week and the new oldest on the charts was The Three Degrees’ ‘When Will I See You Again’ which sat on 18 weeks.

The artist for our new entry this week, however, did already have a song in the charts as Barry White’s ‘You’re The First The Last, My Everything’ joined ‘Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe’ in the top 20. Barry White was the 51st act to manage 2 or more in the charts in the same week and he also now had the highest average number of characters (excluding spaces and punctuation marks) for song titles for any act having had 2 or more songs on the charts. His two averaged 29.5 characters, 1 better than the previous best which was Cilla Black who had averaged 28.5. Ultimately Barry would only end up second on this list. ‘You’re The First The Last, My Everything’ topped the UK charts and made it to number 2 in the US. It also topped the US Hot Soul charts, knocking Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ from the top spot on that chart.

Neil Diamond consolidated his 13th place on the top 20 of the overall weeks count list. His 85 put him 1 ahead of Engelbert Humperdinck.

Youtube playlist:

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.

Youtube playlist:

17 January 1975

Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 1 7 Longfellow Serenade  – Neil Diamond
2 7 5 You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet  – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
3 5 7 She’s a Woman  – Neil Herbert
4 2 15 Kung Fu Fighting  – Carl Douglas
5 3 16 When Will I See You Again  – Three Degrees
6 4 11 Hasta Mañana  – ABBA
7 9 7 To the Door of the Sun  – Gigliola Cinquetti
8 8 10 The Way I Am  – Lovelace Watkins
9 12 7 Help Me My Love  – After All
10 10 8 I Honestly Love You  – Olivia Newton-John
11 6 13 Mama Tembu’s Wedding  – Margaret Singana
12 13 9 Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe  – Barry White
13 11 22 Rock Your Baby  – George McCrae
14 15 10 I Shot the Sheriff  – Eric Clapton
15 20 2 Junior’s Farm  – Paul McCartney
16 19 5 Whatever Gets You Thru the Night  – John Lennon
17 18 4 Another Saturday Night  – Cat Stevens
18 14 20 If You Love Me (Let Me Know)  – Olivia Newton-John
19 New 1 I Can’t Leave You Alone  – George McCrae
20 New 1 You Ask Me To  – Bobby Angel

‘Longfellow Serenade’ spent a second week at number 1 giving Neil Diamond a total of 6 weeks at 1 overall as an artist and 15 weeks in total as a song writer. He now equalled Barry and Maurice Gibb at the top of the list of weeks at 1 by a song writer. This also accounted for the 189th week that we had seen an American act at the top of our charts and that equalled the total that the British acts had seen so far. The last time these 2 nations were equal for this stat was back in December 1967. Since then the Brits had led the way until this week.

The biggest climbers were Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet’ and Paul McCartney’s ‘Junior’s Farm’ which both moved up 5 places from 7 to 2 and 20 to 15 respectively. For Bachman-Turner Overdrive it was their 2nd time with the award and the 15th time a Canadian act had been the biggest climber. Of the 3 Canadian songs that had managed to get to number 2 so far (including Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s), 1 had peaked there (The Poppy Family’s ‘Which Way You Goin’ Billy?’) and one had gone on to reach the top spot (Terry Jacks’ ‘Seasons In The Sun’). The Canadians had seen another number 1 hit (Gordon Lightfoot’s ‘Sundown’) but that did not stop at number 2 on the way up. ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet’ and ‘Junior’s Farm’ were the only star raters this week.

Margaret Singana’s ‘Mama Tembu’s Wedding’ had been the 30th biggest faller by a local female 4 weeks previously and this week it also became the 31st as it took the honours with a 5 place fall from 6 to 11.

George McCrae’s ‘Rock Your Baby’ enjoyed its 22nd week in the chart and its 5th as the oldest. To date 41 songs had spent at least 5 weeks as the oldest on the charts.

‘Kissin’ in the Back Row of the Movies’ by The Drifters was the first of 2 songs to leave the chart this week. It had spent 13 weeks on the charts and peaked at 3. There was still another hit to come from them.

Also leaving us was The Guess Who’s ‘Clap For The Wolfman’. It spent 5 weeks in the top 20 and peaked at 14. This was the last of 3 hits for the band who had spent a total of 12 weeks in the charts and saw a best peak of 10 with ‘These Eyes’. Although this was the end of the road for The Guess Who, members of the band were still in the charts in the form Randy Bachman who was part of Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Another member, Burton Cummings would go on to have a solo career and see some SA chart action later in the decade.

Apart from having the oldest song on the chart, George McCrae also had one of the newest as his second SA hit, ‘I Can’t Leave You Alone’ entered at number 19. He was the 50th artist to have 2 (or more in some cases) in the chart in the same week. ‘I Can’t Leave You Alone’, as with ‘Rock Your Baby’ was written by KC & The Sunshine Band’s Harry Wayne ‘KC’ Casey and Richard Finch and would give McCrae a number 8 hit in the UK and a number 50 hit in the US. The song also made 3 in Belgium and Germany, 4 in Holland and 11 in Austria. We were yet to see KC & The Sunshine Band on our charts.

Bobby Angel (real name Robert Engelsman) had his first SA hit with a cover of a Waylon Jennings song, ‘You Ask Me To’. Jennings version made it to number 8 on the Country Songs Charts in the US. For cricket lovers, this meant that the local males were on Nelson for number of hits, for non-cricket lovers, this meant that the local males were on 111 for number of hits.

John Lennon celebrated reaching the 30 weeks in the charts mark and was the 94th act to make this landmark. Both Ringo and Paul had passed this mark, so it was only George who sat on 23 who needed to catch up to get all the Fab Four to this level. The Beatles themselves managed 42.

Olivia Newton-John’s ‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ became the 37th song to spend at least 20 weeks in the charts and it was the 9th by a solo female artist to manage this.

Neil Diamond continued to move up the overall weeks count list. His 83 weeks moved him level with The Staccatos in tied 14th place while on the points front, George McCrae’s ‘Rock Your Baby’ became the 24th song to move past the 300 points mark as it ticked over to 305.

The average number of weeks that the top 20 songs had been with us was exactly 9 this week. It had been 68 weeks since we last saw this average at 9 or higher.

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10 January 1975

Pos LW Weeks Song Artist
1 2 6 Longfellow Serenade  – Neil Diamond
2 1 14 Kung Fu Fighting  – Carl Douglas
3 4 15 When Will I See You Again  – Three Degrees
4 3 10 Hasta Mañana  – ABBA
5 6 6 She’s a Woman  – Neil Herbert
6 8 12 Mama Tembu’s Wedding  – Margaret Singana
7 10 4 You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet  – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
8 7 9 The Way I Am  – Lovelace Watkins
9 9 6 To the Door of the Sun  – Gigliola Cinquetti
10 5 7 I Honestly Love You  – Olivia Newton-John
11 16 21 Rock Your Baby  – George McCrae
12 18 6 Help Me My Love  – After All
13 17 8 Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe  – Barry White
14 12 19 If You Love Me (Let Me Know)  – Olivia Newton-John
15 11 9 I Shot the Sheriff  – Eric Clapton
16 14 5 Clap for the Wolfman  – Guess Who
17 13 13 Kissin’ in the Back Row of the Movies  – Drifters
18 15 3 Another Saturday Night  – Cat Stevens
19 19 4 Whatever Gets You Thru the Night  – John Lennon
20 New 1 Junior’s Farm  – Paul McCartney

After 7 weeks at the top of our charts, Carl Douglas’ ‘Kung Fu Fighting’ was finally dislodged from the number 1 spot as Neil Diamond’s ‘Longfellow Serenade’ took over as the nation’s favourite. It was Diamond’s second chart topper as an artist as he had reached number 1 with ‘Cracklin’ Rosie’ back in 1970. He had composed both his chart toppers and he had also seen 2 other hits reach number 1 where he had song writing credits, but was not the artist and they were The Monkees’ ‘I’m A Believer’ and The Dealians’ ‘Look Out Here Comes Tomorrow’. This moved him to the top of the list of number 1s by song writers, joining Chris Andrews, Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb, Geoff Stephens and Les Reed there, all of whom had managed 4 so far.

‘Longfellow Serenade’ was the 60th song by an American Artist to top the charts. The Americans were still 7 behind the Brits for number of number 1s as the latter had 67. The local acts were sitting third on 22 while the Dutch on 4 were 4th.

After All’s ‘Help Me My Love’ was the climber of the week as it moved up 6 from 18 to 12. It was the 7th song so far to see a biggest climber after re-entering the charts. It was After All’s 3rd time with the award as they had picked up 2 with their previous hit, ‘If You Need Me’ and was the 9th time a Dutch act had taken the biggest climber award. After All now equalled The George Baker Selection for number of biggest climbers by a Dutch act. The Walkers had seen 2 and The Shuffles made up the numbers with their single one.

George McRae’s ‘Rock Your Baby’ which fell from 11 to 16 last week, made up its lost ground, climbing 5 from 16 to 11 to be 1 of 2 other star raters this week. It was joined by Barry White’s ‘Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe’ which moved up 4 from 17 to 13.

Olivia Newton-John picked up her 3rd biggest faller award as ‘I Honestly Love You’ fell 5 from 5 to 10.

‘Rock Your Baby’ by George McRae was still the oldest on the charts as it entered its 21st week with us. It had been the oldest for 4 weeks.

Andy Kim’s ‘Rock Me Gently’ was the only song to leave the charts this week. It had been his best performer to date, spending 15 weeks in the top 20 and peaking at 3. His previous best peak (of 2 previous hits) was 7 which ‘So Good Together’ managed. This would not be the last we would see from Kim.

In ‘Rock Me Gently’s place we saw the 14th hit by an ex-Beatle. ‘Junior’s Farm’ was written by Paul and Linda and gave them a number 16 hit in the UK and 3 in the US as well as grabbing them a number 9 hit in Norway. This was McCartney’s 6th SA hit (3 solo and 3 with Wings) which meant he had had as many hits as John and Ringo combined (they had had 3 each so far). Poor George was lagging way behind now on 2. With John Lennon’s ‘Whatever Gets you Thru The Night’ one place above the new comer to the chart, we saw the 5th time we had ex-Beatles in adjacent positions and the first time it had been John and Paul sitting so close together.

Abba became the 4th act to spend 40 weeks in the charts and not see a single biggest faller in that time. The Seekers, The Tremeloes and Simon & Garfunkel were the previous 3 to manage this. Another act seeing a weeks milestone was After All who ticked over to 20 weeks. Like Abba, they had also not seen a biggest faller.

For the first time in 15 weeks we saw some movement on the top 20 of the total weeks count list as Neil Diamond moved into tied 15th place with Chris Andrews on 82 weeks. Billy Forrest, Cliff Richard, Manfred Mann and Middle Of The Road whom Diamond had shared 16th place with last week all dropped into tied 17th place. The top 20 of the local weeks count list remained unchanged for the 17th week running.

Olivia Newton-John set a new record for weeks with more than 1 in the chart for a female artist as she had now seen 7 weeks with ‘If You Love Me (Let Me Know)’ and ‘I Honestly Love You’ both in the charts. She moved ahead of Lucille Starr who had managed 6 weeks with 2 in the charts.

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