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by Tom Eames
Here we go then! The start of another brilliant decade of music. The year started with four more weeks at the top for Rolf Harris with "Two Little Boys". This was overturned by Edison Lighthouse with "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Grows)", with a two week rise to the top, a record for a debut act. Lead singer Tony Burrows was also in Brotherhood of Mann, Flowerpot Men and the Ivy League. Lee Marvin then reached the top with "Wand'rin' Star", a one hit wonder from his film "Paint Your Wagon". It also sold two million worldwide but flopped in the US. Quite possibly one of the best songs of all time got to No. 1 after that, with "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel, a multi-Grammy winning song, from the years best selling album of the same name.
"All Kinds Of Everything" by Dana, which won the Eurovision Song Contest that year for Ireland, then reached the top spot. She later became a major Irish political figure. One hit wonder Norman Greenbaum got to No. 1 for two weeks with "Spirit In The Sky", and was returned to the top by another one hit wonder in 1986. The first major football record went to the England World Cup Squad with "Back Home", to go with their defence of the World Cup in Mexico. It was No. 1 for three weeks. Christie then had a No. 1 with "Yellow River" for a week, a song rejected by the Tremeloes, and sold three million worldwide. It was later used in a Yellow Pages ad.
One of the summer anthems of all time then topped the chart for seven weeks. Mungo Jerry's "In The Summertime" sold seven million worldwide and jumped from 13 to 1 in the UK. It was also the first three track single to top the chart. Whilst this was No. 1, one of the best rock anthems of all time was sitting at No. 1 for five weeks. This was Free's "All Right Now". The next No. 1 was the best charting hit of the year, by the best charting artist of the year. It was yet again, Elvis Presley with "The Wonder Of You", his first for more than six years, and the last in his lifetime. For one week only, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles reached No. 1 with "Tears Of A Clown", which was first released in 1967 but ignored until UK Motown released it again and gave them their only No. 1. Freda Payne, the first solo female US R&B singer to top the chart did so with "Band Of Gold" for six weeks, a song about an uncomsumated marriage.
Matthews' Southern Comfort then reached No. 1 for three weeks with "Woodstock", a song originally by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young and written by Joni Mitchell. Jimi Hendrix's three-track single which included "Hey Joe" and "All Along the Watchtower", and the main song "Voodoo Chile" reached the top for a week as a tribute soon after his premature death. It was his only No. 1 single. The last No. 1 of the year went to "I Hear You Knocking" by Dave Edmunds, which jumped from 16 to 1 to get there, and remained for six weeks. Another big hit of the year was a song that didn't reach the top 20, but could end up as the best charter of all time. It was "My Way" by Frank Sinatra which spent 23 weeks in the top 40 this year alone, and was to spend more than 100 weeks on it in its full chart career.
Other big hits of the year included "Something" by Shirley Bassey, "Groovin' With Mr Bloe" by Mr Bloe, "Paranoid" by Black Sabbath, "Leaving On A Jet Plane" by Peter, Paul and Mary, "Mama Told Me Not To Come" by Three Dog Night, "Make It With You" by Bread, "I Want You Back" by the Jacksons, "War" by Edwin Starr and "Black Night" by Deep Purple.
Here are the 20 best charting singles of the year:
Here are the ten most successfully charting artists of 1970: