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The Ultimate Averaged Chart - The BBC Chart Re-Imagined

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  • I think the world was a lot simpler back then Graham. Everybody wasn't as obsessed with confidentiality and data protection like they are now. I mean back then RM even displayed who gave them dealer charts. We already know that exact sales weren't given just a top ten or such of sales. Sadly charts didn't have the importance back then they were basically a good gimmick to just sell music papers.
    The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

    The Way It Was Meant To Be

    Comment


    • Here is the next Ultimate Averaged Chart for Week Ending September 22nd 1956

      Here are all '' the uppers, the downers, the just hanging 'arounders '


      The Ultimate Averaged Chart - Week Ending September 22nd 1956 NME MM RM Total
      Last This The Sound Survey Stores 65 20 60 Points
      Week Week The Top 30 Singles Chart TOP 30 Scored
      2 1 Lay Down Your Arms - Anne Shelton 1 1 1 4350
      1 2 Whatever Will Be Will Be - Doris Day 2 2 2 4205
      5 3 Rocking Through The Rye - Bill Haley and His Comets 3 3 3 4060
      11 4 Ying Tong Song / Bloodnok's Rock'n'Roll Call - The Goons 4 4 3915
      4 5 Why Do Fools Fall In Love - The Teenagers 6 5 5 3705
      6 6 Walk Hand In Hand - Tony Martin 6 4 7 3605
      3 7 A Sweet Old Fashioned Girl - Teresa Brewer 6 6 8 3505
      8 8 The Great Pretender - The Platters (A) 10 6 3415
      18 9 Bring A Little Water Sylvie - Lonnie Donegan (B) 8 9 3243
      10 10 Only You - The Platters (B) 9 11 3005
      14 11 A Woman In Love - Frankie Laine 12 7 10 2975
      9 12 The Saints Rock'n'Roll - Bill Haley and His Comets 11 11 12 2840
      7 13 Mountain Greenery - Mel Torme 10 14 13 2785
      13 14 Born To Be With You - The Chordettes 15 12 15 2380
      15 15 Dead Or Alive - Lonnie Donegan (A) 17 14 2308
      NEW 16 Hound Dog - Elvis Presley 13 20 16 2290
      12 17 Serenade - Slim Whitman 14 18 17 2205
      17 18 I Almost Lost My Mind - Pat Boone 19 16 18 1860
      RE 19 Rock Around The Clock - Bill Haley and His Comets 17 20 19 1850
      22 20 I'll Be Home - Pat Boone 20 20 19 1655
      16 21 I Want You I Need You I Love You - Elvis Presley 16 975
      21 22 By The Fountains Of Rome - Edmund Hockridge 17 910
      RE 23 See You Later Alligator - Bill Haley and His Comets 21 650
      19 24 I'm In Love Again - Fats Domino 22 585
      23 25 The Wayward Wind - Tex Ritter 23 520
      20 26 Heartbreak Hotel - Elvis Presley 24 455
      24 27 You Are My First Love - Ruby Murray 25 390
      27 28 Love Me As Though There Were No Tomorrow - Nat King Cole 26 325
      NEW 29 By The Fountains Of Rome - David Hughes 27 260
      NEW 30 When Mexico Gave Up The Rumba - Mitchell Torok 18 260
      Razzle Dazzle - Bill Haley and His Comets 28 195
      More - Perry Como 29 130
      A Woman In Love - Ronnie Hilton 30 65
      The Great Pretender / Only You - The Platters 5
      Dead Or Alive / Bring A Little Water Sylvie - Lonnie Donegan 9
      Ying Tong Song - The Goons (B) 13
      Bloodnok's Rock'n'Roll Call - The Goons (A) 14
      25 Walk Hand In Hand - Ronnie Carroll
      26 Long Tall Sally - Pat Boone
      28 My Son John - David Whitfield
      29 Serenade - Mario Lanza
      30 Who Are We - Ronnie Hilton
      The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

      The Way It Was Meant To Be

      Comment


      • I can see why Bring A Little Water is higher than Dead or Alive. Faster tune and more rock than the other side.
        http://thechartbook.co.uk - for the latest are best chart book - By Decade!
        Now including NME, Record Mirror and Melody Maker from the UK and some Billboard charts

        Comment


        • Yeah it was far and away the better side.
          Elvis storms the chart this week and Bill Haley comes back for yet another good run with Rock Around The Clock to join his current two higher placed hits, as See You Later Alligator also re-charts.
          Mario Lanza's Serenade is not the charting hit of 1955 it another version of the song that Slim Whitman has in the top twenty.
          The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

          The Way It Was Meant To Be

          Comment


          • Sorry to have a query. Did I miss something on methodology re double-sided hits? I thought that there would only be 1 entry per disc in the UAC, with the second side contributing points to the combined total. Are you showing the Platters and Lonnie Donegan sides separately because of the respective papers' A-side preference? The Goons is still 1 entry.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by membranemusic View Post
              Sorry to have a query. Did I miss something on methodology re double-sided hits? I thought that there would only be 1 entry per disc in the UAC, with the second side contributing points to the combined total. Are you showing the Platters and Lonnie Donegan sides separately because of the respective papers' A-side preference? The Goons is still 1 entry.
              Back when I started posting this part of the project from 1955 onwards membrane I had originally planned to combine split sides for the UAC but most guys suggested to keep to what the charts actually listed to reflect this time period authentically. If all charts decided to combine then the UAC would combine too but if one chart, usually NME, combined but the others split then the UAC would go with the majority and split too. So this has consistently been applied since the beginning of this section in 1955. Hope this clarifies this for u.
              The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

              The Way It Was Meant To Be

              Comment


              • Understood – there’s a logic there based on the published perception of the 3 charts.
                However, and this is just my opinion, I personally take a more record-business point of view in that 1 disc should have 1 chart entry even though the B-side is responsible for reported sales.

                Normally this is not a problem, but is this era of September 1956 there is an interesting dichotomy for the chart compilers here. So how does one combine sales points? You have already achieved this with The Goons.
                Method 1 was the BBC method of just taking the 1st side in each case, and ignoring the 2nd-side chart position, producing some under-performing hits sometimes.
                Method 2 is factoring in points compensation for the 2nd side. One has to be careful here, otherwise the record would be No.1. I notice for the Goons you have factored in the difference between the MM top position (13), and the other best top position (NME & RM). One could do the same with the Platters and Lonnie Donegan.

                For 22 Sep 1956, the Platters double (with 4 + 1 places compensation) would achieve 3895 points and the No. 5 position, not Nos. 8 and 10. Lonnie Donegan (with just 1 + 1 places compensation) achieves 3335 points and would be No.9, not Nos 9 and 15. I hope my calcs are good. This also means that further down, records are moved up 2 positions. Is this fairer?
                Just an opinion!

                Comment


                • I also suggested combining the sides, but most people seemed to disagree. Another problem is that sometimes a chart might combine both sides but still only list one of the songs. Record Mirror appears to have done this with the Goons single. I'm wondering if NME did the same with the Johnston Brothers single Hernando's Hideaway / Hey There in 1955, one of the records that started the discussion on what to do with the separately listed sides. The weekly positions for the songs on each chart:
                  NME RM (HH) RM (HT)
                  10 7 18
                  4 5 16
                  2 5 11
                  1 4 -
                  1 3 -
                  3 4 14
                  5 8 14
                  10 15 13
                  8 - 19
                  11 - -
                  15 - -
                  "Hey There" never appeared on the NME chart despite being close to the top ten in RM, while NME almost always gave "Hernando's Hideaway" a higher position than RM. It's impossible to say for sure, but I'd assume NME combined the points for both sides and then only credited them to one of the sides.

                  Comment


                  • I think until the situation settles down, and NME is the only separator, there are going to be difficulties either way. It is a credit to RM and MM that eventually they saw the light and combined.

                    As alluded to in the post above, one of the problems of separation is that unless both sides appear in the chart you never know how that record has been treated unless the chart compiler has a fixed policy of combining - which none of them did at this time.

                    Originally posted by membranemusic View Post
                    Method 1 was the BBC method of just taking the 1st side in each case, and ignoring the 2nd-side chart position, producing some under-performing hits sometimes.
                    Do you have an example? In all the cases I have seen, the BBC ignored NME's separated positions and applied the other charts joint position.

                    Comment


                    • Above three comments are interesting and thanks for those perspectives.

                      [QUOTE=membranemusic; I notice for the Goons you have factored in the difference between the MM top position (13), and the other best top position (NME & RM).
                      [/QUOTE]

                      That's not how I achieved that position for The Goons membrane. I simply ignored MM because it had split the sides and simply took an average of NME and RM and awarded that to MM. Also using that formula for The Platters like you explained placing it at #5 would just place it to equal the combined chart position on NME which I don't think would be realistic as there is no way of knowing what the combined positions would have been on MM and RM. By averaging both charts with split positions at least gives a middle point which at least is evidenced.

                      As setg 1 explains above I also suspect without any evidence that some sides were combined in NME but only the higher placed side mentioned. Let's be honest here, these fifties charts taken at face value are almost certainly less accurate than later years and those were only really a guide. BUT by combining them and taking an average for the UAC at least provides a more robust outcome. Combined has to be better than any individual chart.

                      As I said a couple of times before the fifties is by a country mile the most difficult era to work with because of the very difficult task involved in applying a formula to an ever changing landscape that is the various music papers charts sometimes combining sometimes splitting so there is no consistent structure to work with. Whatever system I use some record will be disadvantaged.
                      That said the approach I take I do think is the fairest. At this time the record chart was still very 'song' orientated as opposed to seeing it as a two sided record so given that most charts for the time being split the record this has to be taken into account. This is what the charts reflected at this time.
                      Ironically, MM and RM, then Disc, will also combine sides like NME , then come the sixties it will be NME who splits the sides.

                      If I remember correctly the BBC just took the easy way out for split sides and considered only the highest placed ignoring the lower which was unfair as it did not represent either side accurately. For EP's in the sixties when RR did not include them the BBC did much as I do at present and took an average from the other papers' charts and awarded this to RR to establish a chart position.
                      The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                      The Way It Was Meant To Be

                      Comment


                      • Here is the next Ultimate Averaged Chart for Week Ending September 29th 1956

                        Here are all '' the uppers, the downers, the just hanging 'arounders '

                        The Ultimate Averaged Chart - Week Ending September 29th 1956 NME MM RM Total
                        Last This The Sound Survey Stores 65 20 60 Points
                        Week Week The Top 30 Singles Chart TOP 30 Scored
                        1 1 Lay Down Your Arms - Anne Shelton 1 1 1 4350
                        2 2 Whatever Will Be Will Be - Doris Day 2 2 2 4205
                        3 3 Rocking Through The Rye - Bill Haley and His Comets 4 3 3 3995
                        4 4 Ying Tong Song / Bloodnok's Rock'n'Roll Call - The Goons 3 6 4 3940
                        16 5 Hound Dog - Elvis Presley 5 5 5 3770
                        11 6 A Woman In Love - Frankie Laine 8 4 7 3475
                        8 7 The Great Pretender - The Platters (A) 13 6 3258
                        9 8 Bring A Little Water Sylvie - Lonnie Donegan (B) 12 8 3125
                        7 9 A Sweet Old Fashioned Girl - Teresa Brewer 10 6 11 3065
                        10 10 Only You - The Platters (B) 11 10 2993
                        6 11 Walk Hand In Hand - Tony Martin 9 10 14 2870
                        12 12 The Saints Rock'n'Roll - Bill Haley and His Comets 11 16 12 2740
                        15 13 Dead Or Alive - Lonnie Donegan (A) 19 9 2665
                        19 14 Rock Around The Clock - Bill Haley and His Comets 13 14 13 2590
                        13 15 Mountain Greenery - Mel Torme 12 15 15 2515
                        5 16 Why Do Fools Fall In Love - The Teenagers 14 8 17 2405
                        14 17 Born To be With You - The Chordettes 15 8 16 2400
                        17 18 Serenade - Slim Whitman 18 20 1505
                        30 19 When Mexico Gave Up The Rumba - Mitchell Torok 23 18 1300
                        NEW 20 Giddy-Up-A-Ding-Dong - Freddie Bell and The Bell Boys 16 20 1195
                        NEW 21 Razzle Dazzle - Bill Haley and His Comets 17 910
                        24 22 I'm In Love Again - Fats Domino 29 19 850
                        26 23 Heartbreak Hotel - Elvis Presley 22 18 845
                        23 24 See You later Alligator - Bill Haley and His Comets 19 780
                        22 24 By The Fountains Of Rome - Edmund Hockridge 19 780
                        NEW 26 Glendora - Perry Como (B) 25 17 670
                        21 27 I Want You I Need You I Love You - Elvis Presley 21 650
                        RE 28 Be-Bop-A-Lula - Gene Vincent 24 455
                        NEW 29 More - Perry Como (A) 26 325
                        NEW 29 More - Jimmy Young 26 325
                        Glendora - Glen Mason 28 195
                        18 I Almost Lost My Mind - Pat Boone 30 65
                        Only You - The Great Pretender - The Platters 6
                        Bring A Little Water Sylvie / Dead Or Alive - Lonnie Donegan 7
                        20 I'll Be Home - Pat Boone
                        25 The Wayward Wind - Tex Ritter
                        27 You Are My First Love - Ruby Murray
                        28 Love Me As Though There Were No Tomorrow - Nat King Cole
                        29 By The Fountains Of Rome - David Hughes
                        The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                        The Way It Was Meant To Be

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by MrTibbs View Post
                          the BBC just took the easy way out for split sides and considered only the highest placed
                          I stand corrected. If they had done that at this time, when all charts were liable to separate, it would have produced bizarre results. With 'The Platters' above, the separators can't even agree on which side is the highest placed!

                          Comment


                          • If you take the RM chart, Donegan is at 8 & 9 and The Platters are at 6 & 10 so, on a 'combined' basis, every position below 10 is two places lower than it should be.

                            So if you were compiling a composite all-combined chart would you jack up all those records two places?

                            Comment


                            • I actually find it strange that charts at that time actually did separate sides. When the NME launched their 'record chart' in 1952 you would have thought that is exactly what it would be but from the start the NME chart listed split sides which defied the principle of a 'record chart' as it really was still a song chart in reality.
                              Both RM and MM further perpetrated this practise on their arrival on the chart scene and as a result the 'record' charts of that era were a mess littered with split sides taking up two chart positions and denying other records an opportunity to chart.

                              Why oh why couldn't they all have stuck to a record is a record comprising of two sides, end of story.
                              The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                              The Way It Was Meant To Be

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by MrTibbs View Post
                                split sides taking up two chart positions and denying other records an opportunity to chart.
                                And this why I think that when some charts split sides there is no 'perfect' way of doing a composite combined chart. In the RM chart above, even if you moved up the positions below 10 two places you still wouldn't know what numbers 19 and 20 should have been.

                                Has anyone done an analysis on which records were most affected?

                                NME denied Elvis (Rock-a-hoola/Can't help falling in love) number 1 and allowed Cliff (Next Time/Bachelor Boy) there for only 1 week. Perhaps most damaging was NME denying the Everleys (Bird Song) the top spot meaning it is missing from the 'official' pantheon of number ones.

                                Comment


                                • I think another important factor at this time is that the record charts were still in the shadow of the 'Sheet Music Chart'. It was already well established and was given just as prominent a display in both NME and MM chart pages alongside their record charts. Also at this time Radio Luxembourg's Top Twenty Show had a massive radio audience and this remember was a broadcast of the 'Sheet Music Chart'.

                                  So, the record buying public I believe were still asking for specific songs they heard on the radio as opposed to a record, so they would be asking for The Great Pretender or Only You when they went into their record shop. Some stores would therefore report on both sides independently when they gave their report to the relevant music paper while others would just add both together in their return.
                                  The dealer returns had to be reflecting this confusion as the ones I have from '54 and '55 for RM showed some sides split and some combined on individual returns. Compilation would have been as much a nightmare for the music papers as it is for me just coping with three sets of figures.

                                  So NME were possibly predominantly getting the 'add together' in their returns and ignored the split returns, and MM and RM were getting split returns and ignored joint returns. Who would know.
                                  The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                                  The Way It Was Meant To Be

                                  Comment


                                  • Radio Luxembourg might also play a record by an artist from the USA that wasn't released in this country yet. So if you wanted the record by that artist you wouldn't have got it. Though you might have got the record if you lived in a port town, such as Liverpool, as they did have more imports coming in. The sheet music charts were sometimes a bit quicker than record industry at getting a song out. They certainly were in the late 40's and early 50's. Though the Sheet Music Charts tended to hold on to records, even if sometimes the distributors of records had stopped sending them out. I had a look at the sheet music chart for the 29 September and found two songs missing in the top 20. Who Are We? And Autumn Concerto.
                                    The "More" track being new on the above chart had been in three weeks on the Sheet chart and was number 7. Showing a much slower release on record. The top two were flipped on the Sheet Chart.
                                    Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                    Comment


                                    • Splodj, the most egregious example of the BBC using Method 1 for double –sided hits was “The Next Time/Bachelor Boy”, which on 29th December 1962 and January 26th 1963, should have been No. 1 on the BBC chart, though fortunately it did not affect intervening weeks.

                                      Without doing the calcs:
                                      “Rock a Hula Baby/Can’t Help Falling In Love”: 3rd March 1962, 10th March 1962, 17th March 1962 - possibly more weeks at No.1 on the BBC.

                                      “Blue Bayou / Mean Woman Blues” - Roy Orbison: 12 Oct 1963, 19th Oct 1963, 2nd Nov 1963 , 9th November 1963 - possibly higher than No. 4 on the BBC, although there was a strong No. 3?

                                      However I think the UAC reflects a fair outcome in these cases.

                                      Comment


                                      • Sorry to raise another query on the same chart 22 Sep 1956 - not a double-sided issue. This is almost trivial, but ....

                                        Should Mitchell Torok not be No. 28? As I see it, his record entry in MM is being under-compensated by the lack of Nos 21-30 on the RM chart. This under-compensation affects all records equally apart from those that get a placing in the other Top 20. If you give UAC nos 21-29 [all NME entries] another 600 points as though they were all joint No. 21 on RM [or you could choose an average points figure], plus Torok also, then Torok’s score is 860, enabling him to pip D Hughes in a tie break by virtue of being much higher on MM (No. 18).
                                        Just an opinion!

                                        Comment


                                        • Hi membrane. Your thoughts on points below #20 is valid, the only downside being we don't have a clue what positions any record actually held below 20 on RM or MM. Originally I thought about using the same system the BBC used ie considering all records below #20 on RM and MM to be at #21 to equalise points but then took the view as it wasn't factual and as all records couldn't hold that position it would actually make the bottom ten of the UAC more a guesstimate than it already is so just went with the straight positions. As we truly have no evidence that Mitchell Torok would definitely have been in an expanded RM Top 30 it would not be fair to assume so and credit it with points (it wasn't in NME's Top 30 either) .

                                          Because of this I've always said that between 1955 and late 1962 when MM and Disc also moved to a Top 30 as well to take the Top 20 as factual and consider the bottom ten with a tongue in cheek approach.

                                          That said I sincerely appreciate you raising this valid point and hope my explanation reassures you.
                                          The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                                          The Way It Was Meant To Be

                                          Comment


                                          • Originally posted by membranemusic View Post
                                            Splodj, the most egregious example of the BBC using Method 1 for double –sided hits was “The Next Time/Bachelor Boy”, which on 29th December 1962 and January 26th 1963, should have been No. 1 on the BBC chart, though fortunately it did not affect intervening weeks.

                                            Without doing the calcs:
                                            “Rock a Hula Baby/Can’t Help Falling In Love”: 3rd March 1962, 10th March 1962, 17th March 1962 - possibly more weeks at No.1 on the BBC.

                                            “Blue Bayou / Mean Woman Blues” - Roy Orbison: 12 Oct 1963, 19th Oct 1963, 2nd Nov 1963 , 9th November 1963 - possibly higher than No. 4 on the BBC, although there was a strong No. 3?

                                            However I think the UAC reflects a fair outcome in these cases.
                                            Yes, you are right and I am wrong. I even criticised the BBC on this thread for its 'split' methodology and said it should have used the same system it did for EPs. My memory then tricked me into thinking it had!

                                            Of course by the time the BBC chart came along NME was the only splitter. We cannot tell how a BBC chart would have treated the issue at this time when most were splitting. I don't think the 'highest placing' method would have been workable and suspect they too would have split.

                                            Comment


                                            • Mr Tibbs, yes I totally accept your point of view. The issue of lower figures 'invention' was a real problem when I was busy in the late 1960s doing the straight average Top 50 every week.

                                              With that in mind, I nonetheless had the nerve to juggle the figures for the UAC chart of 29 Sep 1956.. For those who are interested, the Platters double come in at No. 6 on jiggled joint points, and Lonnie Donegan up to No. 7. This was on my Method 2, but the same result happens with both on Method 1. Further down, Perry Como does the jiggle at No. 24 including RM compensation. But we have only 29 records ion the Top 30!

                                              I won't be doing this every week, promise.

                                              Comment


                                              • If you have NME positions 21-30 why not use them? Naturally it is imperfect because NME is only shining some light on 21-30, but surely some light is better than none!

                                                Originally posted by membranemusic View Post
                                                or you could choose an average points figure
                                                This is an interesting possibility. If all three charts were Top 20s it would be unfair to assume that an absentee is at number 21 - because that is the highest possible position it could be. You could do some research and determine an average position. If this were (say) 25 you could then treat an absentee as at number 25. So you would then award each absentee 25 points (BBC method) or minus 4 points (UAC) method, instead of 21 and zero respectively.

                                                But I don't see how applying the same score to positions 21-30 (whether 21 or 25) can be superior to applying the actual NME positions.

                                                Or am I missing something? (again!)

                                                Comment


                                                • Originally posted by Splodj View Post
                                                  If you have NME positions 21-30 why not use them? Naturally it is imperfect because NME is only shining some light on 21-30, but surely some light is better than none!



                                                  This is an interesting possibility. If all three charts were Top 20s it would be unfair to assume that an absentee is at number 21 - because that is the highest possible position it could be. You could do some research and determine an average position. If this were (say) 25 you could then treat an absentee as at number 25. So you would then award each absentee 25 points (BBC method) or minus 4 points (UAC) method, instead of 21 and zero respectively.

                                                  But I don't see how applying the same score to positions 21-30 (whether 21 or 25) can be superior to applying the actual NME positions.

                                                  Or am I missing something? (again!)
                                                  I totally agree with you there Splodj because that is my reasoning as well. At least NME's 21 to 30 positions were factual so at least the bottom ten of the UAC is based on fact not supposition. To my mind that's the error the BBC made, assuming every record not in an individual chart be awarded points as if it were #21 or #31 which all of them couldn't be. It totally distorted, especially the lower positions, in the BBC chart.
                                                  The Record Mirror Chart Re-Calculated, Re-Worked, Extended

                                                  The Way It Was Meant To Be

                                                  Comment


                                                  • To be fair, for most of the 'composite' period the BBC calculated 30 but broadcast only a Top 20. When we look at their Top 30s in that file it is easy to forget that the 21-30 section, which contained the bulk of such 'distortions', was only for their private use.

                                                    Comment

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