Friday, May 04, 2012

Charting 1997: 10th May

I don't say much about real-life events on this blog, but there are one or two that seem like they can't be avoided. So I might as well remind everyone that there was a General Election on the 1st of May, meaning that this chart covers the first CDs sold under a Labour government in the UK. As it happens, even by 1997 standards there's a lot of in with the new going on. 

01.(NE) Gary Barlow - Love Won't Wait

Trivia question: what's the only UK Number One single to credit Madonna as a writer, but not a performer? Well, obviously it's this one otherwise I wouldn't have mentioned it. Barlow's second solo single, and some eyebrows were raised at the time as the multi-award-winning songwriter resorted to cover versions this early.
02.(NE) George Michael - Star People '97
If you're keeping track, this is the fifth single from the Older album, which was a year older by now. With the aid of a remix, it keeps his Top 3 run going. 
03.(NE) The Seahorses - Love Is The Law
And completing this all-new Top 3, the first single from the group who'd recently played a secret gig at my university. I didn't go. 
Naturally, they didn't have a Top 3 hit from that alone, they were the new project from ex-Stone Roses guitarist John Squire, who wrote this song but doesn't sing it - the vocalist was former busker Chris Helme. There was a brief hold-up to their career when somebody pointed out that "The Seahorses" is an anagram of "he hates Roses", though a brief change to just Seahorses was scotched by legal problems.
04. (4) The Cardigans - Lovefool {re-issue}
05. (2) R Kelly - I Believe I Can Fly
06.(NE) Jamiroquai - Alright
Unconnected to the identically-titled hits by Cast and Supergrass, this was the third single from their album, oddly released a full six months after the second. 
07. (6) Shola Ama - You Might Need Somebody
08. (1) Michael Jackson - Blood On The Dancefloor
09. (5) DJ Quicksilver - Bellissima
10. (3) 911 - Bodyshakin'
11.(NE) Red 5 - I Love You... Stop!
For years I'd assumed this would be based on a sample of 'Stop To Love' by Luther Vandross, but it turns out it isn't. I believe the name Red 5 is a reference to Nigel Mansell but feel free to prove me wrong on that too. 
12.(NE) Foo Fighters - Monkey Wrench
The first Foo Fighters single to feature an actual band, rather than just a solo effort by Dave Grohl. Although he does play the drums on it as well. Also the debut of his moustache.
13. (9) Blackstreet - Don't Leave Me
14.(NE) Ant And Dec - Falling
Their last single (aside from the rubbish football song in 2002) and this drippy ballad wasn't a great way to bow out. Especially since actual singing wasn't exactly a strong point. 
15.(NE) Mansun - Six (EP) - Taxloss
Squeezing a fifth hit from the album (it's not an EP if there's only one track common to all formats) with a song that is frankly trying too hard to be clever, full of self-referential gags about the music industry and poor jokes about "taxloss lover from Liverpool" and so on. The various bits of Beatles plagiarism are obviously supposed to be witty too, as is the stunt in the video.  
16.(NE) Dru Hill - In My Bed
Apparently somebody's been sleeping in their bed. Well, listening to this would have helped them doze off.
17. (8) Robbie Williams - Old Before I Die
18. (7) Republica - Drop Dead Gorgeous
19.(NE) Paul McCartney - Young Boy
His first new solo material since the Beatles Anthology project that had been so high-profile in the middle of the decade. Presumably that's why this song, really no more than a typical McCartney potboiler, was a significant hit for him.
20.(15) The Course - Ready Or Not
21.(13) The Lightning Seeds - You Showed Me
22.(NE) Gene - Where Are They Now?
Another asking-for-trouble song title from Martin Rossiter and friends, although the fact that there's a picture of a fan on the back cover of the 7" may be a hint that they were in on the joke. Much as I like this song, I always thought it an odd choice of single. Years later I also bought the second CD format with live tracks from the Royal Albert Hall.
23.(16) No Doubt - Don't Speak
24.(11) Brainbug - Nightmare
25.(NE) Goodfellaz - Sugar Honey Ice Tea
Sometimes the jokes are too easy, aren't they?
26.(NE) Nuyorican Soul Featuring Jocelyn Brown - It's Alright, I Feel It!
It is indeed alright.
27.(14) Daft Punk - Around The World
28.(NE) 3 Colours Red - Pure
Title track from the album and yet another hit for them, though the chart positions were starting to trend downwards already.
29.(NE) Hurricane #1 - Step Into My World
Coming a distant second in the battle of the debut singles by new bands formed by songwriting guitarists who used to be in other bands and didn't sing... For this was the new band built around Andy Bell, not the one from Erasure but the one from Ride. It was possibly more surprising for him to stay away from the mics as he had sung his own material in Ride, but for whatever reason he handed over to the raspier Alex Lowe. 
The riff from this song was used on Grandstand, or possibly Match Of The Day.
30.(NE) Prefab Sprout - A Prisoner Of The Past
Their first new material in five years, during which they may have been listening to some of the same records as Mansun were. Sadly their last hit, but a better way to go than Ant & Dec.
31.(NE) Jay-Z Featuring Foxy Brown - Ain't No Playa
No, it's not called that on the album.
32.(10) The Notorious BIG - Hypnotize
33.(20) Sash! - Encore Une Fois
34.(17) U2 - Staring At The Sun
35.(NE) Tin Tin Out Featuring Tony Hadley - Dance With Me
The end of the Eighties revival. Until the next one.
36.(21) Texas - Halo
37.(19) D:Ream - Things Can Only Get Better {second re-issue}
38.(25) Spice Girls - Mama/Who Do You Think You Are?
39.(12) James - Tomorrow
40.(28) Michelle Gayle - Sensational

42.(NE) Fountains Of Wayne - Sink To The Bottom
An odd choice of second single, but I suppose they had to go with the song the US record company had done a video for. 
44.(NE) Human Nature - Wishes
45.(23) Blur - Song 2
Despite this sudden slump under the new government, at least one member of Blur didn't bear a grudge against the Labour  Party: Dave Rowntree was actually a candidate for them in the 2010 election, albeit in an unwinnable seat. 

50.(NE) Katrina And The Waves - Love Shine A Light
We'll see more of this one
51.(NE) Dreadzone - Earth Angel
53.(NE) Feeder - Cement
58.(RE) Peter Andre - Natural
61.(NE) Tilt - My Spirit

63.(NE) LSG - Netherworld
64.(NE) Bis - Everybody Thinks That They're Going To Get Theirs
The only song from their first album I thought was any good.

65.(NE) Various Artists - Feverpitch EP
[The Pretenders 'Goin' Back'; The La's 'There She Goes'; Orlando 'How Can We Hang On To A Dream?'; Nick Hornby 'Football']
Released from the soundtrack to the film of course. Third of four chart appearances to date for the La's song, which is used brilliantly to bridge between scenes set in the 1960s and in 1988/9.
66.(NE) Jon Spencer Blues Explosion - Wail

No comments: