All charts valid

Mar 2020 All charts valid

Dear Editor

All Charts Valid

I read with interest Pat Murphy’s Country 1960 feature in the March 2020 issue of The Beat.
While identifying five chart- topping country recordings, he has done a disservice to another two. In Billboard’s listings Skeeter Davis’s ‘(I Can’t Help You) I’m Falling Too’ (pictured above) spent three weeks at No.2 and attained an identical statistic in the Cashbox Country Singles Chart in the specified year.
However, Music Vendor placed it at the pinnacle of its chart for a solitary week in September, and while that publication did not carry the same wave of influence, its chart was just as valid: a No.1 is a No.1, whatever the chart, similar to the five differing UK pop charts of that period.
It was composed by the same pairing of Don Robertson and Hal Blair milking their original idea following the massive success Hank Locklin brought them. The quaint concept of the answer song was rife in the culture of country music then, with countless examples adding to the genre’s legacy.
Music Vendor also placed Johnny Horton’s ‘North To Alaska’ in the exalted position of No.1 for one week in November that same year, while it wasn’t until the following year Billboard eventually named it the nation’s top airplay title. In Cashbox, it was consistently held off top spot, peaking for an astonishing eight successive weeks at No.2.
So all things considered, that amounts to seven country No.1s in 1960, and all courtesy of George Albert’s, Frank Hoffmann’s and Joel Whitburn’s indispensable tomes.
Michael Stott, Ossett,
West Yorkshire


Dear Editor

Kenny: man of inspiration

After hearing and reading about the sad loss of Kenny Lynch, I realise that we have lost a very notable person in the music world.
In 2014, I went to see him at The Wyllyotts Theatre in Potters Bar. After his impressive performance, I went to the door at theback of the stage and waited for him to come out. When he did, he was very friendly to me.
I then handed him photographs, and sheet music to sign, and he asked me to whom I would like them dedicated. I replied to him, ‘just write your name and that will be fine’. I then jokingly said to him: “I can assure you that these items are not going on e-bay. I was astonished when he then said to me:
“You sell them, and make some money on them.” Very few people would say that!
When I got back home, I looked at the items which he had signed,and he had written on them: “To my pal.”
What a great guy he was, with a wonderful personality. I am so sad to lose him.
I will always remember you, Kenny.
Peter Sumner, Cambridge



Dear Editor

Radio Caroline promotion winner

I’ve only gone and won the first prize: the year subscription to The Beat.
It will come in very handy for my new summer season. I play music at a local pub, anything from the 50s to the present day.
I often do featured artists and some simple competitions.
I am a bit of a music historian, finding obscure facts for the customers. I got into playing records for our local youth club, way back in 1976.
I had many summer seasons working in a family club on the Lincolnshire coast. I became great friends with Alan Barton and Colin Routh (Black Lace).
I played a major part in the launch of Superman, which is now a massive party hit. Unfortunately we lost Alan in a freak accident in Germany: I lost a great friend.
Great memories and stories to tell there.
David Potter,
Boston, Lincs


Dear Editor

Family favourites

May I comment (again!) on a couple of things in The Beat issue 213 please?
In “Memories across the years”, it was a jolt to be reminded that Johnny Tillotson’s “Send me the Pillow You Dream on” only made it to No. 21 in the charts. That one always reminds me of a particular “radio moment”.
Many will remember the Sunday lunchtime request programme “Two Way Family Favourites”. One day, the presenter (Cliff Michelmore or Jean Metcalfe?) praised Royal Mail for managing to deliver a pillow-case to the BBC! Apparently a young lady had actually written her request on such an item for the record to be played for her soldier boyfriend serving overseas – address on one side, request on the other.
Johnny Cleethorpes’s “Somethin’ Stupid” article had me laughing. There were many other examples of course as comedy was a “genre” of its own.
He seems surprised by Chuck Berry’s “My Ding-a-ling” though. As we now know Chuck had his seamy side (which could have got him in serious trouble, today) and he would have delighted in this record’s innuendo.
However, I understood the main reason for its success was Mary Whitehouse! Her anti-filth campaign was well meant of course, but in highlighting certain examples, she also gave them publicity.
Obviously when she latched onto this record the “rebellious young” went out and bought it.
Phillip Crossland


Dear Editor

Brits Awards’ poor standard

I was really quite concerned after watching The Brits Awards on February 18.
Having been once and decided not to take up the invite again, I’m so pleased I missed out this year. There was some lovely words spoken about Caroline Flack who, sadly, is no longer with us, but after that it, showed how awful the music business has gone to somewhere hard to describe.
The compere Jack Whitehall tried very hard to make nasty and unnecessary comments, and the following day I read a few reports that were much like how I felt. I know I’m an old Rocker coming from the late 50s/60s music – and still being played on the radio – but 90% of last night’s music was to a poor standard and won’t be heard in 12 months time. The speeches and behaviour were poor and one was full of bad language.
In the late 70s, the show was called the “Rock and Pop” awards. We Barron Knights were very lucky one year to win one. It was presented by Richard Stilgoe and he was funny and brilliant without being rude in any way. Other award winners were the Bee Gees, Leo Sayer, ELO, Gerry Rafferty, Ian Dury and others.
It was a great day for everyone, and the music from all those others who won awards will never be forgotten. I could have quite easily switched the TV off but I decided to be brave and believe what I was watching.
If Paul McCartney…Ray Davis…The Tremeloes..the Manfreds, The Searchers….Marty Wilde etc., etc., were at an awards ceremony, there would be respect to each other and polite ‘thank yous’ for sure.
Certain music publishers, who I have known for years and now retired, are saying the business is crying out for a new Billy Joel, Ray Davis, Cook and Greenway…..Barry Gibb… Abba etc., etc..
When I read the very informative Beat magazine and see all the groups still touring, I think its brilliant that they fill the theatres and all down to their great records.
Keep Rockin’, lads.
Pete Langford,
Barron Knights