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Easy Livin – Uriah Heep

Easy Livin – Uriah Heep

Uriah Heep (named for a character in Charles Dicken’s Great Expectations) and Deep Purple are two of the earliest bands to introduce progressive-rock elements to heavy metal. Without these two groups, it would be difficult to imagine the existence of one-hit wonders Rush, Triumph, Queensryche, Metallica, Dream Theater, even Tool. British rockers Uriah Heep were also one of the first groups to incorporate “swords ‘n sorcery” lyrics in their songs and soon, songs about castles, … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s, Rock

An American Trilogy – Mickey Newbury

An American Trilogy – Mickey Newbury

There aren’t many patriotic one-hit wonders. “Dawn of Correction” by The Spokesmen is one. But “An American Trilogy” by Mickey Newbury has to top this fairly small and exclusive list. Based on three 19th century songs (“Dixie” and “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” from the Civil War and an African American spiritual in “All My Trials”), “An American Trilogy” was first arranged and performed by Mickey Newbury who reached #26 on the Billboard Top … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s, Country

I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony) – The Hillside Singers

I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony) – The Hillside Singers

It’s one of the most influential and well-regarded TV commercials ever. A bunch of young, fresh-faced, multi-cultural kids singing “I’d like to buy to world a Coke/and keep it company.” Remember the Coca-Cola ad from 1971? Even if you weren’t alive then, you’ve probably seen the ad or at least heard the song since variations on the theme have popped up in Coke ads in 1971, 1990, 2006, 2007 and 2010. But I’ll bet you an … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s

Amazing Grace – The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards

Amazing Grace – The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards

One-hit wonders don’t get more unexpected or unlikely that this one. Today, we bring you “Amazing Grace” by the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards. No, that’s not some groovy mid-1970s rock band. It’s a cavalry regiment of the British Army, and the senior Scottish regiment. These bagpipe-laying, kilt-wearing lads have their own pipes and drums corp and in 1972, their version of “Amazing Grace” reached #11 on the Billboard Top 40, making The Royal Scots Dragoon … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s

Popcorn – Hot Butter

Popcorn – Hot Butter

“Popcorn” is a remarkable piece of pop music because it’s arguably the most famous early synthpop instrumental. You can lump songs like the “Axel F Theme” by Harold Faltermeyer into that same synthpop group. Amazingly, this peppy little version by studio band Hot Butter was the third recorded version of “Popcorn” in three years. And it has been recorded by lots of other bands in the years since it hit the Billboard Top 40 in … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s

Joy – Apollo 100

Joy – Apollo 100

We love the silly, distinctive instrumental one-hit wonders that break through all the traditional pop music to become an unexpected hit. “Joy” by Apollo 100 definitely fits that description. Who would have guessed that a rock version that is basically a note-for-note remake of “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” by Johann Sebastian Bach would ever become a hit that was played on Casey Kasem’s American Top 40 radio show. Then again, in the early 1970s, … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1970s, Featured