My memories of the 60's music starts with my sisters Laurie and Pinkie. They would bring home some 45's they bought and I remember my favorite being "Little Deuce Coupe" by the Beach Boys. Laurie had some of Bobby Rydell records such as "Wild One", and I don't know who bought Johnny Tillotson's "Poetry In Motion" but I really remember liking that song as well. But it wasn't until the Beatles exploded in the US in early 1964 that I really got into music.
Thanks to a local station in Dearborn WKNR, I got to hear the onslaught of the British Invasion. The Beatles really dominated the airwaves for the first 5 months of 1964 due to the fact that every 45 they released on several other labels before 1964 were being re-released all at the same time. The Beatles were signed to Capitol records who promoted them heavily before their February visit to New York City to be on the Ed Sullivan show. I can remember sitting in my living room in Livonia on a Sunday night watching them perform. I can remember my Dad shaking his head, too. One of my sisters had bought "Meet The Beatles" LP and we played it to death. Every song was good.
Meanwhile on WKNR, other British pop groups were being played as well. So here is a list of the top British Invasion groups that charted in the USA. This list is in no particular order, but 1964 is the pivotal year starting with the Beatles....
Remember, these are only songs from the 60's. I know many of them would have hits in the 70's and beyond, which I will get to later.
1. BEATLES - "I Want To Hold Your Hand/I Saw Her Standing There" was the first 45 released by Capitol. The label promoted them heavily, building up to their famous Ed Sullivan Show appearance on a Sunday in February of 1964. "Meet The Beatles " was the first LP Capitol released and it sold in the millions. Because of the phenomonal success of this, all the older Beatle 45's on a variety of different labels were re-released. "She Loves You" on Swan records. "Twist And Shout" on Tollie records "Please, Please Me" and "Do You Want To Know A Secret" on Vee-Jay records. And these re-releases were huge hits. Some re-releases such as "Ain't She Sweet" on Atco records didn't do so well. After the furor died down a little, the group settled in to dominate the rest of the '60's. While Elvis Presley dominated the late 50's and early 60's, and influenced many artists, The Beatles by far were the main influence for many artists for the decade. Their classic album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" was accepted as another change in music style. The Beatles were the cause of thousands of Garage Bands springing up over the USA. Also, they spearheaded the birth of "Psychedelic" music as well. It's hard to explain to someone who wasn't around to experience it how great it was.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG: Too hard to pick. Depends on the mood.
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM : Again too hard to pick but "Abbey Road" is close.
WORST 45 RELEASED : "Matchbox/Slow Down" in late 1964. With all the great songs on
"Beatles 65' " Why Capitol picked this one, I don't know.
2. DAVE CLARK 5 - Almost immediately after the Beatles hit it big came "Glad All Over" and "Bits & Pieces" on the radio by the DC5. Featuring the powerful rock and roll voice of lead singer, keyboardist Mike Smith, the hard pounding drums of Dave Clark and a saxophone, this group for a short while was the Beatles chief rival for the top of the charts. They had many hits through 64, 65 & 66, but while the Beatles kept evolving and changing, the Dave Clark 5 didn't, which lead to them quietly fading away. Other great songs "Can't You See That She's Mine" "Because" "Over & Over" "Catch Us If You Can" "Do You Love Me" "I Like It Like That" and "Come Home"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG : "Because"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM : "Greatest Hits"
SMARTEST MOVE BY A GROUP : Leader Dave Clark's decision early on to own all the
rights to all their songs. Brilliant!
3. PETER & GORDON - While the Beatles were dominating the charts the first half of 1964, This duo from the shores of England had a huge #1 hit with a Lennon/McCartney song "A World Without Love". They would last a few years, had a few more hits, most notably "Nobody I Know" "I Go To Pieces" and "Lady Godiva".
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG : "I Go To Pieces"
4. ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS -By far the bluesiest, ballsiest group to come out of England. Eric Burdon gritty, gutsy voice fit the Animals sound very well. They exploded with "House Of The Rising Sun" and went on to have many more classic hits "It's My Life" "Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" "Sky Pilot" "When I was Young" and "Don't Bring Me Down" just to name a few. Eric Burdon is still going strong today, still touring.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG : Hard to pick but "Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood"
5. GERRY & THE PACEMAKERS - This group had 2 huge hits in the USA, both of them classics. Their first, "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying" is a song you never get tired of. "Ferry Across The Mersey " was also a great song and was an ode to their hometown. Other songs were "How Do You Do It" and "I Like It"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - Easily "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying"
6. ROLLING STONES - When this group came over to the USA, they were the exact opposite of the Beatles clean cut image. Their 1st charted song in the USA was a cover of Buddy Holly's "Not Fade Away". Their next songs "It's All Over Now" "Tell Me" "Heart Of Stone" "Play With Fire" Time Is On My Side" and "The Last Time" all did well. In 1965 they exploded with "Satisfaction" and the rest is rock and roll history. Many huge hits followed, including "Get Off Of My Cloud" "19th Nervous Breakdown" "As Tears Go By" "Paint It Black" "Mother's Little Helper" "Lady Jane" "Let's Spend The Night Together" "Ruby Tuesday" "Dandelion" "She's A Rainbow" "Jumpin' Jack Flash" "Street Fighting Man" "Honky Tonk Women". They would become a more hard rock group in the 70's, after Brian Jones left the group in 1969. The bad boys of rock & roll certainly made their mark. Their albums in the 60's included "12 X 5" "Now!" "Out Of Our Heads" "Aftermath" "December's Children" "Their Satanic Majesties Request" (Their answer to the Beatles "Sgt. Pepper" album) "Beggar's Banquet" and "Let It Bleed"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG : Hard to Pick but "Jumpin' Jack Flash"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM : "Out Of Our Heads"
PAT'S FAVORITE LP CUTS THAT SHOULD'VE BEEN SINGLES - "Gimme Shelter" from "Let It Bleed"
"Under My Thumb " from "Aftermath" "Sympathy For The Devil" from "Beggar's Banquet"
7. THE KINKS - Amazingly underrated group that had so many great songs. The hard rock guitar sound in
their hits was something I never heard before. "You Really Got Me" "All Day & All Of The Night"
"Set Me Free" "Till The End Of The Day" "Tired Of Waiting For You" "Well Respected Man" and
"Sunny Afternoon" are classics. I loved this group's sound. I will have more to say about this great
group when I publish the 70's music info in the future
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "All Day & All Of The Night"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG THAT AMAZINGLY NEVER CHARTED - "Waterloo Sunset"
8. HERMAN'S HERMITS - Featuring lead singer Peter Noone, this group had a number of hits in the USA from late 1964 thru mid 1967. "Can't You Hear My Heartbeat" "Mrs. Brown, You've Got A Lovely Daughter" "I'm Henry the VII, I Am" "A Must To Avoid" and "Listen People". Their last big hit was "There's A Kind Of Hush" / "No Milk Today", their only double sided hit. A true teeny-bopper favorite.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Listen People"
9. ZOMBIES - This group had 3 big hits, The first was "She's Not There", The second "Tell Her No" and their last hit was in 1969 "Time Of The Season" Lead singer Colin Blunstone had a feathery voice and keyboardist Rod Argent had a hit in the early '70's with "Hold Your Head Up"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Tell Her No"
10. BILLY J. KRAMER & THE DAKOTAS - Four songs that made noise. "Little Children" "Bad To Me"
"I'll Keep You Satisfied" and "From A Window" No more charted songs after 1965.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Little Children"
11. SEARCHERS - An underrated group that had a few good songs. "Sugar And Spice" "Needles And Pins"
"Love Potion Number Nine" and "Bumble Bee" Several songs made the mid-charts and are a pleasant
memory when you hear them again, such as "Don't Throw Your Love Away" and "What Have They
Done To The Rain"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Love Potion Number Nine"
12. YARDBIRDS - The legendary group that spawned 3 great guitarists. Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton and
Jimmy Page. They all weren't in the group at the same time. 5 singles made their mark. "For Your
Love" "Heart Full Of Soul" "I'm A Man" "Shapes Of Things" and "Over, Under, Sideways, Down"
Jeff Beck went on to have 2 very popular FM albums "Truth" (1968) and "Beck-Ola" (1969). Eric
Clapton formed Cream in 1966 and went on to huge success with them. Jimmy Page helped form
one of most awesome bands of the 60's and 70's, Led Zeppelin.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - Tough one..."Shapes Of Things"
13. THE WHO - Great quartet from London. Their first charted song "I Can't Explain" was a big hit in
the Detroit area, but charted low on the national charts. Other great songs are "The Kids Are Allright"
"My Generation" "Happy Jack" "I Can See For Miles" and "Magic Bus". It was the release of the
first "Rock Opera" style album "Tommy" in early 1969 that propelled them to superstardom. The
2 hits off the album "Pinball Wizard" and "I'm Free" were great songs. This group featured arguably
the best bass guitar player in John Entwistle, The best drummer in Keith Moon, One great singer in
Roger Daltrey and a great singer/songwriter guitarist in Pete Townshend. They would have continued
success through the early 70's... The Smother's Brothers appearance when they smashed all their
instruments to pieces after a song sticks in my mind, especially the perplexed look on Tom Smothers
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Happy Jack"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM - "Tommy"
PAT'S FAVORITE 'B' SIDE - "Whiskey Man" 'B' side of "Happy Jack"
14. PETULA CLARK - You got to give her props. "Downtown" exploded in late 1964 and she went on
to have many hit records. "I Know A Place" "My Love" "A Sign Of The Times" "I Couldn't Live
Without Your Love" "This Is My Song" and "Don't Sleep In The Subway" Great pop voice.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Downtown"
15. DUSTY SPRINGFIELD - One of the first English artists to chart after the Beatles did, Dusty scored with hits like "I Only Want To Be With You" "Wishin' And Hopin'" "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" "The Look Of Love" and "Son Of A Preacher Man". Great sultry voice.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "The Look Of Love"
16. TREMELOES - This group had 2 hits, "Here Comes My Baby" and "Silence Is Golden"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Silence Is Golden"
17. WAYNE FONTANA & MINDBENDERS - This group also had 2 hits, the first "Game Of Love" was a big number one hit for them. They had one more hit after Wayne Fontana left the group, "Groovy Kind Of Love" in 1966.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Game Of Love"
18. DONOVAN - Born in Scotland, he became popular in England as a singer/songwriter/guitarist in the style of Bob Dylan. He had numerous hits in the USA. "Sunshine Superman" "Mellow Yellow" "Hurdy Gurdy Man" "Atlantis". "Catch The Wind" was his first charted song in 1965. Other great songs included "Wear Your Love Like Heaven" "There Is A Mountain" "Colours" and "Lalena". Donovan was the true hippie style singer. His appearance on the Smother's Brothers Show when he sat in a circle and after his song was through, the audience threw flowers at him, sticks in my mind.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Hurdy Gurdy Man"
19. HOLLIES - Group from Manchester, England had many hits. Great harmonies, great guitars and very
memorable hooks. "Look Through Any Window" ""Bus Stop" "Stop Stop Stop" "On A Carousel"
and "Carrie-Anne" are just some of the great songs they recorded. Graham Nash went on to record
with Crosby, Stills and Nash (and sometimes Young) to great success. After Nash left in late 1968 the
Hollies continued on with more hits in the 70's.They still sounded like the Hollies.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Bus Stop"
20. MOODY BLUES - Had a top ten hit with "Go Now" in 1965, then group couldn't have another hit. Lead singer Denny Laine left, the group reformed with Justin Hayward and John Lodge and went on to record some incredible music. In 1968 they released an album "Days Of Future Passed" which featured the London Festival Orchestra. On this classic album was "Tuesday Afternoon" and the beautiful "Nights In White Satin" (It became a huge hit later in 1972) The 70's would be very good for the group as their popularity rose with each album.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Nights In White Satin" (The LP version, not the edited 45 version)
21. TROGGS - This group released several 45's, but only 2 made it big. "Wild Thing" a classic song that
never loses its appeal to this day and the beautiful "Love Is All Around". The B side of "Wild Thing"
was "With A Girl Like You" which was a pretty good song, too.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - What else? - "Wild Thing"
22. BEE GEES - The disco kings of the 70's started out as a pretty good pop group with some good songs.
"New York Mining Disaster 1941" "To Love Somebody" "Holiday" "Massachusetts" "Words" "I've Gotta
Get A Message To You" "I Started A Joke" and "First Of May" were on the charts from 1967 thru 1969
They went on to mega success in the '70's. I prefer the 60's stuff myself...
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "First Of May"
23. SMALL FACES - Very, very underrated group. Had a slew of hits in England in the mid 60's but couldn't crack the US charts. In late 1967 they released "Itchycoo Park" and finally hit paydirt. "Tin Soldier" was another good song but didn't do well. In the spring of 1968 they released "Lazy Sunday", but it didn't chart. The album "Ogden's Nut Gone Flake" is considered by many as a cult classic, with it's round album cover with a tobacco tin on it. Lead singer Steve Marriott left in 1969 and formed Humble Pie with Peter Frampton as an original member. The remaining 3 members of the group joined up with Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood and became the Faces. Humble Pie had some success in the early 70's, Peter Frampton went on to a pretty successful solo career, The Faces had some hits in the early 70's. Rod Stewart went on to phenomonal success and Ronnie Wood joined the Rolling Stones in 1975.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Lazy Sunday"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM - "Odgen's Nut Gone Flake"
24. CHAD & JEREMY - The other English duo that we got confused with Peter & Gordon. They had a few good songs as well, most notably "Yesterday's Gone" "A Summer Song" "Willow Weep For Me" "Before And After" and "Distant Shores"
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Yesterday's Gone"
25. FREDDIE & THE DREAMERS - I can still remember the first time I saw them on TV (Maybe Ed Sullivan) singing "I'm Telling You Now" and all of them except the drummer kicking their feet in the air. I'm sure you can find it on YouTube.com. They had a couple of other songs "Do The Freddie" and "You Were Made For Me". They only charted in the year 1965.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "I'm Telling You Now"
26. MANFRED MANN - Ah, we can never forget their first hit "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" a number one hit for them in the fall of 1964. Other songs they had were "Sha La La" and "The Mighty Quinn". They would have more success in the 70's
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "The Mighty Quinn"
PAT'S FAVORITE 'B' SIDE - "By Request-Edwin Garvey" 'B' side of "The Mighty Quinn"
27. SPENCER DAVIS GROUP - This group has 2 songs of note to mention. "Gimme Some Lovin" and "I'm A Man". Multi-talented lead vocalist, guitarist, keyboardist Steve Winwood left the group in 1967 and formed Traffic, which had some success in the early 70's. Winwood also had a very successful solo career in the 80's. He also was a member of Blind Faith with Eric Clapton, which released their only LP in 1969.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Gimme Some Lovin'"
28. CREAM - One of the first "Supergroups" of rock. The trio consisted of Jack Bruce on bass and vocals,Eric Clapton on guitar and vocals and drummer Ginger Baker. Their 1st album "Fresh Cream" was released in 1966. In 1967 they released the classic album "Disraeli Gears" with its psychedelic cover. The music was awesome, especially the wah-wah pedal. They split in 1969. Some of their many great songs include "I Feel Free" "I'm So Glad" "Sunshine Of Your Love" "Strange Brew" "White Room" "Crossroads" and "Badge". Jack Bruce had an awesome voice. Clapton could sing as well and of course is a great guitarist. Ginger Baker's drumming was different, jazz influenced. This trio was magic.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Sunshine Of Your Love"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM - "Disraeli Gears"
29. PROCOL HARUM - This group had only one hit in the 60's and it was a doozy. "A Whiter Shade Of Pale" was played on the radio in the summer of 1967. With it's haunting organ melody, it's a song that you just never get tired of. The group would go on to some success in the early 70's and lead guitarist Robin Trower would have some success as a solo artist in the 70's as well. They released an album in 1969 "A Salty Dog" which never had any hits charted off it. An album cut "Pilgrim's Progress" comes closest to their big hit "A Whiter Shade Of Pale"'s sound.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "A Whiter Shade Of Pale"
PAT'S FAVORITE ALBUM - "A Salty Dog"
30. JEFF BECK - The original lead guitarist of the Yardbirds, Beck would have 2 pretty good albums in late 60's "Truth" and "Beck-Ola". Rod Stewart was his lead vocalist on these 2 albums, which got very extensive play on FM radio which was awesome in the late 60's and early 70's. He charted with Donovan on "Goo Goo Barabajagal" in 1969. He would have several popular albums in the 70's.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "I Ain't Superstitious"
31. DEEP PURPLE - This group's first hit was "Hush" in 1968. Other songs were covers of "Kentucky Woman" and "River Deep-Mountain High". They exploded in the early 70's with a harder, louder sound.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Hush"
32. PINK FLOYD - This group never had a charted song in the USA in the 60's. Their early songs included
the weird, spacey "See Emily Play" They were a FM band in the true sense, That was the only place you
could hear their music. Their album "Piper At The Gates Of Dawn" was released in 1967 and "A Saucerful Of Secrets" in 1968. After Syd Barrett left the group in 1968, they added David Gilmour in his place. They went on to slowly build their reputation and finally hit huge success in the 70's.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "See Emily Play"
33. LED ZEPPELIN - Probably the first true "Heavy Metal Band" was formed in early 1968. Jimmy Page
a former Yardbirds guitarist and studio session man, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and a great power
rock drummer John Bonham made up the cast. Their 1st album "Led Zeppelin" exploded all over FM
radio in spring and summer of 1969. Their 2nd LP "Led Zeppelin II" was released in late 1969. They
would go on to dominate the album charts through most of the 70's.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Communication Breakdown"
PAT"S FAVOTITE ALBUM - Every one they ever released
34. BLIND FAITH - Another "Supergroup" featuring Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Ginger Baker and
Rich Grech. They only recorded and released one album in 1969. No charted songs, but heavy FM play.
"Can't Find My Way Home" "Well All Right" and "Had To Cry Today" were some of songs on the LP.
PAT'S FAVORITE SONG - "Can't Find My Way Home"
35. TOM JONES - Welsh singer had many charted songs in the 60's. His biggest hits were "It's Not Unusual" "What's New Pussycat?" "Green, Green Grass Of Home" "Delilah" "Help Yourself" "Love Me Tonight" and "I'll Never Fall In Love Again".
36. ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK - Born in India and moved to London at age 11. Had many easy listening charted songs in the 60's, among them "Release Me" "There Goes My Everything" "Am I That Easy To Forget" A Man Without Love" and "Les Bicyclettes De Belsize"
THE FOLLOWING ARE SOME OTHER NOTABLE ARTISTS WITH 1 SONG..MAYBE 2
37. HONEYCOMBS - Have I The Right 1965
38. NASHVILLE TEENS - Tobacco Road 1964
39. CILLA BLACK - You're My World 1964
40. SHIRLEY BASSEY - Goldfinger 1965
41. LULU - To Sir, With Love 1967
Morning Dew 1968
42. JONATHAN KING - Everyone's Gone To The Moon 1965
43. FORTUNES - You've Got Your Troubles 1965
44. SWINGIN' BLUE JEANS - Hippy Hippy Shake 1964
45. CRAZY WORLD OF ARTHUR BROWN - Fire 1968
46. STATUS QUO - Pictures Of Matchstick Men 1968
47. WHISTLING JACK SMITH - I Was Kaiser Bill's Batman 1967
48. IAN WHITCOMB - You Turn Me On 1965
49. CRISPIAN ST. PETERS - The Pied Piper 1966
50. MARIANNE FAITHFUL - As Tears Go By 1965
51. THUNDERCLAP NEWMAN - Something In The Air 1969
52. HEDGEHOPPERS ANONYMOUS - It's Good News Week 1965
53. SANDIE SHAW - Always Something There To Remind Me 1965
54. MARY HOPKIN - Those Were The Days 1968
55. GEORGIE FAME - Yeh Yeh 1965
Ballad Of Bonnie & Clyde 1968
56. SILKIE - You've Got To Hide Your Love Away 1965
57. DAVID & JONATHAN - Michelle 1966
58. ADAM FAITH - It's Allright 1965
Like any list, I'm sure I have omitted someone. Just e-mail me and let me know