Before we get started on today's #AtoZChallenge, I would be remiss if I didn't pay respects to another 'J' artist. John Geils, guitarist and founder of the J Geils Band passed away yesterday. He was 71. I'll do a regular post about him after this challenge has completed, but I do wish to extend my condolences to his family and fans at this time.
Moving right along with the #AtoZChallenge. Today is the eleventh day of the challenge and that brings us to the letter J. These three songs were the top ‘J’ songs according to the Billboard Hot 100 Year-End lists.
1971 - Joy to the World - Three Dog Night
"Joy to the World" is a song written by Hoyt Axton, and made famous by the band Three Dog Night. The song is also popularly known by its opening lyric, "Jeremiah was a bullfrog". Three Dog Night originally released the song on their fourth studio album, Naturally in November 1970 and subsequently released an edited version of the song as a single in February 1971.
The song, which has been described by members of Three Dog Night as a "kid's song" and a "silly song", topped the main singles charts in North America, was certified gold by the RIAA, and has since been covered by multiple artists. It is also played at the end of every Denver Broncos home victory.
The single had been out less than two months, when on April 9, 1971, "Joy to the World" was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America, for shipments of over 1,000,000 units across the United States. The record was also given a Gold Leaf award by RPM magazine for sales of over a million units. The record won the award for the Best Selling Hit Single Record by the National Association of Recording Merchandisers in March 1972. It was also ranked by Billboard magazine as the year-end #1 pop single of 1971.
The single went on to sell 5 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling singles of all time.
1971 - Just My Imagination - Temptations
"Just My Imagination" is a song by American soul group The Temptations. Released on the Gordy label, and produced by Norman Whitfield, it features on the group's 1971 album, Sky's the Limit. When released as a single, "Just My Imagination" became the third Temptations song to reach number one on the US Billboard Hot 100. The single held the number one position on the Billboard Pop Singles Chart for two weeks in 1971, from March 27 to April 10. "Just My Imagination" also held the number-one spot on the Billboard R&B Singles chart for three weeks, from February 27 to March 20 of that year. The song finished out the year on the Billboard Hot 100 Year-end Charts at number 9.
1975 - Jive Talkin' - Bee Gees
"Jive Talkin' " is a song by the Bee Gees, released as a single in May 1975 by RSO Records. This was the lead single from the album Main Course and hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100; it also reached the top-five on the UK Singles Chart in the middle of 1975. Largely recognised as the group's "comeback" song, it was their first US top-10 hit since "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart".
The song was originally called "Drive Talking". The song's rhythm was modelled after the sound their car made crossing the Julia Tuttle Causeway each day from Biscayne Bay to Criteria Studios in Miami.
According to Maurice Gibb, while hearing this rhythmic sound, "Barry didn't notice that he's going 'Ji-Ji Jive Talkin'', thinking of the dance, 'You dance with your eyes'...that's all he had...exactly 35 mph...that's what we got." He goes on to say, "We played it to [producer] Arif [Mardin], and he went 'Do you know what "Jive Talkin'" means?' And we said 'Well yeah, it's, ya know, you're dancing.' He says 'NO...it's a black expression for bullshitting.' And we went 'Oh, Really?!? Jive talkin', you're telling me lies...' and changed it."
The song is ranked on the Billboard Hot 100 Year-end Chart for 1975 at number 11.
Be sure to follow the 2017 AtoZ Challenge playlist for all of the songs featured in this years challenge.
Did you listen to any of these tunes in the 70's? Would you like to know more about these artists in future posts? Let me know in the comments.
What does tomorrow bring?Tomorrow brings us the letter 'K'.
Any guesses as to which Billboard Hits from the 70s will be showcased?