The series that has come close to being halted with so halted with so many of the #1 indie hits, particularly, from the 90s, only reaching the pinnacle due to the exploitation of loopholes around record label ownership/distribution rules. Can it survive today and make it into a new year. There’s only one way to find out….
1 December 1987 : mp3 : Nina Simone : My Baby Just Cares For Me
I’ve written about this before, back at the start of this year. You’ll hopefully recall that My Baby Just Cares For Me had originally been recorded in 1958 for Nina’s debut LP Little Girl Blue but was really quite an obscure song until some marketing whizzkid decided it would make the perfect accompaniment to an advert for Chanel No. 5 perfume.
Such was the popularity of the ad that there was a demand for the song to be released as a single which happened in October 1987 on Charly Records, a small label specialising in reissuing obscurities and whose distribution arrangements meant its releases could qualify for the indie charts. It not only spent 5 weeks at the top of the indie charts but it went Top 5 in the mainstream charts.
1 December 1997 : Aaron Carter – Crush On You
I had to google the singer and the song. He was seemingly a 10-year old kid whose big brother was in Backstreet Boys. The song was his first single and it was a cover of an 80s pop hit by a band called The Jets (me neither!!). I have never heard it and have no wish to.
The series is now on red alert….and again it comes down to a decade later, and at a time of year when novelty records are in vogue. Things aren’t looking good are they?
1 December 2007 : mp3 : Dizzee Racal – Flex
Dylan Kwabena Mills saves the day!! The third and final single from his third album Maths + English, it reached #23 in the main singles chart but managed 2 weeks at the top of the indie chart thanks to it being on XL Records. Arctic Monkeys took over the following week before they were elbowed aside by Shaun the Sheep with a 45 aimed entirely at the Xmas market.
Worth mentioning that Flex was the last relative flop for Dizzee Rascal – four of his next six singles (some of which were collaborations) all went to #1.
See you next year for the next instalment.
Next week will see the start of some guest contributions looking back at 2017.