1962 as a transitional year

TWO 4 Seasons #1s

Ray-Charles-I-Cant-Stop-Loving-YouLooking back, I thought of 1962 as a transitional year. It wasn’t the 1950s anymore, but nor was it the 1960s as we later thought of it with the Beatles, Motown, and, later, the antiwar movement.

1962 was the Cuban Missle Crisis when even a nine-year-old might think the world was about to end. The movies To Kill a Mockingbird and Lawrence of Arabia were released that year, and Marilyn Monroe died.

I Can’t Stop Loving You  – Ray Charles, five weeks at #1, gold record. It also spent TEN weeks at #1 on the rhythm and blues charts and five weeks at #1 on the adult contemporary charts. And it appeared on the album Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music. Truly a genre-bending smash.
Big Girls Don’t Cry – The 4 Seasons, five weeks at #1, gold record. Three weeks at #1 on the RB charts.
Sherry – The 4 Seasons, five weeks at #1, gold record. Also a week at #1 on the RB charts.

Roses Are Red (My Love) – Bobby Vinton, four weeks at #1, gold record. Likewise, #1 for four weeks on the AC charts and got to #5 on the RB charts.

Peppermint Twist, Part 1 – Joey Dee and the Starlighters, three weeks at #1, gold record. And #8 on the RB charts.
Telstar – The Tornadoes, three weeks at #1. #5 on the RB charts. I remember this because it would be one of the instrumentals that would be played to the news breaks
Soldier Boy – The Shirelles, three weeks at #1, gold record. Three weeks at #3 on the RB charts.
Hey! Baby – Bruce Channel, three weeks at #1, gold record. Also #2 on the RB charts
Duke Of Earl– Gene Chandler, three weeks at #1, gold record. Plus five weeks at #1 RB

Two weeks at #1 pop

The Twist – Chubby Checker, and #4 RB. In 1960, this ALSO went to #1 pop, and #2 RB for three weeks
Johnny Angel – Shelly Fabares. Was in three Elvis movies and played the daughter on The Donna Reed Show
He’s A Rebel – The Crystals. Also, #2 RB
Breaking Up Is Hard To Do – Neil Sedaka. #12 RB
Monster Mash – Bobby “Boris” Pickett, gold record. #9 RB. The novelty song received airplay every Halloween
Good Luck Charm – Elvis Presley, platinum record
Sheila –  Tommy Roe, gold record. #6 RB

A single week at #1 pop

Stranger On The Shore – Mr. Acker Bilk, gold record. The instrumental was #1 for SEVEN weeks AC, and #7 RB
The Stripper – David Rose and His Orchestra, gold record. The instrumental was #1 for two weeks AC and #12 RB. But I (and a lot of people) remember it best from this 1967 TV commercial for Noxema Medicated Shave Cream, featuring Swedish model Gunilla Knutson saying, “Take it off. Take it ALL off.”
The Loco-Motion – Little Eva, gold record. Three weeks at #1 RB. Carole King’s babysitter had the first #1 of this song, but Grand Funk also hit the top of the charts in 1974
Don’t Break The Heart That Loves You – Connie Francis. Four weeks at #1 AC

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

2 thoughts on “1962 as a transitional year”

  1. Quite a year, now that you mention it. I guess you and I were around eight years old, and I certainly remember most of the songs listed. In fact, I Can’t Stop Loving You and YES! Modern Sounds was genre smashing and still stands the test of time! Bravo

  2. I agree that 1962 was the transition year for music and many other things. It was great to see the titles you mentioned I haven’t seen or heard them in decades.

    I will look up Telestar I’d love to hear it again

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