So, as you might have seen this morning, I’m enjoying some reciprocal reposting with Now This Is What I Would Call Music (or Steve, if you’re into the whole brevity thing), and his terribly enjoyable ‘Every Number One’ project. So my mixtape today is on a number ones theme. These are, objectively*, the best number ones of each decade, from the foundation of the charts in 1952, to the best number one of the 10’s so far. And who better to kick things off than the wonderful ‘Tennessee’ Ernie Ford, with the best song about work ever written.
It get’s a lot more difficult with the 60’s. I could pick one a year and still struggle. So based purely on feels today, and beating The Beach Boys, Beatles, Supremes and Shadows as competition, I’ve had to go for Rusty Springboard’s beautiful, heart wrenching You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me.
The 70’s were very much the decade of the album, and there is a lot of crap over the course of the decade. ABBA should really be my choice, but wreck their chances by having too many to choose from. The difficult me wants to pick Uptown Top Ranking by Althea and Donna, but realistically, it’s between Space Oddity and Bohemian Rhapsody, both of which are pretty much albums contained within one track. Bowie takes it because he is Bowie.
The 80’s actually contain more riches than I had anticipated. I’ve sung the praises of Lionel Richie’s Hello elsewhere, and so I’ve gone with the slightly odder choice of double A side, The Model/Computer Love by the mighty Kraftwerk, to whom I owe my love of electronic music, and the few phrases I speak in German. Ich bin der Musikant mit Taschenrechner in der Hand.
A toughie, made mainly of terrible, but lovable songs. The more credible charms of White Town’s Your Woman (or the Abort, Retry Fail EP, for any pedants in the room) and Blur’s Beetlebum pale in comparison to one of my first singles (and the very first I got on cassette), Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince’s Boom! Shake the Room.
The naughties are tough, because I have so many memories associated with tracks that I might not necessarily have liked if they weren’t linked inextricably to moments in my life. For example, Sexyback by Justin Timberlake. It’s not a patch on Like I Love You, but it came out as I moved to London for the first time. So in the end I am between three tracks that guarantee party, and one that is lovely and heartbreaking, and forever associated with England going out of Euro 2004 on penalties in my head. So R Kelly’s Ignition, Beyoncé’s Crazy in Love, and Yeezy’s Stronger all miss out to Brummie poet, Mike Skinner’s Dry Your Eyes.
The sheer amount of messing about with the charts that the internet has brought in has resulted in the charts becoming something of a nonsense in the 10’s. It’s just too easy to stream, so novelty and stupidity largely win the day. But in short, anything Pharrell or Taylor Swift worked on works for me. I went with the one which has Daft Punk on it too.
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