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#616267 - 09/23/20 12:36 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
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Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show - On The Cover Of Rolling Stone

Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen - Hot Rod Lincoln

Sade - Smooth Operator

The Turtles - Happy Together

Steppenwolf - Born To Be Wild

Warren Zevon - Werewolves Of London

Lighthouse - One Fine Morning

Orleans - Dance With Me

America - Horse With No Name

Desmond Dekker and The Aces - Israelites

Procol Harem - Whiter Shade Of Pale
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#616283 - 09/23/20 01:04 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Jim Fogle]
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VideoTrack Offline
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Maybe I'm wrong but I'm pretty sure that the America album wouldn't be in the 'one hit wonder' category? The America album also featured "Sandman" and "I need you" which I think were fairly good hits, well, over here anyway.
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#616298 - 09/23/20 03:28 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Jim Fogle]
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eddie1261 Offline
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This has been a very interesting thread, but what gives a band recognition beyond that one hit is stability and longevity. Some of these bands are in the Hall of Fame and many have won Grammys. How much more recognition is there?

Also noteworthy is how "my taste" centric this has been. As well as each poster's opinion of what recognition is. I have seen so many bands listed that were hugely popular, and again, what is recognition if snot sold out arenas?

Jim's recent post included America, The Turtles, Commander Cody, Sade, Steppenwolf and Warren Zevon. That acts were all considered heavyweights and again I make the refrain, what is it that you consider recognition that they didn't get? I played a show with George Frayne (Commander Cody) and he talked about arrivals and departures and how hard it is to sustain momentum when members keep coming and going. This is also why I research the bands in Wiki to look at that very thing.

The band on Jim's post that makes this point is Lighthouse. For me personally, with my tastes at the time being Chicago and Blood Sweat and Tears, Lighthouse was the Canadian equivalent and I LOVED them. But if you look them up on Wiki, my god they must have had 50 people pass through that band. 25 in just the horn players. They did pioneer symphonic rock, which gave us ELO soon after. The Thoughts of Movin' On and their live album I still play. And Howard Shore moved on after disbanding to take the Saturday Night Live music director and score for film, winning 3 Academy Awards for Lord Of The Rings.

And Sade... MORE recognition? An OBE which was advance to a CBE? Sade was huge! She took a self imposed hiatus three times but her career was wide ranging and very successful.

So a lot of "Who didn't get enough" is SO relative. Somebody out there likes Rick Astley, so.....


Edited by eddie1261 (09/23/20 03:28 PM)
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#616307 - 09/23/20 04:40 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: eddie1261]
Registered: 12/27/13
Posts: 1939
Loc: St. Louis, MO. USA
sslechta Offline
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Originally Posted By: eddie1261
Somebody out there likes Rick Astley, so.....


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#616308 - 09/23/20 04:51 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
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eddie1261 Offline
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One thing working against bands today is that they rarely stay together beyond a few releases. Old school bands kept their lineup for 10-12 albums or more. Now they make so much money early that they put out 2 albums and part ways to go solo or form new bands. Or retire! So from those 2 albums, there may be just ONE monster hit that everybody remembers, thus they are one hit wonders. Surviving member continue on with one original guy who used that wealth to buy the name, and that's the state of the band world anymore.

I remember in the early 90s I did some shows where we opened for The Vogues. In talking to the members, none of them were in any way connected to any of the original guys. They just bought the name. We opened for them 4 times, and we saw 3 different lineups. Our little Motown band had the same lineup for 3 years before I quit playing to go back to college so I could get a big boy job. Longevity plays into this formula.
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#616311 - 09/23/20 05:15 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: eddie1261]
Registered: 04/07/13
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Charlie Fogle Online   content
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Your story of the Vogues brings to mind groups that were together for a while but had run their course by the time their 'breakout' hit came. Spiral Staircase "Love you more today than yesterday" and the Casinos doing the same with "Then you can tell me goodbye".
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#616315 - 09/23/20 05:39 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Charlie Fogle]
Registered: 04/08/11
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eddie1261 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Charlie Fogle
Your story of the Vogues brings to mind groups that were together for a while but had run their course by the time their 'breakout' hit came. Spiral Staircase "Love you more today than yesterday" and the Casinos doing the same with "Then you can tell me goodbye".


Funny thing Charlie is that their label demanded that they spell their name Spiral STAREcase. Pat Upton was a GREAT singer. His story is one of good fortune that found him pretty much ascending that "starecase" of success until late in life when he died after what is only referred to as "a lengthy illness", which may or may not have been cancer. All built on that ONE song.

Did you know he sang backup for Ricky Nelson and was supposed to be on the plane that crashed and killed Nelson and everyone on board?

The Casinos... Cincinnati's own!! Until I looked to see, I didn't know that they didn't write their hit. JD Loudermilk wrote it. I just love following these spiderweb connections between bands and writers and all.
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#616317 - 09/23/20 05:45 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
Registered: 04/08/11
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eddie1261 Offline
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One band I can't believe I missed is The Brooklyn Bridge. Led by the lead singer of The Crests, Johnny Maestro, they had their huge hit with Jimmy Webb's The Worst That Could Happen, and followed that up with Blessed Is The Rain, but curiously, I always thought the better song was on the B side of that, Welcome Me Love. Check out the latter on youtube and listen to that singing. They were in my jam zone with all the harmony and the horn section. They just didn't last all that long relatively speaking. They did a few albums but went right into "nostalgia tour" mode within a few years. And Welcome Me Love was written by Tony Romeo, who wrote a lot of hits. I'm Gonna Make You Mine, Indian Lake, I Think I Love You (He did a lot of the bubble gun stuff) to name a few. Writing is still the thing that trips my trigger way more than performing and will probably always be.


Edited by eddie1261 (09/23/20 05:56 PM)
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#616354 - 09/24/20 04:18 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: eddie1261]
Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 5875
Loc: South Carolina
Charlie Fogle Online   content
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Funny thing I had wrong about the Casinos. There was a regional band that also had the name "The Casinos" that alternated home base between Charlotte, NC and Charleston, SC as for a period of time because they had a local Saturday morning TV show and would base themselves in whichever market was broadcasting their program. I thought for years they were 'the' Casinos with the hit record....

Yes, I knew Pat Upton was with Rick Nelson's Stone Canyon Band but didn't know his connection with Spiral Starecase until recently. I was a big fan and follower of SCB.

But probably the biggest 'One Hit Wonder' artist that's received more recognition than he deserves is Meadowlark Lemon of the Harlem Globetrotters. Trying to cash in on the music success of other Saturday morning cartoon series like "The Archies" and "Josie and the Pussycats", a Globetrotters cartoon was created. An album was released along with several singles, including "Rainy Day Bells" written by Neil Sedaka and Howie Greenfield. Commercially, the release crashed and burned - except - for the Carolina Beach Music market - it was a HUGE hit and is still played on CBM radio stations regularly today and nightly at Beach Clubs up and down the east coast. It's ranked #14 on the top 100 all-time Beach songs. LOL, On the beach circuit and on radio broadcasts, I've heard it told for years, it's him singing vocals and only learned yesterday that he really only sang backing vocals... The attached link clears that misconception.

http://www.rebeatmag.com/the-brief-unknown-recording-career-of-the-late-meadowlark-lemon/
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#616368 - 09/24/20 06:06 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 5126
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
Notes Norton Offline
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It's a tangent to this thread.

When all the members of the band that made the hit record have been replaced and there are no 'original' members left, and they still tour with the same name, is the audience being cheated into seeing a "tribute band" but paying higher prices?

A couple of years ago, a friend went to see "The Kingston Trio". All 3 members of the trio are deceased. None of the present members made any of the hit recordings. I didn't have the heart to tell her she paid premium prices for a tribute band.

Often either a non-member who purchased the name or the Record Label company may own the name. Motown owned all the group names and sometimes had 3 or 4 groups touring the country with the same name. I know this for a fact because I gigged for Motown for a while.

Back on thread.

If a band has one hit, but is alive and prosperous for years they are still a 'one hit wonder'. A single #1 hit on Billboard can give you headliner work for up to 10 years and nostalgia work for years after that.

Also a one hit wonder in the USA might be a multi-hit star in non US countries like the UK, Canada, Australia, France, etc. but in the US they are still considered one-hit-wonders.

I wonder if the opposite is also true. A band or single with numerous hits in the USA are for all practical purposes one-hit-wonders elsewhere.

Here's another one-hit-wonder with a very well recorded and produced hit "Killer Joe" by the Rocky Fellers

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#616382 - 09/24/20 07:21 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Notes Norton]
Registered: 04/08/11
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eddie1261 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Notes Norton
When all the members of the band that made the hit record have been replaced and there are no 'original' members left, and they still tour with the same name, is the audience being cheated into seeing a "tribute band" but paying higher prices?


Absolutely yes. I go one step further. When the member who was "the band" is gone, even if the other original members remain, I consider them a tribute to themselves. Journey WAS Steve Perry. However well the Asian guy plays Steve's part, they are not Journey without that recognizable voice. Queen WAS Freddie Mercury. Again, however good Adam lambert is, they are not Queen without Freddie. Van Halen's face was Roth, not Eddie. Musically they were BETTER with Hagar because he brought a playing piece to the dance, but they weren't Van Halen. The reverse is true as well. Frankie Valli had SO MANY backing groups but as long as he was out front they were still The Four Seasons.

On topic, yes, the foundational piece is "the hit". You can have a band with a long string of lesser hits that didn't get known in Fitzgerald Alberta or in Puerto Deseado Argentina and to those people who don't have the opportunity to hear the whole catalog they can be a one hit wonder. I am a perfect example of this. In my youth, I had ZERO exposure to country music. I had no idea who Hank Williams was until I was in my early teens and that was because people were covering his songs. In our house we listened to Glenn Miller, the Dorsey Brothers, Benny Goodman.... I knew big band music in my early years like southerners knew country. So for a time, Hank Williams was a one hit wonder to me. Same for Johnny Cash. I mean Hank died when I was 18 months old. As songs passed through my ears and I looked into them (Move It On Over, I Can't Help It If I'm Still In Love With You, Cold Cold Heart...) I found out who Hank Sr was and delved into his catalog, but at one point he was just some dead guy from the south to me. Likewise, I grew up with the O'Jays in my back yard. They were instrumental in my music education. I didn't know about Hank Williams, but I knew about Walter Williams!!

As funny as it is that this quote came from a place as trite and banal as Smokey and the Bandit, it's true. "When you say something, it depends on what part of the country you are standing as to how dumb you are." Common knowledge in Ohio is not the same as common knowledge in Alabama.
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#616535 - 09/25/20 06:04 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
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eddie1261 Offline
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I check a list of "weird holidays" every day. And today, yes it is, is National One Hit Wonder Day.
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#616539 - 09/25/20 06:33 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
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Notes Norton Offline
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Eddie, I totally agree with you on the lead of the group leaving leaves a tribute band.

I'll add The Beach Boys were a tribute band when Brian Wilson was out.

Jay And The Americans had 3 lead singers named Jay, but the second one, whose name is really Dave is the voice of the band.

To me a one-hit-wonder in the US needs to have only one hit on Billboard and not more than that. It simplifies it.

My dad who played trumpet, violin, ukulele and later in life organ, he was a big band fan and he had a 'linen closet' full of LPs. When he quit smoking he bought one LP per week, so we had the Dorseys, Artie Shaw, Count Basie (one of my youthful favorites), Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, Harry James, Benny Goodman, and associated acts like Frank Sinatra, Louis Prima (with Keely, Sam & The Witnesses), and the Andrews Sisters (who I respect to this day).

My mom liked Broadway, my big sister was an Elvis and early rock fan.

When we moved to Florida (I was 10) I was exposed to country as well as Salsa and other Caribbean forms of music. This opened up a whole new world for me.

I got in the school band and went head over heels to classical music, especially from the Romantic period to the Contemporary. It's still my 'desert island' genre.

I still seek out different kinds of music. Some of the forms I couldn't make a steady of diet of, and in most genres there are songs I like and those I don't care for (they are for other ears), but different forms of music say things in different and often interesting ways.

I want the music to make me emotional, love it, question it, be passionate about it, or even hate it. Just don't bore me.

Here is a one-hit-wonder that is actually a pretty awful song, it's so bad it's fun, and when we play it, if I play it at the right time for the right crowd, our audience loves it.

I usually announce it as being consistently in the top 10 worst rock and roll song lists...

"Surfin' Bird" by The Trashmen. And no, they don't deserve greater recognition wink

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#616559 - 09/25/20 09:22 AM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
Registered: 09/27/06
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Loc: Victoria, BC
Callie - PG Music Offline
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Look at that... September 25th is "National One-Hit Wonder Day"

https://www.checkiday.com/29dcf5076dcd976bdb0812c2b6f750f4/national-one-hit-wonder-day

there's a day for everything... you just have to know where to look wink
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#616591 - 09/25/20 06:55 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Callie - PG Music]
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Don Gaynor Offline
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The Tokens may have been two hit wonders but the soprano on "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" raises the hairs on the nape of my neck.
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#616753 - 09/26/20 08:38 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
Registered: 09/27/10
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dcuny Offline
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America charted with a ton of songs on their early albums:

  • A Horse with No Name
  • I Need You
  • Sandman
  • Ventura Highway
  • Don't Cross the River
  • Only in Your Heart
  • Muskrat Love
  • Tin Man
  • Lonely People
  • Sister Golden Hair
  • Daisy Jane
  • Woman Tonight
  • You Can Do Magic
  • Right Before Your Eyes
  • The Border


Warren Zevon had a fair number of hits, although Linda Ronstadt seems to have done better with some of his songs ("Hasten Down the Wind", "Poor Poor Pitiful Me")than he did. Then again, Linda probably scored better with Karl Bonoff's songs that Karla did.

I'm going to claim he's not a one hit wonder if other people had hits with songs he's released. wink

  • Carmelita
  • Desperados Under the Eaves
  • Hasten Down the Wind
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money
  • Life'll Kill Ya
  • Mohammed's Radio
  • Mr. Bad Example
  • Poor Poor Pitiful Me
  • Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner
  • Trouble Waiting to Happen
  • Werewolves of London
  • A Certain Girl
  • Reconsider Me
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#616856 - 09/27/20 05:11 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Deryk - PG Music]
Registered: 04/08/11
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eddie1261 Offline
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Hey, the Grateful Dead were NO hit wonders but people followed them all over the world!!! WHAT did those people find so exciting about that musical equivalent of quaaludes?
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#616857 - 09/27/20 05:45 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Don Gaynor]
Registered: 03/20/01
Posts: 261
Loc: Austin, TX
Le Miz Offline
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Originally Posted By: Don Gaynor
The Tokens may have been two hit wonders but the soprano on "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" raises the hairs on the nape of my neck.


I also love the vocal! The guy's name is Jay Siegal, and he sounds great on their other hit too,
"Tonight I Fell In Love".

I heard Neil Sedaka (now 80) last week on Sirius-XM rave about Jay Siegal's vocal ability.

(Neil started the group, called the "Linc-Tones", named after their (Lincoln) high school in
Brooklyn. They changed their name to the "Tokens", after subway tokens were introduced. Jay Siegal
joined the group in 1956. Sedaka sang lead, and the only thing unusual about the group was that
they recorded only original songs written by Sedaka and Howard Greenfield, and that Sedaka always
played piano (duh) with the session musicians. Sedaka left the group in 1957. BTW, Greenfield lived
in Sedaka's apartment building, and Neil Diamond lived across the street and also went to Lincoln High!)

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#616863 - 09/27/20 06:14 PM [Off-Topic] Re: 'One hit wonder' artists who deserved more recognition? [Re: Le Miz]
Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 8772
Loc: Oklahoma, USA
Don Gaynor Offline
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Is that really a male vocalist? I looked at the liner notes for a female vocalist and came up empty. This would explain it. Thank you. Wow, what a range he had ( presuming he's left the stage ).

The Tokens sing "The Lion Sleeps Tonight"

https://youtu.be/OQlByoPdG6c

The story behind the song: https://youtu.be/4llIwk0BK8A


Edited by Don Gaynor (09/27/20 06:31 PM)
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