UK Top 20: September 23, 1972 Ft. The Drifters

The Drifters / Come On Over to My Place
Up to Number 10: The Drifters

Presenting the UK Top 20 music chart for the week ending 23 September, 1972

Slade were enjoying a third (and final) week at the summit of the UK Chart this week in 1972, while nearly a third of the places below them were occupied by records making their debut in the Top 20.

As predicted last week, the Top 3 were now in a tussle to grab the Number 1 position, but could any of the six new entries claim to be pretenders to the crown? A couple of them would come close, but it was the single at this week's anchor position that would surprise many by making a successful dash to the summit and stay there for a month.

But who are we talking about?

Read on...

(Above image by Allan Warren (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons)

Slade at Number 1

The Chart: 
  • 01 (01) Slade - Mama Weer All Crazee Now 
  • 02 (14) T. Rex - Children of the Revolution 
  • 03 (10) David Cassidy - How Can I Be Sure 
  • 04 (02) Rod Stewart - You Wear It Well 
  • 05 (05) Lynsey De Paul - Sugar Me 
  • 06 (03) Faron Young - It's Four in the Morning 
  • 07 (04) Roxy Music - Virginia Plain 
  • 08 (08) Michael Jackson - Ain't No Sunshine 
  • 09 (22) Donny Osmond - Too Young 
  • 10 (20) The Drifters - Come On Over to My Place 
  • 11 (06) Blackfoot Sue - Standing in the Road 
  • 12 (12) Cliff Richard - Living In Harmony 
  • 13 (09) Jackie Wilson - I Get the Sweetest Feeling 
  • 14 (07) Mott The Hoople - All the Young Dudes 
  • 15 (25) The Sweet - Wig-Wam Bam 
  • 16 (21) Jr. Walker and the All Stars - Walk in the Night 
  • 17 (23) Judge Dread - Big Six 
  • 18 (28) Dandy Livingstone - Suzanne Beware of the Devil 
  • 19 (13) Hawkwind - Silver Machine 
  • 20 (38) Lieutenant Pigeon - Mouldy Old Dough
*Previous week in brackets; Climbers denoted in red; New entries in bold

Stream This Week's New Hits:

09: Donny Osmond: Too Young

Following on from his UK Number 1 hit Puppy Love, Donny Osmond had now established himself as one of a few popular heartthrobs of the early 1970s, thus allowing him impressive Singles Chart figures.

He was back this week with one of the biggest movers on the listing, albeit another cover of an already classic song: Nat King Cole's Too Young from 1951.

Osmond's version would go on to peak at Number 5 in the UK, while in both the USA and Australia the single's highest placing would be the Number 13 spot.

15: The Sweet: Wig-Wam Bam

The Sweet were now on a roll of hits and Wig-Wam Bam represented the band's sixth UK chart entry and would soon become their third Top 10 success.

Again composed by the songwriting team of Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, it was the group's first true glam rock single and the first on which the band played their own instruments, giving the track a completely different sound.

It would go on to peak at Number 4 in the UK and would also enjoy great success across Europe, reaching the top of the charts in both Germany and Denmark and the Top 10 elsewhere.

16: Jr. Walker and the All Stars: Walk in the Night

It had been three years since Motown legend Jr. Walker had enjoyed a British chart entry with What Does It Take (To Win Your Love).

He was now back with another superb instrumental, enhanced by his excellent saxophone and deserving of a better peak position than this week's Number 16.

Walk in the Night was lifted from Walker's album Moody Jr. and ultimately performed better on the UK charts than it did at home - although it managed a Number 10 peak position on the US R&B chart.

17: Judge Dread: Big Six

The first appearance of Judge Dread (nee Alexander Hughes) on the British chart was courtesy of this innuendo-laced nursery rhyme performed over a rocksteady rhythm and reggae beat.

Big Six was also the first of eleven singles which, not surprisingly, was banned from airplay by the BBC because of its suggestive sexual content.

Probably because of this, the single hung around on the chart for an impressive six months, managing to peak at Number 11 for a couple of weeks.

Dread would return to the Top 30 over the next four years with more of his reggae-backed lewd versions of nursery rhymes, much to the pleasure of his many fans.

18: Dandy Livingstone: Suzanne Beware of the Devil

More reggae featured at Number 18, but this time from the somewhat more authentic sound of British-Jamaican musician and producer, Dandy Livingstone.

He had released numerous singles under various names but, up until this point, none had figured on the UK Singles Chart.

Before Suzanne Beware of the Devil, his most recognisable recording was probably Rudy, A Message to You which was later successfully covered by The Specials under the slightly amended title A Message to You, Rudy.

However, Suzanne was his only sojourn into the British Top 20 as a recording artist, although the follow-up Big City/Think About That deserved better than its eventual Number 26 placing.

20: Lieutenant Pigeon - Mouldy Old Dough

The UK's proclivity for embracing odd novelty acts was, quite possibly, no more apparent than when this single surprisingly started storming up the listing.

Not easy to categorise, Lieutenant Pigeon's Mouldy Old Dough was largely an instrumental track dominated by a marching beat and the unmistakable sound of a pub piano. Played by Hilda Woodward, mother of band member Rob Woodward, it's the piano which defines the track, along with the minimal lyrics: the deep growling of the song's title.

The single had already enjoyed great success in Belgium as a result of its use on a currents affairs TV show and, although the track had previously flopped on its initial UK release, the record company felt a re-release could take off. Helped by extensive radio play, Mouldy Old Dough did just that.

Its eighteen place leap this week was just a mere stepping stone on its way to Number 1, where it would stay for four weeks, eventually becoming the second bestselling single of 1972.

The UK Number 1 album this week:
  • Rod Stewart: Never A Dull Moment

The American Top 10 (Click to play tracks)

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