Friday, December 30, 2016

The Top 20 Best Selling Artists

Here is the final Top 20 list, broadcast this morning on BBC Radio 2.

1 The Beatles
2 Elvis Presley
3 Michael Jackson
4 Elton John
5 Madonna
6 Led Zeppelin
7 Cliff Richard
8 Rihanna
9 Pink Floyd
10 Mariah carey
11 Celine Dion
12 AC DC
13 Whitney Houston
14 Queen
15 Abba
16 The Rolling Stones
17 Taylor Swift
18 Garth Brooks
19 Eminem
20 The Eagles

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Top 100 Best Selling Artists

BBC Radio 2 have constructed a Top 100 Best Selling Artists list and have been playing mostly two tracks from each one this week. Fascinating and also nice to hear some album tracks and less well-known editions from the BBC.

I guess they're including international sales which explains George Strait and Linda Ronstadt and I suspect more surprises still to come!

The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, Queen, Carrie Underwood and maybe some other big Country stars from across the Pond are still to come,  Paul Simon should be there too, maybe with Art Garfunkel. Van Morrison too. Pink Floyd albums ought to get them in the Top 20, as could Duran Duran's 1980 sales and perhaps Frankie Goes To Hollywood but I suspect they might not have made the list with a shorter lifespan. then what do we make of Little Mix, One Direction and Girls Aloud who must have had vast sales recently. Perhaps not enough yet, though? I think it will be some older names - The Hollies? - we see and definitely US-based people. Taylor Swift, of course. Brenda Lee from the old days. Rhianna from recent days. Justin Timberlake. Andy Williams, Garth Brooks. Ariana Grande? Some of those will not be there at all.

Here is the list so far. I shall add the Top 20 when they're known.

21 U2
22 Billy Joel
23 Phil Collins
24 Aerosmith
25 Frank Sinatra
26 Engelbert Humperdinck
27 Barbra Streisand
28 Status Quo
29 Kanye West
30 Bee Gees

31 Bruce Springsteen
32 Lady Gaga
33 Metallica
34 Katy Perry
35 Adele
36 Bruno Mars
37 Justin Bieber
38 Jay-Z
39 Rod Stewart
40 Bon Jovi

41 Lil Wayne
42 Britney Spears
43 Fleetwood Mac
44 Tom Jones
45 George Strait
46 Guns n' Roses
47 Backstreet Boys
48 Neil Diamond
49 Prince
50 Paul McCartney & Wings

51 Kenny Rogers
52 Janet Jackson
53 Julio Iglesias
54 Chicago
55 Carpenters
56 Bob Dylan
57 Dire Straits
58 Bryan Adams
59 Def Leppard
60 Cher

61 Lionel Richie
62 Genesis
63 James Taylor
64 Olivia Newton-John
65 Stevie Wonder
66 Tina Turner
67 Linda Ronstadt
68 Donna Summer
69 The Beach Boys
70 David Bowie

71 The Who
72 Barry White
73 The Supremes
74 Duran Duran
75 Iron Maiden
76 Depeche Mode
77 Deep Purple
78 The Dave Clark Five
79 Bing Crosby
80 Pet Shop Boys

81 Santana
82 Earth, Wind & Fire
83 Wham!
84 Johnny Cash
85 Beyoncé
86 Shania Twain
87 R.E.M.
88 Coldplay
89 Van Halen
90 Spice Girls

91 Foreigner
92 The Doors
93 Reba McEntire
94 Meat Loaf
95 Barry Manilow
96 Kylie Minogue
97 Tom Petty
98 The Black Eyed Peas
99 Enya
100 Robbie Williams

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Jacob's Song from Douwe Bob

Here's a nice track from Douwe Bob from The Netherlands. Their Slow Down was 11th in this year's Eurovision.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Morning Dew

This week in 1967 Episode Six (with Ian Gillan later of Deep Purple) were in the Radio London Top 20. In a great week for music, the chart also included The Troggs' Night In The Long Grass, Pink Floyd's See Emily Play, The Monkees' Alternate Title, The Turtles' She'd Rather be With Me and Cream's Strange Brew. One of my all-time favourites,So Much for Mary by Jon was at its peak of 28.

What a great time to be a teenager!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Bobby Darin sings Clementine live.

Have to smile at this 1960 performance by the very talented Bobby Darin.

His #1 hit song, "Mack the Knife", had a strange connection with the number "59": it was the 59th #1 single of the rock era, it entered the Billboard charts at #59, and was the second biggest-selling record of 1959.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Eurovision 2016. The Top 10.

Tonight we'll find out whether Moscow has won the battle for Eurovision. Big Red has certainly thrown a huge amount of effort and one of its best stars into this thing. They really do mean business, and probably feel pretty hard done by after last year when they would have won had some juries not changed the numbers at the last moment.

Russia and Australia start the favourites bu quite a margin by I shall be brave and say that neither will win. I just have a feeling that the efforts and obvious attempts to appeal to everyone by Russia could backfire and make way for a simpler and more West-friendly nation. Australians may be super supporters of the whole Eurovision thing but, really, there should be a rule that says Australia can join in but we're not letting someone from a totally different part of the planet win. Dami Im is lovely, a super singer and demonstrates the power of make-up superbly but we already give South Korea a massive load of money with all the products we buy that they make without adding support for their recent emigrant to the pot. I am also a bit bothered by her odd sequencing of the lyrics. Paul Simon would definitely not approve, either, and I am a big fan of the guy.

So who will win?

This really is quite an odd year with no particularly good songs so I believe it will be a close-run affair. Here are my predictions, which, as always I have backed with cash at Betfair.

10 United Kingdom

Yes, I reckon the boys will make it this year. There's no-one vaguely like them and they have quite an appeal that our previous years' entries have not had. The singles selling well abroad too. But not that well.

9 Israel

If he gets things right, this guy could put on one of the better performances although I accept that Israel is not everyone's favourite nation, which is why I'm leaving him at 9. A worthy track, well-produced and the guy makes up each performance as he goes so it is very natural.

8 The Netherlands

Last year they nearly made it with their gentle strum-along song. This is pretty similar and is just a pleasant number with a nice guy singing with his band backing him. It doesn't do a great deal or make you want to go and buy it tomorrow but there is a certain charm about the track and the lead singer is a super performer who shouldn't put a step wrong. he;s been great i rehearsals all the way so far.

7 Cyprus

This is a bit of a long shot but this is a group that is unlike the rest of the crowd. Looking at how well The Disturbed have done recently then there may be some who vote for this band who rock along nicely with what is quite a catchy number. Their performances have been complicated and not that brilliant i some rehearsals but if they get it right there's a chance they'll be up there.

6 Australia

Dami Im will endear herself to lots and lots of fans I am sure and her dress and make-up and singing will be flawless. It's just a poor song in my view and, as I said before, Australia is a lovely country but it isn't in Europe. She will get enough votes to make the Top 10, though, easily.

5 France

This has been a huge hit across Europe and deservedly so as it is a good little pop song. It'll do well and many have predicted that it will win. I just have a feeling that it is almost too obvious with its ooo-ooo-ooo bits. The guy has also been missing quite a lot of notes in practice and relying on backing singers. he may do better than this but not a great deal worse.

4 Russia

After all their effort they will have to come close to the top. Sergei is a great singer, hardly ever puts a note wrong and also has a very difficult set of moves to do, with a tremendously impressive backscreen to work with as well. It's just, well, all a bit much. Russia will, though, get support and bags of votes from all their friends - and there are plenty, but not quite as many as before.

3 Italy

I think this is the best song of the evening and the singer is superb in terms of reaching the right notes and her delivery generally. She lacks a bit of personality which is a shame and she will need to smile and appeal a bit more than she has done so far to make this position but I feel there is much love for Italy and hope they do reach this position, or maybe even take the crown.

2 Ukraine

Controversial, this one. I may be completely wrong. The singer has written this herself and it breaks almost all the normal Eurovision 'How To Win' Book rules but that may even be in its favour. I don't understand all the lyrics or the history but suffice it to say she is unlikely to get any votes from Russia. If the singer manages to reach all the notes she has done in most rehearsals then this could be amazing. if she wails instead then I'll be very wrong and regret asking you to listen to it. Because it is so political, I fear that many voters will shy away from giving Ukraine the douze points and prevent her wining but I do expect to see her in the Top Ten.

1 Sweden

I am going for the double for Sweden. The song is not brilliant and the singer a bit bland but he is about the only modern thing on the menu apart from Justin Timerberlake and the Lithuanian guy. Hmm, maybe I should have backed the Lithuanian guy. No, Sweden are the only Scandinavian nation left in this thing this year which is remarkable but also likely to produce quite a few heavy points from their neighbours of whom there are plenty who have no-one else to vote for.

My personal favourites this year have been Austria and Croatia but, despite them both being well-produced numbers, the performers have been a little unreliable in rehearsals and the tracks are probably a bit old-fashioned for a 2016 contest.

Apart from Lithuanian's young fellow, the other two to look out for, each of whom could make the Top if they get things right and some others don't, are Malta's Ira and Armenia's Iveta. Both excellent singers with decent numbers who ought to be in the Top 10, if not the Top 5. One of them may, indeed, replace Italy and come fairly high but there may be some splitting of votes for dark-haired ballad singers this year and I shalls tick with Italy winning that particular battle.

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