Number one

For a while earlier this month one of the hot email memes going around was a Number One In History web site, though it’s been taken offline now. Happily there’s another site which is online, and even better, it can tell you the number one hits in Australia, the USA and the UK.

Like many others I checked what song was number 1 (in the USA) on the day I was born. It was “War!” by Edwin Starr. Ah, now there’s a good, worthy hit record. I was so inspired by this that I invested A$1.69 and bought it off iTunes. (The Australian number 1 the week I was born was Simon & Garfunkel’s “El Condor Pasa”, which I have somewhere on an old S&G compilation CD.)

Sadly my kids’ birth week number ones are rather less inspiring. Jeremy’s was some sappy Celine Dion number (“My Heart Will Go On” — puke-o-rama). Isaac’s was Merril Bainbridge (“Mouth”), the name of whom is familiar, but I can’t place the tune. (And it’s not on iTunes.)

The site from the email was taken offline by request from Billboard, which owns the US chart data. They want people to pay for archived chart information. If I were in charge of the record industry had any brains, they’d put up an official free “Number 1 this week” archive web site with direct links into iTunes and other online music retailers so you could buy the song with a few clicks. Precisely this kind of thing is what iTunes is designed for.

But hey, a lot of stuff would be different if I ran the world.

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6 thoughts on “Number one

  1. Wish-ga, I was going to comment on the exact same site, I use it for relevant tie breakers in the quiz I run.

    And yes Daniel, the music industry really doesn’t get this new media the “interwebs” coz that’s how I’d make a site make money as well.

    It’s like football fan sites in the UK being told to take down fixture listings as they’re copyright of the FA, or this tale about Transport for London” getting nasty with people hosting silly maps of the London Underground.

    One wonders sometimes just how dumb people are.

  2. You know… the music from “El Condor Pasa” is a traditional peruvian tune…. S&G just added the lyrics… very nice…

  3. Wanna know something REALLY sad? My number one was John Farnham’s “Sadie the Cleaning Lady”…. Probably won’t mean much to non-Aussies, but that is just sad….

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