The Friday Five: Five From The WLS Survey, July 7, 1979

You might remember that last week I did five random songs from the top 40 songs of summer in the UK, and I said that, if I could find a similar list from the US I would feature them this week.

Well, no such luck. I found every other kind of survey except one that showed the top 40 tracks from the US. I found a list of the #1 songs from 1979 and looked at the ones from the end of May to the beginning of September, and saw that most of them were disco tunes. I can tolerate disco and even like some of it, but the ones listed weren’t favorites, and I knew there would be a few people who would kill me if I did that to them. So, I did what I usually do: found a WLS survey from roughly Independence Day, the traditional midpoint of summer in the US, and chose five songs at random, using the facilities at Random.org. Here are the five Random picked for us.

#2: Cheap Trick, “I Want You To Want Me” A Chicagoland favorite, Cheap Trick was from Rockford, Illinois and featured two guys (rhythm guitarist/vocalist Robin Zander and bassist Tom Petersson) who looked like rock stars and two guys (lead guitarist Rick Nielsen and drummer Bun E. Carlos) who didn’t.

#25: Doobie Brothers, “What A Fool Believes” From 1978’s Minute By Minute, the album that put the Doobies back in the spotlight. Michael McDonald had joined the band several years earlier (at the suggestion of Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, another Steely Dan alumnus) and the sound of the band had changed radically.

#6: Supertramp, “The Logical Song” At my company at the time, I had the dubious honor of mentoring the owner’s son, and the first night he came in wearing a Supertramp t-shirt. We got along fine after that. This is from their 1979 album Breakfast In America.

#34: Kiss, “I Was Made For Loving You” A song I don’t remember that well. As I said, I was working nights and didn’t get to listen to much music.

#9: Blondie, “Heart of Glass” I think I mentioned that you know the Baby Boom generation is getting old when you hear Blondie played over the intercom at the grocery store on senior discount day. After the infamous Disco Demolition wrecked the field at Comiskey Park, the White Sox went on a road trip, during which the field was used to hold a concert. It had been raining for a couple of days, and the grounds crew had just about gotten the field in shape, only to have it turned into another sea of mud. I mention that because one of the featured acts was Blondie.

And that’s The Friday Five for June 9, 2017.

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Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

30 thoughts on “The Friday Five: Five From The WLS Survey, July 7, 1979”

  1. I know what you mean about the blondie songs now in grocery stores. I also laugh when I hear the Eurthymics, Sweet Dreams, being played as well. How times have changed from the musac being played when my dad was alive. I actually know that KISS song well:)

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  2. Thanks for rigging the polls to avoid disco. I would have been one of the ones you mentioned. Some pretty good ones in here. I really liked Supertramp’s Breakfast In America album

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  3. I didn’t remember the Kiss song until I heard it but I never was much of a Kiss fan. I think their makeup scared me πŸ™‚ I remember dancing to Blondie in my bar-hopping youth. Ahhh thanks for the memories, John. We are seeing Cheap Trick later this year. That is one of my favorite songs of theirs. Happy Friday.

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  4. I liked all of these songs. Even the one by Kiss–I thought this song was by someone else and didn’t realize it was by Kiss. Remember well hearing all of these songs played with great repetition and I never got tired of hearing them.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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  5. I once saw Cheap Trick for $2.50 and all the beer I could drink. It was 1977, and the place was Champaign, IL’s Chances-R. I would play there myself later that year.

    Rick Nielsen’s comments were outrageous (“I have to adjust my pedals, so I’ll just bend over and pretend I’m blowing myself”), Robin Zander’s vocals were excellent, Tom Petersson was unmemorable on bass, and drummer Bun E. Carlos (Brad Carlson) just sat in back with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth looking bored.

    A few years later, we covered I Want You To Want Me in my California band Ringmaster.

    Cheap trick was featured on Daryl Hall’s Daryl’s House program just a couple years ago. They still play great meat-and-potatoes rock and roll.

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  6. Great job, John. Cheap Trick, Supertramp, Blondie…great memories. Thank you for leaving Disco out. Steve Dahl (WLUP) blew it up at Comiskey Park, Disco Demolition, July 12, 1979, for a reason.

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  7. All great!! But “What a Fool Believes” is my favorite of these five. Yep, not many will beat out Blondie for me, but Michael McDonald, on this song at least, does it for me.

    Some great memories with these tunes! As always, thanks, John. 🎢🎢🎢

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  8. Great selection, John. These groups bring back some fond memories. I didn’t know Atlanta has a Disco station. I listen to classic rock but I’ll do some checking.

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