It’s November, 1952

An exciting week as we hit November, 1952 – the month the UK launched its official charts. Let’s see how different they sound from the USA.

The songs of November, 1952

A trio of new songs and one version of a previous charting hit on the USA charts this month:

November, 1952 Top 20 Hits

“Because You’re Mine” – Mario Lanza
“Blue Violins” – Hugo Winterhalter
“Half As Much” – Rosemary Clooney
“Heart And Soul” – Four Aces
“High Noon” – Frankie Laine
“I Went To Your Wedding” – Patti Page
“I” – Don Cornell
“It’s In The Book” – Johnny Standley
“Jambalaya” – Jo Stafford
“Keep It A Secret” – Jo Stafford
“Lady Of Spain” – Eddie Fisher
“Lady Of Spain” – Les Paul
“Meet Mister Callaghan” – Les Paul
“Outside Of Heaven” – Eddie Fisher
“Takes Two To Tango” – Pearl Bailey
“The Glow-Worm” – Mills Brothers
“Trying” – Hilltoppers
“Why Don’t You Believe Me” – Joni James
“Why Don’t You Believe Me” – Patti Page
“Wish You Were Here” – Eddie Fisher
“You Belong To Me” – Jo Stafford
“You Belong To Me” – Patti Page
“Yours” – Vera Lynn

So yes, as we noted a few weeks back, the UK charts started in November 1952 and here we are. You can see the full chart detail for the w/c 14 November, 1952 here. But we’ve added the novel tunes from the top ten to this week’s playlist:

“Here In My Heart” – Al Martino
“You Belong To Me” – Jo Stafford
“Somewhere Along The Way” – Nat ‘king’ Cole
“The Isle Of Innisfree” – Bing Crosby
“Feet Up (Pat Him On The Po-po)” – Guy Mitchell
“Half As Much” – Rosemary Clooney
“Forget Me Not” – Vera Lynn
“High Noon (Do Not Forsake Me)” – Frankie Laine
“Sugarbush” – Doris Day And Frankie Laine
“Blue Tango” – Ray Martin

For the same week there were only 3 songs crossing over with the USA charts but number of the songs had previously charted in across the Atlantic and its primarily American artists. The “British invasion” is still a decade away..

You can listen to the full playlist on Youtube via this link or embedded below:

This month in history

It’s all about the UK Charts kicking off this month, so I’ll leave it to t the Official Charts Company:

The story of the UK’s Official Charts began back in November 1952, when the then publisher of the New Music Express Percy Dickins decided that he needed some method to encourage advertisers to his new music paper. Dickins compiled the very first charts by phoning around to a handful of his retailer friends, totting up the number of copies sold of their biggest sellers to create an aggregated chart.

As you’ll see, if you look at the first chart in full, that method meant there were multiple “equal” places. So the top 10 we used this month actually only gets to 8, because of double-ups on position 7 and 8.

You can read more here. Including a decade by decade story of how they changed.

What’d Sadie think?

In the USA we have the sightly bitter, “I Went To Your Wedding” by Patti Page in the top slot for the first two weeks. A good song but not one we’d elevate to those heights.

Then somehow the stand-up comedy track, “It’s In The Book” by Johnny Standley makes it to number 1 for a week. For us it did not get any funnier on second listening.

Patti Page enters the charts with another version of “Why Don’t You Believe Me” which isn’t bad at all. But Joni James, who had the original charting version, must have been fine with that when her own version made it to number 1 for the last week of November, 1952

It’s a good song yes, but in looking into it, most interestingly it looks like it has been covered at some point by nearly half the artists we’ve encountered on the charts so far this decade Vic Damone, Bing Crosby, Guy Lombardo, Dean Martin, Margaret Whiting… check it out.

As mentioned back in the May issue when it hit the USA charts, the first UK number one was “Here In My Heart” by Al Martino so here it is in our charts this week, still a good son.

“Somewhere Along The Way” by Nat King Cole, “Sugarbush” by Doris Day And Frankie Laine and “Blue Tango” by Ray Martin in the UK charts all also previously charted in the USA.

Leaving “The Isle Of Innisfree” by Bing Crosby, “Feet Up (Pat Him On The Po-po)” by Guy Mitchell and “Forget Me Not” by Vera Lynn as the only songs we’ve not encountered. I didn’t bother to look (read: it’d take a bit of digging) to see if the Bing and Guy songs charted below the top 20 in the USA which seems likely. Vera Lynn is of course British so this is the sole novel contribution by the Brits to their own charts.

Though in fairness “The Isle Of Innisfree” was composed by Irish songwriter Dick Farrelly in 1950 and it was Bing who made it famous after it was on the sound track of the John Wayne film, “The Quiet Man”. A familiar and decent tune. Here’s the film trailer:

“Feet Up (Pat Him on the Po-Po)” is also a nice, but slightly oddly named and themed song. To quote the wiki:

The narrator of the song is a former lowlife who is reforming so he can set a good example for his newborn son, whom he loves. The title refers to the tradition of spanking a newborn baby just after birth, to ensure it draws breath.

This is probably a good time to begin teasing Sadie about how she was a breach birth and came out bruised purple bum first. 😉 Love you Sadie!

We’ll give song of the month though to Vera Lynn for “Forget Me Not” because its a great song and a welcome to the chart world for Great Britain!

Now go listen to the full playlist on Youtube via this link.