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The Top 10 Songs of 1973 in the UK

Updated on August 1, 2017

The UK's Top 10 Best Selling Songs of 1973

The UK's Top 10 best selling songs of 1973 certainly made for strange bedfellows considering the music that was on offer during this particular year.

You probably could not invent a list of ten songs as diverse as those that attracted the attention of the UK's record buying public during 1973. Who would have thought that Slade, The Simon Park Orchestra and Donny Osmond could end up appearing on the same listing? But, that is precisely what happened.

[Note: These songs have not been selected as my favourites of this year, but to demonstrate which records sold the most during 1973.

Number One

Tie A Yellow Ribbon: Dawn Ft. Tony Orlando

Written by Irwin Levine and L. Russell Brown, Tie a Yellow Ribbon (Round the Ole Oak Tree) was a massive worldwide hit in 1973 for Dawn featuring Tony Orlando.

It reached Number One on both the US and UK charts for four weeks in April 1973, and Number One on the Australian charts for seven weeks from May to July 1973. It was the top selling song for the year 1973 in both the US and UK.

The song lists at Number 37 on Billboard's Greatest Songs of all time.

Number Two

Eye Level: The Simon Park Orchestra

Eye Level was selected by Thames Television in England to be the theme tune for the Netherlands based detective series, Van der Valk. The work was based on a Dutch nursery rhyme which Simon Park arranged for his own orchestra.

As a result of the popularity of the TV show, this instrumental became one of the biggest hits of 1973 in Great Britain.

Number Three

Welcome Home: Peters and Lee

Coming after their success on the British TV talent show Opportunity Knocks, Peters and Lee recorded the former French language song Welcome Home.

It became the duo's one and only Number One song in the UK, spending a single week at the top in July 1973.

Number Four

Block Buster!: The Sweet

Block Buster! was written by Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman and was The Sweet's sole UK Number One hit, along with becoming one of glam rock's biggest hits of 1973.

Released in January, it spent five weeks at the top of the UK Singles Chart and also made Number One in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Ireland.

Outside Europe it fared less well, as it peaked at Number 29 in Australia and at Number 73 on the American Billboard Hot 100.

Number Five

Cum On Feel The Noize: Slade

Written by band members Jim Lea and Noddy Holder, Cum on Feel the Noize was Slade's fourth Number One single in the UK and their first to enter the chart at Number One. Quite a rare feat at the time, as it was the first occasion this had happened since The Beatles with Get Back in 1969.

It went on to spend four weeks at the top of the chart in March 1973. Typical of Slade's releases at the time, it fared less well in the USA, where it would only peak at Number 98 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Number Six

I Love You Love Me Love: Gary Glitter

Written by Gary Glitter with Mike Leander, I Love You Love Me Love was the now-disgraced Glitter's second Number One song in the UK, spending four weeks at the top of the chart in November 1973.

It was also the last of his four hits of 1973.

Number Seven

See My Baby Jive: Wizzard

Written and produced by lead singer, Roy Wood, See My Baby Jive was the second single by Wood's band and their first to reach Number One in the UK, spending four weeks at the top of the chart in May.

Although the follow-up, Angel Fingers, also topped the British charts, it did not sell enough copies to register as one of the top 10 songs of 1973.

Several of Wizzard's recordings are deeply indebted to Phil Spector's Wall of Sound.

Number Eight

I'm the Leader of the Gang (I Am): Gary Glitter

Written by Gary Glitter and Mike Leander, I'm The Leader Of The Gang (I Am) was Glitter's first Number One single in the UK, spending four weeks at the top of the chart in July 1973.

The song is a Glam Rock anthem and typical of Glitter's early Seventies output, based on a simple mid-tempo rhythm and loud chanted backing vocals.

Number Nine

The Twelfth of Never: Donny Osmond

Written by Jerry Livingston and Paul Francis Webster, The Twelfth of Never had previously been recorded successfully by the likes of Johnny Mathis and Cliff Richard.

During the era of Osmondmania, Donny Osmond recorded his version which reached the summit of the UK Charts for a single week in March.

Although the Osmonds were all over the music charts at this time, none of their other recordings managed to secure a spot in this list of the top 1973 hits.

Number Ten

Daydreamer/Puppy Song: David Cassidy

Daydreamer was David Cassidy's second and final Number One single in the UK, spending three weeks at the top of the chart in October, 1973.

The song was a double-A side with a version of Harry Nilsson's Puppy Song on the reverse.

The 1973 Poll

Which is your favourite hit of 1973 listed here?

See results

Meanwhile, in the United States...

1. Dawn ft. Tony Orlando
Tie A Yellow Ribbon ('Round the Ole Oak Tree)
2. Jim Croce
Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
3. Roberta Flack
Killing Me Softly With His Song
4. Marvin Gaye
Let's Get It On
5. Paul McCartney & Wings
My Love
6. Kris Kristofferson
Why Me?
7. Elton John
Crocodile Rock
8. Billy Preston
Will It Go Round in Circles
9. Carly Simon
You're So Vain
10. Diana Ross
Touch Me in the Morning
Top 10 Songs of 1973 - US Billboard Year End Charts

Major Grammy Winners of 1973

  • Record of the Year: Killing Me Softly With His Song - Roberta Flack
  • Album of the Year: Innervisions - Stevie Wonder
  • Song of the Year: Killing Me Softly With His Song
  • Best New Artist of the Year: Bette Midler

About Your Author

With each article, Richard invites you to step into his world of music, television and entertainment - including memories from the Seventies Music Archives. He will introduce you to British Glam Rock, share The 20 Scariest Film Scores Ever? and even give you an up close look at some classic actors such as Christopher Lee as Dracula.

For a complete list of his articles, please visit Richard's profile.

© 2007 Richard

Your Thoughts on the Top 10 Songs of 1973

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    • CrossCreations profile image

      Carolan Ross 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Was music THAT different from the US to the UK? Guess so, cause the US list you included sounded MUCH more familiar, knew them all. :-) Wondering why you picked that year 1973 bestselling singles - twas a significant year for me.

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 6 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I'd only heard of three of these songs (I'm from the U.S.) but good recap of 1973!

    • profile image

      jetliu123 6 years ago

      brings back good old memories

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 6 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Some classic songs in 1973, and some I would prefer to forget as well. Nice to see The Who performing 5:15 on TOTP. Great job, great memories, and blessed.

    • profile image

      outsource123 6 years ago

      I Love this lens. Since I love music.

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 8 years ago

      I love this lens! Slades version of "Cum on feel the noize" was awesome! Tie a Yellow Ribbon is an all time favorite too.

    • The Homeopath profile image

      The Homeopath 9 years ago

      I remember when I was very young, I got to stay up late once a week to watch the Tony Orlando and Dawn show on TV!!! It was a VERY big deal for me at the time.