Top songs of 1964 - The British Invasion
1964 was the year when British groups and singers dominated the United States record charts. Of course, to me it was just the music of my life. This is the music that helped to establish my musical tastes.
The Beatles first appeared on US charts in January of 1964; they went on to have at 9 of the songs that appeared Billboard top 100 of that year. A nearest to the Beatles in terms of most songs on the top 100 was The Dave Clark Five who had 4. In fact, 24 of the top 100 songs for that year were by British artists.
I remember loving all these groups as a kid. I was 7 during that year and I had 2 older sisters who were very into the music of the time. The radio was always on at our house and we had records galore. The Dave Clark Five had such catchy tunes for a 7-year-old to appreciate and enjoy, as did the Beatles at that time. My friends and I would talk about these bands, we would pretend to be them and lip synch to the records using tennis rackets as guitars, and we would watch them on such shows as Top of the Pops and The Ed Sullivan Show.
I would like to have included all the British invasion songs from that year (not just the ones on the top 100) but there isn’t enough room. These songs are what I consider the cream of the crop for 1964.
The Beatles - I Wanna Hold Your Hand
This was the Beatles first hit in North America, of course we in the UK had been aware of them for a couple of years before that. I had such a crush on Paul...as did most girls of the time.
The Animals - The House of the Rising Sun
I can’t remember if I was aware of this song in 1964, but I did come to appreciate it in the years to come. The Animals were one of the best groups to come out of the UK in the 60s.
Manfred Mann - Doo Wah Diddy
I remember this song somehow permeated my life. It’s like it’s always been there for some reason, however strange that may sound.
The Zombies - She's Not There
I like how all the British Invasion bands all seemed to wear the same suit. Did the Beatles start that or did they just follow that trend? I don’t know. However, this song is leaps and bounds above anything the Beatles put out that year.
The Dave Clark Five - Because
Catchy drums and cool clothes. Not many bands had a drummer as the lead singer.
Gerry and the Pacemakers - Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying
This band was from Liverpool, home of the Beatles. I like the sound of this band, and the songs they released were memorable and timeless
The Kinks - You Really Got Me
This is one of the early songs of this British institution. The Kinks had a long and successful career. I think this is my favorite early song of theirs.
Chad and Jeremy - Summer Song
This is a perfect summer song; relaxing and smooth. Sounds very folky.
Billy J. Kramer - Bad to Me
This song was written by Lennon/McCartney and it was also released by the Beatles. I prefer this version.
The Beatles - Can't Buy Me Love
Another Beatles song; their music in 1964 was so innocent and hopeful.
The Dave Clark Five - Bits and Pieces
More Dave Clark Five. 1964 seems to have been the peak year for this band before they, and other British bands, were swallowed up by the Beatles success.