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The Top 10 Most Popular Songs of 1970 in the Viet Nam War Era -- Whale Song to Hard Rock
1970: The Year of the Whale
This year of the Viet Nam War was exceedingly interesting for music in that all kinds of heretofore unimaginable things to Americans were used to create it. Whale song was first recorded in 1970, leading researchers in the next couple of decades to discover that Humpback Whales had learned the tune of Amazing Grace (information broadcast on the Paul Harvey Show, TVChannel 10 in Columbus, and 610 WBNS.
Whale song also prompted the ST:TOS 1986 film The Voyage Home. Two whales, George and Gracie, saved the world of the 23rd Century in that one, with help from Scottie and the Captain. Not only environmentally relevant, Voyage Homeis the funniest of the Trek Film Saga. Parts of it (Spock learning to use colorful language) are parodied in the sci-fi film comedy Paul.
Songs of a Humpback Whale changed minds about whales. Underwater microphones were used by Mr. Frank Watlington in Bermuda to prove that whales communicate with their own language, but also with music. This recording was chosen by the US Library of Congress as Number 20 on the list of 25 Recordings to be Preserved in 2010. All 25 music and spoken word recordings join the National Recording Registry as historic recordings.
National Library Entry
US National Recording Registry
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In this drama with much humor added, humpback whales are extinct in the 2500's AD, but an alien watchdog group wants to talk to them. Time travel is the only answer to stop world destruction by bringing back George and Gracey Whale from 1986. This is the only film that I can watch every day without tiring of it.
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Number One Billboard Top 100 Hit
Simon and Garfunkle, Central Park Concert 1981
Period Drama and Music - Good Morning Viet Nam!
The Billboard Top 100
The Viet Nam War began in 1940 with France, picked up the USA about 1964 and continued to 1975. That's a long time for an undeclared war. Part of it was fought with blaring Rock Music after American troops refused to listen to any more classical. The VC didn't like Rock and Americans were ready for some rockin' sounds (depicted in Good Morning Viet Nam).
- Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head by B. J. Thomas, from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Song by Burt Bacharach, Lyrics by Hall David. This one became #85 on the Billboard Hot 100 All Time Hits list.
- I'll Be There by The Jackson Five. This is the lead song on the Five's Third Album. A ballad to change things up from bubblegum pop and still uplifting.
- I Think I Love You by The Partridge Family. This TV family headed by Shirley Jones and David Cassidy recorded the song and aired it withy the TV series beginning in 1970.
- Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon and Garfunkel
- Close to You by The Carpenters
- My Sweet Lord by George Harrison
- War by Edwin Starr. Word on the Internet is that The Temptations recorded this song first, felt it would hurt their careers, and passed it on to Mr. Starr, who made it a hit, with three weeks in the Number One spot at Billboard. It has been covered many times and was featured in an episode about a copyright proceedings trial on Boston Legal.
- American Woman by Canadians, the Guess Who. The woman in the song was the Statue of Liberty and this was a protest song against the Vietnam War protest. But as Harlan Ellison has written in the 1970s, censorship was rampant. President Richard Nixon's First Lady, Pat, asked the group not to perform it at the White House. Vice President Spiro Agnew was an enforcer for TV censorship according to Mr. Ellison in his 1970s books and columns, especially against depicting the rising drug use in America that killed some of Harlan's friends.
- Let It Be by The Beatles
- I Want You Back by The Jackson Five, solo by Michael Jackson. My favorite cover of this song is done by Cheryl Crow, from the Winter 2011 Motown Tribute concert at the White House.
"I Want You Back" -- White House Motown Tribute 2011
Spirit In the Sky
Ride, Captain, Ride
Additional Favorites from the Billboard Top 100
- Tears of a Clown - Smokey Robinson and the Miracles - #11.
- Ain't No Mountain High Enough - Diana Ross - #14
- Spirit in the Sky - Norman Greenbaum - #19
- Fire and Rain - James Taylor - #26
- Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I'm Yours - Stevie wonder - #41
- Ride, Captain, Ride - Blues Image #49
- Don't Cry Daddy - Elvis Presley - #59
- Travel 'In Band and flipside Who'll Stop the Rain - Credance Clearwater Revival - #67
- Psychedelic Shack - The Temptations - #71
- Evil Ways - Sanatana - #81
- Don't Play That Song - Aretha Franklin - #93. Ms. Franklin's father was a renowned Detroit minister and his sermon on the Crucifixion is also among the 25 Recordings Preserved in 2010 at the Library of Congress.
Psyhcedelic Shack on ED Sullivan Show, 1970
An album of 12 Christmas standards chosen from the two albums recorded in 1970.
1970s Music at the Bla Bla Cafe
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