It was June 1964, barely six months since President John F. Kennedy had been killed.
One of the hottest cars in the country was the 1964 Pontiac GTO.
And an old man, figuratively speaking, was sitting at the top of the hit album charts. 47 years ago today, the top album in the country was not by the boy super groups from across the ocean. The top album on the Billboard charts, for the period from June 13 until the end of July, was by an old timer. The artist had made his recording debut, as a sideman, 41 years before hitting #1.
Even before going to #1, this guy was a living legend. If you saw Ed Sullivan regularly, then you know this artist. This man's single, the featured cut on the #1 album, had knocked the Beatles out of the top position on the singles chart a month before, in May 1964.
People were buying and playing this record. Tell you the truth, I have a copy in my personal collection. My copy is on CD, not vinyl, but the original was vinyl and this original was the kind of "hot wax" that was played on a turntable of course.
Not only did this artist knock the Beatles out of #1 on the singles chart, but when this album shot to #1 on the album chart, it swept an original Broadway cast album, of the same name as the single and this album, off the top of the chart. It was a one-two punch: The hit single knocked-out the Beatles and the album knocked out the Broadway cast album.
This #1 song, and the hit album featuring the song, ended up being the all time career achievement for this now deceased artist. He has been gone for 40 years, but his music lives on. I saw a blog post here at Active Rain, only a couple weeks back, that featured this legend performing another of his standards.
Do you think you have it? Do you know who was looking swell?
Find out for sure. Simply turn on the vintage TV by clicking on it. If you do so, that will turn off the annoying old 1960's test pattern (remember that one) and it will take you to a live performance by the original artist performing his hit song off the album that topped the U.S. charts 47 years ago today.