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• 1993 – INFORMER / Snow
• 1983 – COME ON EILEEN / Dexys Midnight Runners
• 1973 – TIE A YELLOW RIBBON ROUND THE OLE OAK TREE / Dawn featuring Tony Orlando
• 1963 – HE’S SO FINE / The Chiffons

Welcome to the 50th (already!) edition of #1 Songs On This Date! – another four-pack of the best of the best from the Top 40 Rock ‘n’ Roll music era.

Since we began in the first week in January, 170 distinct number one singles from the years 1956 through 1995 have been featured – with hundreds more to follow.

They’re all part of a permanent archive that’s being built at which will ultimately feature ALL 837 different number one singles as listed in 2,080 weekly national music charts published by Billboard® within that 40-year timeframe.

Fortunately, HouseoftheHits has every one of those charts – plus secondary data – as published in the essential Joel Whitburn’s Record Research series (CD-ROM and eBook edition formats).

Everything is stored digitally on a HouseoftheHits computer – as are all 837 number one singles (in high-quality audio) from the music vault.

With the availability of precise data and the HOTH song files – together with some amazing technology – approximately 600 – 700 of those Billboard® chart-toppers will be presented this year – with the remainder to follow in early 2017.

As the archive grows you will have continual free access to the accumulating repository, indexed by Decade, Month and Year. Plus, EVERY Title and Artist will be (blue) hyper-linked for smooth, easy navigation from song to song – with more great features to be added along the way.

Again, it will contain every #1 single in America, plus interesting commentary about each song (written by yours truly) and presented with a crystal clear High-Definition audio version of the complete original hit to instantly play as often as you wish.

The ever-expanding library is found HERE and you can bookmark this link for future instant access.

Enjoy! 😎

Due to copyright issues, some audio song files may not play on smartphones, tablets and connected devices. A PC, Mac or laptop may be required.



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    #1 / April 24th, 1993

(Single Version)

Number One: 7 weeks
Replaced: A WHOLE NEW WORLD (Aladdin’s Theme) / Peabo Bryson and Regina Belle
Succeeded by: FREAK ME / Silk

Canadian dance-pop-reggae singer Snow (real name Darrin Kenneth O’Brien) was raised in a Toronto government-subsidized housing project where he became heavily influenced by Jamaican reggae music and rap. At the age of 10 he was a big fan of the record Rapper’s Delight by the Sugarhill Gang.

Predictably, given his rough upbringing, trouble ensued for O’Brien in early adulthood. At one point he was charged with two counts of murder and sent to prison, but the charges were later reduced and he was ultimately acquitted.

It was during his incarceration that he wrote the song Informer and upon his release he recorded an entire album for the New York City-based EastWest label called 12 Inches Of Snow.

After Informer was issued as a single from the album, heavy airplay on a New York City radio station helped the record’s popularity to spread rapidly, and it ultimately enjoyed a seven-week run at the top and became Billboard’s fourth biggest hit of 1993.

[Trivia Bit] Audiences dubbed white rapper O’Brien as ‘Snow White’, from which his handle ‘Snow’ was derived.



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    #1 / April 24th, 1983

Dexys Midnight Runners
(Single Version)

Number One: 1 week
Replaced: Replaced: BILLIE JEAN / Michael Jackson
Succeeded by: BEAT IT / Michael Jackson

Come On Eileen is a Celtic/country-flavored ditty based on the true-life experience of Kevin Rowland, founder, guitarist and lead vocalist of the one-hit-wonder UK band Dexys Midnight Runners, .

Rowland had been raised in an Irish-Catholic family in Birmingham amid very strict views when it came to sex, i.e. that it was ‘dirty.’

Then, in his early teens, he’d developed a relationship with a girl with whom he was growing up – a pairing that had been ‘clean’ for so long, until finally one day, it became ‘dirty.’

Eventually, Rowland co-penned this week’s #1 song in ’83 as a nostalgic look back upon his guilt-ridden struggle during the adolescent relationship with ‘Eileen.’

The original single version heard here has a fiddle intro taken from an Irish folk number called Believe Me, If All Those Endearing Young Charms.

The lyrical lines “Too-Ra-Loo-Ral” are derived from the early 20th century American song made popular by crooner Bing Crosby in 1944 called Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (That’s An Irish Lullaby) – which sold a million copies.

Based on the above, Dexys Midnight Runners cleverly titled the album containing ‘Eileen’ as Too-Rye-Ay.

[Trivia Bits] Ostensibly, the handle Dexys Midnight Runners was derived from the name of the widely used amphetamine ‘dexedrine.’

Referenced in the opening lyrics line of the melody as “Poor old Johnny Ray,” Ray was a popular vocalist in the early 1950’s whose best-remembered for the hit Cry (#1 for 11 weeks in 1951).

The record sleeve and label graphics above feature Máire Fahey standing beside Rowland as ‘Eileen.’ Her sister, Siobhan Fahey, was a member of the girl-group Bananarama. The latter Fahey later married Dave Stewart of Eurythmics (Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This, Here Comes The Rain Again).

On the last day of NASA’s STS-114 mission on August 7, 2005, astronaut Eileen Collins’ wake-up call aboard the Space Shuttle ‘Discovery’ was Come On Eileen.



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    #1 / April 24th, 1973

Dawn featuring Tony Orlando

Number One: 4 weeks
Succeeded by: YOU ARE THE SUNSHINE OF MY LIFE / Stevie Wonder

Just prior to Dawn featuring Tony Orlando knocking this one out of the park for 4 weeks during this period in 1973, disbandment had loomed on the horizon for Orlando, Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent.

Tough times had befallen them after the success of a couple of million-sellers as Dawn: their debut hit Candida in late 1971, followed by their first chart-topper in early 1971, Knock Three Times.

Two plus years and six failed singles later, the trio was coaxed into attending one more recording session prior to breaking up.

That last date yielded Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree – not only their biggest career hit single, but the penultimate record for all of 1973 based on Billboard’s year-end listing (it was nudged out of the top spot by Roberta Flack‘s Killing Me Softly With His Song).

The tune, written by Irwin Levine and L. Russell Brown, was based on a true story of an ex-convict who was serving a three-year stint in a Georgia prison for falsifying checks.

In a letter penned just prior to his release, the gentleman asked his wife – as a signal of hopefully her continued love and support – to tie a yellow ribbon around a big old oak tree situated in their hometown’s city square. The loving, forgiving spouse carried out his request.

[Trivia Bits] Tony Orlando was initially reluctant to record Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree, feeling the tune was “corny.”

The record’s producer, Hank Medress, was one of the founding members of the early 1960’s Brooklyn vocal quartet The Tokens (along with future legendary singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka).

The song’s co-writer, Irwin Levine also co-composed Dawn’s Knock Three Times (link below) and the 1965 number one, This Diamond Ring by Gary Lewis and The Playboys.

Other #1 Singles by TONY ORLANDO/DAWN (3)
1975 / HE DON’T LOVE YOU (Like I Love You) (Tony Orlando & Dawn)



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    #1 / April 24th, 1963

The Chiffons
(Extended Version)

Number One: 4 weeks
Replaced: OUR DAY WILL COME / Ruby And The Romantics
Succeeded by: I WILL FOLLOW HIM / Little Peggy March

He’s So Fine is now best remembered for the lawsuit it produced, which saw music publishing company Bright-Tunes Music – on behalf of the song’s writer Ronnie Mack – sue ex-Beatle George Harrison for alleged copyright infringement with his 1971 number one solo hit My Sweet Lord

Read More: The Chiffons vs. George Harrison

The record’s genesis saw members of the 1960’s Brooklyn vocal group The Tokens (The Lion Sleeps Tonight) signing Mack to a songwriting deal, after which a four-member black ‘girl group’ known as The Chiffons – who also recorded as The Four Pennies – being recruited to record his song He’s So Fine.

From Upper Manhattan and the Bronx, NY, the quartet, who began singing together as high school classmates, were enjoying a four-week stay atop Billboard with their only #1 hit.

This is an extremely rare stereo version of He’s So Fine – and with an extended ending.

[Trivia Bits] The single was shopped to 13 other record companies – all of which turned down the disc – before the smaller Laurie Records label signed the group.

The Tokens played all the instruments on the recording.

He’s So Fine was followed by the Carole King-Gerry Goffin written song One Fine Day. After listening to its demo recording, The Tokens erased the original vocals from it and had The Chiffons add their own. It climbed to #5 in the summer of 1963.

The gals returned to the Top 10 one more time in June, 1966 with Sweet Talkin’ Guy.


Produced & Written By: Rick Murray Hunter /
Songs Source: The Music Vault of HouseoftheHits Inc.
Billboard® Chart Data: Joel Whitburn’s Record Research (eBook Editions)
References: The Billboard Book of Number One Hits (5th Edition) by Fred Bronson
The Billboard Book of One Hit Wonders (Revised and Expanded) by Wayne Jancik
The Archives of
Record Sleeve & Label Graphics: Courtesy of 45cat

Other #1 Songs on This Date Posts are HERE