One-hit wonders

In 1969, one-hit wonders Zager and Evans were enjoying what would turn out to be a six-week run at the top of the US charts with this cheery number, ‘In The Year 2525 (Exordium and Terminus)’. It also reached Number One in the UK.

A slightly less-depressing French version was also released in 1969, by Dalida.

You know what I would type at this point if it wasn’t self-explanatory, but the following links might help you decide the best and worst, or just your favourites. If you haven’t started questioning your life’s purpose after listening to all three minutes of Zager and Evans, that is.

One-Hit Wonders (UK)
1960s One-Hit Wonders (USA)

Plenty to choose from the Sixties, I’m sure you’ll agree, where all my favourites come from. Check out ‘Cool Jerk’ by the Capitols, the EasyBeats’ ‘Friday On My Mind’, the Equals’ ‘Baby, Come Back’ and ‘Black Is Black’ by Los Bravos.

They don’t make them like that anymore, do they?

Then there’s the iconic instrumental, ‘Classical Gas’, by Mason Williams…

Fans of The Simpsons might care to single out Iron Butterfly’s ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida’, commonly known as ‘In the Garden of Eden’. Great riff.

For best, how about ‘Something In the Air’ by Thunderclap Newman? Failing that, for me, it has to be Bob and Earl with ‘Harlem Shuffle’.

Other notable mentions from other decades: Paul Hardcastle’s unforgettable ’19’, from 1985, and Marc Cohn’s ‘Walking in Memphis’, from 1991 (foolishly overlooked when we were discussing piano songs recently – my bad).

Worst? There are just too many, and that’s without considering all those infuriating novelty hits (I’m thinking Toto Coelo’s ridiculous ‘I Eat Cannibals’), but does Bobby McFerrin’s ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ actually reassure anyone?