How To Have 1000 Number Ones - The Easy Way

Friday, March 31, 2006

Putting On The Style

The Resplendents needed six matching suits on a tight budget, so I met Alex and Paul in town in order to investigate potential stage-wear. We visited every shop we could think of that might be able to cater for us and came away with a few suggestions to put to the rest of the band.

After completing our research I persuaded the others to join me on the charity shop trail. We began with the British Heart Foundation, where I bought the CD single version of Snap’s Rhythm Is A Dancer. I already had this on 7” but decided I might as well, at only 50p, have the CD too. I also found Gary Barlow’s Love Won’t Wait and Boom Boom Boom by the Outhere Brothers, which contained, according to the Parental Advisory notice on the cover, strong language which some people may find offensive. This might have been for the protection of the hard-of-hearing, who could easily mistake the lyrics for ‘Bum Bum Bum’.

We moved on to the RSPCA, where I turned up the CD of Young At Heart by the Bluebells, meaning that I would have no use for the empty 7” sleeve that had been lying around at home for some time. I also came away with a small stack of vinyl, including the 81st Number One, from 1959, Shirley Bassey’s As I Love You, which was in remarkably good condition given its age. The same could not be said for The Power Of Love by Jennifer Rush which turned out to be incredibly noisy, meaning that I now had two poor quality copies of this record. The Jam’s A Town Called Malice/Precious was at least an improvement on the one I already owned, though I was still missing its picture sleeve.

Alex declared Doop by Doop* to be the worst record ever made, but I bought it anyway, along with a trio of classic 80s chart-toppers: Nena’s 99 Red Balloons, Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean and Always On My Mind by the Pet Shop Boys.

In Oxfam I had to be content with a solitary CD, the Five Live EP, credited to George Michael & Queen with Lisa Stansfield, though Lisa Stansfield only appears on one of the four tracks and Queen, as far as I can tell, on two.

The Shelter shop was short on vinyl but the stock they did have included another copy of Always On My Mind, this time with a picture sleeve, so I bought this record for the second time in a day. I also found Goody Two Shoes by Adam Ant in a strange sleeve-cum-poster combination. The cover credit of Adam & The Ants revealed this to be an early pressing.

The selection of CD singles was better, including three of the 36 Number Ones from 1999: Fatboy Slim’s Praise You, Lou Bega’s Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of…) (The European Hit Of The Summer, according to the cover) and King Of My Castle by Wamdue Project, which holds the obscure distinction of being the chart-topper with the most letters in its title without repetition – 14 of them and every one different.

Also present were the comparatively recent Toxic by Britney Spears, from 2004, and a pair from 2002: the 933rd Number One, Round Round by the Sugababes, and its successor, Blazin’ Squad’s Crossroads. This contained a card to sign up for Blazin’ Squad updates, which had been completed but unsent by its previous owner. I studied the details and noted that I now had the name, address and phone number of a nearby 20-year-old lady. I considered giving her a call, perhaps with a view to becoming her stalker, but decided against this course of action when I remembered how this information had come into my hands.

By now we had been walking around town for hours and I was laden with as many Number Ones as I could cope with, so we decided to retire to the pub, where we played darts and hatched a plan to shave my head.

* I have a feeling this will be another controversial topic, but I believe this is one of eleven Number Ones with a nonsense or made-up word in the title.


  • And you refused my offer of #1 singles, but I already had a number of the ones that you have picked up recently

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/01/2006 3:13 am  

  • Wasn't your offer something to do with e-mailing me MP3s? That's no good to me.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/01/2006 2:00 pm  

  • Is The Stonk a nonsense word? And presumably 'Wannabe' is a nonsense word as it's all rolled into one as is 'Stickwitu' which came too late for your collection.

    By Anonymous Dan Webb, at 4/02/2006 5:43 pm  

  • Nah. I considered 'The Stonk' but arbitrarily decided it didn't count. I wasn't counting the others either - rolling words into one doesn't make it nonsense or made-up, in my view. Similarly Slade-style misspelling wouldn't count.


    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/02/2006 8:43 pm  

  • Do wah diddy?

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/03/2006 1:00 am  

  • Crap, I missed that one. One point for Nik. No points for me.

    Make that 12 Number Ones.

    I just realised some of my answers are words rolled together... but... they are still nonsense.

    Told you it would be controversial.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/03/2006 1:38 am  

  • I know you'll be disapointed if I don't post a tedious comment proposing a quiz answer along the lines of, "Bring your Knoblotch to the Slaughter", so I won't.

    By Anonymous Steven, at 4/03/2006 2:44 am  

  • Steven, I find that very disappointing.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/03/2006 3:08 am  

  • knoblauch

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/08/2006 10:19 pm  

  • bumface

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/08/2006 10:35 pm  

  • I can't give you knoblauch or bumface, no. Both brilliant records but not Number One.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/09/2006 12:21 am  

  • Agadoo?

    By Blogger beanochris, at 4/10/2006 4:23 pm  

  • No, I'm pleased to say 'Agadoo' wasn't a Number One.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/10/2006 4:39 pm  

  • I see no reason why you couldn't become her stalker - anyone who fills out a Blazin' Squad information request probably deserves some ill-fortune. I would suggest that it may be erroneous to describe a young Blazin' Squad fan as a "lady", however.

    That particular hit spawned a "Jackie Wilson says" moment - on CD:UK (I think), Blazin' Squad performed their number one hit against a backdrop featuring the large illuminated letters "BS". Nice.

    By Blogger Rish, at 4/11/2006 2:00 pm  

  • I think I've shown remarkable restraint in not publishing her name and phone number here.

    Funny you should mention Jackie Wilson...

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/11/2006 2:03 pm  

  • Are Beetlebum and Boombastic what you have in mind? And the hint in you last post suggests Reet Petite, but I thought that was just French?

    By Anonymous Dan Webb, at 4/16/2006 3:51 pm  

  • I forget to mention I checked my dictionary and there is a verb 'to stonk' but it's something to do with artillery fire.

    By Anonymous Dan Webb, at 4/16/2006 3:52 pm  

  • Beetlebum and Boombastic I'll give you.

    'Petite' is French of course but is 'reet'?

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/17/2006 2:36 pm  

  • No. It's Geordie. Thought you'd have known that, Joe.

    Jo Ward

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/18/2006 9:57 am  

  • Good point. Though I prefer the alternative dialect 'Geet Petite'.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/18/2006 11:48 am  

  • So where are we up to now? You said 11 and then we added another. To date we have:

    1) Do Wah Diddy
    2) Beetlebum
    3) Boombastic
    4) Reet Petite

    Which means we aren't doing very well. Is Xanadu a real word? or just become one since the film? Also does Shuddup You Face count or is that the rolling words in to one?

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/19/2006 8:19 am  

  • I have 8 more that haven't been mentioned here yet. Reet Petite wasn't on my original list either.

    Shaddap You Face is just poor spelling/pronunciation and Xanadu was an ancient Mongol city, so no to both.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/19/2006 6:12 pm  

  • What about those dodgy foreign words such as La Isla Bonita? Anything not in the Queen's English must surely be made up.

    If not, then the truly awful Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny etc etc must be not only made up words, but one of the worst number ones of all time. Whatever happened to Timmy Mallet?

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/20/2006 8:12 am  

  • Itsy Bity Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini is one. Ah yeah.

    Whatever happened to Timmy Mallet? I'd like to say that he descended into a whirlpool of self-destruction and crack hell, but in fact he is working at BBC Radio Berkshire.

    Though there was this incident:

    Foreign words not allowed, crazy though they are. Unless, of course, they aren't really foreign... hmm...

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/20/2006 12:16 pm  

  • I bet he pushed her in. Or bashed her on the head with his mallet. Probably.

    Jo Ward

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/20/2006 7:50 pm  

  • Um, time for a disclaimer I think.

    DISCLAIMER: Serious allegations expressed by contributors to this site are not necessarily the view of the blog's author, no matter how wildly speculative and without foundation said allegations may be.

    Thank you.

    Bet he did though.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/20/2006 7:59 pm  

  • Aserejé by Las Ketchup.
    Cha Cha Slide by DJ Casper
    FURB by Frankie

    By Blogger beanochris, at 4/21/2006 1:01 pm  

  • The Ketchup Song (Asereje) is right, as Asereje isn't actually a word even in Spanish.

    No dice with the others though - the Cha-Cha is a well-known dance and F.U.R.B. is an acronym, not a word.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/21/2006 4:53 pm  

  • How could I have forgotten the most nonsensical number one ever, especially when I used to know every word,sound and note.
    I refer of course to Mmmbop!

    By Anonymous Dan Webb, at 4/23/2006 10:35 pm  

  • You know what Dan - and I'm sorry if this destroys you - I'm not counting that.

    'Mmm' is just a noise - not a nonsense word - and 'bop' is obviously just the word 'bop'.

    Close but no cigar.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/24/2006 12:01 am  

  • I am however intrigued to hear about how you now every word, sound and note.

    I would love to hear a recording of your performance of 'Mmm Bop'.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/24/2006 12:03 am  

  • Chirpy chirpy cheep cheep? Or does that fall foul of the mmmbob rule?

    Do the Bartman?

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/24/2006 3:06 am  

  • Do The Bartman yes, Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep no.

    I can't believe you're all having such trouble with this concept. Basically if some dude (or dudesse) just made up a word (or words) for the name of a song, then that counts. Otherwise it doesn't.


    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/24/2006 4:45 am  

  • Well now you have opened a kettle of worms - what about gangsta'a paradise - is gangsta just bad spelling a la slade, or (as I would claim) a completely made up word?

    Same could be said of Peter Andre's Flava - bad spelling or new word?

    Don't believe that the rules are being applied consistently here.

    By Anonymous Nik, at 4/24/2006 4:01 pm  

  • Obviously gangsta and flava are both examples of bad spelling.

    There is only one rule - I decide what's right and what's wrong. I think you'll find I have applied this rule with absolute consistency.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/24/2006 4:26 pm  

  • So what's the diffence between Mmmbop and Bartman ?

    If anything, I rate Mmmbop as the more "made up" word.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/25/2006 12:16 pm  

  • Is that was the title I'd be inclined to agree, but the title of the song is Mmm Bop - two words.

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 4/25/2006 1:47 pm  

  • Groovejet by Spiller?

    By Blogger beanochris, at 5/07/2006 5:02 pm  

  • Yes!

    By Blogger Joe Williams, at 5/08/2006 2:01 am  

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