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> Unluckiest Chart Hits, 1980-2019
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Gezza
post May 8 2021, 12:23 PM
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Hello There

Inspired by recent threads on here on the concept of “unlucky” hits- I thought I’d put a bit of sales into the mix to come up with a list of songs that may rightfully claim to be unlucky.

Kylie may have sung “I Should Be So Lucky” but with 5 weeks at No 1 luck was clearly on her side, not so these tracks despite a good respective sale within their chart year and one which on many weeks would have seen them at No 1. Years covered for the survey are 1980 to 2020 and for obvious reasons the Christmas chart has been excluded as naturally sales for that week are artificially high (up to 2010), and so too for the week after Christmas when the “gift card” effect took effect (from 2011 to 2012) then it ceases to really have any effect for the purpose of this thread so all weeks are included from 2013 onwards.

How are we defining an “Unlucky” chart hit?

So in order to focus on the “unluckiest” tracks we’re looking at songs that never made the top 2 but sold enough to make No 1 in at least 11 weeks of the respective year of release. Songs are ranked ultimately in terms of weeks it sold enough to be No 1 then on the weekly sale that brought that figure about.

BUT ALSO

For those of a more sales mind we’re going to start with 17 songs which wouldn’t make the list under the first criteria but did sell at least 90% of the sales of the No 1 in their respective week. There are also 6 that would have made both lists but they are listed in the main list of 107 tracks.

So first up will be those 17 songs ranked by % of sales compared to the No 1 in that week.....
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Gezza
post May 8 2021, 12:24 PM
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As per usual, I'm sure we can all think of examples so please no spoilers and we'll see if they surface as the thread develops....
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T Boy
post May 8 2021, 06:05 PM
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Exciting! So many great songs that never peaked top 2!
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dandy*
post May 8 2021, 06:09 PM
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Sounds fun, looking forward to this happy.gif
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Jade
post May 8 2021, 06:11 PM
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Ooh sounds great *.*
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diva thin muffin
post May 8 2021, 07:57 PM
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Exciting! I have no ideas what kind of songs or even what time period these songs will be from but I'm excited to follow this!
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Colm
post May 8 2021, 08:07 PM
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It's amazing that there are still chart ideas to be fully realised by the esteemed Gezza, given the inventiveness and resourcefulness of his work down through the years.

Looking forward to this. wub.gif
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Colm
post May 8 2021, 08:11 PM
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I'm guessing that there'll be one from Sept 1988, Sep/Oct 1989 and Sept 1991. A few from spring 2002.

This post has been edited by Colm: May 8 2021, 08:11 PM
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Gezza
post May 9 2021, 11:14 AM
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East 17- Hey Child (90%)



W/E 18/01/1997

1- PROFESSIONAL WIDOW (IT’S GOT TO BE BIG)- Tori Amos (80,000)
2- QUIT PLAYING GAMES (WITH MY HEART)- Backstreet Boys (79,000)
3- HEY CHILD- East 17 (72,000)

A week before the group imploded thanks to Brian Harvey’s drugs comment the boys released what would be their final single as a quartet. It was a week when Lisa Stansfield first led the midweek charts followed by The Backstreet Boys but in the end TOTP swung it narrowly for Amos. East 17 held on in there however ending up just 8k off the top spot.

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Gezza
post May 9 2021, 11:23 AM
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Dollar- Give Me Back My Heart (90.2%)



W/E 17/4/1982

1- MY CAMERA NEVER LIES- Bucks Fizz (72,000)
2- AIN’T NO PLEASING YOU- Chas & Dave (71,000)
3- EBONY & IVORY- Paul McCartney & Stevie Wonder (69,000)
4- SEVEN TEARS- Goombay Dance Band (67,000)
5- GIVE ME BACK MY HEART- Dollar (65,000)

Co-written and produced by Trevor Horn this is the closest they ever came to No 1 in a sales sense though of course “Mirror Mirror” went to No 4 earlier in 82 and is, on paper, their biggest hit. It was a poor week all around for 1982.

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Gezza
post May 9 2021, 11:26 AM
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Sabrina- Boys (Summertime Love) (90.4%)



W/E 02/07/1988

1- I OWE YOU NOTHING- Bros (42,000)
2- THE TWIST (YO TWIST)- Fat Boys & Chubby Checker (40,000)
3- BOYS (SUMMERTIME LOVE)- Sabrina (38,000)

Inexplicably released first in February when it made No 60 this clearly had “Summer hit” written all over it and so it proved on re-issue that summer. Sabrina’s “charms” were well remarked on at the time with TOTP famously airing the promo on primetime TV whilst not vetting the “nipplegate” incident long before Janet Jackson got there.

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Dot Branning
post May 9 2021, 11:28 AM
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I’m also really looking forward to to reading this Gezza. Always a lot of interesting information in your chart threads.

The East 17 song is hardly a stand out from their discography, would have been a forgotten #1. The Top 3 lined up in the right order imo.
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Dot Branning
post May 9 2021, 11:43 AM
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QUOTE(Colm @ May 8 2021, 09:11 PM) *
I'm guessing that there'll be one from Sept 1988, Sep/Oct 1989 and Sept 1991. A few from spring 2002.


One from early 1999 was the first example that sprung to my mind.
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steve201
post May 9 2021, 11:50 AM
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Most of the near misses probably deserved from the list so far! Like the cheesy Sabrina song!
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dandy*
post May 9 2021, 12:59 PM
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QUOTE(Dot Branning @ May 9 2021, 12:43 PM) *
One from early 1999 was the first example that sprung to my mind.

Yes me too - will be interesting to see how many weeks it could have been #1 for as the sales in general were high that year
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King Rollo
post May 9 2021, 01:20 PM
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The four singles Trevor Horn produced for Dollar were all great pop songs. I didn't know Chas & Dave were that close to having a number 1 single.
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Bjork
post May 9 2021, 01:28 PM
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oh never knew Sabrina had been so close to #1

still amazed to this date that Tori Amos worst song ever and the least representative of her sound is her only #1 biggrin.gif
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dandy*
post May 9 2021, 01:43 PM
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I love the dance version of Tori's track, it is basically Armand Van Helden's track but it's a dance classic for me *.*
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jimwatts
post May 9 2021, 02:52 PM
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I've an idea of what will come top of this first countdown, but not completely sure. Something fairly recent should come in at about 93%.
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Jade
post May 9 2021, 02:58 PM
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'Ain't No Pleasing You' is my favourite from that 1982 chart - kinda reminds me of '(Just Like) Starting Over' by John Lennon - wish Chas & Dave had got that #1.
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