60's Hits
jfclams (all lists)  
Modified at: 2024-04-09 6:58pm
A list of hit songs from the 1960s

March 1969, spent six weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 The song is listed at number 66 on Billboard's "Greatest Songs of All Time".

July 1967, #1 on the Hot 100 "Ode to Billie Joe" was nominated for eight Grammy Awards; Gentry and arranger Jimmie Haskell won three between them. Gentry's writing was adapted for the 1976 film Ode to Billy Joe. The song appeared on Rolling Stone's lists, 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and Greatest Country Songs, while Pitchfork featured it on their 200 Best Songs of the 1960s list.

June 1965, #1 on the Hot 100 for 4 weeks It features a guitar riff by Richards that opens and drives the song. The riff by Richards is widely considered one of the greatest hooks of all time. The song lyrics refer to sexual frustration and commercialism.

July 1966, #1 on the Hot 100 for 3 weeks It turned out to be the group's only chart topping hit. John Sebastian reworked the lyrics and melody from a song written by his teenage brother Mark.

January 1966, #1 on the Hot 100 for 5 weeks The song was the No. 1 hit in the U.S. for the five weeks, spanning March 1966; also the No. 21 song of the 1960s as ranked by Joel Whitburn. The single sold more than nine million copies; the album, more than two million.

January 1965, #1 on the Hot 100 for 2 weeks Although it has been his biggest commercial success as a songwriter, Al Kooper has reportedly stated many times that he was unhappy with the record. He originally hoped the song would be recorded by a group like The Drifters and based on the original demo of the song as recorded by Jimmy Radcliffe. Kooper would later re-visit the song, recording a funky version for his 1976 album Act Like Nothing's Wrong.

May 1960, #1 on the Hot 100 the week of July 11 The song was inspired by the V. T. Hamlin-created comic strip of the same name.

July 1964, #2 on the Hot 100 The opening two-chord piano riff and the lead falsetto singing voice of Larry Henley are notable features of the song.

September 1965, #7 on the Hot 100 The song was released between Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde on Blonde, as the follow-up to Dylan's hit single "Like a Rolling Stone", but was not included on either album. The song's title does not appear anywhere in the lyrics and there has been much debate over the years as to the significance or which individual the song concerns.

Peaked at #11 on the Hot 100 in 1968 This version omits the responses and instead has each band member do a quick "solo", and was ranked #73 on the list of "The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time" of Rolling Stone.

June 1966, peaked at #14 on the Hot 100 Billboard praised the single's "off-beat music hall melody and up-to-date lyrics." Cash Box said that it is a "slow-moving, blues-drenched, seasonal affair with a catchy, low-key repeating riff." "Sunny Afternoon" was placed at No. 200 on Pitchfork Media's list of The 200 Greatest Songs of the 1960s.

August 1967, peaked at #16 on the Hot 100 in 1968 The song reached number 16 in the American Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1968, during a chart run of 16 weeks. In Canada, the song reached number 1. It was one of the first pop singles to use flanging, an effect that can be heard on the drums in the bridge section after each chorus.

August 1962, peaked at #6 on the Hot 100 While experimenting with the sound of an overdubbed trumpet, Herb Alpert recorded this song in his garage. It features a mandolin, a bass guitar, drums, and a wordless chorus, featuring a solo soprano.

May 1967, #9 on the Hot 100 The song features a steelpan solo, likely the first use of the instrument on a pop record. Cashbox called it "a gently driving, pulsating, soft-rock venture that is likely to stir up a lot of activity with the teens."

May 1965, #8 on the Hot 100 It was largely improvised at the end of a recording session in Dublin. Released as a single on the Tower label, it reached Billboard's number 8 spot in July 1965 – it was the first Irish-produced record to reach the US charts – but did not chart in Britain.

November 1964, two weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 the weeks of February 6-13, 1965 It was produced by Phil Spector and is cited by some music critics as the ultimate expression and illustration of his Wall of Sound recording technique.

November 1968, #1 on the Hot 100 for 2 weeks starting February 1, 1969 It spent 16 weeks on the U.S. charts, reaching number one in the United States (in February 1969) and four other countries. The single has sold 5 million copies, making it Tommy James and the Shondells' best-selling song. It has been covered by many artists including Joan Jett, Cher (as a duet with her son) and Prince. In 2006, Pitchfork Media named it the 57th best song of the 1960s.

May 1964, #1 on the Hot 100 for the weeks July 4-11, 1964 The single became the Beach Boys' first chart-topping hit in the U.S., as well as one of America's biggest hits since the British Invasion and the beginning of an unofficial rivalry between Wilson and the Beatles. The single also topped the Canadian charts and reached the top ten in the UK, New Zealand, and Sweden. In 2017, "I Get Around" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

August 1965, #1 on the Hot 100 for 4 weeks in October 1965 Paul McCartney's vocal and acoustic guitar, together with a string quartet, essentially made for the first solo performance of the band. It remains popular today and, with more than 2,200 cover versions, is one of the most covered songs in the history of recorded music.

July 1962, #3 on the Hot 100 Described as "one of the most popular instrumental rock and soul songs ever" and as one of "the most popular R&B instrumentals of its era", the tune is a twelve-bar blues with a rippling Hammond M3 organ line by Booker T. Jones that he wrote when he was 17, although the actual recording was largely improvised in the studio.

May 1967, #4 for 4 consecutive weeks in the Hot 100 starting July 1967 McKenzie's version has been called "the unofficial anthem of the counterculture movement of the 1960s, including the Hippie, Anti-Vietnam War and Flower power movements." 

Reached #2 on the Hot 100 in October 1968 The singer's opening proclamation "I am the God of Hellfire" became a lasting catchphrase; the audio effect on the intro is a mixture of artificial reverb and "recording in the toilet, which gave a chamber-type sound". The song ends with the sound of a wind from Hell along with one of Brown's trademark banshee screams.

October 1968, #68 on the Hot 100 Dec. 1968 - #1 UK Nov. 6-12, 1968 After recording the song, Cocker and record producer Denny Cordell brought it to Paul McCartney, who later said of the recording, "it was just mind blowing, totally turned the song into a soul anthem and I was forever grateful for him for doing that."

June 1964, #5 on the Hot 100 Music critic Tom Ewing, writing for Freaky Trigger, commented that the song "invents" post-punk, "which is to say, when I listen to the instrumental break on this record, bright guitar and sharp keyboard slicing tuneless chunks out of each other, it’s not 1964 I’m hearing."

June 1969, peaked at #2 on the Hot 100 for three consecutive weeks from July 26 to August 9 At the time of the song's release there were several popular types of high quality blue-colored LSD tablets in circulation—some listeners generally assumed James was referring to "acid". In 1979, music writer Dave Marsh described it as "a transparent allegory about James' involvement with amphetamines."

December 1963, Peaked at #2 for 3 consecutive weeks on the Hot 100 beginning February 1, 1964 The song was Gore's second most successful recording and her last top-ten single. Gore herself considered it to be her signature song claiming “I just can’t find anything stronger to be honest with you, it’s a song that just grows every time you do it.”


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