Entertainment Music & Nightlife

Throwback Thursday: The top 10 songs this week in 1959

This week 57 years ago, Congress welcomed three new members (two senators and one representative) from Alaska, which became the 49th state on Jan. 3; in Virginia, Mildred and Richard Loving were found guilty of a felony for violating the state's law preventing sex, marriage or cohabitation between different races; Charles de Gaulle became president of France; TV western "Rawhide" premiered on CBS; and the following songs were the most popular in the U.S., according to Billboard's Hot 100 chart archive.

10. "Whole Lotta Loving," Fats Domino

As a general rule, I don't believe kissy sounds should be in songs, but Fats Domino doing them is fine by me.

9. "Gotta Travel On," Billy Grammer

Grammer guitars? They're named after this guy, who made both the country and pop charts with "Gotta Travel On," his biggest hit. Grammer was also playing at the political rally in Laurel in 1972 during which presidential candidate George Wallace was shot.

8. "A Lover's Question," Clyde McPhatter

Doo-wop legend McPhatter also sang with his band, the Drifters, as well as Billy Ward and his Dominoes. Not too shabby.

7. "Tom Dooley," Kingston Trio

Folk revival! "Tom Dooley" was, I'm guessing, the most successful song about a man being hanged for the murder of his lover and his unborn child (based on a true incident in 1860s North Carolina).

6. "My Happiness," Connie Francis

Borney Bergantine, who wrote the music for "My Happiness," once lead an orchestra called The Happiness Boys during the Great Depression.

5. "One Night," Elvis Presley

"One Night" co-writer David Bartholomew joined forces with No. 10 on our list, Fats Domino, to compose Domino's hit "I'm Walkin'."

4. "Problems," the Everly Brothers

The totally relatable "Problems" spent an impressive 15 weeks on the Hot 100 chart. It was written by Felice and Boudleaux Bryant, who also penned the Everly Brothers' hits "Bye Bye Love" and "All I Have to Do is Dream."

3. "To Know Him, Is To Love Him," the Teddy Bears

I always thought this song was about Jesus/God, but apparently Teddy Bears member Phil Spector (yes, that Phil Spector), wrote it based on an inscription on his dad's tombstone ("To Know Him Was To Love Him").

2. "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes," the Platters

The classic was also the title of the series premiere episode of "Mad Men," in which Don Draper must figure out how to market Lucky Strike cigarettes.

1. "The Chipmunk Song," the Chipmunks with David Seville

Just how popular was this song? It was released in 1958 and then RE-ENTERED the Hot 100 chart in 1959 (going to No. 1) and then again in 1960, 1961 and 1962 (each time in the top 50). Not bad for a group of rodents who just want a hula hoop.

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