Worst Songs List

Top 10 List: Worst Songs of 1963

1963. The year John F. Kennedy was assassinated and Martin Luther King gave his “I Have A Dream” speech. Slowly, but surely, we’re moving out of the boring parts of the 60s because 1963 was actually okay for music. Surf rock started gaining popularity, injecting some much needed energy into the charts full of doo-wop and easy listening stuff. We’re almost there, people. One more year until the British Invasion and that’s when things will get interesting. Let’s start the list.

1963

10.

Image result for i love you because al martino

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz………

Nice to see that the 50s refused to die and held on like a little kid who doesn’t want to go to school. This is Al Martino’s cover of I Love You Because, a country song from 1949. It’s a cookie cutter love song you’ve heard a million times whose biggest crime is being utterly boring. Al Martino is a fine enough singer, but good singing alone isn’t enough to make a song good, especially when you have instrumentation that sounds like every 50s ballad out there. This is an uninteresting snoozefest. Next.

9.

This will be the first of two songs on this list that was covered by an Osmond. And you wonder why most of their music sucks. Anyways, this is Dale & Grace with I’m Leaving It All Up To You. It’s another generic love song with bland doo-wop instrumentation that you’ve heard in other songs from the 60s. Seriously, so much of this easy-listening crap takes up a good chunk of the charts at the time that it becomes hard to tell which is what. The best thing I could say about it is that the singing’s alright, but look back at what I said about the previous song. I’m ready for something with a little more variety.

8.

Well, it’s not boring like the previous song, but that doesn’t mean that I Will Follow Him is off the hook. With this song, Little Peggy March was the youngest female artist to top the charts at the time. She was 15. My issue with this song is how annoying it is, especially that chorus. I don’t know what it is, but the way it’s sung combined with the melody sounds like it’s mocking the listener. And there’s also the writing, which makes Little Peggy seem too clingy, following this unnamed gentleman where ever he goes. Ehh, she’s young. She’ll figure it out when she’s older. Still left us with a crappy song.

7.

Probably one of the weirdest songs to ever become a hit in the 60s (which is saying a lot), Martian Hop by the Ran-Dells is at least more interesting than the other songs on this list. Too bad it’s still not good. The instrumentation is a sloppy doo-wop mess with sci-fi synthesizers in the intro. It also has a lot of annoying alien voices, which I understand is the point since the song is about aliens, but it’s still annoying regardless, especially when you get to the chorus. I think songs like this is why actual aliens refuse to visit us.

6.

And now, time for some unnecessary drama courtesy of the Angels, who hit number one with My Boyfriend’s Back. The premise of the song is that these girls are warning a guy that they’ve rejected who spread rumors about them that their boyfriend is in town and they better watch their back. This is one of those situations where I can’t side with anyone because both parties suck. One side reacts to being rejected by gossiping like a little punk while the other side reacts to that by hiding behind their significant other and getting them to beat them up. It’s dumb reality television drama. Imagine this song being made today with social media being as prominent as it is. As for the rest of the song? It’s catchy, but I don’t want to listen to it again.

5.

Image result for four seasons candy girl

Guys, I know the Four Seasons are considered a legendary group and there are a lot of people who like their music, but I can’t stand them. I don’t like a lot of their music, though they are capable of making good songs. Since Big Girls Don’t Cry (their worst song) didn’t make any Year End lists, I settled with another one of their turds to take their place, Candy Girl. It’s a doo-wop love song like 50% of the hits in the late 50s and early 60s, but what puts this song on the list is the same reason I can’t stand to listen to the Four Seasons in general: Franki. Goddamn. Valli. Holy Jesus, this guy’s falsetto annoys the piss out of me. It’s one of those shrill falsettos that can break glass if you play it loud enough and it just ruins whatever enjoyment I could get out of this song. That’s just me.

4.

S75079.jpg

You know? I was gonna open this entry with an Australian joke, but chances are I would have lost my Australian readers if I did. And on that note, Rolf Harris’ Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport, an Australian song made in 1960 that was re-recorded in 1963 for the States. The song is about an Australian guy giving his dying wishes to his friends, which includes watching wallabies (they’re like small kangaroos) feed, keeping his cockatoos cool (mind out the gutter now), taking his koala back, mind his platypuses, and of course, tying his kangaroo down. Why? What did the kangaroo do to deserve this treatment? Let that motherfucker hop. Anyways, the subject matter makes the song depressing, which contrasted by it being sung like a campfire song. Before we move on, two things: 1), there’s this deleted fourth verse:

Let me Abos go loose, Lou
Let me Abos go loose
They’re of no further use, Lou
So let me Abos go loose

For those that don’t know, “Abo” is an offensive slang term for Aboriginal people. You know, the people who lived in Australia before British colonialism. Yikes. And 2), Rolf Harris was convicted and sent to prison for sexually assaulting four teenage girls. Double yikes.

3.

Image result for two faces have i

Jesus H. Christ, this song. This is probably one of the most annoying sounds I have subjected my ears to. This audio atrocity is called Two Faces Have I and it comes from Lou Christie. It’s a guy hiding his emotion, appearing happy on the outside, but on the inside, he’s actually sad and depressed. Okay, let’s just get into the main reason why this song is on here, the singing. You thought Frankie Valli had an annoying falsetto? Well, Lou Christie heard that, said “hold my beer,” and gave us one of the shrillest falsettos that any person could ever conceive on this track. Every time he does that falsetto, it’s like a dentist drill going another inch into your brain. Get this noise out of here.

2.

Image result for go away little girl steve lawrence

And here’s the other song that was covered by an Osmond, Go Away Little Girl by Steve Lawrence. I’m gonna say something unorthodox: the Osmond version of this song is the superior version. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still shit, but with the subject matter being about a boy rejecting a pretty girl because he doesn’t want to betray his girlfriend, it made sense for a pre-teen Donny Osmond to do this song. Steve Lawrence, on the other hand, was 28 years old when he did this song. Think about that when you hear this grown ass man say “go away little girl.” Yeah, he is rejecting her, but the fact that this scenario is brought up in the first place makes what would have been a sappy-sounding song even creepier. Not helping is Steve Lawrence singing in a lower register. Ugh. Can we move on to number one already?

And now, here are some dishonorable mentions.

DISHONORABLE MENTIONS

  • Skeeter Davis-The End Of The World
  • Bobby Vinton-Blue Velvet
  • Bobby Darin-You’re The Reason I’m Living
  • The Four Seasons-Walk Like A Man
  • Bill Anderson-Still
  • Nino Tempo & April Stevens-Deep Purple
  • Bobby Vee-The Night Has A Thousand Eyes
  • Allan Sherman-Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah
  • Dee Dee Sharp-Do The Bird
  • The Dartells-Hot Pastrami

And finally, the worst song of 1963 IS………

drum roll

1.

Here’s a song that’s ten levels of fucked up when you analyze it. On the surface level, If You Wanna Be Happy by Jimmy Soul seems like an upbeat catchy doo-wop song. But then you look at the lyrics and you realize something isn’t right. Basically, Jimmy Soul is telling dudes to marry an ugly woman instead of a pretty woman because a pretty woman will make you look bad while an ugly woman will make you look better. This is one of those songs that sets unrealistic expectations when it comes to relationships. This time, it tries to be subversive by saying be with someone who’s ugly because most people like pretty. It’s one thing to say that appearances don’t matter when it comes to a relationship, I would support that message, but that’s not what this song did. It put one preference over another in the most shallow, mean-spirited way possible. Even if it was framed as a satire, it would still be a shitty satire. Congratulations to If You Wanna Be Happy for being the worst song of 1963.

And those were the worst songs of 1963. In two weeks, BACK TO THE 60s continues with the Worst Songs of 1964.

1963.png

Peace!!

SONG OF THE WEEK

I2I-Tevin Campbell

12 thoughts on “Top 10 List: Worst Songs of 1963

  1. Really late on this due to the fact that I got a second job, but disagreements for me are My Boyfriend’s Back, Walk Like A Man, and Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh, although I get why they’re here. Also, the two songs you have on the list proper (I’m Leaving It All Up To You and Go Away Little Girl) aren’t the only songs that would later be covered by an Osmond as one of your dishonorable mentions (Deep Purple) is in that category as well. Oh, and really wasn’t expecting you to like It’s My Party. That was quite the curveball (not gonna complain, though, it’s a good song).

    Anomalies:

    Worst:

    Lesley Gore – Judy’s Turn To Cry
    Inez & Charlie Foxx – Mockingbird
    Paul & Paula – Hey Paula
    Skeeter Davis – I Can’t Stay Mad At You
    Ricky Nelson – Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear To Tread)
    Bill Pursell – Our Winter Love
    Trini Lopez – If I Had A Hammer
    Ned Miller – From A Jack To A King
    Sunny & The Sunglows – Talk To Me

    Best:

    Henry Mancini – Days Of Wine & Roses
    The Drifters – Up On The Roof
    The Chiffons – He’s So Fine

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  2. You forgot to mention about the March on Washington and MLK’s I Have A Dream speech happening in 63. Speaking about JFK’s assassination, my mom remembers at 4 years old seeing my grandma crying in front of the TV as they broadcasted his funeral. Agree with your thoughts on the year. We’re finally starting to get into the part of the 60s that people really identify the decade with. While the trends of the last few years were still present, we started to get the more 60s defining sounds making their impact like surf rock, girl groups, Motown, etc. I also find it interesting in how both a Japanese and a French song managed to hit number one this year since you don’t see this a lot.

    I Love You Because- boring

    I’m Leaving It Up to You- really dated and another dull love song of its era

    I Will Follow Him- another dull love song

    Martian Hop- really annoying

    My Boyfriend’s Back- agree that it’s very catchy but very childish and the girls vocals can get annoying

    Candy Girl- I don’t hate the Four Seasons as much as you do but even I can admit Frankie Valli’s falsetto can get really grating especially at the end where it almost gives me a heart attack. My guitar teacher was recently telling me how his mother mentioned that one reason for why she didn’t like a lot of music in the early 60s was how many of the male performers like Frankie Valli had these big falsettos and that The Beatles were the first masculine sounding performers they had heard in a while.

    Tie Me Kangaroo, Sport- Aside from the racist implications, this song is just meh

    Two Faces Have I- really annoying

    Go Away Little Girl- very creepy

    If You Wanna Be Happy- I share Billboardguy1’s opinion on the song in that it’s another song setting unrealistic expectations about marriage but at least it sounds fun though that falsetto at the end gets really annoying

    My only disagreement is with Walk Like a Man cause I find it really fun to sing along to and Frankie Valli’s falsetto is at least more tolerable here.

    Can’t disagree much with your best list. Johnny Cash is the best. I was recently in Nashville on family vacation and went to the Johnny Cash Museum where I got to see a lot of his memorabilia and history. And you also get to hear different artists cover Johnny’s songs like Snoop Dogg sampling I Walk The Line and Ray Charles doing a cover of Ring of Fire. Overall, I had a fun time in Nashville getting to experience the music and culture there. I went to a couple other music museums seeing a lot of memorabilia. A recording studio where Elvis, Roy Orbison, Everly Brothers, Dolly Parton among others have recorded. I got to see Brenda Lee get her star on the Music City Walk of Fame along with unfortunately Ray Stevens. And I went on a tour of The Hermitage, Andrew Jackson’s home and plantation. Other songs on the list I like include Surfin USA, Fingertips, It’s My Party, Surf City, Be My Baby, Wipe Out, Pride and Joy, Blowin In The Wind, and You’ve Really Got a Hold On Me. Can’t wait for you to cover the rest of the 60s since we’re finally entering the part of the decade that people really remember along with Beatlemania finally helping to bring back quality into music that will last for the rest of the decade.

    Here are the lists I made for 2004
    Best Hit Songs of 2004
    1)Hey Ya!/The Way You Move ft. Sleepy Brown by OutKast
    2)Yeah! ft. Lil Jon and Ludacris/Burn/Confessions Part II/My Boo with Alicia Keys by Usher
    3)If I Ain’t Got You/You Don’t Know My Name by Alicia Keys
    4)Slow Jamz by Twista ft. Kanye West and Jamie Foxx
    5)Drop It Like It’s Hot by Snoop Dogg ft. Pharrell
    6)This Love by Maroon 5
    7)Heaven by Los Lonely Boys
    8)Jesus Walks/All Falls Down ft. Syleena Johnson/Through the Wire by Kanye West
    9)Leave (Get Out) by JoJo
    10)Are You Gonna Be My Girl by Jet
    Honorable Mentions
    I Don’t Wanna Know by Mario Winans ft. Enya and P. Diddy
    Lean Back by Terror Squad
    My Immortal by Evanescence
    Dirt Off Your Shoulders/Change Clothes by JAY-Z
    Me, Myself and I by Beyoncé
    The First Cut Is the Deepest by Sheryl Crow
    My Place by Nelly ft. Jaheim
    Overnight Celebrity by Twista
    Numb/Breaking the Habit by Linkin Park
    She Will Be Loved by Maroon 5
    White Flag by Dido
    It’s My Life by No Doubt
    Toxic/Everytime by Britney Spears
    Meant to Live by Switchfoot
    My Happy Ending/Don’t Tell Me by Avril Lavigne
    Headsprung by LL Cool J
    Breakaway by Kelly Clarkson
    Remember When by Alan Jackson
    Let’s Get It Started by The Black Eyes Peas
    American Soldier by Toby Keith
    Happy People by R. Kelly
    Letters From Home by John Michael Montgomery

    Worst Hit Songs of 2004
    1)Why? by Jadakiss ft. Anthony Hamilton
    2)F**k It (I Don’t Want You Back) by Eamon
    3)Just Lose It by Eminem
    4)Goodies by Ciara ft. Peety Pablo
    5)Milkshake by Kelis
    6)One Call Away by Chingy ft. J-Weav
    7)Someday by Nickelback
    8)My Band by D12
    9)Game Over by Lil Flip
    10)With You by Jessica Simpson
    Dishonorable Mentions
    Tipsy by J-Kwon
    Freak-A-Leek by Petey Pablo
    Naughty Girl by Beyoncé
    Pieces of Me by Ashlee Simpson
    Splash Waterfalls by Ludacris
    Salt Shaker by The Ying Yang Twins ft. Lil Jon and The East Side Boyz
    I Like That by Houston ft. Chingy, Nate Dogg and I-20
    Sorry 2004 by Ruben Studdard
    Gigolo by Nick Cannon ft. R. Kelly
    Southside by Lloyd ft. Ashanti
    Dude by Beenie Man ft. Ms. Thing

    What are your opinions on the following songs?
    Sugar Shack by Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs
    He’s So Fine by The Chiffons (the song that a court ruled George Harrison copied for My Sweet Lord)
    Hey Paula by Paul and Paula (surprised this didn’t make the worst list)
    Da Doo Ron Ron by The Crystals
    Surfer Girl by The Beach Boys
    Dominique by The Singing Nun
    Up On The Roof by The Drifters
    I Wanna Be Around by Tony Bennett
    Pipeline by The Chantays

    Liked by 1 person

    1. in the 2004 lists I can see where one may come from by putting Freek A Leek towards the worst side. Beats and Synth don’t mask potentially rapist lyrics. I could see a Yikes after digging deeper in the lyrics and the way he shouts off sexual positions and multiple girls.

      As for 1963 we reached the last year of the rockabilly years and the British brought the real sound of rock music in the next year that changed everything. The year could be summed up a year of progress then Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated John Kennedy in Dallas.

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  3. You actually did like one song from The Four Seasons, “December, 1963 (Oh, What A Night)”. But let’s face it, Frankie Valli was barely in that song. I don’t like them either (except that one song and the Grease theme song from Frankie, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You was okay), so you’re not alone on that. yeah, ’63 was a decent year, but still not that great of a year, but the surf rock and rise of R&B music was starting to take hold. I agreed with pretty much every song on this list. I Will Follow Him is more inoffensive than anything, but it was definitely very clingy. Still, I can listen to it, though it’s not something I’d go back to. My Boyfriend’s Back is catchy, but really stupid. Don’t really hate it, though. Every time I heard Lou Christie’s music, I kept asking myself if it was a guy or a woman singing and it turns out it was guy using a falsetto. And it’s a horrible one at that. Frankie’s is pleasant music compared to that. Martian Hop has at least the distinction of being interesting, but it’s not good. The early 60’s were the golden age of novelty songs, so there had to be at least one novelty song on this list. Tie Me Kangaroo, Sport is just another really lame novelty song. And wow, what an asshole Rolf Harris was. I gave If You Wanna Be Happy a pass simply for being upbeat when most of the other songs were boring and super generic. But now that I know what it’s fully about, yeah, it’s not that great of a song. If it ever came on at a 60’s oldies station I wouldn’t change the channel, but the message of the song is a bit messed up. It’s also one of those songs that set unrealistic expectations of marriage. Being married isn’t always everything. The rest of the songs on this list is boring crap, so I agree with you. Overall, another great list. And the best one is also great as always. Can’t wait to finally see the worst list of the start of Beatlemania and the British invasion. Will be fun to see.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Regarding My Boyfriend’s Back, for some reason HESS uses the jingle for My Boyfriend’s Back almost every Christmas to promote their toy trucks. Because of course.

    Also, forewarning, but Lou Christie is going to have more hits as the 60s go on, one in 1966 and another in 1969.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Steve Lawrence is a great talent, but there’s no excusing “Go Away Little Girl.” Like you said, his version is much worse than Donny Osmond’s. At least Donny Osmond had the decency to not be an adult when he recorded it. You can almost see the evil grin on Steve Lawrence’s face as he sings it

    Liked by 1 person

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