Tag Archives: Electric Light Orchestra

RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (October 2015)

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new singles will be lighting up the national charts during the month. Which tracks will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a small selection of new songs being serviced in October, ten of the best from four different radio formats in this month’s Radio Report:

CHR (*) and HOT AC (**)

Naughty Boy, Beyoncé and Arrow Benjamin
NAUGHTY BOY featuring BEYONCÉ and ARROW BENJAMIN – “Runnin’ (Lose It All)” (October 6) (*)
Label: Capitol
English producer Shahid Khan has only one U.S. radio hit to his credit, the top ten “La La La” (with Sam Smith) from last year, an interesting fact considering he’s had four (and perhaps a fifth with this single) top tens on the U.K. chart since 2010 and many big co-writes with notable artists. The 30-year-old may be bound for a win with “Lose” given the featured star. We’ll see pretty soon.

Skrillex, Diplo and AlunaGeorge
SKRILLEX & DIPLO featuring ALUNAGEORGE – “To Ü” (October 6) (*)
Label: Big Beat/Atlantic
Justin Bieber has them to thank for reigniting his music career after a two-year absence from the pop radio chart with the top ten hit “Where Are Ü Now”, and now, it’s up “to ü” (and the rest of the American music-buying public) to make this next effort from a British duo and the two producers another big track. “You Know You Like It” from the duo reached a peak of #7 in May and June.

The Vamps
THE VAMPS – “Wake Up” (October 6) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
This British quartet has seen a fair amount of success in their native U.K. with five top ten singles in a row, but they’ve barely had a presence on the charts here, reaching #50 on the pop radio survey last fall with “Somebody To You”. Satellite station Hits 1 will probably become a leader on this song out of the gate, similar to their past singles, but will this finally be their big U.S. breakout?

Tove Lo
TOVE LO – “Moments” (October 13) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
Back in July, “Timebomb” was supposed to be serviced to the CHR airwaves as the followup to the top five single “Talking Body”. That ended up getting pulled at the last minute: you can’t say that it bombed out, but radio didn’t make time for it either. Now, in the fall, we finally have a third proper radio release from Queen Of The Clouds. The forecast looks slightly brighter for this track.

Jason Derulo, Jennifer Lopez and Matoma
JASON DERULO featuring JENNIFER LOPEZ and MATOMA – “Try Me” (October 20) (*)
Label: Warner Bros.
“Try” came up in a post I put up earlier this week regarding its sampling of Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” and the competition it may face from another new single with the same sample. Derulo will have to work extra hard to get his new era back on track, due in part to “Cheyenne” recently crashing down the chart after a peak in the teens. Perhaps it can do well during the winter months.


Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
ANDREW MCMAHON IN THE WILDERNESS – “High Dive” (October 13) (* + **)
Label: Crush Music/Vanguard/CMG
McMahon’s second single from his self-titled album is already climbing nicely on my top 40 and just came into the top 50 here on the Alternative chart. Of course, you’ll remember that “Cecilia And The Satellite” spent a record number of weeks rising up to the #5 spot on that survey and hit the 40-week mark overall before it was sent recurrent. Let’s hope this can also reach a “High” peak.

Jeff Lynne's ELO
JEFF LYNNE’S ELO – “When I Was A Boy” (October 13) (**)
Label: Columbia
Would you believe that it was back in 1986 that the Electric Light Orchestra had their last national hit? That was the song “Calling America”, and it made the top 20 before the band broke up. Now performing under a slightly different name, Lynne and the boys are back with a new album on Columbia, where they first released Discovery in 1979. It’s another great single from a great group.

X Ambassadors
X AMBASSADORS – “Unsteady” (October 13) (*)
Label: KIDinaKORNER/Interscope
It’s the song that keeps sticking around: “Renegades”. You know it well. It spent 11 weeks at #1 on the Alternative survey, marking the longest run at the top spot so far this year. Now, it’s set to become a huge crossover smash. Of course, the group is now trying to make it two in a row with this song, now above six million streams on Spotify. The title may not be steady, but the gains will be.

BANNERS – “Shine A Light” (October 20) (** + * 10/27)
Label: Island/Republic
“Shine” just debuted on my personal chart last week and I’m very excited to see this single from the British performer, now living in Canada, at radio so soon. Los Angeles’s two Alternative outlets are giving major early support to this song, but given his label’s inability to break releases by Brandon Flowers and Neon Trees here earlier in 2015, will that hinder its performance? I hope not.

Tor Miller
TOR MILLER – “Carter & Cash” (October 20) (**)
Label: Glassnote
This Brooklyn newcomer signed to Glassnote last year, but generated a bit of buzz earlier this week when “Carter” made its debut on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 show as Monday’s World Record. Miller’s last single to hit the format was the song “Midnight” earlier this year, which spent several weeks in the top 30 in March and April before descending. How will his latest walk the line? Stay tuned.

Which of these new singles would you like to see on top of the charts? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab to find PGTC on social media.

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REWIND: ELO “Roll” Up The Charts

Strike up the band.

Strike up the band.


It started out as two friends wanting to create a new project in order to adapt a more classical sound, and though it took a few years to finally get off the ground, the Electric Light Orchestra became huge for their entertaining symphonic meets art rock style in the 70’s. Led by the talented Jeff Lynne, their presence on both the concert circuit and the charts was felt for many years. They may not be present in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (yet), but they still won over people from around the world, including in the U.S., where a great run began for them several decades ago.

Today (April 28) in 1973, the Electric Light Orchestra‘s “Roll Over Beethoven” debuted at #90 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the group’s first single to chart on any major U.S. survey. It was the leadoff single from their second LP, Electric Light Orchestra II, issued on United Artists. It topped out at #42 in late July after a wild ride up to #65, then a crash down to #100, and then up the chart once more to its peak just outside the top 40. “Roll” also climbed to #48 on Cashbox and all the way to #31 on Record World, the two other big trade papers at the time. The single also helped the album to reach #62 on the Billboard 200 that year, a much better position than the #196 achieved by No Answer about a year prior. Things were very much looking up for the guys.

The song itself is a remake of the 1956 Chuck Berry single, which went to #29 on Billboard’s Top 100 chart, an earlier version of the Hot 100 with a variation in methodology. It’s an early rock classic, but ELO managed to interpolate some familiar sounds into the arrangement, specifically pieces of Beethoven‘s Symphony No. 5. It’s done particularly well, although the full remake itself has received mixed reaction over the years. Nevertheless, it’s still remembered as one of the group’s most well-known compositions and, of course, their breakthrough to a bigger audience. (Larger things were yet to come, however!)

Following their first chart record in America, it would take ELO nearly two years to score a top 40 entry, but when they hit with “Can’t Get It Out Of My Head”, it soared to #9 on the Hot 100 and really set them on their way. From 1975 until 1986, 20 of their singles went top 40, including such Classic Rock radio staples as “Evil Woman” (#10, 1976) and “Don’t Bring Me Down” (#4, 1979). The last, “Calling America”, peaked at #18. Even during the biggest days, they never sent a single to #1. (On rival Radio & Records, “Shine A Little Love” did spend a week there in 1979.) After an extended hiatus, the group recorded album Zoom in 2001, but it failed to make a significant impact. Jeff Lynne and Richard Tandy have since played together live, but the full band hasn’t played in any configuration in years.

Still on the airwaves and perhaps the odd showing of Xanadu here and there (which is still one of the best soundtracks of the 80’s), there’s no need to “roll over” this Orchestra yet. Ludwig may care to differ, but he’s just one guy. Luckily, guys and girls can still enjoy this record that beats to the baroque while relishing in the rock, just another milestone in music history.

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