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Played to Death


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There are songs that have been "played to death" in Canada that have probably received little airplay, relatively speaking, in the U.S. An example of this would be "These Eyes" by the Guess Who, or other songs by Canadian artists. As far as non-Canadian songs are concerned, I'd nominate "Sweet Home Alabama."


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I can remember turning on the radio and ALWAYS hearing these same songs over and over and over and over again…… crazy …

Love is Blue - Paul Mauriat

Staying Alive – Bee Gees

Hello – Lionel Richie

I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor

I Just Called To Say I Love You – Stevie Wonder

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Marvin-I'm going a bit off topic-but I'm curious about the following.

I DO NOT listen to the Adult Contemporary Radio Stations-BUT-I notice that songs like (currently) "Bad Day" by Daniel Powter and others stay in the Top 5 (Adult Contemporary Charts) for like 53 weeks according to Billboard.

When we were kids a smash lasted about 12 to 14 weeks.

Now I realize that the playlist is big on AC-much bigger than on old Top 40.

I imagine Powter,and other AC heroes don't get played all that repetitively daily.

But is the need for familiarity so important to the main audience of "LITE FM" type stations that virtually no one breaks into the Top 20 on their playlists -with minimal exception-for weeks and weeks at a time?

I'd be curious to hear from you and others.

This is a sincere query-not a criticism.I really don't understand the format. confused -Ira.

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How about Yesterday by the Beatles? I don't care to hear that any more. Most Beatles songs I could listen to over and over and admire just about all of them, except that one.

I agree with Stairway to Heaven. Even though I'm one of a zillion people who can play it on guitar and my old high school band played it, I will usually turn the channel when I hear it on the radio now, even though I love Led Zeppelin.

Though, it's funny how different songs mean different things to people. I love Free Bird and Sweet Home Alabama, mostly because they have a special place in my memories of my high school years. When I hear the first notes of Sweet Home Alabama, I do what Ronnie Van Zant says right in the beginning of the song and "Turn it up".

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some people's choices aren't played that much here on the east coast (even Kathy's)... i rarely if ever hear "Yesterday" on the radio...

also: anthen schmanthem; if it gets played too much, it becomes annoying...

the worst offenders over the past 5-10 years are...

"Sweet Home Alabama"- Lynyrd Skynyrd

"Hotel California"- Eagles

"Hey Jude" & "Get Back"- Beatles

"Old Time R&R"- Bob Seger

"Bad To The Bone"- George Thorogood


most of "Dark Side Of The Moon"- Pink Floyd

"Baba O'Reilly" & "Won't Get Fooled Again" (although I like them a lot, like 'Dark Side'...)

"Fly Like An Eagle" Jet Airliner"- Steve Miller

"Maggie May"- Rod Stewart

"You Shook Me All Night Long"- AC/DC

"Start Me Up"- Stones

"Piano Man"- Billy Joel

"When A Man Loves A Woman"- whoever

"Respect"- Aretha

"Unchained Melody" & "You've Lost That Loving Feeling" R. Bros

"Bad Girls"- Donna Summer

"Stayin' Alive"- Bee Gees

"Dancing Queen"_ ABBA

the whole first "Boston" album, especially "More Than A Feeling"

"I Love R&R"- Joan Jett

"Another Brick In The Wall"- Pink Floyd

"Bohemian Rhapsody"- Queen

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My wish for all you Skynyrd haters:

THYRTY shall find it's way into your Christmas Stocking and become lodged in your favorite automobile CD player... wink

To this day when I hear "All Through The Night" I think "Raspberries doing Skynyrd"... and then when I hear "What's Your Name?" I think "Skynyrd doing Raspberries doing Skynyrd"... laugh

Actually my sister was the huge Skynyrd fan at the time. I was a huge Raspberries fan. It was only years later when I starting hearing "other" Skynyrd songs, like Tuesday's Gone and Call Me The Breeze that I really started getting hooked on the Skynyrd Style. The "Live" versions of all their songs flat-out rock. Most of their songs, even from the studio, have some of the best and boldest instrumental breaks and fade outs. Some artists make songs like that occasionally, Skynyrd made them a habit.

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Rich Supertramp is THE perfect example of a band that gets an incredible amount of airplay in Canada. They've had a huge following in this country for 30+ years and songs like "Dreamer" and "Bloody Well Right" have never left Canadian radio playlists.

Pat, did I see Percy Sledge on your list!?

Ira your post was very thought-provoking. It covers some thoughts and comments that have been posted on various other threads. I'll put together my thoughts on the subject and post soon.


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Thanks Marv.

A great Radio Industry story concerns "77 WABC"-the top "Top 40" radio station of all-time till it eventually was dashed by FM.

Rick Sklaar the GM was sitting in a teen hangout and noticed that the kids played the same few songs on the jukebox over and over again.

They loved the familiarity-they loved singing along with their friends and knowing all the words.

Rick returned to WABC and pared their playlist from 40 songs down to 15-to-20 new songs a week + a coupla Oldies.This move + great DJs (Dirty Dancin's Cousin Brucie) and Jingles sent ratings through the roof.

I hated WABC.Even as a kid-I went over to WMCA where I might hear "Magic Bus" or "Here Comes My Baby- "Top 40-ish Hits" not in heavy rotation-or any rotation-on-WABC.

But Sklaar was right as WABC soared-in part-by playing songs to death.

POSTSCRIPT: I'm sure all EC.com parents have observed this same phenomena as their young children watched the same damn "Strawberry Shortcake-The Movie" videos-over and over while we looked for a place to hide.

I guess we're in the minority.

For many-I suppose-"Familiarity (does NOT) breeds contempt". grumpy -Grumpy 'Ole Ira.

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And you haven't heard "Stairway" until you hear the version done by the 1988 touring band of Frank Zappa (complete with the Jimmy Page guitar solo transcribed and played by the 5-piece horn section in unison). Now that's beautiful... [/QB]

... transcribed complete with mistakes!!!!

Yeah that is a classic. I was crying from laughing so hard when I heard it. Not to mention the same band doing "Purple Haze"

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Ira I don’t have my ear glued to the radio like I used to, so you’ll have to excuse my simplistic answer. Possibly someone like Pat Pierson who is much more in tune with current radio, can give a better answer.

In the old days before radio became rigidly formatted, you had everyone from Frank Sinatra to Alice Cooper to Lynn Anderson competing for the same spot on the same chart. It created a musical map unlike any before and one that will likely never return.

Today what competition does an artist like Daniel Powter have on the charts? The average AC station is not going to play the top rap or hip hop song, so Powter’s chart longevity lasts longer than what would normally be expected. The situation has created mindless radio and songs that get much more airplay and chart action than they deserve.


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