What was the number one song in the UK on 13th November 1971?
“Coz I Luv You” by Slade was Number One on 13th November 1971 and stayed there for four weeks.
So it is time for a trip back down memory lane, more precisely 1971. This year has just flown past, as a lot of the hits stayed at the top for several weeks. This was a wonderful flamboyant time for music with glam rock and interesting compositions. This weeks number one is a great example of this genre. Though they were rather tame in the costume department.
“Coz I Luv You” is a song by British band Slade, written by Noddy Holder and Jim Lea and produced by Chas Chandler. It was the band’s second hit single in the UK and the first of six number ones. Released on 30 October 1971, it was last seen on the charts on 5 February 1972 at #44. According to Holder’s autobiography the single sold half a million copies in only two weeks.
The song was typical of Slade’s brash, stomping glam style and prominently featured Jim Lea’s electric violin. It quickly reached number one on the UK Singles Chart, where it stayed for four weeks in November 1971. In the first week of its release, the single reached #26, followed by #8 the following week and #1 the week after. The single was #1 for four weeks and stayed at #3 for three weeks after that.
Chas Chandler had put Lea under pressure to write a new song for a single. Lea turned up at Holder’s home unexpectedly with his guitar and violin with an idea for a song with a Django Reinhardt/Stephan Grapelli “Hot Club” sound. The track was written in half an hour. The song began the writing partnership of Holder and Lea which would continue throughout Slade’s career. Originally the band felt the song to be too soft and so clapping was added. The misspelt titles also became a trademark for Slade, causing some consternation among the country’s school teachers.
The song had no promotional video but was performed on numerous TV shows, both in UK and in Europe.
Ritchie Blackmore commented on the song in an 1971 Melody Maker interview “Is this the MM staff band? I think I recognise it now the guitarist is speeding up. The song isn’t bad. I like the violin. It’s very coarse, but the guitar needs speeding up a lot. It can’t be East of Eden, and it’s certainly not Family. Slade, yes? They are a good group because the don’t care about the notes and there is a public wanting that. Another group might be too inhibited to do what they do.”
In a November 1980 Sounds magazine interview, Lea spoke about the song: “I didn’t even like some of those old ones. We all hated ‘Gudbye T’ Jane’ when we made it, it was knocked up in half an hour at the end of one of our studio sessions. The same for our second single, ‘Coz I Luv You’. It was namby-pamby to us, a throwaway for an album. It shot to number one in two weeks and we thought, ‘What a pile of shit!’ It was so wet.”
In a December 1984 interview with Record Mirror, the magazine tested Lea’s memory by asking him to recall the story behind certain hits. About “Coz I Luv You”, Lea recalled:
That was the time when I wrote mainly with Don and Dave wrote with Nod. Nod and I were really into Stephan Grappelli and Django Reinhardt, the violin and stuff, so one afternoon I went over to Nod’s on his council estate where he lived with his mum and dad and I said ‘hey Nod, why don’t we write a song?’. I took my violin with me and said why don’t we do a Stephan Grappelli thing. ‘Hot Love’ was in the charts at the time – Marc Bolan, and I said something like that, dead simple and we wrote the song in half an hour. We got the structure of the tune and Nod just filled in the gaps. That’s the only song we’ve ever written like that.
I really think that there was a lot of raw energy in this song. It was an exciting and dynamic time when talented singers from poor backgrounds got to hit the big times. There was no contrived hits, with careful composition or a lot of studio work. It made for more genuine concerts – no lipsynching either. Just pure sound.
So back here in New Zealand we had two very different number ones – the first being a New Zealand group – The Rumour – L’Amour Est L’Enfant De La Liberte (Love Is The Child Of Freedom) It was also number 2 to the next number one for another 4 weeks.
Followed by 7 weeks of Paul McCartney and Wings. This brings back so many memories of this summer – we are not only in the future time wise, but also with the seasons.
I hope you have enjoyed this walk back to the past and now it is back to the future.