Various Artists

70 Number One Hits of the 70s, Vols. 1-6

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Sold as a package of six separate discs, each of which contain 11 or 12 tracks, this compilation actually does feature 70 recordings that were number one singles during the 1970s. The simple fact that it lives up to its title is more remarkable than you might think; there are albums out there with the phrase "number one hits" in their names that contain only a few actual chart-toppers. Justifying the title, though, is the best it does. Otherwise, it is a randomly sequenced collection of often stylistically disparate recordings, with no annotations. Typically for collections of this kind, there is a focus on minor artists and one-hit wonders, with most of the major names of the decade missing. Of the top 20 singles artists of the '70s (in the estimation of Billboard chart researcher Joel Whitburn), only four are included: Donna Summer, the Jackson 5, Tony Orlando and Dawn, and Three Dog Night. Similarly, of the top 20 hits of the decade, just four are here: "Le Freak," by Chic; "My Sharona," by the Knack; "Joy to the World," by Three Dog Night; and "Best of My Love," by the Emotions. But the set does provide a sense of the range of music that could top the charts in a notoriously fragmented decade, from the hard rock of "Frankenstein" and "American Woman" to gentle ballads like "If You Leave Me Now" and "Don't Give Up on Us," with a strong representation for disco in songs like "Rock the Boat" and "Hot Stuff." Those who grew up in the '70s, hearing these songs spilling from their AM radios in something like the arbitrary order they do here are liable to take this musical miscellany to their hearts, even if, in strictly musical terms, it must be considered an uneven jumble.

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
blue highlight denotes track pick