My Music Charts–Killer B’s

My Top Ten Singles chart permitted the entry of B-sides, that beloved flipside of a 45 r.p.m. vinyl disc. I never felt that one side of a single had to be resolutely excluded from the charts and if I liked the B-side enough then I charted it as well. As the eighties passed into the nineties more artists released their music on cassette singles–which also had two sides–yet with the CD era the concept of sides went out the window. A CD single might host multiple tracks yet as long as the songs were on a single, or a CD EP, it was eligible to chart. In some rare instances I liked the B-side so much that it eclipsed the ranking of its accompanying A-side, and on one occasion a B-side charted while its accompanying A-side didn’t chart at all. In some cases I only charted the A-side after I had become a fan of the B-side first. The appearance of a B-side on my chart does not necessarily mean that it shared its chart run with its A; the two sides may not have had concurrent runs.

I did not limit my chart to singles released only in Canada. I established the rule from the day my chart started (5 November 1983) that any single released anywhere in the world was eligible. Thus I pored over Billboard‘s Hits of the World feature week after week to look for singles released in different territories in the hope of finding songs I could make eligible for my own chart. I would also comb the import sections of the downtown Toronto record stores looking for singles that had an international release somewhere. I often found singles released in Japan, Australia, continental Europe as well as the usual UK imports. There were occasions when during a B-side’s chart run I discovered that it had been released somewhere in the world as an A-side. I then ceased to regard it as a B-side.

It is possible that a territory released a song as an A-side and not as a B. This list will show all the B-sides that hit my top ten as I knew them as B-sides. I will also name the accompanying A-side for each B. It is commonplace for other territories to have different A-sides or even to rerelease the same B-sides over and over again. Again, I will list the accompanying A-sides as I knew them at the time. Singles released as double A-sides are not listed. The charting B-sides are listed in chronological order.

B-side song title–Artist (Peak Position) / A-side song title–Artist if different from A-side (Peak Position)

01. Ode to a Koala Bear–Paul McCartney (6) / Say Say Say–Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson (1)
02. Again Together–The Nomen Rumenals (5) / I’ll Be Laughing (2)
03. Sleepless Night–Yoko Ono (3) / I’m Stepping Out–John Lennon (1)
04. Baby I’m a Star–Prince and the Revolution (6) / Take Me With U–Prince and the Revolution (duet with Apollonia) (3)
05. Don’t You (Forget About Me) [live]–Simple Minds (3) / All the Things She Said (1)
06. Vertigo (Do the Demolition)–Duran Duran (2) / «Meet El Presidente» (1)
07. Into the Fire–Bryan Adams (7) / Victim of Love did not chart
08. How Does That Grab You, Darlin’?–Nancy Sinatra (3) / These Boots Are Made for Walkin’ (1)
09. Ou est le soleil?–Paul McCartney (2) / Figure of Eight (1)
10. Bushfire–The B-52’s (3) / Roam (1)
11. Channel Z–The B-52’s (4) / Love Shack (1)
12. Lord of Karma–Tears For Fears (3) / Laid So Low (Tears Roll Down) (4)
13. Winged Mammal Theme–R.E.M. (1) / Drive (2)
14. The World’s Green Laughter–The B-52’s (3) / Tell it Like it T-I-Is (2)
15. Cosmically Conscious–Paul McCartney (5) / Off the Ground (2)
16. Tell it to My Heart–Pointer Sisters (3) / Don’t Walk Away (1)
17. New Agenda–Janet Jackson (6) / You Want This (1)
18. Survival–Madonna (7) / Bedtime Story (2)
19. None of the Above–Duran Duran (5) / White Lines (Don’t Do It) (1)
20. Shameless–Pet Shop Boys (3) / Go West (1)
21. It Must Be Obvious–Pet Shop Boys (5) / So Hard (7)
22. Once–Pearl Jam (10) / Alive (7)
23. The Light in Your Eyes–LeAnn Rimes (8) / Blue (1)
24. Rainbow High–Madonna (1) / You Must Love Me (5)
25. shanti/ashtangi–Madonna (3) / frozen (1)

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