USA Best Selling Singles of 1972

USA Best Selling Singles of 1972
Authored By John Nicholson

I’m pretty sure few of us would think Gilbert O’Sullivan would be #2 on this chart, but briefly he was part of the singer-songwriter tradition that did well in this period on the American charts, represented here by Neil Young’s ‘Heart Of Gold’ and America’s ‘Horse With no Name’. 

It’s noticeable how little rock there is on this chart, actually, compared to previous years. That Wayne ‘The Big Fig’ Newton was at #10 says much about where some of America was still at. 

Rock had to make do with Derek & the Dominoes ‘Layla’, Argent’s ‘Hold Your Head Up' and Yes’ brilliant ‘Roundabout’. Badfinger’s ‘Day After Day’ is one of the great singles of the period and Jackson Browne’s ‘Doctor My Eyes’ is always an affecting song, one of his best. 

There’s a bit of an ‘after the party has ended’ feel about this 100. The acid rock years have faded and left everyone a little burnt out. Some have said it marked the end of the LSD and dope years and the start of the cocaine and heroin era. While that must be an over-simplified statement, I suspect there is some truth in it. 

1 "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" Roberta Flack

2 "Alone Again (Naturally)" Gilbert O'Sullivan

3 "American Pie" Don McLean

4 "Without You" Harry Nilsson

5 "The Candy Man" Sammy Davis Jr.

6 "I Gotcha" Joe Tex

7 "Lean on Me" Bill Withers

8 "Baby, Don't Get Hooked on Me" Mac Davis

9 "Brand New Key" Melanie

10 "Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast" Wayne Newton

11 "Let's Stay Together" Al Green

12 "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)" Looking Glass

13 "Oh Girl" The Chi-Lites

14 "Nice to Be with You" Gallery

15 "My Ding-a-Ling" Chuck Berry

16 "(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right" Luther Ingram

17 "Heart of Gold" Neil Young

18 "Betcha by Golly, Wow" The Stylistics

19 "I'll Take You There" The Staple Singers

20 "Ben" Michael Jackson

21 "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" Robert John

22 "Outa-Space" Billy Preston

23 "Slippin' into Darkness" War

24 "Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress" The Hollies

25 "How Do You Do" Mouth & MacNeal

26 "Song Sung Blue" Neil Diamond

27 "A Horse with No Name" America

28 "Popcorn" Hot Butter

29 "Everybody Plays the Fool" The Main Ingredient

30 "Precious and Few" Climax

31 "(Last Night) I Didn't Get to Sleep at All" The 5th Dimension

32 "Nights in White Satin" The Moody Blues

33 "Go All the Way" Raspberries

34 "Too Late to Turn Back Now" Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose

35 "Back Stabbers" The O'Jays

36 "Down by the Lazy River" The Osmonds

37 "Sunshine" Jonathan Edwards

38 "Starting All Over Again" Mel and Tim

39 "Day After Day" Badfinger

40 "Rocket Man" Elton John

41 "Rockin' Robin" Michael Jackson

42 "Beautiful Sunday" Daniel Boone

43 "Scorpio" Dennis Coffey

44 "Morning Has Broken" Cat Stevens

45 "City of New Orleans" Arlo Guthrie

46 "Garden Party" Ricky Nelson

47 "I Can See Clearly Now" Johnny Nash

48 "Burning Love" Elvis Presley

49 "Clean Up Woman" Betty Wright

50 "Hold Your Head Up" Argent

51 "Jungle Fever" The Chakachas

52 "Everything I Own" Bread

53 "In the Rain" The Dramatics

54 "Look What You Done for Me" Al Green

55 "The Happiest Girl in the Whole U.S.A." Donna Fargo

56 "Bang a Gong (Get it On)" T. Rex

57 "Mother and Child Reunion" Paul Simon

58 "Where Is the Love" Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway

59 "I'm Still in Love with You" Al Green

60 "Layla" Derek and the Dominos

61 "Day Dreaming" Aretha Franklin

62 "The Way of Love" Cher

63 "Black and White" Three Dog Night

64 "Sylvia's Mother" Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show

65 "Hurting Each Other" The Carpenters

66 "Coconut" Harry Nilsson

67 "Puppy Love" Donny Osmond

68 "You Don't Mess Around with Jim" Jim Croce

69 "Hot Rod Lincoln" Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen

70 "A Cowboy's Work Is Never Done" Sonny & Cher

71 "Joy" Apollo 100

72 "Anticipation" Carly Simon

73 "Never Been to Spain" Three Dog Night

74 "Kiss an Angel Good Mornin'" Charley Pride

75 "School's Out" Alice Cooper

76 "Saturday in the Park" Chicago

77 "Drowning in the Sea of Love" Joe Simon

78 "Use Me" Bill Withers

79 "Family Affair" Sly & the Family Stone

80 "Troglodyte (Cave Man)" The Jimmy Castor Bunch

81 "The Witch Queen of New Orleans" Redbone

82 "Freddie's Dead" Curtis Mayfield

83 "Power of Love" Joe Simon

84 "Ain't Understanding Mellow" Jerry Butler & Brenda Lee Eager

85 "Taxi" Harry Chapin

86 "Don't Say You Don't Remember" Beverly Bremers

87 "Sealed with a Kiss" Bobby Vinton

88 "I Saw the Light" Todd Rundgren

89 "Motorcycle Mama" Sailcat

90 "Day by Day" Original Cast of Godspell

91 "Roundabout" Yes

92 "Doctor My Eyes" Jackson Browne

93 "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)" The New Seekers

94 "Vincent" Don McLean

95 "Baby Let Me Take You (In My Arms)" The Detroit Emeralds

96 "Speak to the Sky" Rick Springfield

97 "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)" The Hillside Singers

98 "Walkin' in the Rain with the One I Love" Love Unlimited

99 "Get on the Good Foot" James Brown

100 "Pop That Thang" The Isley Brothers

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