« random camera phone picture: exploitation in b flat | Main | Yankees »

ASV Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: New Wave Finalists
And a New Category


I have a feeling this is going to be the most hotly contested poll thus far. The four finalists are New Order, The Cars, Depeche Mode and Duran Duran.

I like each band in their own right and, despite suffering from damp panties syndrome over Simon LeBon many years ago, I am voting for Depeche Mode, for quality of overall catalog.

[this poll has been completed. please see HoF link below for winner]


By popular demand: ONE HIT WONDER. Please remember, - this is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (Rock and Roll, for this purpose, covering all these genres). And by ONE HIT WONDER, I mean:

In the music industry, a one-hit wonder is an artist who is generally known for only one hit (A base hit on which the batter stops safely at first base) single. It also applies to any group which charts only one single into the upper reaches of the (Click link for more info and facts about Billboard Magazine) Billboard Magazine album charts, or the relevant local album charts.

My immediate choice for this category is Seven Mary Three's Cumbersome.

PLEASE NOTE: This has been cross posted at Blogcritics, so I will wait for some nominations from that post and combine them before I make the poll for this one.


'Closing Time' - Semisonic

'Take On Me' - A-ha (not sure if that qualifies as rock however)

'Breakfast At Tiffany's' - Deep Blue Something

I take issue with the Seven Mary Three nomination - the CD American Standard was awesome. Bah!
My picks:
Mudvane - Let the Bodies Hit the Floor
Danzig - Mother
Default - Wasting My Time
Third Eye Blind - Jumper

You may take issue, the charts do not.

Let the Bodies hit the Floor (Bodies, actually) is Drowning Pool, not Mudvayne.

Chumbawamba - "Tubthumping"

You're kidding? There are too many popping into my head to even begin to narrow the field down (although that A-Ha dreck did immediately come to mind).

Ahh, 7M3. Launching them was pretty much the last independant act of WJRR here in Orlando before they were eaten by Clear Channel and became lame. And yes, all of American Standard was brilliant - they deserved to have at least 4 or 5 hits off that disc. I can't be as kind to their later efforts though unfortunately.

Anyway, my nominee is Blind Melon's "No Rain".

Like, 'Take On Me', I thought of 'Tubthumping', but is that really a rock song?

Candle Box - 'Far Behind'
Alien Ant Farm - 'Smooth Criminal' (do covers count?)
Meatpuppets - 'Backwater'
The Verve - 'Bittersweet Symphony'

I could come up with many more, but those are the first that come to mind.

I thought of 'Tubthumping', but is that really a rock song?


Candle Box - 'Far Behind'

Wasn't For You a hit also?

Just a questionon the Drowing pool nomination.

Does the singer dying while touring in support of the album disqualify them for this category (or at least some other consideration)?

While the rest of the band is the same, the second album does have a different singer.

Kinda alike the guys from STP trying to get Talkshow off the ground when Weiland went solo/rehab/glam...

I have to nominate Golden Earring, for being the very rare 2-hit one-hit wonder.

(Radar Love and Twilight Zone.)

Does the singer dying while touring in support of the album disqualify them for this category (or at least some other consideration)?

Why would it? The hit was with that singer. I'm confuzzled.

I have to nominate Golden Earring, for being the very rare 2-hit one-hit wonder

That would be nice if the category was two hit wonders.

i nominate The Vapors!

I thought of another:

'Black Velvet' - Alannah Myles

The first song that popped into my head was Turning Japanese. I second the Vapors.

What's Going On - 4-Non Blondes
Keep Your Hands to Yourself - Georgia Satellites
The Distance - Cake
I'm Gonna Be - Proclaimers

You spin me right round, baby, right round, like a record baby...

Dead or Alive, The very definition of a one hit wonder.

One other to nominate, though: Boys Don't Cry, for "I Wanna Be a Cowboy".

I've got my hat...on. I've got my boots...dusty.

Ok. If "Tubthumping" isn't a rock song, what the hell is it? A nursery rhyme? Nursery rhymes aren't permitted to be that annoying.

How about Shocking Pink for "Venus?"

The Distance - Cake

I think Cake had a hit with both Short Skirt, Long Jacket and I Will Survive

Dead or Alive, The very definition of a one hit wonder.
Nope, they had a hit with Brand New Lover
Ok. If "Tubthumping" isn't a rock song, what the hell is it?

Novelty song? Annoying? Terrible?

Nope, they had a hit with Brand New Lover

Damn my memory (still don't remember that one, actually). To repent I'll nomiate Timbuk 3 (The Future's So Bright I've Gotta Wear Shades) in their place.

The Proclaimers also had a hit with "I'm On My Way", so I don't think "I'm Gonna Be" qualifies. Michele?

I will, however, second the nomination for "What's Up?" by 4 Non Blondes.

Yeah, I don't know where I was going with that, lack of coffee leads to a delusional Rob.

I go the box now and feel shame.

"i'm too sexy" by Right Said Fred

Just typing that makes me want to vomit.

just outta curiousity... is there gonna be a "one-ALBUM wonder" category? that way, you can use people like Candlebox (who had more than one "hit", but all on the same album). and Boston.

Keep Your Hands to Yourself - Georgia Satellites

Good song, but not sure they'd qualify because they had a minor hit with their cover of Chan Romero's 'Hippy Hippy Shake' on the good sountrack (but way sucky movie) for 'Cocktail.'

Just typing that makes me want to vomit.

I think we're going for BEST one hit wonder here.

Mikey, good suggestion!

oh yeah, some more possible noms for one hit wonder:

Outfield - Your Love
Autograph - Turn Up the Radio
Lo-Fi All Stars - Battle Flag
Local H - Bound for the Floor
Temple of the Dog - Hunger Strike
Sponge - Plowed
Modern English - I Melt With You
Biz Markie - Just a Friend (OK, I know it's not rock, but it's one of the greatest one-hitters of all time!)

"Best" One Hit Wonder?"
That narrows it down.

"Wild Thing" The Troggs.

Yeah, "best" definitely narrows the field.

now I only have about a dozen dozen to sort through, instead of a few hundred.



There can be only one:

"Come On Eileen," Dexy's Midnight Runners

Pure - The Lightning Seeds.

867-5309 -- Tommy Tutone

No Rain-- Blind Melon

The Promise -- When in Rome

Sausalito Summer Night - Diesel
Walking on Sunshine - Katrina and the Waves (RnR using the loose definition of the time)
Everything about You - Ugly Kid Joe
Bitch - Merideth Brooks
Your Love - Outfield
99 Red Balloons - Nena
Black Betty - Ram Jam
Hocus Pocus - Focus
Run Run Away - Slade (Yes they had a lot of UK hits, but I think US hits are the Criteria here)

Part of me wants to say "And We Danced" by The Hooters, but they also had 2 minor hits: All You Zombies and Where Do The Children Go.

But that should be enough to chew on for now.

My Sharona - The Knack
What I Like About you - The Romantics
Mexican Radio - Wall of Voodoo
And here's another vote for "Turning Japanese"

Holy crap! How could I forget about 'My Sharona'??

  • "Walk the Dinosaur" - Was (Not Was)
  • "In a Big Country" by a band called 'Big Country' from the album entitled 'Big Country'
  • "Tub-Thumping" - ChumbaWumba
  • "Genius of Love" - Tom Tom Club
  • "Amadeus" - Falco (which might not count as rock, but should given the crowd-chanting Rock Anthem feel towards the end of it)
  • "A Girl Like You" - Smithereens


"Tub-Thumping" - ChumbaWumba

Already been disqualified.

"Amadeus" - Falco

He also had Der Kommisar

"A Girl Like You" - Smithereens

See also, Behind the Wall of Sleep and Only a Memory

Falco had "Vienna Calling" as well. And maybe "Jeannie".

Was "Do it again" enough of a 'hit' to disqualify Wall of Voodoo? I know it got beaucoup airplay on MTV at the time...

I know you've posted about them in the past, but because this is the only song of their's I'm pretty sure I ever heard played on the radio:

Zebra - "Who's Behind the Door"

Zebra!!!! Someone NOT from New Orleans has actually heard of them.They had several hits , unfortunately confined to WRNO in N.O.

How about:
Hey Mickey by Toni Basil
Jenny 867-5309: Tommy TuTone

The Grateful Dead only had one hit song....would they count?

Zebra!!!! Someone NOT from New Orleans has actually heard of them.They had several hits , unfortunately confined to WRNO in N.O.

Are you serious? Zebra moved to NY and became a HUGE HUGE HUGE Long Island band. They are STILL seen as celebrities around here. I must have seen them a hundred times.

Just tell me what you waaaaaaaaant

Wow...I've got so many but I'm trying hard to keep the ROCK thing in there and that narrows it a LOT.

And I question many that have been mentioned so far because I assume if I ain't heard of it, it ain't a "hit." "Hit" presumes that it made the rock and the pop chart, yes? Or am I putting too much into this?

I second (or third) The Vapors and Sponge.

I would add:

Raspberry Beret - Hindu Love Gods
Lunatic Fringe - Red Rider
I Want Candy - Bow Wow Wow
Canataloop - US3
New Age Girl - Deadeye Dick
I Got a Girl - Tripping Daisy
Banditos - The Refreshments
In The Meantime - Spacehog
I Know What Boys Like - The Waitresses

There are just so many to choose from.

I can't believe I haven't seen this song listed here:

"Lunatic Fringe" - Red Rider

Sponge also had Molly.

Waitresses had Christmas Wrapping, which re-becomes a hit every year.

Spacehog, that's a good one. Great song, I wonder why that band never made it.

Oh, I have one:

Hum, Stars

YES! I win the Lunatic Fringe Door Prize!

Black Betty - Ram Jam

Hot Rod Lincoln - Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen

Chuck E's In Love - Rickie Lee Jones

Cruel to Be Kind - Nick Lowe (Yeah, I know, but it was his only hit.)

We're Not Gonna Take It - Twisted Sister

Joy to the World - Three Dog Night

There are a lot of other good ones, but those are the rock ones I come up with.

Add my vote for


Thank you Matt...seriously, thank you, that's it, show's over, nothing to see here.

God, I love that song.

I'll give you one reason on Spacehog. They were booked to play in a bar I ran soon after the song became a hit. They showed up three hours late, bombed out of their minds and asked for their money. Thank god for flexible opening acts.

Twisted Sister also had Burn in Hell and I Wanna Rock.

Thanks Michelle, I totally forgot Molly (probably for a reason).

Anytime, Timmer. I actually saw Red Rider open for Pat Benatar, it was the loudest thing I've ever heard.

Burn in Hell? I Wanna Rock?

OHhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, you're counting video hits? Holding my head. I'm sooooo confused.

Cumbersome! Nice Choice! I'll go with you.

I know its meant to be Rock, but the Italian in me has to chuck in "Shaddupa Your Face" by Joe Dolce.

Seriously, "Fade To Grey" By Visage, "Turning Japanese" by The Vapours, "Counting The Beat" by The Swingers and "Immune Deficiency" by Rail

I can't believe I am 55 comments into this thread and not 1 person has mentioned Aldo Nova with "Fantasy".


Counting the Beat! What a fabulous song, I had forgotten all about that.

Anyone remember Doug and the Slugs?

Technically, Bo Diddley, Black Sabbath ("Paranoid"), Jimi Hendryx ("All Along the Watchtower" I think), and Blue Oyster Cult (duh) were all "one hit wonders", in that they had one song that charted in the top 10 or top 20.

Of the four, I'd say Sabbath's Paranoid gets my vote.

I thought of Fantasy when Matt mentioned Lunatic Fringe too but the vocals take away from the "best of" title.

We're not getting that technical. Basically one hit wonders are bands that are known strictly for that one hit. None of those band apply.

One hit wonder:

Haircut 100

Buggles - Video Killed the Radio Star

This one has the distinction of being the first music video ever played on MTV, too!

OK, here's a couple from the early 90's that, if anyone can provide proof of remembering them, I'll buy you a t-shirt. I'll give you the song title, you provide the name of the band, the singer's name and their country of origin. Googling is cheating.

Song Titles:
King of Nothing

"Falco had "Vienna Calling" as well."

Thank you! I've been trying to figure that one out for years!

How do you define "hit"? Top 10 or Top 40?

If its the latter then 'Take on Me' does not qualify because it was not their only hit.

My nominations:

Autograph - Turn Up the Radio

Cinderella: 'Don't Know What 'Till Its Gone'

Danzig- Mother is pretty good too

In the UK the best one hit wonder has to be 'Bring You're Daughter to the Slaughter' Iron Maiden. It went to number one.

NB: As someone said above TS had several to bother the chart.

Loud Lucy - Ticking

Another vote for "Pure", by the Lightning Seeds

There She Goes - The La's
Some Velvet Morning - Lee Hazelwood (w/Nancy Sinatra)
Cars - Gary Numan

Cmon. We're talking about a 'hit' in the sense that it was (and still is) amazingly well known. A one hit wonder elevates an act to the highest of levels of stardom only to fade into obscurity.

Iron Maiden or Black Sabbath don't come close to falling into that category.

And I know this may get some flames sent my way, but I thought the category was for the BEST rock one hit wonder. 'Turning Japanese' is a funny song, but from a musical standpoint, it sucks. Big time.

Now here's a question. 'Lunatic Fringe' is a good choice. However, the lead singer of Red Rider, Tom Cochrane had a hit with "Life Is A Highway" about 10 years after that. Does it still count?

I agree with Jay on all counts.

And no, a single on your own after a single with a band does not disqualify you.

All Time

King Tut - Steve Martin
Pac-Man Fever - Buckner and Garcia
Fantasy - Aldo Nova
Pass The Dutchie - Musical Youth

Classic Rock

Magic - Pilot
All Right Now - Free
In the Summer Time - Mungo Jerry
Boys are Back in Town - Thin Lizzy


The Hustle - Van McCoy & The Soul City Symphony
Disco Duck - Rick Dees
Don't Leave Me This Way - Thelma Houston

New Wave

Kung Fu Fighting - Carl Douglas
Vapors - Turning Japanese
Cars - Gary Numan
Autobahn - Kraftwerk
Pop Muzik - M

THE one-hit wonder of all time is Brewer and Shipley, for their stoner song "One Toke Over the Line." I work with Tom Shipley. Seriously, I do. He's doing videos now.


I thought this was for a rock song. For me, there is only one one-hit wonder that fills the category, and that is "Spirit In The Sky" by Norman Greenbaum. No other hits for this guy, and I defy you to find anyone older than 5 years old who doesn't know the opening riff to this one.

Fantasy - Aldo Nova

'C'est La Vie' can never remember who did it.

Best novelty one hit wonder has got to be 'Video Killed the Radio Star' by the Buggles.

Nice one. Cracking good song that got him quite a few freelance music writing gigs after that.

Two more late nominees:
Roachford, "Somebody's watching me"
(presuming that other hits in Europe and Britain only is not a disqualifier), Paul Hardcastle, "19".

C'est la Vie was Robbie Neville I believe.

I haven't heard '19' by Paul Hardcastle in a long, long time....

Rockford did 'Somebody's Watching Me'.

i dont think the romantics count, because they had a hit with "talking in your sleep", too, and Thin Lizzy also had "Jailbreak".

Spirit in the Sky was a one-hit wonder for TWO people, Norman Greenbaum and Doctor and the Medics (about 1985, i think). So thats a good one :)

But i still love Turning Japanese. it may not be a musically genius song, technically, but often the simple songs are the best ones.

Hmmm - Spirit in the Sky. Come to think of it 1970 was a great year for one-hit wonders. Vehicle by Ides of March and Stay Awhile by The Bells. Oo-ooh Child (I forget who) House of the Rising Sun by Frijid Pink. Love Grows by Edison Lighthouse. ...How do I know all this? I had the AM-WFIL (Philadelphia) Radio 1970 Compilation of Summer hits. One of my first records in fact.

"Somebody's Watching Me" was by Rockwell. I think he was the cousin or nephew of someone in the biz, so that 'splains why he got an album in the first place. his lack of talent 'splains why he's only a one-hit wonder.

Rockwell was Berry Gordy's nephew, and Jim, I'm from Philly too. Remember the days of Jim O'Brien as a DJ prior to his too-brief stint as a weatherman?

Um...."Brandy You're A Fine Girl" By Looking Glass anyone? How about "Ride Captain Ride" by Blues Image.......

I'll stop now.

"Zebra moved to NY and became a HUGE HUGE HUGE Long Island band. They are STILL seen as celebrities around here. I must have seen them a hundred times."

That's awesome. I only knew of them as a NOLA band. I grew up seeing them play at St. Christopher's C.Y.O. I even got to play guitar with Guy Gelso in '86 at a bar in Metarie that used to have open stage night.

Popcorn by Syrinx
Summertime Blues by The Flying Lizards
Girl of My Dreams by Bram Tchaikovsky

Iron Butterfly In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida

There are sooo many. Keeping this to the New Wave category, though, I'd toss in:

Human League - Don't You Want Me (though I liked Voice of Buddha quite a lot, it didn't get a fraction of the airplay)

SKP - Metal Dance

and Spandau Ballet - whatever

Dead or Alive was no one hit wonder -- at least not in the clubs. Misty Circles (before they went disco) and even Come Home with me Baby did pretty well.

Here's a suggestion for a new topic, Michele. Bands that sort of switched gears in midstream. (E.g., Dead or Alive, Ministry)

Back from their world tour playing in Indonesia and here in New Orleans. I nominate for ASV Hall of Fame one hit wonder.

....wait for it....

Walking on Sunshine by:

Katrina and Waves!

/isle seat please

I don't think Human League were one hit wonders...course I could be confused because I am rather transatlantic in my musical knowledge. They may have been one hit wonders in the US.

Yep - Jim O'Brien used to spin the tunes on 'FIL which they used to play over a loudspeaker at our community pool. Songs I best remember him spinning were "Spill Wine" (the original cowbell song), "Brandy" (does anyone REALLY think she would have made a "good wife" or was this just a bad line?) and "Smoke on the Water" which are strange things for a kid to remember, I guess - a song about drinking, a barwench and arson spun by a guy who died jumping out of a plane.

I need to withdraw "Popcorn" because it's not rock, and I'm informed The Flying Lizard's hit was "Money," not "Summertime Blues."

But how about "Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats? Dopiest video ever.

One more..."Hey, St. Peter" by Flash and the Pan (Personally, I was a big fan of the band, but I never heard another of their songs get any airplay).


The Red Rockers