The Day Dave Edmunds Hit The Top

12/13/2010
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On this day in 1970, Dave Edmunds was at no. 1 on the U.K. singles chart with his version of the 1955 Smiley Lewis hit "I Hear You Knocking." It was the Welsh singer-songwriter-producer's only #1 hit (it reached #4 in the U.S.). Gibson takes a look back: After spending the '60s having limited success as part of numerous bands in Wales and England, it took Dave Edmunds just one single to have a solo hit of his own. On this day in 1970, Edmunds went all the way to #1 in the U.K. with his version of "I Hear You Knocking."

Growing up in Wales, Edmunds had kicked around with plenty of groups. He'd been in the 99ers and the Heartbeats with his older brother Geoff. He fronted a rockabilly-style band called The Raiders in Cardiff. He dabbled in blues-rock as part of The Human Beans, which soon turned into Love Sculpture. That band made the most impact, charting a 1968 hit with "Sabre Dance," a speedy reworking of Khachaturian's classical work. It went to the Top 5 in Britain, with support from John Peel.

But Love Sculpture wouldn't last long and less than two years after their one (and only) hit, the band members went their separate ways. Coming out of the break-up, Edmunds already had designs on what he wanted to do as a solo act. He wanted to cover Wilbert Harrison's blues song "Let's Work Together," and began creating a drastically different, un-bluesy arrangement. Edmunds plans were halted when the American group Canned Heat released their own version of Harrison's tune in August of 1970. more on this story

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