Song: “Ring My Bell” by Anita Ward
Reached #1: June 30, 1979 (her first, 2 weeks)
Anita Ward is the definition of “one-hit wonder”.
“Ring My Bell” was her first single. It went straight to #1, and became an anthem of the disco era. She never got close to those heights again. In fact, she only had one other Top 100 pop hit, and it only got to #87 (“Don’t Drop My Love”).
It wasn’t supposed to be her song, though (tell me where you’ve heard that before). The song was written to be Stacy Lattisaw’s first single (Lattisaw was 12 at the time), but Lattisaw’s advisors rejected the record. Ward wasn’t fond of it, either, but was talked into adding it to her first album as it needed another dance track. And that’s how a one-hit wonder is created…
She’s made quite a career out of that one hit, though – still making appearances to sing the song, and occasionally touring with other disco acts.
Unfortunately, part of the reason she fell off the map was an early ‘80s car accident – of course, the other part was the sudden and total death of disco.
She released an album in 1989, and an iTunes single in 2011.
Tomorrow, the most notorious #1 single in music history. It’s proof that you can’t always believe what you see.
Other songs that reached #1 on June 30:
1973 – “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace On Earth)” by George Harrison (his second, 1 week)
1990 – “Step By Step” by New Kids On The Block (their third, 3 weeks)