Song: “In The Year 2525 (Exordium & Terminus)” by Zager & Evans
Reached #1: July 12, 1969 (their first, 6 weeks)
There are one-hit wonders, and there are ONE-HIT WONDERS.
Denny Zager and Rick Evans are a ONE-HIT WONDER. Not only did they have just the one hit, basically, they had just the one single.
“In The Year 2525” was written by Evans in 1964. It had kicked around a bit until 1968, when radio stations in their hometown of Omaha, Nebraska started playing it – and made it a huge regional hit. RCA Records, seeing money, signed the duo and released the single in the spring of ‘69. In the year where man reached the moon – and some saw other exotic places (with a little chemical help) – a song predicting man’s future struck a chord.
Things went awry, though, when the followup single was (according to Wikipedia, and we know they’re never wrong) about a rapist who nailed his wrist to a wall as self-punishment. Surprisingly, that didn’t sell at all… and the duo drifted off to musical obscurity.
Or so we think. Actually, Denny Zager has been quietly behind some of the biggest names in music – as their guitar manufacturer. It turns out his real passion was making guitars easier to use and easier to learn – and he’s been doing both through “Zager EZ-Play Guitars” for over 30 years. He’s still in business, selling guitars and teaching new players, working alongside his son Dennis Zager Jr.
Who knows? Maybe, in the year 2525, Zager EZ-Play Guitars will still be alive…
…unlike tomorrow’s featured artist, who’s been incredibly productive since his death.
Other songs that reached #1 on July 12:
1986 – “Holding Back The Years” by Simply Red (their first, 1 week)
2003 – “Crazy In Love” by Beyoncé feat. Jay-Z (her first, 8 weeks)