Song: “Baby Love” by the Supremes
Reached #1: October 31, 1964 (their second, 4 weeks)
The clip above was from the Supremes’ first-ever TV appearance, lip-synching on the BBC’s “Top Of The Pops”. This wasn’t exactly unusual – everyone on TOTP lip-synched, as it was much cheaper for the notoriously pence-pinching Beeb to have the performers lip-synch compared to the cost of doing the music live.
Supposedly (because nobody ever went broke underestimating the American listening public), Berry Gordy wanted “Baby Love” to sound as much like the Supremes’ first #1 (“Where Did Our Love Go?”) as possible. It worked, as “Baby Love” became part of an incredible streak for the Supremes.
Despite the fact they were releasing music in the face of Beatlemania and the British Invasion, the Supremes landed five straight #1 singles in 1964 and 1965 – after “Baby Love”, they hit the top with “Come See About Me”, “Stop! In The Name Of Love” and “Back In My Arms Again”.
“Nothing But Heartaches” stalled at #11, but the next single also went to #1 (“I Hear A Symphony”). So 6 of 7 singles after they hit it big went to #1. No other Motown act had two #1s at the time the Supremes were tearing up the top of the charts… and they are still the most prolific Motown chart-topper with 12 #1 singles. The irony? The last #1, released as the group was breaking apart, was “Someday We’ll Be Together”.
Tomorrow, the last #1 for a king.
No other songs reached #1 on October 31.