Song: “Me and Mrs. Jones” by Billy Paul
Reached #1: December 16, 1972 (his first, 3 weeks)
There’s been music about just about every topic under the sun – but in 1972, a song trying to explain the story of an extramarital affair was a bit unique.
That didn’t stop Philadelphia International writers/producers/“Philly Sound” gurus Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff from writing a song doing just that.
It became Paul’s only major pop hit, and one of the first Philly Sound songs to hit the top of the charts – fitting, since Paul was one of the first artists Philadelphia International signed and released.
Of course, Philadelphia International’s most recognized song is “TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia)” – also known as the Soul Train theme – but it started with an affair…
The song turned out to be one of Michael Bublé’s biggest busts – he covered the song in 2007 with backing vocals by then-girlfriend Emily Blunt. The song was released very briefly as a single but – for reasons never made clear – was ignored by his label upon release and, some believe, cancelled while still available for download. However, Bublé still sings the song in concert.
For that matter, so does Paul, who’s still going strong in his mid-70s.
Tomorrow, a one-hit wonder inspired by a ‘60s song’s misplaced lyrics…
Other songs that reached #1 on December 16:
1957 – “April Love / When The Swallows Come Back To Capistrano” by Pat Boone (his fifth, 3 weeks, Disk Jockey chart)
2006 – “Irresponsible” by Beyoncé (her fourth, 10 weeks)