Procol Harum's 1967 classic "A Whiter Shade of Pale" has been named as the most-played record of the past 70 years in the United Kingdom, in a chart compiled by collecting society PPL (Phonographic Pe
Procol Harum's 1967 classic "A Whiter Shade of Pale" has been named as the most-played record of the past 70 years in the United Kingdom, in a chart compiled by collecting society PPL (Phonographic Performance Ltd) to mark its 70th anniversary.
The chart tabulates the 70 recordings that have received the most airings, not only on radio but all other public performances, including clubs, retail outlets and jukeboxes. It was produced using methodology that ensured each of the seven decades in the organization's history was fairly represented.
Research reflected the amount of play gathered by a song on its original release, as well as subsequent exposure.
After learning that "A Whiter Shade" beat Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" to take the No. 1 position on the survey, Procol Harum bandmember Gary Brooker told Billboard.biz: "When poor old Freddie Mercury died [in 1991], it gave a huge boost to 'Bohemian Rhapsody,' but 'Whiter Shade' has never been the subject of a lot of hype, and it wasn't when it came out."
The top 10 of the chart embraces the years 1957-1994, but earlier recordings were also represented in the top 70. The oldest track in the chart is "In The Mood" by Glenn Miller and the Orchestra, from 1939, at No. 35. Bing Crosby's "White Christmas" (1942) is at No. 16 and the same singer's "Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town" (1943) is at No. 58.
The top 20 is as follows:
1. Procol Harum "A Whiter Shade Of Pale"
2. Queen "Bohemian Rhapsody"
3. Wet Wet Wet "Love Is All Around"
4. Everly Brothers "All I Have To Do Is Dream/Claudette"
5. Bryan Adams "(Everything I Do) I Do It For You"
6. Abba "Dancing Queen"
7. Elvis Presley "All Shook Up"
8. Rod Stewart "Maggie May"
9. Beatles "Hello Goodbye"
10. Beatles "Get Back"
11. Perry Como "Magic Moments"
12. John Lennon "Imagine"
13. Whitney Houston "I Will Always Love You"
14. Frankie Goes To Hollywood "Two Tribes"
15. George Harrison "My Sweet Lord"
16. Bing Crosby "White Christmas"
17. Human League "Don't You Want Me"
18. Sinead O'Connor "Nothing Compares 2 U"
19. Band Aid "Do They Know It's Christmas"
20. Elton John & Kiki Dee "Don't Go Breaking My Heart"