Leonard Nimoy's Brief, Unique Billboard Chart History

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Leonard Nimoy photographed on August 5, 1969. 

Nimoy charted two albums in the '60s, and his voice was heard on a No. 1 dance hit

On Friday, Feb. 27, beloved Star Trek actor Leonard Nimoy passed away in his Los Angeles home. He was 83.

While not primarily known as a singer, Nimoy charted two eclectic albums (featuring a mix of spoken word and his singing) on the Billboard 200 in the late 1960s: Mr. Spock's Music From Outer Space (which peaked at No. 83 in 1967) and Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy (No. 97 in 1968). Both were released on Dot Records. He released three more studio albums: The Way I Feel (1968), The Touch of Leonard Nimoy (1969) and The New World of Leonard Nimoy (1970).

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The four-time Emmy Award nominee would also earn three Grammy Award nominations: two in 1987 for best spoken word or non-musical recording for Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (read by Nimoy and his fellow Star Trek cast mate George Takei) and Whales Alive, and another in 1995 for (for best spoken word or non-musical album) for the reading his own autobiography I Am Spock.

While Nimoy had a couple charting albums, he never scored a hit single on a Billboard chart. However, his voice has been heard on a No. 1 hit, thanks to a prominent sample in Information Society's "What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy)." It's actually Nimoy you hear saying the phrase "pure energy" throughout the song. The tune excerpted bits of dialogue from the Star Trek TV series, including a line from Nimoy in the 1967 episode "Errand of Mercy," where he says the phrase "pure energy."

The snippet is used throughout "What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy)," which spent two weeks at No. 1 on the Dance Club Songs chart in 1988, and climbed to No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. (The song was included on Information Society's self-titled 1988 album; the group thanked Nimoy in its liner notes.) "What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy)" returned to the Dance Club Songs chart in 2001, thanks to new remixes (still featuring the sample of Nimoy), and it reached No. 4. Information Society paid tribute to Nimoy on Facebook the day of his death.


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