60 Of The Most Bizarre One Hit Wonders Of The 1960s and 1970s

By Sarah Norman | December 3, 2023

Ernie K-Doe, 'Mother-In-Law'

Prepare to be transported back in time as we dive into the world of music to explore the quirkiest and most eccentric one-hit wonders that graced the airwaves during the colorful decades of the 1960s and 1970s. From psychedelic pop gems to offbeat disco delights, join us on a musical journey filled with delightful oddities, unexpected chart-toppers, and artists whose fleeting moments in the spotlight left a lasting imprint on music history. Get ready to groove, laugh, and reminisce about the most bizarre and unforgettable tunes that captured hearts for a moment, forever etching their place in the annals of musical curiosities. Let's turn up the volume and rediscover the delightful eccentricities of the bygone era's one-hit wonders!

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In 1961, Ernie K-Doe, an African-American rhythm-and-blues singer recorded "Mother-in-Law", written and produced by Allen Toussaint. The song was a #1 hit in the U.S. on both the Billboard Hot 100 and the Billboard R&B charts. Toussaint also contributed the piano solo.

After several unsuccessful takes, Toussaint balled up the composition and threw it away as he was leaving the room. One of the backup singers, Willie Hopper, thought that it was such a good song that he convinced K-Doe to give it one more try.

Spiral Staircase, "More Today Than Yesterday"

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source: reddit

This very strange hit single from 1969 is essentially built around a poem from the turn of the 20th century which is absolutely wild. Even though Spiral Staircase never scored another hit of this magnitude it's been covered time and time again by artists as varied as Sonny and Cher to Lena Horne, and even pop-punkers Goldfinger.