Ranking the #1 R&B songs of 1975

Disco made its first serious footprint on this chart in 1975. Classics like “Fly Robin Fly,” “The Hustle,” “Shame, Shame, Shame,” and a couple of Wayne Casey singles did well and crossed over pop, not to mention fellow traveler Barry White and Smokey Robinson in the here-goes-nuthin’ phase of his solo years. Ohio Players experimented with kiddie Funkadelic (Eddie Hazel co-wrote the Temptations’ “Shakey Ground”). The O’Jays confirmed the eternal verities, their biggest hit of the year conferring a name on my most frequented message board. My jam, though, is ” You’re the First, the Last, My Everything,” a master class in the arrangement of strings and to my ears the greatest thing White heaved, groaned, and croaked over


Labelle – Lady Marmalade
Natalie Cole – This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)
Carl Douglas – Kung Fu Fighting
Kool & the Gang – Spirit of the Boogie
Tavares – It Only Takes a Minute
Joe Simon – Get Down, Get Down

Sound, Solid

Al Green – L-O-V-E (Love)
The Temptations – Shakey Ground
Major Harris – Love Won’t Let Me Wait
Silver Connection – Fly Robin Fly
The Commodores – Slippery When Wet
B.T. Express – Express
Smokey Robinson – Baby That’s Backatcha
KC & the Sunshine Band – That’s the Way (I Like It)
Gwen McCrae – Rockin’ Chair
Pointer Sisters – How Long (Betcha’ Got a Chick on the Side)
KC & the Sunshine Band – Get Down Tonight
The Temptations – Happy People
Ben E. King – Supernatural Thing
Eddie Kendricks – Shoeshine Boy
The Moments – Look at Me (I’m in Love)
Ohio Players – Sweet Sticky Thing

Good to Great

The Isley Brothers – Fight the Power (Part 1)
Ohio Players – Fire
Barry White – You’re the First, the Last, My Everything
Earth, Wind & Fire – Shining Star
Ohio Players – Love Rollercoaster
The Spinners – Games People Play
War – Low Rider
The Staple Singers – Let’s Do It Again
Barry White – What Am I Gonna Do with You
Shirley & Company song –
Van McCoy & the Soul City Symphony – The Hustle
Al Green – Full of Fire
The O’Jays – I Love Music (Part 1)
Faith, Hope & Charity – To Each His Own
People’s Choice – Do It Any Way You Wanna
Stevie Wonder – Boogie On Reggae Woman

2 thoughts on “Ranking the #1 R&B songs of 1975

    1. Jukebox

      It’s a disgrace Betty Wright’s own “Tonight Is the Night” never bothered the charts that year. I don’ tknow where to begin with that song,,, would be my top choice for sure.


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