Throwback Thursday 35

On this day 50 years ago this song was in its last day as the #1 single on the Billboard Top 40/Hot 100:


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(The picture is from a blog hosted by the Evil Empire.)

By the way, despite the identical title this song is completely different from Frankie Avalon’s #1 song from 1959 with the same name. The Shocking Blue was a Dutch group and had no other songs reach the Top 40 in the US. They were more successful in their native Holland/Netherlands.

Although I don’t remember the product I know I’ve heard this song used in at least one commercial. Do you remember any of the lyrics?


A goddess on a mountain top
Burning like a silver flame
A summit of beauty and love
And Venus was her name.

She’s got it,
Yeah baby, she’s got it.
I’m your Venus,
I’m your fire at your desire.


Like a lot of pre-teens during that time I grew up listening to Top 40 radio. I loved listening to Casey Kasem and the American Top 40. As I have written before, Dr. Zal and I used to make our own Top 40 charts. I have an innate need to make order out of chaos. When I worked in major league baseball, my favorite task was my season-end analysis of minor league performance. I took huge amounts of raw data and turned it into tables and charts of players ranked by various metrics, many of my own invention. I miss that kind of project very much. That’s why I include charts and tables in this blog.


A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Yeah, I hear you…little minds, alright. No reason the Throwback Thursday car has to be related to any other topics in the post.

MarkCars2014 has become a regular reader and commenter here. (Please check out his blog, which is linked in his name.) In a comment he mentioned his affinity for Buicks. Regular readers of Disaffected Musings know I also have an affinity for Buicks. My interest in these cars has moved beyond my attachment to the ’56 Century, the first car I ever drove, and the “First Generation” Riviera, one of my absolute favorite cars ever. How about this car?


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From a Pinterest page, this is supposed to be a picture of a 1950 Buick Roadmaster Riviera hardtop coupe. In the context of this era, a hardtop was not just a car with a fixed metal roof, but one without a visible B pillar. Those who think the “Riviera” began in 1963 should note that this car, and others, were given the name Riviera, although not as a separate model, but as a sub-model designation.

The swooping body line is a portend of the sweep spear that would appear on Buicks soon enough. The waterfall grill had its origin in the famous Y-Job concept car of 1938.

In model year 1950 Buick built 10,732 Roadmaster Riviera hardtop coupes, 2,300 in “base” trim and 8,432 in “DeLuxe” trim. The DeLuxe model cost $2,854, $30,431 in 2020 dollars. I don’t think a 2020 model-year car like this would actually cost that little. Remember that the average “transaction price” for a new vehicle in the US is about $40,000. Buicks were only behind Cadillac in prestige in the GM lineup.

The 1950 Model 70 Roadmaster was powered by a 320 cubic-inch version of the long-running Fireball inline 8-cylinder engine. Buick used the Fireball inline-8 from 1931 to 1953. The 320 cubic-inch variant produced 152 HP, but 280 LB-FT of torque. As these cars weighed about 4,200 pounds, they needed some torque to get moving.

In my OCD-addled/ADD-addled brain my thoughts move from car to car and then fixate on a few. One car that has been in my consciousness, if you can call it that, is a Buick from this period. However, my thoughts move immediately to resto-modding the car, especially if the original drivetrain no longer exists.

Happy Throwback Thursday!






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