1976 in British music

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
1970s in music in the UK
Number-one singles
Number-one albums
Best-selling singles
Best-selling albums
Summaries and charts
1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974
1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979
1969 1980
Top 10 singles
1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974
1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979
1969 1980

This is a summary of 1976 in music of all genres in the United Kingdom, including the official charts from that year.


This year saw the emergence of disco as a force to be reckoned with, a trend which would hold for the rest of the decade and peak in the last two years. This was also the year which truly established ABBA as the top selling act of the decade with them achieving their second, third and fourth number ones (as well as releasing the biggest-selling album of the year). The ABBA formula was also replicated in the biggest-selling song of the year - the Eurovision-winning "Save Your Kisses for Me" by Brotherhood of Man, who began a three-year run in the UK charts from 1976. Other acts to achieve notable firsts were Elton John, who scored his first UK number one single this year (albeit as a duet with Kiki Dee), Showaddywaddy had their first and only number one and long-standing hitmaker Johnny Mathis also scored his biggest hit this year. The album charts saw TV advertising become a major factor in changing the landscape of big sellers with non-regular singles artists achieving high sales with compilations. Among these were Slim Whitman, Bert Weedon, Glen Campbell and The Beach Boys, who remained at number one for ten consecutive weeks.

Also emerging this year was a new trend, which became known as punk rock. This was little evident on the charts as yet, and was more a lifestyle choice, but would become much more significant the following year, as many new acts who typified the trend came onto the scene.

Overall, 1976 is not considered a vintage year by music critics, with its overwhelming dominance by pop and MOR acts. Certainly, many consider 1976 to be the nadir of British music and hold the year's charts up to be the very reason why Punk and New Wave music emerged with such force the following year.

Britain's foremost classical composers of the late 20th century, including Sir William Walton, Benjamin Britten and Sir Michael Tippett, were still active. Sir Charles Groves conducted the Last Night of the Proms, and the soloist for "Rule Britannia" was contralto Anne Collins; the programme included Walton's Portsmouth Point overture.



Number One singles[edit]

Date Song Artist(s) Weeks
10 January "Bohemian Rhapsody" Queen 3
31 January "Mamma Mia" ABBA 2
14 February "Forever and Ever" Slik 1
21 February "December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)" The Four Seasons 2
6 March "I Love to Love (But My Baby Loves to Dance)" Tina Charles 3
27 March "Save Your Kisses for Me" Brotherhood of Man 6
8 May "Fernando" ABBA 4
5 June "No Charge" J.J. Barrie 1
12 June "The Combine Harvester (Brand New Key)" The Wurzels 2
26 June "You to Me Are Everything" Real Thing 3
17 July "The Roussos Phenomenon EP" Demis Roussos 1
24 July "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" Elton John and Kiki Dee 6
4 September "Dancing Queen" ABBA 6
16 October "Mississippi" Pussycat 4
13 November "If You Leave Me Now" Chicago 3
4 December "Under the Moon of Love" Showaddywaddy 3
25 December "When a Child Is Born" Johnny Mathis 2


Number One albums[edit]

Date Album Artist(s) Weeks
10 January 40 Greatest Hits Perry Como 1
17 January A Night at the Opera Queen 2
31 January The Best of Roy Orbison Roy Orbison 1
7 February The Very Best of Slim Whitman Slim Whitman 6
20 March Blue for You Status Quo 3
10 April Rock Follies Television soundtrack 2
24 April Presence Led Zeppelin 1
1 May Rock Follies Television soundtrack 1
8 May Greatest Hits ABBA 9
10 July A Night on the Town Rod Stewart 2
24 July 20 Golden Greats The Beach Boys 10
2 October The Best of The Stylistics Volume II The Stylistics 1
9 October Stupidity Dr. Feelgood 1
16 October Greatest Hits ABBA 2
30 October Soul Motion Various Artists 2
13 November The Song Remains the Same Led Zeppelin 1
20 November 22 Golden Guitar Greats Bert Weedon 1
27 November Twenty Golden Greats Glen Campbell 6


Year-end charts[edit]

Between 5 January and 10 December 1976.

Best-selling singles[edit]


No. Title Artist Peak
1 "Save Your Kisses for Me" Brotherhood of Man 1
2 "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" John, EltonElton John and Kiki Dee 1
3 "Mississippi" Pussycat 1
4 "Dancing Queen" ABBA 1
5 "A Little Bit More" Dr Hook 2
6 "If You Leave Me Now" Chicago 1
7 "Fernando" ABBA 1
8 "I Love to Love (But My Baby Loves to Dance)" Charles, TinaTina Charles 1
9 "The Roussos Phenomenon EP" Roussos, DemisDemis Roussos 1
10 "December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)" Four Seasons, TheThe Four Seasons 1
11 "Under the Moon of Love" Showaddywaddy 1
12 "You to Me Are Everything" Real Thing, TheThe Real Thing 1
13 "Forever and Ever" Slik 1
14 "Sailing" Stewart, RodRod Stewart 3
15 "Young Hearts Run Free" Staton, CandiCandi Staton 2
16 "The Combine Harvester (Brand New Key)" Wurzels, TheThe Wurzels 1
17 "When Forever Has Gone" Roussos, DemisDemis Roussos 2
18 "Jungle Rock" Mizell, HankHank Mizell 3
19 "Can't Get By Without You" Real Thing, TheThe Real Thing 2
20 "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" Sayer, LeoLeo Sayer 2
21 "Mamma Mia" ABBA 1
22 "Hurt" Manhattans 4
23 "Silly Love Songs" Wings 2
24 "Convoy" McCall, C. W.C. W. McCall 2
25 "Kiss and Say Goodbye" Manhattans 4
26 "You Just Might See Me Cry" Our Kid 2
27 "Love Really Hurts Without You" Ocean, BillyBilly Ocean 2
28 "You See the Trouble With Me" White, BarryBarry White 2
29 "Let 'Em In" Wings 2
30 "No Charge" Barrie, J. J.J. J. Barrie 1
31 "Jeans On" Dundas, DavidDavid Dundas 3
32 "Don't Take Away the Music" Tavares 4
33 "Howzat!" Sherbet 4
34 "Rodrigo's Guitar Concerto D'Aranjuez" Manuel and the Music of the Mountains 3
35 "Bohemian Rhapsody" Queen 1
36 "Misty Blue" Moore, DorothyDorothy Moore 5
37 "Heaven Must Be Missing an Angel" Tavares 4
38 "Dance Little Lady Dance" Charles, TinaTina Charles 6
39 "I Am a Cider Drinker (Paloma Blanca)" Wurzels, TheThe Wurzels 3
40 "Music" Miles, JohnJohn Miles 3
41 "Love Machine" Miracles, TheThe Miracles 3
42 "Aria" Bilk, AckerAcker Bilk, His Clarinet and Strings 5
43 "Let's Stick Together" Ferry, BryanBryan Ferry 4
44 "In Zaire" Wakelin, JohnnyJohnny Wakelin 4
45 "The Killing of Georgie" Stewart, RodRod Stewart 2
46 "The Girl of My Best Friend" Presley, ElvisElvis Presley 9
47 "Play That Funky Music" Wild Cherry 7
48 "You Don't Have to Go" Chi-Lites, TheThe Chi-Lites 3
49 "I Only Wanna Be with You" Bay City Rollers 4
50 "Arms of Mary" Sutherland Brothers and Quiver 5

Best-selling albums[edit]

The list of the top fifty best-selling albums of 1976 were published in Music Week and in Record Mirror at the end of the year, and reproduced in the second edition of the BPI Year Book in 1977. However, in 2007 the Official Charts Company published album chart histories for each year from 1956 to 1977, researched by historian Sharon Mawer, and included an updated list of the top ten best-selling albums for each year based on the new research. The updated top ten for 1976 is shown in the table below.[7]

No. Title Artist Peak
1 Greatest Hits ABBA 1
2 20 Golden Greats Beach Boys 1
3 Forever and Ever Roussos, DemisDemis Roussos 2
4 A Night on the Town Stewart, RodRod Stewart 1
5 Glen Campbell's Twenty Golden Greats Campbell, GlenGlen Campbell 1
6 Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) Eagles 2
7 The Very Best of Slim Whitman Whitman, SlimSlim Whitman 1
8 A Night at the Opera Queen 1
9 Desire Dylan, BobBob Dylan 3
10 Wings at the Speed of Sound Wings 2

Bands formed[edit]

Bands disbanded[edit]

Classical Music: new works[edit]


Film and Incidental music[edit]

Musical films[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Eurovision Song Contest 1976". European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 15 August 2012. 
  2. ^ BBC - Proms. Accessed 13 April 2013
  3. ^ "Number One singles of 1976". The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 5 July 2017. 
  4. ^ "The Official Charts Company - Top albums of 1970". The Official Charts Company. 6 May 2013. 
  5. ^ "Top 50 Singles of 1976". Music Week. London, England: Spotlight Publications: 25. 25 December 1976. 
  6. ^ Hunter, Nigel, ed. (1977). "Top 100 Singles 1976". BPI Year Book 1977 (2nd ed.). London, England: The British Phonographic Industry Ltd. p. 216–18. ISBN 0-906154-00-6. 
  7. ^ Mawer, Sharon. "Album Chart History: 1976". Official UK Charts Company. Archived from the original on 17 December 2007. 

External links[edit]