Top Ten Tunes- 1963

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 1963.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1960 1961 1962 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019


In 1963, the Beatles release their debut album Please Please Me, 70,000 marchers protest against nuclear weapons in London, 16 year old Pauline Reade becomes the first victim of the Moors Murders, the Great Train Robbery takes place in Buckinghamshirerioters burn down the British Embassy in Jakarta to protest against the formation of Malaysia, British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan announces his resignation after 7 years in office on the grounds of ill health, Alec Douglas-Home replaces Macmillan and becomes Prime Minister, the Dartford Tunnel opens, the first episode of Doctor Who is aired, Kenya gains independence from the UK, Zanzibar gains independence from he UK, the launch of the lava lamp takes place, Alcatraz Penitentiary closes, Valentina Tereshkova becomes the first woman in space, the Profumo scandal results in resignations from he cabinet caused by war minister John Profumo having an affair with Christine Wheeler who was also involved with a Soviet Navy officer, Hurricane Flora kills 6,000 people on Haiti, Cuba, Trinidad & Tobago and Grenada, the Klu Klax Klan dynamite a baptist church in Alabama killing 4 young girls, a tsunami in Bangladesh kills 22,000 people, Martin Luther King delivers his “I Have a Dream” speech.

On 22nd November both authors C.S.Lewis and Aldous Huxley die, but their deaths are overshadowed by the assassination of American President John F Kennedy who was shot dead whilst being driven through Dallas, Lyndon Baines Johnson is sworn in as president on Air Force One, 2 days later night club owner Jack Ruby shoots dead the president’s suspected assassinator Lee Harvey Oswald live on TV.

The films the Birds, Cleopatra, the Great Escape, Tom Jones, From Russia With Love, the Pink Panther and Billy Liar are released.


Another year from the 60s, another corker. This week features several of my all time favourite musicians. Here’s my favourite tunes from 1963, in no particular order.

1. I Only Want To be With You by Dusty Springfield


2. Surfin’ USA by the Beach Boys


3. She Loves You by the Beatles


4. Da Doo Ron Ron by the Crystals

5. It’s My Party by Lesley Gore

Photo of Lesley Gore

6. Wipe Out by Surfaris


7. Can I Get a Witness by Marvin Gaye

8. Tell Him by Billie Davis


9. Be My Baby by the Ronettes


10. Blowin’ in the Wind by Bob Dylan


Dusty and Bob are close seconds, but this week my favourite is Be My Baby by The Ronnettes. Don’t forget to let me know, which one is yours below.

See you next week for 1964!


  1. thatblogwherecheriemovestogermany · October 26, 2018

    She loves you and Be my Baby. But really, I love all of them

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · October 26, 2018

      Yes, it’s a really good week isn’t it? Two very good choices from you x

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Losing the Plot · October 26, 2018

    Lady you are killing me here! WhAt a year! There are epic songs there, and the films! Man alive, there were some belters!

    I think I’m choosing Wipeout because I can’t pick between the top ones lol!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. April Munday · October 26, 2018

    Hang on. How did you leave out ‘I wanna hold your hand’? It’s the first pop song I can remember loving when it came out, which isn’t to say that I wouldn’t have loved the rest of your choices if I’d been aware of them at the time.

    Since you went back in time, I’ve been wondering about how I became aware of these songs. Radio 1 was still in the future and I don’t expect these records got much, if any, airtime on the Light Programme. I wasn’t even at infant school in 1963, so I wasn’t hearing them in dance halls. One of my uncles was a teenager and I heard his records when I was at my grandparents’ house, so that’s how I got to hear some of them. His taste wasn’t broad, though. He was only interested in rock and roll.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · October 27, 2018

      Ha well, I personally prefer “She Loves You” and I’m trying to avoid putting 2 songs by the same artist in one list, but of course I do love “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” too. It’s a good question- how do we become aware of songs that were either around before we were born or we’re too young to remember them at the time. For me, my mum is a huge music fan (which has clearly rubbed off on me) and she was always listening to her vinyl or had the radio on. So music from the past and present was always being played in our house. That and a combination of parties that play songs from the past, influences from friends and older siblings maybe too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • April Munday · October 27, 2018

        In the 70s there was a radio programme which played the charts from 20, 10 and 5 years before (I think). That’s how I know about stuff from before I was born, that and my uncle giving me his old record player when he bought a new one and throwing in some 45s. I was wondering more how I became aware of contemporary records in the 60s. Radios 1 to 4 weren’t around until 1967. I suppose it might have been through television.

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · October 27, 2018

        Ah I see. Yes probably TV and in films too possibly.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. rachaelstray · October 26, 2018

    Argghhh I am gonna love this decade I know it. I’m gonna plump for two Hayley – Be My Baby and She Loves You.


  5. Zoe O'Farrell · October 26, 2018

    The 60’s were and still are my favourite period! I would have loved to been around in those times with the petticoats!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Be My Baby was the first dance at our wedding (except it was the slightly more obscure We Are Scientists version!) so it has to be this one although Dusty and Marvin are a close joint second 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · October 27, 2018

      Yes! Love it! I haven’t heard that version, so Imma gonna check it out…

      Liked by 1 person

  7. angelanoelauthor · October 27, 2018

    These are all so great. I have to say “It’s My Party”. It might not sound like a fight song, but in a way I think it is. Whether it was intended or not, I like the message that I get to do what I want to do in my own life, and if you can’t get that–too bad for you. Of course, it’s about losing a boy to another girl. . . but still.

    I do like C.S. Lewis. I’ve read many of his books and seen the movie Shadowlands depicting his love for his wife. It’s too bad his death and Huxley’s got lost in the shuffle by Kennedy’s. But I’ll honor them all in memory. And I didn’t know that the Russians were the first to send a woman in space. Good for her and good for them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebeasley · October 27, 2018

      It’s My Party is definitely some kind of protest song. It’s demanding the right to be upset and mourn something. I absolutely loved it as a child for some reason. I still haven’t seen Shadowlands- it’s been on my list of films to watch for years! Oh and I knew what you meant by the Russians. It is wonderful that they sent the first woman into space and she must’ve been a role model for a lot of little girls at the time (and still now probably).

      Liked by 1 person

      • angelanoelauthor · October 27, 2018

        There’s a line in Shadowlands that his wife tell him that I remember to this day, though it’s been almost 20 years since I first saw it. I don’t want to spoil it for you, but she says it when they’re out for a drive and stop to admire the view. If you do see the movie, I’d be curious if you have any favorite lines. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • thebeasley · October 27, 2018

        Ooh that sounds lovely. I must watch it, then I’ll let you know xx


  8. angelanoelauthor · October 27, 2018

    Let me amend that last statement a bit–good for them for innovating. I’m not a fan of many things the Russian government does. But putting a woman in space is something.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Scrum_Jet · October 27, 2018

    So many great songs. I think I love them all.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. mydangblog · October 28, 2018

    It’s got to be Dylan! Great list!


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