Greetings! And welcome to We’re Number Eleven, a follow-up series of articles to the award-winning, genre-defining, penetratingly-observed We’re Number Two (cough). There’s something perennially fascinating about songs which are slightly (excuse the pun) unsung — the ones which almost made it to whatever marker we choose, but not quite. In this case that’s songs which came close to cracking the Top Ten but never quite got across the line. Very much a case of so near, and yet so far.
And that’s what this is – an exploration of the songs which were more than popular enough to be considered bona fide hits, but which for whatever reason stalled just shy of one of the big markers of success, the Top Ten. Unlike We’re Number Two, this series of articles will be sticking exclusively to the UK charts and the chart positions are all taken from The Official Charts. And unlike We’re Number Two these will all be songs which peaked at Number Eleven, rather than ones which simply occupied that slot at some point. Number Eleven will be the highest these songs will ever reach. The dates we will be covering run from 1966 to 2006 so, as with We’re Number Two, covering a 40-year span. As a rule I’ll also try to avoid artists who have already featured in We’re Number Two, though I can’t promise there won’t be any overlap.
So I hope you’ll come on a little musical adventure with me, as we take a stroll down no highways and stick exclusively to the byways – or maybe this this the musical slip-road, leading up to the heady fast-paced motorway of the Top Ten but never quite getting there. It’s possible the analogy may be getting away from me, but regardless – enjoy!