Procol Harum

the Pale

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Danish LP Top Ten

Procol's progress

Niels-Erik Mortensen writes to BtP: during my holiday, I have found a number of Danish charts from the years 1971 - 73. This was quite exciting, as I had long forgotten all about them. Especially the LP Top Ten, which was published by Radio Denmark fortnightly, is interesting for Procoholics in these years of Broken Barricades and Live. According to the one-and-only official Danish LP chart, both albums achieved a considerable success.

These are the results of the first year with the Danish LP Top Ten:

Broken Barricades

7 August 1971

No 5 (new)

21 August 1971

No 5

4 September 1971

No 5

18 September 1971

No 7

Live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra

29 April 1972.

No 4 (new)

13 May 1972

No 3

27 May 1972

No 3

10 June 1972

No 8


To me, this was quite amazing. I did remember a very positive consumer's response to Live, but the success for Broken Barricades was quite astounding. Especially as I didn't recall it perhaps because I didn't purchase a copy then and really never have learned to love the album.

Obviously, the chart success for Procol is rather significant as both albums as far as I am concerned achieved better positions in the Danish album charts than anywhere else in the world. Nevertheless, for any band it would always be more rewarding with a No 20 position in the GB or UK charts than No 5 or 3 in the Danish equivalent...

As a matter of fact, the live album was the third most popular LP for a whole month in 1972, surpassed only by Deep Purple (Machine Head) and Creedence Clearwater Revival (Mardi Gras). Even the previous year, Procol achieved better positions than Paul McCartney (Ram, No 9 for two weeks), Jethro Tull (Aqualung, No 10 for one week) and Rod Stewart (Every Picture Tells A Story). However, Procol was not able to beat Janis Joplin (on both occasions) nor The Moodies. After entering the chart on 21 August, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour quite rightly deserved the No 1 slot (4th September) for a long running on the album chart.

Both albums stayed on the charts for the same time, namely four times or six weeks, though Live had the better fate. Other album positions for the rest of the Procol albums do not exist. The album Top Ten was first introduced in 1971 and it disappeared completely in 1973 when all radio sales charts were abolished. A number of British bribery scandals involving well-known DJs and a general long-time dislike from the Radio Denmark management killed the Danish charts or put then into stasis for more than 20 years.

Other Procol Harum chart-data

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