1953 in British music

1950s in music in the UK
Number-one singles
Number-one albums
Best-selling singles
Best-selling albums
Summaries and charts
1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954
1955, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959
1949 1960
Top 10/12 singles
1952, 1953, 1954
1955, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959

This is a summary of 1953 in music in the United Kingdom, including the official charts from that year.


Chart summary

The first week of January saw American jazz singer Al Martino spend a ninth and final week at number one with "Here in My Heart". Jo Stafford and Kay Starr were both non-movers at numbers 2 and 3 with "You Belong to Me" and "Comes A-Long A-Love", and the following week, Jo Stafford managed to climb a place to number one, after 10 weeks in the chart and 9 weeks stuck at number two. Al Martino fell to number 6, and American movie star Mario Lanza climbed back up to number 3, having peaked there 6 weeks earlier. Kay Starr became the third number one when "Comes A-Long A-Love" climbed a place to number one, and American traditional pop music singer Eddie Fisher's "Outside of Heaven" was joint number two with Jo Stafford, due to sales clashing.
At the end of month, Eddie Fisher climbed to number one with "Outside of Heaven", Perry Como and The Ramblers' "Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes" climbed 5 places to number 3, and Al Martino's "Now" became his third release to make the chart in just 3 months.

The first number one of February was also the only number one, as Perry Como and The Ramblers' "Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes" climbed two places to number one, and ended up staying there for 5 weeks. The month also saw Al Martino's "Now" and American traditional pop singer Guy Mitchell's "She Wears Red Feathers" slowly climbing up the charts, reaching peaks of number four and two in February. Also, American duo Art and Dotty Todd's "Broken Wings" was a popular song in February, peaking at number 6 for two weeks.

Just like the previous month, there was only one number one in March, when Guy Mitchell's "She Wears Red Feathers" climbed a place to number one, remaining there for four weeks. Big hits this month were by British group Stargazers' "Broken Wings", American singer Danny Kaye's "Wonderful Copenhagen", and British singer Lita Roza's "(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window", although they all reached their peaks in the following month. Al Martino's "Now" also re-peaked at number 3, and spent two weeks there.

In April, Stargazers' "Broken Wings" climbed to number one, and was replaced by Lita Roza's "(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window" the following week. Elsewhere in the charts, Johnston Brothers's "Oh Happy Day" climbed up the charts, eventually reaching number four at the end of the month, Guy Mitchell's "Pretty Little Black Eyed Susie", debuting at number four then climbing two places to number two, and jazz, rhythm and blues singer Frankie Laine's "I Believe" debuted at number 11 at the beginning of the month, and climbed up the chart to number one at the end of the month.

"I Believe" in fact remained at number one for nine consecutive weeks, matching Al Martino's "Here in My Heart's" number of consecutive weeks and in total, the song spent eighteen non-consecutive weeks at number one - no other song in the history of charts has spent longer at number one! After debuting at number 10 the previous month, Nat King Cole's "Pretend" climbed to number two and stayed there for the rest of May, Eddie Fisher's "Downhearted" climbed to number 3, spending a total of 14 consecutive weeks in the Top 10 and Jimmy Boyd and Frankie Laine had a Top 5 hit with "Tell Me a Story".

In June, the theme from Charlie Chaplin's Limelight - "Terry's Theme" sung by easy listening singer Frank Chacksfield - reached number two, and in this month spent two weeks at this position (it later had more success throughout the Summer). There was also another theme song in the chart - Mantovani's version of "The Song from Moulin Rouge" - which reached number four this month, and again, had more success over the Summer. After 9 consecutive weeks at number one, Frankie Laine's "I Believe" fell to number 2, whilst the Eddie Fisher and Sally Sweetland song "I'm Walking Behind You" climbed three places to number one. However, it only spent one week there, and then Frankie Laine returned to number one. Muriel Smith's "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me" was also a hit this month, peaking at number 3.

Number Ones

Number-one singles

Issue Date Song Artist
4 January "Here in My Heart" Al Martino
11 January "You Belong to Me" Jo Stafford
18 January "Comes A-Long A-Love" Kay Starr
25 January "Outside of Heaven" Eddie Fisher
1 February "Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes" Perry Como and the Ramblers
8 February
15 February
22 February
29 February
8 March "She Wears Red Feathers" Guy Mitchell
15 March
22 March
29 March
5 April "Broken Wings" Stargazers
12 April "(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window?" Lita Roza
19 April "I Believe" Frankie Laine
26 April
3 May
10 May
17 May
24 May
31 May
7 June
14 June
21 June "I'm Walking Behind You" Eddie Fisher
28 June "I Believe" Frankie Laine
5 July
12 July
19 July
26 July
2 August
9 August "The Song from the Moulin Rouge" Mantovani
16 August "I Believe" Frankie Laine
23 August
30 August
6 September "Look at That Girl" Guy Mitchell
13 September
20 September
27 September
4 October
11 October
18 October "Hey Joe" Frankie Laine
25 October
1 November "Answer Me" David Whitfield
8 November Frankie Laine
15 November
22 November
29 November
6 December
13 December
20 December
27 December

Classical music


Film and Incidental music

Musical films




  1. ^ a b Kendall, Alan. The Chronicle of Classical Music. Thames & Hudson, 2000: p. 240
  2. ^ Barbirolli, John (1954). "Kathleen ... The Last Years". In Cardus, Neville (ed.). Kathleen Ferrier: A Memoir. London: Hamish Hamilton. p 107
  3. ^ "Miss Kathleen Ferrier Suffering From Strain". The Guardian. 10 February 1953. p. 5. 
  4. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 39863. p. 2939. 26 May 1953. Retrieved 2012-08-25.
  5. ^ Wilkinson, James (2011). The Queen's Coronation: The Inside Story. Scala Publishers Ltd. p. 24. ISBN . 
  6. ^ Official website Malcolm Arnold website
  7. ^ Ferrier, Winifred (1955). The Life of Kathleen Ferrier. London: Hamish Hamilton. OCLC 612023977. p. 179
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