23 Best Songs From 1963

13. “Blowin' in the Wind” by Peter, Paul, and Mary

"Blowin' in the Wind" by Peter, Paul, and Mary

This song was originally a Bob Dylan recording, but the musical group Peter, Paul, and Mary recorded a cover under the same management team as Dylan.

The trio and their folksy performance of this song hit the music charts and sold hundreds of thousands of copies within its first week after release. Eventually, it sold over one million. Bob Dylan received publishing royalties.

14. “Wipe Out” by The Surfaris

“Wipe Out” follows Little Stevie Wonder's “Fingertips” as an instrumental hit that found insane success. The song is now synonymous with beach culture and has been featured in dozens of films and television series over the decades since its release.

Fellow surf enthusiasts The Beach Boys did a cover of “Wipe Out” in the late 1980s that also reached the music charts. Though many write this off as another one-hit wonder, no one can deny its impact on pop culture.

15. “Wild Weekend” by The Rockin' Rebels

This is another instrumental hit. It started as a theme song for a radio show and The Rockin' Rebels adapted it for their album, also titled “Wild Weekend.”

It has been covered by many other recording artists, including The Surfaris, and others as recently as 2017.

16. “You're the Reason I'm Living” by Bobby Darin

Here is a country song that saw massive success in 1963. The single had so much star power that the recording artist, Bobby Darin, created a full-length album around it.

The single's accompaniment has some jazz flair that set it apart from other country songs on the charts. Some people weren't fond of him meshing musical styles, but the fans widely outnumbered the critics.

17. “Walk Like a Man” by The Four Seasons

The Four Seasons made their stamp on the hit music charts in 1963 with this beat-heavy ensemble smash.

Many attribute this danceable single's success to the juxtaposition of lead vocalist Franki Valli's famous falsetto singing in conjunction with the heavily deep vocals of another band member, Nick Massi.

18. “Mockingbird” by Inez & Charlie Foxx

Here is a soul music version of the classic children's lullaby that hit the R&B Singles and Pop Singles charts. The sister and brother duo became famous under US Top Black Singles performers.

Some famous performers with covers of “Mockingbird” include American soul music legend Aretha Franklin and 1970s sensation Carly Simon.

19. “I Will Follow Him” by Little Peggy March

“I Will Follow Him” reached the number one spot on the American pop music charts, breaking a record for a single by the youngest female recording artist to hit number one. She was fifteen years old at the time.

The song is unbelievably catchy and it's no surprise to anyone who listens that it had such massive success.

20. “Pipeline” by The Chantays

Surf-rock group The Chantays made a name off this instrumental hit. The song's title, “Pipeline” is surfer slang.

Music industry pros credit this single's popularity to its unique composition. Instead of emphasizing the leading instruments, the song dulls the piano, drums, and guitar to the background and highlights the rhythm and bass guitars.

21. “Surf City” by Jan and Dean

You might be picking up that there's a common theme in 1963's most popular music. In the same vein as The Beach Boys, surf vocal duo Jan and Dean sang ensemble style.

The song details a dreamy surfing location with the famous tagline “two girls for every boy.” Despite not reaching the same success as The Beach Boys' Surfin' USA, it was the first surf song to make number one on the popular music charts.

Huntington Beach, CA fought for the legal right to hold the trademark to “Surf City.”

22. “It's My Party” by Lesley Gore

Arguably one of the most famous songs from the 1960s, “It's My Party” has unique production qualities brought by the talent of Quincy Jones.

The song is about a teenage girl who is devasted at her sweet sixteen because her high school boyfriend replaced her with another girl from the party. The lyricist says it is inspired by a real teenage girl he saw crying at her sweet sixteen.

This single has a catchy melody, a danceable beat, and dramatic heartbreak that are hallmarks of 1963 music. It had international success and has been heavily featured in the media.

23. “Blame it on the Bossa Nova” by Eydie Gormé

This single is by artist Eydie Gormé whose music specializes in Latin influence on traditional pop. It is about a romance forming while engaging in the bossa nova, which is a sensual Brazilian dance that was popular during this time.

The artist famously disliked the single and tried to convince the record label not to release it. It was an international smash hit that has been covered by many artists and featured in different television series, films, and advertising campaigns.

Top Songs From 1963, Final Thoughts

Those are some of the best songs from 1963. Hopefully you enjoyed this trip down memory road or even found some music that you missed out on. When it comes to music, every year offers something special. So search the site for our coverage of other years to come. You can use the search bar in the sidebar.

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