Six stunning one-hit wonders from the 1970s

These were all memorable hits back in the 1970s, but somewhat surprisingly they weren't followed up by more from the same artist.

Michael Putland/GettyImages
6 of 6

The Crusaders - Street Life

I was going to just list five songs, and again there is a slight stretch in the definition, as I’ll explain. But this one is so good it needs a mention too. This is also another example of a great song being picked up for movies, TV, and video game use.

Let's get the slight stretch out of the way first. The Crusaders were a successful jazz band in the US. They were previously known as The Jazz Crusaders. Under both names, they had a series of top albums over many years. But “Street Life” was their only hit single.

It represented a peak for the band and the years after saw a decline in their success. But it also marked the start of an amazing career for the band's lead singer, Randy Crawford. She, of course, went on to have many hits on her own afterward. 

Released in July 1979, “Street Life” was the title track of the Crusaders top twenty album released later that same year. The success of the single helping boost the album sales further. It's a very stylish piece of jazz funk with superb orchestral backing and extraordinary vocals from Crawford. A slow mellow start with obligatory sax soon breaks into an upbeat memorable and classic tune.

“Street Life” reached number five in the UK, 36 in the US, and top twenty spots around Europe. Tarantino used this song too in his Jackie Brown movie. It also popped up in Better Call Saul on TV and featured for players of Grand Theft Auto V. Quite a far reach again for a one-hit wonder. 

Read more from AudioPhix