Exactly 28 years and one week ago, a record called I Should Have Known Better by Scottish singer Jim Diamond climbed to Number One. Uniquely the singer expressed a hope that he wouldn't be at the top of the charts for a second week, wanting everyone to buy the forthcoming Band Aid charity single instead. History records that his timing was a little off, for Do They Know Its Christmas was still not due for release, so instead he watched his chart crown taken by Frankie Goes To Hollywood.
Their single made a piece of history of its own. The Power Of Love was their third single release and the third in a row to storm to Number One, meaning that the Liverpool group matched the achievement of Gerry and the Pacemakers 21 years earlier in topping the charts with their first three singles - at the time something considered to be an almost impossible feat.
I tell these stories for the simple reason that exactly 28 years later The Power Of Love is once more the Number One single of the week, this time in a version by Gabrielle Aplin. To see her at the top of the charts is, on the face of it, something of a surprise. The soundtrack to the current series of TV commercials for John Lewis department stores, Aplin's single has been on the charts for four weeks already and indeed appeared to have peaked at Number 5 a fortnight ago. Credit for its turnaround has to go to - what else - the X Factor semi final, during which contestant and eventual show winner James Arthur performed his own take on the song. The current series of the show has aired to a rather more muted reception than usual, meaning that until now - Lucy Spraggan aside - we've missed out on the spectacle of contestant performances causing older hits to make sales surges. All that changes this week and whilst it has done so with one of the lowest sales for a number of weeks, The Power Of Love has been propelled to the top - ironically thanks to the man who is set to replace it at Number One in seven days time.
A dearth of major new releases leaves the door open for some existing singles to make important chart progress. Setting itself up nicely for a deserved place in the Christmas chart is Pink's Try which vaults 26-8 to become her second Top 10 hit in the space of three months. An epic sounding lighters-aloft anthem, as a festively timed release it strikes a perfect note.
Also on the move, albeit slower is Taylor Swift's I Knew You Were Trouble which moves 24-13 to eclipse the Number 23 it initially scaled when released as a preview track ahead of her current Red album back in October.
For chart new entries we have to content ourselves with Don't Stop The Party by a bandwagon jumping Pitbull at Number 16 but perhaps more notably with Sight Of You from Tuslia which crawls in at Number 18. Granted it is her third single of the year and arrives alongside her debut solo album, but the fact that the X Factor judge could not spark enough interest in her new single despite being granted a spot on the show to perform it for millions will be taken by many as raising serious questions as to the exact nature of her popularity.
I'm not personally feeling the Tulisa hate that some might be, but it is still slightly amusing to note that Sight Of You is outsold by Fairytale Of New York at Number 15, a single which was released in November 1987, some six months before she was born. Lower down the rest of the traditional holiday favourites are all present and correct. Mariah is at 20, Wizzard at 31, Wham! at 34, Slade at 35 and Band Aid at 37.
On the album chart there is for the moment no shifting Olly Murs as Right Place Right Time notches up another six figure sale to sit comfortably at the top. His closest rival comes from last year's Christmas Number One album, Christmas from Michael Buble which is reaping the benefits of a new deluxe edition, plus his now annual radio show on Magic radio where he gets to read out requests every weekend and play some of his own songs. His great rival in the seasonal album stakes however is Rod Stewart who benefitted from some promotional leg work of his own this weekend just gone thanks to the TV airing of his recent Stirling Castle private concert. Merry Christmas Baby is at Number 4 this week, but you can guarantee it will see a boost next time around.
A reminder that as we can essentially disregard the actual Christmas chart in two weeks time owing to the inevitable invasion of random novelty purchases by people attempting to stage their own particular chart coups, next week will effectively be the last normal chart before the holiday. It isn't spoiling things too much to reveal that X Factor winner James Arthur will be Number One is it? The only real question is how much he will sell….