Vomit-Inducing Top 40 Hits: the 1960s edition

Kathy Copeland Padden
5 min readDec 24, 2022
Ear covering as self-preservation

The sixties produced some of the most memorable masterpieces in the history of popular music. The sixties also produced some of the most heinous crapola in the history of popular music.

It wasn’t all Beatles, Stones, Doors, Hendrix, and Joplin in the 60s. Oh no, far from it. Like everything in life, we have to take the bad with the good. “Sugar, Sugar” is the price we pay for “Purple Haze,” so we must bear our musical burdens with grace and forbearance.

Except for right now. Right now we’re going to eviscerate some shit. So sharpen those claws and let’s get shredding.

Sugar, Sugar

The Archies

Let’s start this list off strong.

This sucky song is the suckiest suck that ever sucked. If it’s not the worst pop song in all recorded history, it’s damn close. The fact that “Sugar, Sugar” was so popular is one of the reasons I have no faith in humankind. It’s a prime example of man’s inhumanity to man.

This musical menstrual cramp was first offered to the Monkees, who said, “yeah, no thanks.” Michael Nesmith hated it so much that he expressed his disdain by putting his fist through a wall. This is one of 466532 gazillionty reasons why Nez was the shit.

The Ballad of the Green Berets

Staff Sgt. Barry Sadler

Released in 1966 as shit in Vietnam was getting really real. “Battle of the Green Berets” is the height of small dick over-compensation by proxy. This “song” (but, c’mon — it’s really not a song) glosses over the horror and futility of war to glorify toxic machismo in the service of Uncle Sam. Gross.

I can’t listen to this without getting angry. Pro-war propaganda has that…



Kathy Copeland Padden

is a music fanatic, classic film aficionado, and history buff surfing the End Times wave like a boss. Come along!