Top artists of the year were Abba. They had emerged on the scene in 1974 with a number one hit "Waterloo" but now the Swedish band took the charts by storm. They had three number one hits: "Mamma Mia", Fernando (fifth biggest single of the year) and Dancing Queen (second biggest of the year) followed by a number thee hit "Money Money Money". Their album "Greatest Hits" was also the biggest of 1976. The album was to be in the charts for a few years and the November follow up "Arrival" didn't hit the top spot until the following January.
Number two artist was Elton John with help from
Kiki Dee. Their duet "Don't Go Breaking my Heart" was a chart topper and third biggest hit of the year. Elton also had top ten hits with "Pinball Wizard" and "Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word". His albums "Here and There" and "Blue Moves" were both top five successes.
British vocalist Tina Charles captured number three position following a good run on the singles chart. Her first was a number one, "I Love to Love".
She followed this with a minor hit, "Love Me Like a Lover", but then recaptured her earlier form to reach high in the top ten first with "Dance Little Lady Dance" and then "Dr Love".
The classic harmony sound of the Four Seasons were in fourth place overall. The quartet had enjoyed their greatest success in the US charts of the early sixties but had managed a couple of top ten UK hits in 1975 after a long gap out of the charts. In 1976 they hit number one with "December '63 (Oh What a Night)" and followed this with a top three single, "Silver Star". The band also hit the album charts with top twenty LPs from three different labels.
In fifth spot were the Real Thing a British band who managed to capture the contemporary American sound of the time and were
fifth biggest performers of the year. They followed their number one single "You to Me Are Everything" with a number two, "Can't Get by Without You".
The biggest single of the year belonged to "Save Your Kisses for Me" by
Brotherhood of Man, a UK million seller. But their follow up "Rosalie" failed to make the top twenty. Just like Dutch band
Pussycat whose number one "Mississippi" was the year's fourth biggest. Other successful but similarly unaccompanied number one hit singles included
Showaddywaddy with their "Under the Moon of Love", "If You Leave Me Now" by
Chicago and the Johnny Mathis revival of the Christmas hit "When a Child is Born". More consistent were the comedy band the
Wurzels whose quirky singles included number one hit "Combine Harvester" and a number three spot for "I Am a Cider Drinker".