Blog Archives

FlinterFile: Henry Mancini- Peter Gunn

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In 1958, Henry Mancini recorded a theme song for a new television series: Peter Gunn. The theme song, which is very simple, since it only knows one chord, would be a rock ‘n roll success. Read the rest of this entry

Song of the day: Peggy Lee- Fever

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In 1958, Peggy Lee covered a song by Little Willie John. Eddie Cooley and Otis Blackwell wrote the song in 1956 for Little Willie John. He made it to number 1 in the R&B charts. Two years later, Peggy Lee took the first and fourth verse and recorded them together with some other verses, which include Romeo & Juliet. She reached number 5 in the UK and number 8 in the US. Enjoy

Peggy Lee- Fever

Song of the day: Connie Francis- Stupid Cupid

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In 1958, Connie Francis had hit the charts with Who’s Sorry Now, which became her breakthrough single. However, the follow-up single had flopped and she needed a good song to keep her success. In the search for this song, she heard nothing good. Then Howard Greenfield and Neil Sedaka came along, and they played some of their songs. She asked for something more lively, and then they played Stupid Cupid. She liked it, recorded it and it made her return to the charts, on number 14! The UK loved this song even more, bringing it to number 1. Enjoy

Connie Francis- Stupid Cupid

Song of the day: The Everly Brothers- All I Have To Do Is Dream

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In 1958, the songwriter team Felice & Boudleaux Bryant wrote All I Have To Do Is Dream. The song was recorded by the Everly Brothers in the same year, and hit number 1 in all US Billboard charts at the same time. It would also be a number 1 hit in the UK. The b-side of the single, Claudette, was the first success in songwriting for Roy Orbison. Therefore, Roy quit Sun Records and went to Acuff-Rose Music, the label of the Everly Brothers. Enjoy

The Everly Brothers- All I Have To Do Is Dream

Song of the day: Nina Simone- My Baby Just Cares For Me

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This song was a jazz standard for the movie of the musical Whopee! from 1930. Eddie Cantor sang this version. In 1958, Nina Simone recorded another version, which was featured on her debut album. In 1958, the song stuck to number 82 in the UK. This changed in 1987, when Chanel No. 5 used the song in a commercial. The song would be number 5 in the UK and even number 1 in the Netherlands! Enjoy

Nina Simone- My Baby Just Cares For Me

Song of the day: The Champs- Tequila

the champs tequila

Today another number 1 hit in the US pop and R&B charts, but this is an instrumental track with the word Tequila said three times in the whole song! The song was recorded in 1958 and had a sense of Latin music, since it was based on a Cuban mambo beat! Gene Autrey had signed Dave Burgess on his label in 1957, but Dave had not produced any hits till the end of 1957. At a recording session, Train to Nowhere (written by Dave) was recorded, as well as Tequila. This would be the b-side. Train to Nowhere was no success, Tequila became a success when a DJ flipped the single. Enjoy

The Champs- Tequila

Song of the day: Elvis Presley- Jailhouse Rock

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It’s Elvis Monday again! It’s written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller and was released in 1957, when the movie Jailhouse Rock was released. In the US, it would be a number 1 hit. The people he refers to are both fictional and real: Shifty Henry was a musician (but not a criminal one), the Purple Gang a mob and Sad Sack a nickname for a loser. The song later inspired the Spider Murphy Gang to choose its name. Enjoy

Elvis Presley- Jailhouse Rock

Song of the day: Kingston Trio- Tom Dooley

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Again a number 1 hit in the US charts, and this one is an old murderballad! The story of Tom Dooley was based on the murder of Laura Foster in 1866. Her lover and fiancé, Tom Dula, was convicted for this murder. He had to hang for this murder, as is sung in the song. Thomas C. Land, a poet, wrote a poem about it and that’s how it ended up in the folk scene. Here, several recordings were made, but none were more successful than the version of the Kingston Trio. Enjoy

The Kingston Trio- Tom Dooley

Song of the day: The Coasters- Yakety Yak

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Another number 1 hit in the R&B charts and normal charts today! The song was written in 1958 for the Coasters by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and it was just one of the many hits the Coasters had in the fifties. The song described the life teenagers had when living with their parents (do this, do that, and don’t complain). Enjoy

The Coasters- Yakety Yak

Song of the day: Bobby Day- Rockin’ Robin

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Rockin’ Robin was a big hit in 1958. Leon René wrote the song, using his pseudonym Jimmie Thomas. The song was recorded by Bobby Day, who took the song to number 2 in the US normal chart and number 1 in the R&B chart. In Australia, the song made it to number 9. As a matter of fact, Bobby Day only had this hit, and never returned to the charts… The cover version, made by Michael Jackson, also did well in the charts: it reached number 2 in the US. However, today we enjoy the original

Bobby Day- Rockin’ Robin

Song of the day: Neil Sedaka- Oh! Carol

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In 1958, the song Oh! Carol was written by Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield. It was the last chance for Neil Sedaka to show he could make a hit, since his first two singles had not charted. Neil bought the three top singles of the week, listened to them over and over again, found out the structure was the same and made a single with this concept. The song was inspired by the affair Neil had on the high school, with Carole King. She released a reaction in 1958 too, but this song would not be a hit. The song by Neil Sedaka charted number 9 in the US and even number 1 in Italy! Enjoy

Neil Sedaka- Oh! Carol

Song of the day: Eddie Cochran- Summertime Blues

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A golden oldie today! All the way from the fifties, written by Eddie Cochran and his manager, Jerry Capehart. In 1958 it was released as a B-side, but this time they got it wrong: the B-side would be the hit! In the US it peaked at number 8 and in the UK it reached number 18. Then the song started its way through history in many cover versions, including a version of the Beach Boys and the Who. Today we’ve got the original! Enjoy

Eddie Cochran- Summertime Blues