Song 41 – Rocket 88

SONG: Rocket 88 ARTIST: Jackie Brenston & His Delta Cats YEAR: 1951 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: “Rocket 88” was originally recorded in Memphis, Tennessee in March of 1951, which is the version we’re listening to today. It was credited to “Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats”, who were actually “Ike Turner and hisContinue reading “Song 41 – Rocket 88”

Song 40 – Mambo No. 5

SONG: Mambo No. 5 ARTIST: Perez Prado YEAR: 1950 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: There is little information on the composition of Mambo Number 5, just that it was written by Perez Prado in 1949 and released in 1950. THE ARTIST: Damaso Perez Prado, AKA the King of Mambo was born December 11, 1916Continue reading “Song 40 – Mambo No. 5”

Song 39 – Goodnight, Irene

SONG: Goodnight, Irene ARTIST: The Weavers YEAR: 1950 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: What has become a 20th century American folk standard, started as a song written by and first recorded by blues musician Huddie ‘Lead Belly’ Ledbetter in 1933. For more information on Leadbelly, please see our review of Song 20 – GallisContinue reading “Song 39 – Goodnight, Irene”

Song 38 – Summertime

SONG: Summertime ARTIST: Sarah Vaughan YEAR: 1950 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: Summertime was written by George Gershwin for his 1935 opera Porgy and Bess, with lyrics by DuBose Heyward who wrote the novel Porgy.  Gershwin started writing the song in 1933 and tried to recreate the feel of a spiritual.  The song isContinue reading “Song 38 – Summertime”

Song 37 – Autumn Leaves

SONG: Autumn Leaves ARTIST: Jo Stafford YEAR: 1950 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: “Autumn Leaves” was composed by Joseph Kosma, with original lyrics by Jacques Prevert (French lyrics) and later English lyrics by Johnny Mercer.  Joseph Kosma was a Hungarian composer who met Jacques Prevert in Paris. They collaborated on a few songs andContinue reading “Song 37 – Autumn Leaves”

Song 36 – I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry

SONG: I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry ARTIST: Hank Williams YEAR: 1949 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry was written and recorded by Hank Williams in 1949.  The song was put to tape on August 30th of that year and Williams was backed by the Pleasant Valley Boys.  TheContinue reading “Song 36 – I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”

Song 35 – Saturday Night Fish Fry

SONG: Saturday Night Fish Fry ARTIST: Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five YEAR: 1949 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: Today, we’re welcoming another song from the jump blues genre: Saturday Night Fish Fry, written by Louis Jordan and Ellis Walsh, and made famous by Louis Jordan and His Tympany Five.  The first recording ofContinue reading “Song 35 – Saturday Night Fish Fry”

Song 33 – Good Rockin’ Tonight

SONG: Good Rockin’ Tonight ARTIST: Roy Brown YEAR: 1947 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: Depending on who you talk to, this “jump blues,” released in 1947 is one of the first, or maaaaybe the very first rock’n’roll song ever! Roy Brown wrote the song in 1946, and he and his pianist knew right awayContinue reading “Song 33 – Good Rockin’ Tonight”

Song 32 – White Christmas

SONG: White Christmas ARTIST: Bing Crosby YEAR: 1947 SONG: White Christmas ARTIST: Bing Crosby YEAR: 1947 Listen to it here:  1942 Original: 1947 Re-recording THE SONG: White Christmas was written by Irving Berlin, possibly in 1940 in either La Quinta, California or the Arizona Biltmore.  It was first performed by Bing Crosby on Christmas Day,Continue reading “Song 32 – White Christmas”

Song 31 – La mer

SONG: La mer ARTIST: Charles Trenet YEAR: 1946 Listen to it here:  THE SONG: Charles Trenet claims that he wrote an early version of La mer’s lyrics as a 16 year old in a poem, years before he came up with a melody. The melody came to him while on a train travelling between MontpellierContinue reading “Song 31 – La mer”