Showing posts with label music and musicians. Show all posts
Showing posts with label music and musicians. Show all posts

Friday, 16 June 2017

Musicality

I will listen from music from the time I'm up, non stop until Andy's home, as he gets bored of my never-ending pre 1962 tunes! Oddly, most of the time, when he walks back through the front door, Ricky Nelson is playing, which leads him to tease me about playing nothing but Ricky. Even if he isn't playing, he jokes that I saw him coming and changed it from Ricky to someone else!

Within my preferred time, I listen to a wide array of music: rock and roll, proper R&B, doo wop, rockabilly, country, blues, though not too bluesy as I need a hefty dollop of rhythm with my blues to make it palatable, crooners, 50's and early 60's pop.

People usually have pre-conceived notions about me from the way I dress and they usually assume I like Elvis Presley, hence this post!

Singers from reading my blog you may have guessed I like. And indeed I do:

Buddy Holly





I like odd affectations in voices. In fact, this can make me turn on a sixpence and label something my favourite song of the moment! I like voices which break a little on a particular word, an odd way of pronouncing something, hoarseness, you get the picture. So, Buddy Holly's distinctive voice, is just my cup of tea.

The Everly Brothers





So dreamy. Nothing more needs to be said.


Singers from reading my blog you may have assumed I like. And I don't, not really:

Elvis Presley





It isn't that I don't like him, it's that I don't choose to listen to him and there are only
certain songs I like and they are very few in number.
There are others I would choose to listen to over him. 

Roy Orbison





Yes, he can sing, I openly acknowledge that, but I just don't like his voice, except on slower tracks and consequently, only really like In Dreams and Crying.
I hate, hate, hate Pretty Woman.  

Little Richard





Don't know what it is, I simply have no desire to own anything by him.
I like The Girl Can't Help It but that's it really. 

Bill Haley



I don't like his voice, simple as that.
I do like The Comets though, they are an incredible band!

Chuck Berry


I admit, he was a talented musician, but after a while, it all starts sounding really samey. 
There are records he did which I like, but I don't tend to listen to him by choice.

Cliff Richard
No.
Just no.
In fact, I'd go as far as to say NO!
Actually, NEVER!



Singers from reading my blog now, that even I would never have guessed I would ever like:

Hank Williams





I never, ever liked country singers and still don't like modern country and by that, note that I think anything past 1962 is modern. It's one of my endearing quirks ;)
Listening to a steady stream of rock and roll, got me on to rockabilly, then listen to enough of that and you start to hear the country influence and after listening to Warren Smith, a lot, I then heard on a film soundtrack, something by Hank Williams and was suddenly open to hearing more and now I absolutely love him.

Jerry Lee Lewis





One of my favourites, who I would never have guessed I would like, because as a child, he scared me! I was trying to think how I would have been exposed to him. It was the actual sight of Jerry Lee that scared me, and am guessing, as my nan wasn't music minded and my granddad was all about Jim Reeves, my mum wasn't so much about music, but my step dad was, and to my knowledge, he isn't a fan of The Killer, that I must have seen him on some Alan Freed music vehicle as when I was wee, Alan Freed fascinated me. An early memory is of me being alone and him being on the telly and me sitting right up close, about a foot away from the telly, gazing at him in wonder. I was an odd child! 

Gene Vincent & the Blue Caps





Andy likes Gene Vincent, but even after trying to brainwash myself by playing him over and over in the car, I just couldn't get along with his music. Then I heard him speak and he was so softly spoken, that I immediately came round as I am all about voices *cough*shallow*cough*
Mind you, one of his band really unsettles me (the one on the right, clapping), in the same way Jerry Lee did. Must be the wild musician thing!

Johnny Burnette





I'm not talking the You're Sixteen Johnny, I'm talking rockabilly Johnny. I got Andy a CD once and hated it on first listen. Then as my ears became acclimatised to such things, I found him easier and easier to listen to. Now I label one of his songs one of my all time favourites.


Other Music Type Things I Just Adore:

Trad Jazz





I love it. But unless it's got a mad clarinet backed up with a just as mad trombone, I'm lukewarm and oh so very not interested.

Teen Romance Tunes





I can't help it and I offer no apologies! 
I like the innocence of these songs.
There's one song I love which opens with the line "Here she comes, the prettiest girl in town ..."
They just don't write them like that anymore, and that makes me sad.


Conversation Songs


One of my favourite conversation songs, for want of a better description, is Say Man by Bo Diddley and his right hand maraca man, Jerome Green. 
Have a listen.




Music Type Things I Really Don't Like:

Novelty Songs





I just cannot tolerate novelty songs. First listen I am fine, second, I start to get irritated.
The early sixties seems to be rife with such things. I really do not like things like Beatnik Fly by Johnny and the Hurricanes and Rockin' Goose.


Instrumentals
I don't mind Link Ray's Rumble, Santo & Johnny's Sleepwalk and I ADORE Dick Dale's Miserlou, but I am very lyrically led, so records without lyrics don't do it for me. I think though, I would go as far as to say that Miserlou is my all time favourite record without lyrics. The mariachi section makes me beyond happy!


I am also not partial to things like Tequila which are largely instrumental but feature just one phrase.




Friday, 19 May 2017

It's All Relative

A quick note about this post ... it's a republish of a favourite post of mine that I wrote in my second year of blogging (hence the talk of October!), so may seem familiar to long term readers.



As October comes around, I feel a calling from some repressed part of my mind, to watch scary films.  I try to avoid things that help my over active imagination to literally play mind games with me as I already have ‘Don’t Look Now’ woman, Toby from ‘Paranormal Activity 3’ and Plastic Man* under the bed, so there is no room for anyone else, I'm just surprised the Creeper from Jeepers Creepers isn't under there too.

Typically, I am not a big fan of the horror genre, though I will watch the ‘classics’ if they happen to cross my path as I believe I should watch classic films, regardless of genre, to see what all the fuss is about. To this end, I very much like Stephen King’s ‘Christine’ (for very obvious reasons) and ‘Carrie’ was a good one too, I often think I would do exactly what she did in her shoes, such a low tolerance do I have for bullies and people who delight in ‘harmless’ baiting.

I don't though, generally touch zombie films but will give Hammer studio films a go, which leads me on to the point of this post ...

Scanning through the listings earlier in the week, I found myself a Hammer film, ‘Demons of the Mind’, a little known early seventies offering. It ticked all the boxes .. Hammer. A Baron (played by Seigfried of ‘All Creatures ..’ fame). Madness. Incest. I was all over this like a rash .. Not that I am a big cheerleader of incest I hasten to add, it’s just a good thing to throw into the mix.  Andy was dismissive, he wasn’t remotely interested, as it isn’t a genre he enjoys.  
So, I sat down alone to watch and when it was over, felt I should share the delights of 'Demons of the Mind', with you .. yes, I watched, so you don't have to. You'll possibly thank me.

Let the watching commence!
Head of the bill .. Paul Jones. I was hopeful it was Paul Jones of Manfred Mann fame, who I had a huge bit of a crush on during my sixties obsession.


as he acts and 'Privilege' is one of my favourite films  


but it isn't exactly an unusual name so I was curious to see.  

It was a 1972 historical Hammer offering complete with coach and horses driven by your typically burly man, and glorious architecture courtesy of Wykehurst Place (a Gothic Revival mansion in West Sussex, England).


*

So, cue Elizabeth, a nubile young blond who had Hammer written all about her person. She was very pretty indeed and could have been dancing in a mini skirt on any late sixties, early seventies episode of Top of The Pops.  




Apparently in the coach against her will, the poor girl is drugged by her dear aunt (for her own good dontcha know) and falls into a waking dream state which sees her running fearfully through the woods before scampering into the presence of Carl the bookish woodcutter/medical student, played by Paul Jones, (yes THEE Paul Jones of my crush and frequent swooning. I was very happy indeed) where she promptly fainted, or collapsed, or indeed swooned (it is Paul Jones after all).  



He tends her wounds.  He spots her locket in which is a photo of a sickly looking fop. He rows her around in a rowboat (this was ridiculously random I have to say) and a very splendid time was had indeed.  She wakes and rises from his bed, which is the cue for a typically titillating Hammer moment, a quick flash of breast in the early morning light which pours through the grubby windows, which makes me think that Carl’s self satisfied smile is more to do with having someone to keep house than having someone in his bed. She departs his cottage in her pretty undergarments to collect eggs where she is promptly snatched by burly man and bundled back into the coach    /end dream state.

Cue Emil, the man from the locket who rises weakly from his bed in a distant room (he has a delicate beauty which touches me somehow). Back to the coach where burly man is waving cheerfully to people he passes from the drivers seat on the coach as he wends his way to the glorious house where Emil stares solemnly from the window as the coach carrying Elizabeth arrives.


Elizabeth is ushered from the coach by Aunt Hilda (and a mysterious box) and dear papa, Baron Zorn is happy to see his daughter.  Upstairs, Emil is pacing, he's growing restless! He knows Elizabeth is near! 


He emerges from his room, heading toward her for what is evidently a reunion which is not to be as she is promptly locked away, as this is how it must be …………. 
Yes, Emil and Elizabeth, they who look longingly at one another from afar, are brother and sister. The Baron it seems, has locked his teenage children up to stop their incestuous penchant for one another, for lo they are ill and they must be bled, which no doubt explains the pastiness.
“What are you doing to her? She looks so pale, and sad,” bemoans Emil. Likely the same thing they’re doing to him considering his sullen face and pallid complexion.
 More titillating scenes follow, where the mystery box comes into play and Elizabeth is bled, to cure her of her desires for Emil who is locked in the adjoining room. I’m very sure we didn’t need another flash of her breast when she was being bled from her thigh but we got it anyway.  Huzzah for predictability. 

Elsewhere, a blond has wandered off into the woods, but be fearful dear girl, this is no time to be getting stones in your shoes, as there are things in the woods who shake trees! Run! Run for your life! Oh, too late, it got you, and it’s scattering rose petals over your lifeless body.

Cue a mad wandering holy man who has ‘been led there’ through inclement weather on foot and Dr Falkenberg himself and Carl who are travelling in a coach. It becomes apparent that Carl does not trust Falkenberg’s methods and wants no part of working with him and you know what? The doctor didn’t actually fall from grace in his profession, rather he was thrown but even so, there are still those that will trust him *cough*baronzorn*cough*. 

Cue extra commentary from Melanie as things trip along merrily.  Their coach crashes thanks to the wandering holy man, um, wandering in front of the coach bellowing warnings, so Carl goes off to find help. Cut to a remote inn or some such where another blond is gleefully ravished by a man who looks old enough to be her dad as burly man watches through a window *heavybreathing*  (it transpires that burly man and inn woman have history) Oh look! The breast bearing inn blond emerges from inside and very affable she is too, outside as she is, in the bad weather, in her flimsies, and happens across the newly arrived Carl where she remarks upon no one coming by that way ordinarily, mores the pity, as she moves up against him in a terribly obvious way.  I felt they had left a line or too out, “ .. now if you’d like to come inside with me, where I shall make you something to calm your nerves and possibly flash you my breasts.”  

There is screaming in the shaky woods, oh no! Has another blond fallen prey to the rose petal killer???? Ahh, yes, yes she has. 

Carl arrives back at the coach with help for the injured driver but Falkenberg has gone! He has somehow been found by burly man and taken back to the house in a gig where Zorn emerges from the house covered in blood, berating the doctor for being late.  Zorn is next seen in a row boat on a lake where he discards the body of a blond over the side. What? Why? How? When? Is the Baron the rose petal killer???? Hey ho, she’s been disposed of now, it matters not.

Meanwhile, Falkenberg is treating the Baron with his shady discredited method, and this is where we find that the Baron has evil in his blood and wants to be cured of rife insanity, family incest and oh my! Prowling in the woods like AN ANIMAL! Blood lust! Ritual death? Is he? Could he be? 
To purify the family line, he married a peasant woman whose virgin blood appalled him and he would never sleep with her again, for he became impotent. Really? Women pay heed, should your virgin blood appall your new husband then you might just be responsible for his impotency and you know what happens then don’t you? Yes, he will drive you not only to madness, but also you will be compelled to commit suicide in front of your children.
It happened to the Baron and his wife, so it could happen to you too *points in a sinister manner*

Elsewhere, it’s all gone a bit wicker man in the village and lo and behold, another young woman has gone awol which causes unrest amongst the villagers.



While everyone else has been distracted, Emil has been busy trying to break into his sisters room .. they quickly hatch a plan to escape. Keys stolen from Aunt Hilda and brother and sister are reunited with a full blown kiss on the lips. All together now - ahhhhh!  On the verge of escape they are rumbled by Aunt Hilda. But who is that at the door? It's Carl! Huzzah, he's come to save the day! But has Elizabeth forgotten her brother so soon? “Carl ….” she breathes as she spots him from the window. My, that girl is fickle.

The Baron and burly man however, think Carl’s on to them so try to put his mind at ease .. by telling him of the madness that runs through Elizabeth's veins. Is it just me or is that not putting someones mind at rest? I'm very sure they weren't just sharing the same bed before she got whisked away, what if she got pregnant? The madness might continue, which was what worried the Baron, but little did he know what Elizabeth might have been up too in the halcyon days back in the cottage.
During this part I got terribly distracted by Carl, as Paul Jones has a lovely mouth .. see? Oh I am such a girl.



He proceeds to a showdown with Falkenberg and tells him just what he thinks of his methods; oh he’s so forceful. Just when you think the Baron is going to listen to Carl and do the right thing and throw him out, he lets Falkenberg fight his own corner then lets him stay to subject his children to all sorts, which apparently involves the doctor dressing in a snazzy purple get up. It seems for a moment that their relationship is considered okay by the doctor which just agitates the Baron who wants them cured and he wants them cured now! But the doctor insists the Baron has damaged them so very much, that it could take weeks to make them better, but for faster results, there is only one way, an extreme way, but, he isn't going to share what that is.

Oh look, we’re back with inn woman and burly man has come calling, to lure her to the home of the Baron. To what end though? To what end? Ahh, I see .. take inn woman to the house, tell her she’s going to be in a play, strip her naked in front of everyone and cut her hair. That's the plan then is it? 
Better hurry, as the villagers are on their way with pitchforks and flaming torches (and a flaming crucifix), how quaint! But the plan, what is the plan? The plan is in fact to tell Emil that Elizabeth loves and needs him, and to lead him to inn woman who is wearing Elizabeth's favourite dress. 
They take him to inn woman. Emil's reaction scares her to the extent that she promptly runs off with him in fast pursuit, believing her to be Elizabeth. 
When she tells him otherwise, it all goes very horribly wrong. 
There then followed an ending that was quite something and I'm still confused as to how the plan was to work.
????

Confusing plan aside, I was very taken with this so promptly popped it on my Amazon wishlist. I'm very sure it will be unwatchable to most people, but then I also own the bizarre 'Gonks Go Beat' which I also hear is unwatchable!

* Plastic Man.
A product of my very over active imagination. I was woken one night by sounds not unlike someone dragging heavy duty plastic around the bedroom, you know, those huge bags mattresses come in, that sort of noise. Still have no idea what that actually was, but Plastic Man was born that night.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Death Discs: Leader of the Pack




Lyric Lowdown
The song is about a girl named Betty, who is asked by friends to confirm that she is dating Jimmy, the leader of a motorcycle gang, whose ring they see on Betty's finger. After singing of love at first sight ("(By the way, where'd you meet him?) I met him at the candy store/He turned around and smiled at me/You get the picture?/(Yes, we see) That's when I fell for the Leader of the Pack"), Betty's heart turns to despair as she bemoans her parents' disapproval. The parents claim Jimmy hails from "the wrong side of town" and ask Betty to tell Jimmy goodbye and find someone new. Betty reluctantly does as she is asked, and a crushed and tearful Jimmy speeds off on his motorcycle. Moments later, Jimmy crashes on a rain-slicked surface and dies; Betty's pleas for Jimmy to slow down are in vain.

The Birth of a Classic
The tune of "Leader of the Pack" has been credited to impresario George "Shadow" Morton together with Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich. Morton has said that he wrote the song for the Goodies (also known as the Bunnies), but instead it was needed as a follow-up to the Shangri-Las hit "Remember (Walking in the Sand)".



Morton claims he didn't know  he was expected to have a second idea ready to follow up "Remember (Walking in the Sand)" until Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller asked him, "Hey, what do you want to do for the second record?"

Morton said he "got a bottle of champagne, two cigars" and "went into the shower, sat down, drank the champagne, smoked the cigars, and wrote the song on a shirt cardboard with my kids crayons."

Legend Says
To add the authentic sound of a motorcycle engine, one was actually driven through the lobby of the hotel and up to the floor of the recording studio. Although no one was arrested, it didn't stop a ticket being issued.



Four decades later, however, Shangri-Las lead singer Mary Weiss claimed the motorcycle sound was taken from an effects record. Hugh Grundy, drummer for The Zombies, recalls revving up a motorcycle backstage when the Shangri-Las performed on a U.S. tour.

Reception
The record was released as a single by Red Bird Records, which was a Leiber and Stoller label, and hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 on November 28, 1964.

In the United Kingdom, the single was refused airplay by the BBC, probably due to its death theme, although some have speculated that it was considered likely to encourage violence between mods and rockers.



Interestingly, even though the song had been banned by Auntie Beeb, that didn't stop it intruding on a Sunday morning service broadcast by the BBC from the chapel choir at Keele University. The choir had been singing Christ is Our Cornerstone as part of a commemorative service to mark the passing of Winston Churchill, when suddenly Leader of the Pack came blaring into proceedings, played it is said, by a free spirited drama student over the halls PA system in protest to the song being banned. The choir, in an attempt to drown it out, sang louder but it made no difference and the BBC simply faded the choir out and the recording was never repeated or ever completed.

Regardless, it charted three times on the UK Singles Chart: number 11 in 1965; number 3 in 1972 (by which time the BBC ban had been lifted); and once again at number 7 in 1976, when its sales figures as a reissue on two different labels (Charly and Contempo) were combined to arrive at its chart position.

*



Mm--"Is she really going out with him?
"Well, there she is, Let's ask her"
"Betty, is that Jimmy's ring you're wearing?"
"Mm-hm"
"Gee, it must be great riding with him"
"Is he picking you up after school today?"
"Mm-mm"
"By the way, where did you meet him?"

"I met him at the candy store
He turned around and smiled at me
You get the picture
"Yes, we see"
That's when I fell for the leader of the pack

My folks were always putting him down
They said he came from the wrong side of town
They told me he was bad but I knew he was sad
That's why I fell for the leader of the pack

One day my dad said find someone new
I had to tell my Jimmy we're through
He stood there and asked me why, but all I could do was cry
I'm sorry I hurt you, the leader of the pack

He sort of smiled and kissed me good bye
The tears were beginning to show
As he drove away on that rainy night,
I begged him to go slow, whether he heard,
I'll never know Look out! Look out! Look out!

I felt so helpless, what could I do
Remembering all the things we'd been through?
In school they all stop and stare
I can't hide the tears, but I don't care
I'll never forget him, the leader of the pack

Ooh, the leader of the pack now he's gone
the leader of the pack now he's gone
the leader of the pack now he's gone


***

Previous Songs In This Series:

Johnny Remember Me - John Leyton
Endless Sleep - Jody Reynolds

Monday, 8 May 2017

Ricky Nelson




Eric Hilliard "Ricky/Rick" Nelson
May 8th 1940 – December 31st 1985

Ricky, or Rick as he preferred to be known, was anAmerican actor, musician
and singer-songwriter. He starred alongside his family in the television series
The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet as well as co-starring alongside John Wayne
and Dean Martin in Howard Hawks's western feature film Rio Bravo.


He placed 53 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 between 1957 and 1973 including "Poor Little Fool", which holds the distinction of being the first #1 song on Billboard magazine's then-newly created Hot 100 chart.


He recorded 19 additional Top 10 hits and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on January 21, 1987.

I want to focus for a moment on his role of Colorado Ryan in Rio Bravo.
In the latter part of the film, he sings a duet with Dean Martin and then a song called 'Cindy'

"Cindy hugged and kissed me
She wrung her hands and cried
Swore I was the prettiest thing
That ever lived or died
"

Well she was right there, he was a beauty.
There's just something about his lips ...








Today would have been his 77th birthday, so happy birthday Rick!


It would also have been my granddad's 86th birthday!
Happy birthday granddad!


And it's the anniversary of VE Day!

Monday, 17 April 2017

Billy Fury & Eddie Cochran


Billy Fury
Born
Ronald William Wycherley
17th April 1940 - 28th January 1983


Billy Fury was an early British rock and roll star who equalled the Beatles' record of 24 hits in the 1960s, and spent 332 weeks on the UK chart, without a chart-topping single or album.
He is also one of my absolute favourite British rock and rollers.


Journalist Bruce Eder stated, "His mix of rough-hewn good looks and unassuming masculinity, coupled with an underlying vulnerability, all presented with a good voice and some serious musical talent, helped turn Fury into a major rock and roll star in short order".


Others have suggested that Fury's rapid rise to prominence was due to his "Elvis Presley-influenced, hip-swivelling and at times highly suggestive stage act."


Today would have been his 77th birthday.
So here's to Billy, happy birthday!


* * *

Today also marks the passing of Eddie Cochran. Last years tribute post can be found here.
 

Photo taken by Andy


Sunday, 19 March 2017

Chuck Berry

 Charles Edward Anderson
'Chuck' Berry
October 18th 1926 – March 18th 2017

Rest In Peace


"It was a teenage wedding, and the old folks wished them well
You could see that Pierre did truly love the mademoiselle
And now the young monsieur and madame have rung the chapel bell,
"C'est la vie", say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell

They furnished off an apartment with a two room Roebuck sale
The coolerator was crammed with TV dinners and ginger ale,
But when Pierre found work, the little money comin' worked out well
"C'est la vie", say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell

They had a hi-fi phono, boy, did they let it blast
Seven hundred little records, all rock, rhythm and jazz
But when the sun went down, the rapid tempo of the music fell
"C'est la vie", say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell

They bought a souped-up jitney, 'twas a cherry red '53,
They drove it down to Orleans to celebrate the anniversary
It was there that Pierre was married to the lovely mademoiselle
"C'est la vie", say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell."

Monday, 6 March 2017

Hey! Haven't I Heard This Before? Blue Suede Shoes

Or ... Grammy Done Shook Her Moneymaker To Thissun!


There are songs a-plenty from my favoured musical era, which every one will know, but the chances are, many people will know the cover version better than the original.

Take the extraordinarily well know Blue Suede Shoes. Who do you know that recorded this? Elvis Presley I'm betting in most cases. Did you know though, that Elvis didn't record it until March of 1956, Carl Perkins released it three months earlier  on January 1st 1956.

Johnny Cash gave the idea to Carl in the autumn of 1955 while they and other Louisiana Hayride acts toured throughout the Southern states of America. He told him the story of a black airman, who he had met when serving in the military in Germany, who had referred to his military regulation airmen's shoes as "blue suede shoes." He suggested to Carl that he write a song about those shoes. Carl replied, "I don't know anything about shoes. How can I write a song about shoes?"

However, when Perkins played a dance on December 4, 1955, he noticed a couple dancing near the stage. Between songs, he heard a stern, forceful voice say, "Uh-uh, don't step on my suedes!" Looking down, Carl noted that the boy was wearing blue suede shoes and one had a scuff mark. "Good gracious, a pretty little thing like that and all he can think about is his blue suede shoes", thought Carl.

That night he began working on a song based on the incident at the dance. His first thought was to frame it with a nursery rhyme and he considered, but quickly discarded "Little Jack Horner..." and "See a spider going up the wall...", before settling on "One for the money..."

Leaving his bed and working with his Les Paul guitar, he started with an A chord.  "Well, it's one for the money... Two for the show... Three to get ready... Now go, man, go!" he broke into a boogie rhythm. He quickly wrote the song down, writing the title out as "Blue Swade"; "S-W-A-D-E – I couldn't even spell it right," he later said*!

According to Carl, "On December 17, 1955, I wrote 'Blue Suede Shoes'. I recorded it on December 19.**"

Sun Records released the second take of the song with Sun producer Sam Phillips, suggesting that the lyric "go cat go" be changed to "go man go", but the suggestion was not taken.

In Jackson, where Perkins lived, and in Memphis, radio stations were playing the flip side of the record, "Honey Don't." However, in Cleveland, Ohio, disc jockey Bill Randle was featuring "Blue Suede Shoes" prominently on his nightly show, and before January was over, the Cleveland distributor of the record asked Phillips for an additional 25,000 copies of the record.

Blue Suede Shoes became the side of choice throughout the South and Southwest. On February 11 it was the number 2 single on Memphis charts; it was number one the next week and remained there for the next three months.

Carl made four appearances on the radio program Big D Jamboree on station KRLD in Dallas, where he played the song every Saturday night and was booked on a string of one-nighters in the Southwest. The Jamboree was broadcast from the Dallas Sportatorium, with about four thousand seats, and it sold out for each of Perkins' performances. Music shops in Dallas ordered a huge number of copies of the record, and at one point it was selling at a rate of 20,000 copies per day.

On March 17, Carl became the first country artist to reach the number three spot on the rhythm & blues charts. That night, he and his band first performed "Blue Suede Shoes" on television, on ABC-TV's Ozark Jubilee.

He was booked to appear on The Perry Como Show on NBC-TV on March 24th, but on March 22nd he and his band were in a serious car crash on the way to New York City, resulting in the death of a truck driver and the hospitalization of both Carl and his brother. While he recuperated from his injuries, "Blue Suede Shoes" rose to number one on most pop, R&B, and country regional charts. "I was a poor farm boy, and with 'Shoes' I felt I had a chance but suddenly there I was in the hospital," he recalled bitterly.

Carl Perkins never attained the stardom of Elvis Presley, who, according to Perkins, "had everything. He had the looks, the moves, the manager, and the talent. And he didn't look like Mr. Ed, like a lot of us did, Elvis was hitting them with sideburns, flashy clothes, and no ring on the finger. I had three kids."

After Presley hit the chart with his version of "Blue Suede Shoes," Perkins became known more for his song writing than for his performing.

Carl's original version:
I prefer this one.




Elvis's cover:



* As a child, I couldn't spell suede either, I used to spell it swede. 

** My birthday!