Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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I Almost Lost My Mind

Written and originally recorded by Ivory Joe Hunter (R&B #1 1949).
Hit version by Pat Boone (US #1 1956).

From the wiki: “‘I Almost Lost My Mind’ written by Ivory Joe Hunter and was first recorded by him in 1949. Hunter’s 12-bar blues recording of the song was a #1 hit on the US Billboard R&B chart in that year. The best selling version of the song was a cover version by Pat Boone, hitting #1 on the Billboard charts in 1956.”

“Ivory Joe Hunter was a prolific songwriter, and some estimate he wrote more than 7,000 songs during his career.

“In the early 1940s, Hunter had his own radio show in Beaumont, Texas, on KFDM, where he eventually became program manager, and in 1942 he moved to Los Angeles, joining Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers in the mid-1940s. When he wrote and recorded his first song, ‘Blues At Sunrise’, with the Three Blazers for his own label, Ivory Records, it became a nationwide hit on the R&B chart in 1945. After signing with MGM Records, he recorded ‘I Almost Lost My Mind’. With his smooth delivery, Hunter became a hot R&B commodity, and he also began to be noticed in the country music community.

“In April 1951, he made his network TV debut on You Asked For It. He toured widely with a backing band and became known for his large build (he was 6′ 4″ tall), his brightly colored stage suits, and his volatile temperament. By 1954, he had recorded more than 100 songs and moved to Atlantic Records. His first song to cross over to the pop charts was ‘Since I Met You Baby’ (1956). It was to be his only Top 40 pop song, climbing to the #12 position. While visiting Memphis, Tennessee, in the spring of 1957, Hunter was invited by Elvis Presley to visit Graceland. The two spent the day together, singing ‘I Almost Lost My Mind’ and other songs together.”

Pat Boone, “I Almost Lost My Mind” (1956):

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