Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Jolé Blon

First recorded (as “Ma blonde est partie”) by Amede, Ophy & Cleoma Breaux (1929).
Hit version by Red Foley (C&W #1 1947).
Also recorded by Waylon Jennings (1958), Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band (1980), Gary “U.S.” Bonds (1981).

From the wiki: “‘Jolé Blon’ is a traditional Cajun waltz, often called ‘the Cajun national anthem’ because of the popularity it had in Cajun culture’; is considered to be the very first Cajun recording. The song was then later popularized on a nationwide scale by a series of renditions and references in late 1940s country songs. There is some mystery to the song’s origin: According to Cleoma Breaux’s daughter, while Amede Breaux is credited with writing the song, it was his sister, Cleoma, who actually wrote the lyrics and Amede sang the song. Dennis McGee claims the original song was written by Angelas Lejeune as ‘La Fille De La Veuve (The Widows Daughter)’ during WWI and Cleoma simply rewrote the lyrics, allegedly about Amede’s first wife.

“‘Jolé Blon’ was Waylon Jennings’ debut single on the Brunswick Records label, in 1958, recorded with King Curtis on sax and produced by Buddy Holly. In 1980, Bruce Springsteen had originally recorded the song for the album, The River, with his E Street Band but it was never formally released. Instead, Springsteen decided to re-record the song with Gary ‘U.S.’ Bonds for Bonds’ 1981 album, Dedication.”

Red Foley, “New Jolie Blonde” (1947):

Waylon Jennings, “Jolé Blon” (1958):

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, “Jolé Blon” rehearsal demo (1980):

Gary “U.S.” Bonds, “Jolé Blon” (1981):

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