First recorded by The Cannonball Adderley Quintet (US #11 1966).
Other hit versions by Larry Williams & Johnny “Guitar” Watson (US #96/R&B #23 1967), Marlena Shaw (US #58/R&B #33 1967), The Buckinghams (US #5 1967).
Also recorded by The Buddy Rich Big Band (1968).
From the wiki: “‘Mercy, Mercy, Mercy’ is a song written by Joe Zawinul in 1966 for Julian ‘Cannonball’ Adderley and his album Mercy, Mercy, Mercy! Live at ‘The Club’. The song is the title track of the album and became a surprise hit, reaching #11 on the Billboard charts in Feb. 1967. The song has been re-recorded numerous times, most notably by The Buckinghams who reached # 5 in August 1967, adding lyrics to the tune.
“The theme of the song on the original recording is performed by Joe Zawinul himself playing it on a Wurlitzer electric piano previously used by Ray Charles. ‘Mercy, Mercy, Mercy,” was also recorded by the Mauds in 1967, with lyrics to the original instrumental written by Curtis Mayfield. It is this arrangement that The Buckinghams released in June, 1967 which peaked in the US Top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100. It followed earlier vocal recordings by Larry Williams & Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson (released February, 1967) and Marlena Shaw (released March, 1967).
“A live recording of the ‘Mercy, Mercy, Mercy’ was featured on the 1968 Buddy Rich Big Band album, Mercy, Mercy, recorded at Caesars Palace in 1968. The album received acclaim as the ‘finest all-round recording by Buddy Rich’s big band.'”
Larry Williams & Johnny “Guitar” Watson, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” (1967):
Marlena Shaw, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” (1967):
The Buckinghams, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” (1967):
The Buddy Rich Big Band, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” (1968):