Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Gary “U.S.” Bonds

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.

Quarter to Three

Based on “A Night with Daddy G – Part 1” by The Church Street Five (1961).
Hit version by Gary “U.S.” Bonds (US #1/R&B #3/UK #7 1962).
Also performed by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band (1978).

From the wiki: “‘Quarter to Three’ was adapted and expanded from ‘A Night with Daddy ‘G’ – Part 1′, a 1961 instrumental recording by the Church Street Five and written by written by Gene Barge, Frank Guida (‘If You Wanna Be Happy‘), and Joseph Royster. ‘Daddy G’ was saxophone player Gene Barge, who would go on to be featured on all Gary ‘U.S.’ Bonds’ hits. Barge’s group, The Church Street Five, scored a bubbling-under hit with ‘A Night With Daddy ‘G” before Bonds would compose a vocal arrangement for the song (listed under his birth name, Gary Anderson). It was co-writer Guida who discovered and named Bonds, and the recording of ‘Quarter to Three’ took place during a party celebrating Bond’s first hit ‘New Orleans’.

“The entire Church Street Five, including Legrand label boss Guida, provided the live atmosphere. The lyrics mention the Church Street Five and Daddy G by name, and contain the exhortation ‘Blow, Daddy!’ Guida has been quoted that the raucous production, sometimes describes as sounding as if it had been recorded in a school gymnasium, was exactly what he wanted the song to sound like. It was a ‘live’ gimmick avidly copied by other producers, including Chubby Checker’s ‘Dancin’ Party’, Dion’s ‘Runaround Sue’, The Beach Boys’ version of ‘Barbara Ann’, and Trini Lopez’s ‘If I Had A Hammer’.

“‘Daddy G,’ Gene Barge, would go on to work with Chess Records during the 1960s, playing on recording sessions and providing arrangements along with production work. In the 1970s, he produced as well as arranged records, including Natalie Cole’s early hits, and toured and played with such notables as Fats Domino, Bo Diddley, Big Joe Turner, LaVern Baker, Ray Charles, Chuck Willis, and The Rolling Stones. Barge also branched out into acting, with roles in major movies starring Gene Hackman, Chuck Norris, Harrison Ford and Steven Seagal.

Rendezvous

First recorded (as an outtake) by Bruce Springsteen (1976, released 2010).
Commercially-released by Greg Kihn (1979), Gary “U.S.” Bonds (1982).

From the wiki: “‘Rendezvous’ was written by Bruce Springsteen during the recording sessions for the Darkness On The Edge of Town album but was not included in the final release. The first commercial release of the song was by Greg Kihn, in 1979, on With The Naked Eye, and covered again in 1982 by Gary ‘U.S.’ Bonds with a version produced by Springsteen and backed by Springsteen’s E Street Band. Columbia Records had Bruce Springsteen remove his vocals from all the tracks he backed on Bond’s On The Line album (distributed by competitor EMI Records). Because of this, although Springsteen can still be heard on several of the tracks, he is not credited in the original liner notes.

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