Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Whole Lotta Love

Inspired by “You Need Love” by Muddy Waters (1963)
and “You Need Loving” by Small Faces (1966).
Hit version by Led Zeppelin (US #4 1969).

From the wiki: “In 1962, Muddy Waters recorded ‘You Need Love’, written for him by peer Willie Dixon. In 1966 British mod band the Small Faces recorded the song as ‘You Need Loving’ for their 1966 debut album. Some of the lyrics of Led Zeppelin’s version were copied from the Willie Dixon song, a favorite of Plant’s. Plant’s phrasing is particularly similar to that of Steve Marriott’s in the Small Faces’ version. Similarities with ‘You Need Love’ would lead to a lawsuit against Led Zeppelin in 1985, settled out of court in favor of Dixon.

“Dixon was long gone before he was finally credited on a 1997 reissue of ‘Whole Lotta Love’ but, with the settlement proceeds, before his passing, Dixon was able to start up the Blues Heaven Foundation to keep a close watch on Blues copyrights. Part of that same settlement was also spent on saving the Chess studio in Chicago from being torn down.”

You Need Love (Dixon lyrics)

You’ve got yearnin’ and I got burnin’
Baby you look so sweet and cunning
Baby way down inside, woman you need love
Woman you need love, you’ve got to have some love
I’m gonna give you some love, I know you need love
You just gotta have love, you make me feel so good

Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin lyrics)

You’ve been learnin’, baby, I’ve been yearnin’,
All them good times, baby, baby, I’ve been yearnin’,
Way, way down inside honey, you need it,
I’m gonna give you my love… I’m gonna give you my love.

Small Faces, “You Need Loving” (1966):

Led Zeppelin, “Whole Lotta Love” (1969):

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