Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Rubber Biscuit

First recorded by The Chips (1956).
Hit version by The Blues Brothers (US #37 1979).

From the wiki: “‘Rubber Biscuit’ is a Doo-wop song by The Chips, first recorded in 1956. It was famously covered by The Blues Brothers (on their debut album, Briefcase Full of Blues). Label credit for writing the song was given to Chips lead singer Charles Johnson and Adam R. Levy. Levy, though, was the son of label owner Morris Levy, who was notorious for adding either his or his son’s names to songwriting credits in order to claim partial, or in some cases all composer royalties on songs they did not write. There is no evidence that Morris or Adam ever wrote any songs. When Josie Records heard the song they signed The Chips and the record was issued in September 1956. Although it did not chart, ‘Rubber Biscuit’ became an instant east coast radio favorite.

“Few of the lyrics can actually be understood, as they are sung in the scat manner. The scat is interrupted every few bars for short one-liners, most of which are implicit references to the singer’s poverty and the low-grade food he eats: a ‘wish sandwich’ (where one has two slices of bread and wishes for meat), a ‘ricochet biscuit’ (which is supposed to bounce off the wall and into one’s mouth, and when it doesn’t, ‘you go hungry’), a ‘cold-water sandwich’ and a ‘Sunday-go-to-meeting-bun’. The song closes with the question ‘What do you want for nothing? A rubber biscuit?.'”

The Blues Brothers, “Rubber Biscuit” (1979):

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