Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Chris Farlowe

Rockin’ Pneumonia & the Boogie Woogie Flu

Written and first recorded (as “Tu-Ber-Cu-Lucas and the Sinus Blues”) by Huey “Piano” Smith (1957).
Hit versions by Huey “Piano” Smith & The Clowns (US #52/R&B #5 1957), Johnny Rivers (US #6/AUS #27/NZ #11 1972).
Also recorded by Jerry Lee Lewis (1965), Chris Farlowe (1966), David Lindley (1981).

From the wiki: “In 1955, Huey ‘Piano’ Smith turned 21, and became the piano player with Little Richard’s first band for Specialty Records. The same year Smith also played piano on several studio sessions for other artists such as Lloyd Price; one of the sessions resulted in the Smiley Lewis hit, ‘I Hear You Knocking‘.

“In 1957, Smith formed ‘Huey ‘Piano’ Smith and His Clowns’ and signed a long-term contract with Ace Records. The group hit the Billboard charts with several singles in succession, including ‘Rockin’ Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu’, first recorded as ‘Tu-Ber-Cu-Lucas and the Sinus Blues’ in 1957 and released as the B-side to ‘Dearest Darling’.

Handbags and Gladrags

Originally recorded by Chris Farlowe (UK #33 1967).
Also recorded by Mike d’Abo, composer (1970), Kate Taylor (1971).
Other hit versions by Chase (US #84 1971), Rod Stewart (1969 |US #42 1972), Big George (2000), Stereophonics (UK #4/IRE #3 2001).

From the wiki: “‘Handbags and Gladrags’ was written by Mike d’Abo (Manfred Mann). In November 1967, singer Chris Farlowe was the first to release a version of the song, produced by d’Abo. It became a #33 hit in the United Kingdom for Farlowe from the album The Last Goodbye. In 1969, Rod Stewart recorded a version for his album An Old Raincoat Won’t Ever Let You Down.