Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: El Chicano

Hurt So Bad

First recorded by Little Anthony & the Imperials (US #10/R&B #5 1964).
Other hit versions by The Letterman (US #12/MOR #2/CAN #14 1969), Philly Devotions (Dance #10 1976), Linda Ronstadt (US #8/MOR #25/CAN #27 1980).
Also recorded by Willie Bobo (1965), El Chicano (1970), Bobby Hart, co-writer (1979).

From the wiki: “‘Hurt So Bad’ was written especially for Little Anthony & the Imperials by Teddy Randazzo, Bobby Weinstein, and Bobby Hart. It was the follow-up to the hit single ‘Goin’ Out of My Head’ and, like that single, became a Billboard Top-10 hit as well as a Top Five R&B hit.

“After writing ‘Come A Little Bit Closer’ with Tommy Boyce for Jay & the Americans, Bobby Hart signed with DCP Records and sang background when Randazzo performed in Las Vegas. When label head Don Costa asked for another hit for Little Anthony, Hart, Randazzo and Weinstein went to a conference room between sets and came up with “Hurt So Bad,” a song about a man who feels intense pain when he sees his former love.

Tell Her She’s Lovely

Written and first recorded by Batteaux (1973).
Hit version by El Chicano (US #40/MOR #22/R&B #98/AUS #54 1974).

From the wiki: “‘Tell Her She’s Lovely’ was written by brothers Robin and David Batteau of the band Batteaux. Robin had previously played violin in the bands Appaloosa, and Compton & Batteau. After signing with personal manager, Richard Flanzer (Roger Daltrey, Manhattan Transfer, Dr. John), Batteaux auditioned for legendary hit maker, Clive Davis. Columbia Records signed the brothers immediately. A May 1973 review, in Billboard magazine, of the group’s performance at the Bitter End in New York, noted:

“Batteaux offers two lead vocalists and a delicate instrumental style that combines electric elements with violin and gentle, rolling rhythms. The material itself was uneven. The group was not; playing and singing were excellent.”

“El Chicano, originally formed by Freddie Sanchez under the name The VIP’s, arose during a period of increasing Chicano consciousness in America. In 1974, the West Coast band would cover ‘Tell Her She’s Lovely’ and chart with it in the US Top 40, their second – and last – Top 40 appearance.”