Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Lawrence Welk


Based on “Tivoli Melodie” by Werner Müller (1958).
Hit version by Lawrence Welk (US #1/R&B #10 1960), The Four Preps (US #96 1961).

From the wiki: “‘Calcutta’ was written in 1958 by the German songwriter Heino Gaze. Its original title was ‘Tivoli Melodie’; it was re-titled several times, until it became known as ‘Calcutta’ because of the song’s reference to the Indian city. The American songwriting team of Paul Vance and Lee Pockriss later wrote English lyrics, celebrating the charms of the ‘ladies of Calcutta.’ An instrumental recording of ‘Calcutta’ by American bandleader and TV host Lawrence Welk in 1961 became a US chart hit, the most successful of Welk’s career, and the only Tango-based recording to hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. Dancers Bobby Burgess (who first appeared on television as a Walt Disney Mouseketeer) and Barbara Boylan, cast members on Welk’s weekly TV show, worked up a dance routine to go along with “Calcutta”, which they performed numerous times on the Welk show over the years. The Four Preps (‘Love of the Common People‘, 1967) released a vocal version shortly after Welk’s recording. It briefly entered the Billboard Hot 100.”