Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Steve Winwood

Shanghai Noodle Factory

First recorded and released by Jay & the Americans (1967).
Hit album version by Traffic (1968).

From the wiki: “‘Shanghai Noodle Factory’, ostensibly about the business of music being in conflict with the needs of a musician, was written by Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi, Chris Wood, Jimmy Miller, and Larry Fallon sometime between Winwood’s departure from the Spencer Davis Group and his co-founding of the band Traffic in the spring of 1967. But, ‘Shanghai Noodle Factory’ would first be recorded by the group Jay & the Americans (‘Come A Little Bit Closer’, ‘Cara Mia’, ‘This Magic Moment‘) and released in October 1967 as the B-side to the non-charting single ‘French Provincial’.

“Coincidentally, it was co-writer and Traffic (and former Spencer Davis Group) producer Jimmy Miller who helmed the Jay & the Americans recording session.

“Traffic would record its own version of Winwood’s song during the group’s final studio sessions in early 1968. Traffic’s ‘Shanghai Noodle Factory’ would then be released in December 1968 in the UK (February 1969 in the US) as the B-side of the non-charting single ‘Medicated Goo’ and appear on the 1969 album Last Exit.”

Keep On Running

Written and first recorded by Jackie Edwards (1965).
Hit version by The Spencer Davis Group (US #76/UK #1/CAN #22/IRE #3/NZ #4 1965).
Re-recorded by Jackie Edwards (1976).

From the wiki: “‘Keep on Running’ was written and first recorded by Jackie Edwards, which became a #1 UK hit when recorded by The Spencer Davis Group. Edwards recorded his original version while working in the UK for Island Records as a songwriter. It first appeared on his 1965 album Come on Home, and was later re-recorded by Edwards again as a reggae arrangement in the mid-1970s for his Do You Believe In Love album.

Gimme Some Lovin’

Influenced by “(Ain’t That) A Lot of Love” by Homer Banks (1966).
Hit versions by The Spencer Davis Group (US #7/UK #2 1966), Traffic (US #68 1971), The Blues Brothers (US #18 1980).

From the wiki: “Homer Banks was born in Memphis, Tennessee, and, at the age of 16, formed The Soul Consolidators gospel group which toured around the southern states. After military service, Banks returned to Memphis in 1964 where he began a singing career with the small Genie label where he met Isaac Hayes and David Porter. Soon, Stax founder Estelle Axton hired Banks to work at the record shop attached to the company’s Satellite Studios. He stayed for three years, also recording for the Minit label subsidiary of Liberty Records. One of his Minit recordings, ‘(Ain’t That) A Lot of Love’, co-written by Banks and Deanie Parker, provided the basic riff later used by the Spencer Davis Group on their hit ‘Gimme Some Lovin”.

I’m A Man

First recorded by The Spencer Davis Group (US #10/UK #9/CAN #1 1967).
Other hit version by Chicago (US #49/UK #8/CAN #8/IRE #13 1971).

From the wiki: “‘I’m A Man’ was written by The Spencer Davis Group singer-songwriter Steve Winwood and record producer Jimmy Miller (not to be confused with the Bo Diddley song), and released as a single by The Spencer Davis Group in early 1967. It would be the last hit single by the band before the brothers Steve and Muff Winwood left the group to pursue solo careers.