Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: The WIllows

Church Bells May Ring

First recorded by The Willows (US #62/R&B #11 1956).
Other hit version by The Diamonds (US #14/CAN #23 1956).

From the wiki: “After two flops as ‘The Five Willows’ in 1954, the group hit as The Willows in 1956 with ‘Church Bells May Ring’ (which featured an uncredited Neil Sedaka playing the chimes).

“As the Willows’ original version began climbing the charts, a number of cover singles were quickly released to cash in on the song’s popularity, including one by The Cadets (‘Stranded in the Jungle’). However, the biggest cover by far of ‘Church Bells May Ring’ came from a Canadian group, the Diamonds (‘Little Darlin”, ‘Silhouettes’).

“The Willows’ arrangement hit #11 of the R&B chart but stalled at #62 on the Billboard pop chart while the Diamonds’ single soared to a peak at #14 on the Hot 100.”