Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tennessee Waltz

First released by Cowboy Copas (C&W #6 1948).
Other hit versions by The Golden West Cowboys (C&W #3 1948), Erskine Hawkins (R&B #6 1950), Patti Page (US #1/C&W #2/AUS #1 1950).

From the wiki:”Pee Wee King, and most of his group,the Golden West Cowboys, were riding in a limousine in 1946 when he and vocalist Redd Stewart co-wrote the song. They were on their way to a Grand Ole Opry appearance in Nashville when they heard Bill Monroe’s new ‘Kentucky Waltz’ on the radio. Stewart immediately began writing the lyrics on a matchbox while King and the other musicians hummed King’s theme song, ‘No Name Waltz’. King and Stewart presented ‘Tennessee Waltz’ to music publisher Fred Rose the next day. The Golden West Cowboys were not able to record ‘Tennessee Waltz’ until December 1947. Meanwhile, Cowboy Copas, who still occasionally performed with The Golden West Cowboys, recorded the song for King Records just after the Cowboys, with Copas’ version released just prior to that of the Cowboys.

“Patti Page recorded the song – as ‘The Tennessee Waltz’ – to serve as B-side to the seasonal single ‘Boogie Woogie Santa Claus’, issued at the end of 1950. Page chose to record the song because it was a favorite song of her father’s; also that Jerry Wexler, then a record reviewer for Billboard, brought ‘Tennessee Waltz’ to the attention of Page’s manager, Jack Rael, by playing him a new R&B rendition by Erskine Hawkins (‘Tuxedo Junction‘). Page recorded ‘The Tennessee Waltz’ in a November 1950 session in New York City with Rael conducting his orchestra: Page’s vocal was cut multi-tracked with three voices.”

The Golden West Cowboys, “Tennessee Waltz” (1948):

Erskine Hawkins, “Tennessee Waltz” (1950):

Patti Page, “The Tennessee Waltz” (1950):

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