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 Original versions of Rockabilly Riot

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Slim Jon Phantom


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PostSubject: Original versions of Rockabilly Riot   Fri Mar 25, 2011 6:03 pm

I know many of you are rockabilly guys and girls and sure you know the original versions of Brian Setzer's Rockabilly Riot versions.

As you might also know, I am not a rockabilly guy either, and though I don't particulary enjoy most of the original versions played by Brian on Rockabilly Riot, I thought a post dedicated to the original versions of such a great album was necessary. So, that I did some research on YouTube, and I found all the original songs there and created a post about them.

So, if you visit my blog, www.straycatscollectors.blogspot.com you'll find a link to each and every original song from Rockabilly Riot.

Hope you like it!
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PostSubject: Re: Original versions of Rockabilly Riot   Mon Mar 28, 2011 8:21 am

Once again, excellent job!

Keep up the great work.........


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PostSubject: Re: Original versions of Rockabilly Riot   Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:53 pm

The original version of Wild One (Real Wild Child)was co written and recorded by Australian rocker Johnny O'Keefe, (though I do concede that the version on Rockabilly Riot is a cover of Jerry Lee's version.)

In 1958 the song was covered and released as a single by Jerry Ivan Allison, a member of The Crickets, using the name Ivan. Retitled "Real Wild Child," the song became a moderate hit, peaking at #68 on the Billboard Hot 100.

"Wild One" was also recorded by Jerry Lee Lewis in 1958 but was not released until 1974 on Lee's album, Rockin' and Free. His version also appears in the 1989 motion picture and soundtrack album for Great Balls of Fire.

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PostSubject: Re: Original versions of Rockabilly Riot   Wed Mar 30, 2011 1:45 pm

I spent a bit of time and money compiling these tracks back in 2005. It was a real challenge finding "Stairway to Nowhere." My collection of Sun recordings grew substantially during this time, so it was worth every dime.

Thanks for posting Johnny O'Keefe's "Real Wild Child." Jerry Lee Lewis and the Crickets were touring Australia together in 1958 when they both got the idea to cover this record. I have no idea why The Killer's version stayed in the vaults so long, as it is easily the strongest of the three. Buddy Holly is playing guitar on Ivan's version. I had the pleasure of hearing Jerry Allison and the Crickets perform this a couple of years ago - and he still sounded just like the record after all these years.

Billy "The Kid" Emerson wrote and recorded the original "Red Hot" for Sun:

It's not hard to hear why Billy Lee Riley hit it big with his version (featuring Jerry Lee Lewis on piano.)

Brian is faithful to Tommy Blake's version of "Flatfoot Sam." The Sun version sounds nothing like the original TV Slim recordings from 1957. Here is the original:

The record was leased for distribution to Chess Records, but Leonard Chess sent TV Slim to New Orleans to re-record it later that year using Cosimo Matassa's stable of studio musicians who backed artists like Little Richard and Fats Domino. I can't find this version on YouTube, but it definitely grooves a bit harder than the clip I just posted above, and sounds like a cross between Little Richard and Fats Domino. There are audio clips on amazon and other sites - it's worth a listen. I prefer it to the Sun version. But Brian's version gets major points for using the Jordanaires!

Well done to Jon for tracking down every version that Brian chose to cover, or at least every artist. "Put Your Cat Clothes On" is another tricky one. Carl Perkins recorded it a several times while with Sun, and released a version on his first album. But the version Brian covered was recorded in December 6, 1956, just days after the "Million Dollar Quartet" held court in Sun Studios. This version sat in the vault until 1964, after both Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis had left Sun Records. The YouTube version linked in Jon's blog is a different take. When you hear the correct version, it's amazing how much detail Brian and the Nashvillains duplicated on the Rockabilly Riot album. Kevin McKendree's piano, Bernie Dresel's delayed fills, and more than a few of Brian's licks match up well with the original recording.

Man, I love Rockabilly Riot! One of my favorite Setzer projects ever!

Red Hot-a-billy

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PostSubject: Re: Original versions of Rockabilly Riot   Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:02 pm


As always, thanks a million for stopping by and
enlightening us with your vast wealth of knowledge.

Blessings to you and yours,

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