My friend Fred Hembeck gave me a collection of songs some years ago. The thing they have in common is that they were all very familiar, but not by the artists on the disc.
These were the original performers. So I decided to post some songs that I didn’t know were the first recorded versions, some from that album plus a few extras.
Dedicated To The One I Love – The Five Royales (1957), The Shirelles (1959). The Mamas and the Papas also recorded this.
I Can’t Stop Lovin’ You – Don Gibson (1958), Ray Charles (1962). Written by Gibson on June 7, 1957, the same day he wrote Oh, Lonesome Me, later covered by Neil Young, among others.
I’m Leavin’ It All Up To You – Don and Dewey (1959), Dale and Grace (1963). Donny and Marie also covered this.
Twist and Shout – The Top Notes (1961), The Isley Brothers (1962). Also covered by a Liverpudlian band of some note.
Someday We’ll Be Together – Johnny and Jackie (1961), Diana Ross and the Supremes (1969). The songwriters were Johnny Bristol, Jackey Beavers (the singers of the original), and Harvey Fuqua. The cover is Diana with non-Supremes background singers.
Nobody But Me – The Isley Brothers (1962), The Human Beinz (1968)
You’re No Good – Dee Dee Warwick (1963), Betty Everett (1963). Yes, DeeDee was the sister of Dionne. Linda had a big hit
Do-Wah-Diddy – The Exciters (1963), Manfred Mann (1964). Written by the great songwriting duo of Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry
Needles And Pins – Jackie DeShannon (1963), The Searchers (1964). Written by Jack Nitzsche and Sonny Bono
(They Long to Be) Close to You – Richard Chamberlain (1963), Carpenters (1970). Chamberlain was TV’s Dr. Kildare. Written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David.
Go Now – Bessie Banks (1964), Moody Blues (1964)
I’m Into Something Good – Earl-Jean (1964), Herman’s Hermits (1964). Earl-Jean was a member of the Cookies. Written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King
My Girl Sloopy – The Vibrations (1964), The McCoys (1965 as Hang On, Sloopy)
Good Lovin’ – Lemme B. Good (1965), The Olympics (1965), The Young Rascals (1966)
Bette Davis Eyes – Jackie DeShannon (1974), Kim Carnes (1981). Written by DeShannon and Donna Weiss.
I Love Rock ’N Roll – The Arrows (1975), Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (1982)