Number 23 – 33

Here’s songs 23-33 on the 2018 Great 88:


“Twist and Shout” by The Isley Brothers(1962)

This was written by up-and-coming songwriter Bert Berns (under the pseudonym Bert Russell) along with Phil Medley, a songwriter whose credits include “A Million To One” by Jimmy Charles and “If I Didn’t Have A Dime (To Play The Jukebox)” by Gene Pitney (also written with Berns).  
The song was first recorded by the Atlantic Records vocal group The Top Notes on February 23, 1961.  This original version was produced by Phil Spector, who within the next three years became the most famous producer in the record business, but his work on this track didn’t go over well. Songwriter Bert Berns felt Spector had ruined the song, and went out to show Spector how it should be done, giving the song to the Isley Brothers.

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  First year on survey



“Wait Til’ My Bobby Gets Home” by Darlene Love (1963)

As a minister’s daughter, Love grew up listening to gospel music and was a dedicated member of her church in San Antonio, Texas. She began singing in her church choir at age ten. During choir practice she caught the attention of choir director Cora Martin. After singing for Martin she was asked to go to the Music Mart where she sang and did some broadcasts; Love’s career began there.

2017:  #76, Highest Ranking:  #34 (2016)



“Walk Don’t Run” by The Ventures (1960)

The group’s founding duo, Bob Bogle and Don Wilson, chose this instrumental track as a single after being asked to perform it in concert a half dozen times each night. It was their second single, after “Cookies And Coke” b/w “The Real McCoy.” 

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #79 (2014)



“Runaway” by Del Shannon (1961)

Shannon and his keyboard player, Max Crook, came up with this while they were playing a club in their hometown of Battle Creek, Michigan. Crook played a keyboard called a “Musitron” on the song.

2017:  #10, Highest Ranking:  #1 (2012 and 2016)



“(‘Til) I Kissed You” by Everly Brothers (1959)

Don Everly wrote this amorous number about a life-altering smooch after a dalliance he had while the Everly Brothers were on tour in Australia. “I wrote it about a girl I met on that trip,” he said in a 1998 interview. “Her name was Lillian, and she was very, very inspirational. I was married, but… you know.”

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #25 (2014)



“Don’t Be Cruel” by Elvis Presley (1956)

This was released as a single with “Hound Dog.” It is the only single in history to have both sides reach #1 in the US. Joel Whitburn, who writes the definitive books on the subject, told the Forgotten Hits newsletter: “As far as the two-sided Presley hit ‘Hound Dog” / “Don’t Be Cruel,’ I’ve always tabulated that single 45 as two #1 hits. ‘Hound Dog’ was the first title to chart and the first one to be listed as the lead #1 song. There is absolutely no doubt that the initial sales and ‘buzz’ about this record was for ‘Hound Dog.’ It was a smash #1 hit right out of the box. As airplay began to favor ‘Don’t Be Cruel,’ the two titles were flip-flopped at #1, with ‘Don’t Be Cruel’ actually showing more weeks as the #1 lead song. 

2017: not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #17 (2015)



“Dream Lover” by Bobby Darin (1959)

Neil Sedaka played piano on this track, and also the B-side of the single, which was a song called “Bullmoose.” Sedaka had a song on the charts called “The Diary,” but was not yet widely known as a solo artist.

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #22 (2013)


“Blueberry Hill” by Fats Domino (1956)

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin performed this song on December 10, 2010 at a charity event in front of an audience of international film and television celebrities. Videos of his performance quickly went viral worldwide. Putin’s spokesman said the former KGB chief learned the lyrics to the song as part of his English language studies.

2017:  #3 Highest Ranking:  #3 (2017)



“Whispering Bells” by The Dell-Vikings (1957)

Joan Baez released a version of the song featuring Paul Simon on her 1989 album Speaking of Dreams. It was produced by Simon.  He later featured the song on the re-release of his album, Graceland.

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  First year on survey


“Peggy Sue” by Buddy Holly (1957)

Holly wrote this about Peggy Sue Gerron, who was dating Holly’s drummer with The Crickets, Jerry Allison. Holly was not involved with Peggy Sue, but liked the name for the song. Allison and Peggy Sue eventually got married, but divorced 11 years later.

2017:  #45, Highest Ranking:  #15 (2012)



“Not Fade Away” by Buddy Holly and the Crickets (1957)

This was one of the first pop songs to feature the “Bo Diddley” sound, a series of beats (da, da, da, da-da da) popularized by Diddley, who used it on his first single, the egotistically named “Bo Diddley.”

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #35 (2016)


Check out all the songs that made the Great 88 here. You can also see the first round results here.

WCWP logo newJoin us  for “The Grooveyard” following “Rick’s Redneck Ranch” each Saturday night at 7 PM.  We count down the Grooveyard Top Ten songs from the date in history at 8 PM, and your requests on the Grooveyard Party Hour at 9 PM.  Hear us on 88.1 FM on Long Island, by clicking the 88.1 FM link on or via the TuneIn app.  or the 88.1 FM button on the WCWP app for Android or iPhones.  You can also follow us on Twitter.

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…Where Oldies Come Alive!


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