Number 34 – 44

Here’s songs 34-44 on the 2017 Great 88:


“Jim Dandy” by LaVern Baker (1957)

The song was covered by southern rock band Black Oak Arkansas. It hit #25 on the pop chart and featured Jim Mangrum (who had already been using “Jim Dandy” as a stage name before they covered the song) and female vocalist Ruby Starr trading off vocals. It was the first single from their 1973 album High on the Hog, Black Oak’s most commercially successful album.

2017: #33, Highest Ranking:  #3 (2017)



“La Bamba” by Ritchie Valens (1958)

“La Bamba” is a traditional Mexican Folk song that became a hit for the young rocker Ritchie Valens’ after he died in a plane crash on February 3, 1959 along with Buddy Holly and The Big Bopper. The song is very popular with Mariachi bands and is often played at weddings. The lyrics are in Spanish: “Para bailar la Bamba se necessita una poca de gracia” means “To dance La Bamba you need to have a little grace.”

2017:  #82, Highest Ranking:  #20 (2012)



“He’s Sure the Boy I Love” by The Crystals (1963)

While The Crystals were on tour, Darlene Love of the Blossoms was asked by Phil Spector to record “He’s Sure the Boy I Love”. After being discredited from “He’s A Rebel”, Love urged Spector to give her a royalty contract with a rate of three cents per record.[3] The track was recorded at Gold Star Studios in Los Angeles in November 1962. The Wrecking Crew played a Jack Nitzsche arrangement, Larry Levine was the engineer.

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



“New Orleans” by Gary US Bonds (1960)

 Producer Frank  Guida chose Anderson’s stage name, U.S. Bonds, in hopes that it would be confused with a public service announcement advertising the sale of government bonds and thereby garner more radio airplay.  This was his first hit song.

2017:  #18, Highest Ranking:  #18 (2017)



“Rave On” by Buddy Holly (1958)

This was written by Sonny West, Bill Tilghman and Norman Petty and recorded in January 1958 at Petty’s New Mexico studio where Holly laid down most of his hits. It was first recorded by West for Atlantic Records, which released his version in February 1958.  Buddy Holly recorded the song later the same year, and his version became a hit,

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #13 (2014)



“Sh-Boom” by The Chords (1954)

Later in 1954, a white group called the Crew-Cuts recorded a more mainstream version of this song, taking it to #1 on the Billboard charts. The Crew-Cuts were an example of what critics called “Sham-Rock,” as they would release sanitized versions of songs created by black artists. 

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



“When” by The Kalin Twins (1958)

The Kalin Twins were the first act with twins to make the Top 10 in the US or UK. The next group to do it was The Bee Gees, whose first American Top 10 was “I’ve Gotta Get A Message To You” in 1968. In the UK, it was the #1 “Massachusetts” in 1967.

2017:  #25, Highest Ranking:  #25 (2017)


“Great Balls of Fire” by Jerry Lee Lewis (1957)

Like Lewis’ previous hit, “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” this contained a lot of sexual innuendo, which was shocking for a southern musician in 1957. Lewis grew up in a religious household and was conflicted over whether or not he should record this. He and Sun Records owner Sam Phillips argued as Phillips tried to convince him to sing it.

2017:  #6, Highest Ranking:  #6 (2017)



“Maybellene” by Chuck Berry (1955)

There are a few different stories floating around about how the song got its name. Berry has said that Maybellene was the name of a cow in child’s nursery rhyme, but Johnnie Johnson recalled that there was a box of Maybellene mascara in the office, which gave Leonard Chess the idea for the title.

2017:  not on survey, Highest Ranking:  #85 (2016)


“Be Bop a Lula” by Gene Vincent and the Blue Caps (1956)

The phrase “Be-Bop-A-Lula” is similar to “Be-Baba-Leba”, the title of a No. 3 R&B chart hit for Helen Humes in 1945, which became a bigger hit when recorded by Lionel Hampton as “Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop.” This phrase, or something very similar, was widely used in jazz circles in the 1940s, giving its name to the bebop style, and possibly being ultimately derived from the shout of “Arriba! Arriba!” used by Latin American bandleaders to encourage band members.

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



“Everyday” by Buddy Holly (1957)

Songwriter credits are given to Charles Hardin and Norman Petty. Charles Hardin is actually Buddy Holly: his real name was Charles Hardin Holley.

2017:  noton survey, Highest Ranking:  #26 (2015)


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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