The Genie is out of the bottle and the large record companies can no longer stop the tide of small labels by using cover records; the kids want the originals. This fact would make 1958 one of the largest years of one-hit songs in history.
Elvis’s mother dies at 46.
The first “Stereo” Album is introduced.
Hank Ballard would write “The Twist” it would be moderately successful, but two years later it would own the market, by Ernest Evans or Chubby Checker.
Folk Music is heard from by the Kingston Trio and Tom Dooley.
Dick Clark and American Bandstand would get even more powerful by adding a Saturday Night Show sponsored by Beechnut Gum.
Elvis reports to the draft board.
A new television series, “77 Sunset Strip” started in 1958.
Swinging Shepherd Blues / February 1958/ Moe Koffman / #23 BB
Moe was a multi-talented Toronto Musician / Arranger and Writer, who left us in 2001.
Buzz, Buzz, Buzz / January 1958 / The Hollywood Flames / #11 BB
Bobby Day (Byrd) also recorded “Little Bitty Pretty One” and “Rockin Robin”.
This one-hit stands out to me. In December 1957, Danny & the Juniors reached #1 with “At The Hop“. Now in that same month Cecil Altman Boone, Pat’s younger brother recorded the same song under the name Nick Todd and it reached #21 in February 1958. The entire project was recorded at Dot Records using Billy Vaughn for everything.
On Ed Sullivan 1959 with Plaything:
Get A Job / February 1958 / The Silhouettes / #1 BB
Unfortunately none of the original members are still with us.
She’s Neat / February 1958 / Dale Wright with the Rock-Its/ #38 BB
Dale left us in 2007, he was a college student who wrote and arranged all of his material.
Oh Julie / March 1958 / The Crescendos / #5 BB
Janis Green is the girl on the record, she just happened to be in the studio that day.
7-11 / March 1958 / The Gone All Stars / #30 BB
The Gone All Stars were a studio group featuring the honking sax of Buddy Lucas. The song was Prez Prados Mambo # 5.
He’s Got the Whole World in his Hands / April 1958 / Laurie London / #1 BB
Laurie is still with us, left the music business in 90’s and currently runs a Pub in North London.
Don’t You Just Know It/ High Blood Pressure / April 1958 / Huey Smith and the Clowns / #9 BB
I love Huey Smith and he should not be a One-Hit person. He wrote “Rocking Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu Part 1” It was two sided, vocal one side and instrumental on the B side. Now this record sold over 1 million copies. He also wrote and recorded “Sea Cruise” but the record company put a younger “white” Frankie Ford on the track. I must not understand the way the record companies do their counting, because to me, Huey was anything but a One-Hit Wonder. I bought “Don’t you know Yockomo, High Blood Pressure, I loved this group.
Book of Love / April 1958 / The Monotones/ #5 BB
The Monotones disbanded in 1962.
You / May 1958 / The Aquatones / #21 BB
They still play in concerts, but the voice, Lynne Nixon left us in 2001.
Purple People Eater / June 1958 / Sheb Wooley / #1 BB
Sheb left us in 2003, but he recorded, was in movies and TV Series, including “Rawhide”.
For Your Love / June 1958 / Ed Townsend / #13 BB
Ed left us in 2003, he was honoured with a Purple Heart for Korea, but he struggled with addictions for a good part of his life.
Jennie Lee / June 1958 / Jan and Arnie / #8 BB
OK, if I remember this correctly, the song was written about the “BaZoom Girl” at a burlesque house. Arnie Ginsberg wrote the song and just before, Jan Berry, Arnie Ginsberg and Dean Torrence were about to record it, Dean was conscripted into the Army, so it was just Jan & Arnie. Of course later they would become Jan and Dean. In 1966 Jan would hit a parked truck in his corvette on Whittier Blvd and nothing would ever be the same again.
Endless Sleep / June 1958 / Jody Reynolds / #5 BB
He wrote the song in an afternoon. Jody left us in 2007.
One Summer Night/ July 1958 / The Danleers / #7 BB
They were from Brooklyn NY, and their name came from their manager Danny Webb, who wrote “One Summer Night”.
Willie and the Hand Jive / August 1958 / Johnny Otis Show / #9 BB
Earl and his 17 year old cousin were killed in a car accident in 1970
Susie Darlin’ / October 1958 / Robin Luke / #5 BB
Robin is still with us and he was a Professor and head of the Marketing Department at Missouri State University in Springfield.
Poor Boy / December 1958 / The Royaltones / #17 BB
One of my all-time favourite instrumental groups, are they One-Hit? I do not really think so, but you be the judge:
“Flamingo Express” which is my favourite only went to #82 on BB; but the flip side of “Poor Boy”, was “Wail”, another great song.
To Know Him is to Love Him / December 1958 / The Teddy Bears / #1 BB
Well, say what you want and think what you wish, but this was the start of one the greatest careers in music and in my opinion the finest producer we will ever see Phil Spector. I loved this song and here is a rare video from 1958…
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