|Single by Roy Orbison|
|from the album In Dreams|
|B-side||"Mean Woman Blues"|
|Released||August 1, 1963|
|Recorded||November 1961, at Monument|
|Genre||Country pop, rockabilly|
|Writer(s)||Roy Orbison, Joe Melson|
|Roy Orbison singles chronology|
A plaintive ballad, "Blue Bayou" was originally recorded by Roy Orbison at the end of 1961, but released by Monument as the double A-side track on a Monument Records single in the UK, yet was issued at the 'B'-side single in the US, peaking at #29; "Mean Woman Blues" was a US #5, released in August 1963, written by Claude Demetrius and originally recorded by Elvis Presley in 1957). In the UK both sides peaked at #3 as a double A-sided single on London Monument, HLU 9777. The song also appeared on Orbison's 1963 full-length album In Dreams.
US: Monument Records 824
- "Blue Bayou" (Roy Orbison, Joe Melson) – 2:29 - Recorded in late 1961.
- "Mean Woman Blues" (Claude Demetrius) – 2:23
|Irish Singles Chart||1|
|Australian Singles Chart||1|
|UK Singles Chart||3|
|Norwegian Singles Chart||10|
|US Billboard Hot R&B Sides||26|
|US Billboard Pop Singles||29|
References in popular culture
This song has been used in several motion pictures including:
- The Man Who Fell to Earth, Nicolas Roeg (1976) starring David Bowie
- Last Orders, Fred Schepisi (2001)
- Dreamcatcher, Lawrence Kasdan (2003)
- Man on Fire, Tony Scott (2004)
German 7" single
|Single by Linda Ronstadt|
|from the album Simple Dreams|
|B-side||Old Paint or Poor Poor Pitiful Me|
|Released||August 23, 1977|
|Writer(s)||Roy Orbison, Joe Melson|
|Linda Ronstadt singles chronology|
Linda Ronstadt took the song to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in late 1977 – where it held for four weeks - as well as #2 Country and #3 Easy Listening. It also reached #2 - for four weeks - on the Cash Box Top 100 chart. The single was RIAA certified Gold (for sales of over 1 million US copies) in January 1978. It was Ronstadt's first of three Gold singles. Don Henley of the Eagles sang backup on the recording.  "Blue Bayou" was later certified Platinum (for over 2 million copies sold in the United States). It was a worldwide smash and was also popular in a Spanish-language version called "Lago Azul".
Ronstadt later performed the song on an episode of The Muppet Show.
Because of this song, Dickson's Baseball Dictionary records that a "Linda Ronstadt" is a synonym for a fastball, a pitch that "blew by you." 
US: Asylum Records E-45431
- "Blue Bayou" (Roy Orbison, Joe Melson) – 3:57
- "Old Paint (traditional, arranged by Linda Ronstadt) – 3:05
|US Billboard Adult Contemporary||3|
|US Billboard Country Singles||2|
|US Billboard Pop Singles||3|
|New Zealand Singles Chart||3|
|UK Singles Chart||35|
Other cover versions
Ed Bruce covered the song on his 1995 album Puzzles.
Nana Mouskouri covered a German version of the song, entitled "Ich Will Heim Zu Dir, Blue Bayou", in 1978.
"Blue Bayou" has been recorded by other artists in many languages, including in the French language by France's Mireille Mathieu. Mexican singer/actress Bibi Gaytán recorded a Spanish version of this song in 1994 titled "Lago Azul", which was released as the first single from her second studio album Manzana verde.
- "Roy Orbison website". Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "irishcharts.ie search results for Blue Bayou". Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "norwegiancharts.com". Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "Allmusic - Roy Orbison - Billboard singles". Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "Blue Bayou". Songfacts.com. Retrieved 2009-12-26.
- "W. W. Norton and Company". Retrieved 2013-1-10.
- "Allmusic - Linda Ronstadt - Billboard singles". Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "everyhit.com search results". Retrieved December 6, 2008.