Gene Summers

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For the American modernist architect, see Gene Summers (architect).
Gene Summers
Born January 3, 1939 (1939-01-03) (age 75)
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Genres Rock and roll, Rockabilly
Occupations Singer, songwriter, publisher, record producer
Instruments Vocals, guitar
Years active 1958-present
Labels Mercury Records
Jan/Jane Records
Jamie Records
Tear Drop Records
Capri Records
Rhino/Atlantic Records
Warner Music Group artists
Jubilee Records
Apex Records (Canada)
W&G Records/Australia
Alta Records
Charay Records,
Collectables Records
EMI/Big Beat
Norton Records
Charly Records
Overtone Records, USA
K-Tel
Various Indie Labels
Associated acts The Rebels, The Tom Toms, Bill Smith Combo
Website Gene Summers
Rockabilly Hall
of Fame Page

Gene Summers (born January 3, 1939 in Dallas, Texas) is an American rock/rockabilly singer and entertainer. Some of his classic recordings include "School of Rock 'n Roll", "Straight Skirt", "Nervous", "Gotta Lotta That", "Twixteen", "Alabama Shake" and his biggest-selling single "Big Blue Diamonds". Summers was inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame in 1997 and The Southern Legends Entertainment & Performing Arts Hall of Fame in 2005. He still performs worldwide and celebrated his 50th anniversary as a recording artist in 2008 with the release of Reminisce Cafe.

Summers graduated from Duncanville High School in 1957 and attended Arlington State College, now known as the University of Texas at Arlington. That same year, he formed the rockabilly band The Rebels and performed on Joe Bill's Country Picnic on KRLD-TV where they were spotted by songwriter Jed Tarver. This led to the band being signed by newly found Jan Records. Their first record was released on February 1, 1958, under the name of Gene Summers & His Rebels.[1][2][3]

Partial discography[edit]

Television, Films and DVDs[edit]

(incomplete)

  • Hi-School High Lites Show - Dallas, TX 1956
  • The Neal Jones Show - Dallas, TX 1956
  • Joe Bill's Country Picnic - Dallas, TX 1957-'58
  • Jerry Haynes' "Top Ten Dance Party" - Dallas, TX 1958
  • The Larry Kane Show - Houston, TX 1958
  • The Ted Steele Bandstand Show - New York City-1958
  • The Milt Grant Show- Washington, DC 1958
  • The Buddy Deane Show - Baltimore, MD 1958
  • The Larry Kane Show - Houston, TX 1964
  • Hi-Ho Shebang Show - Ft. Worth, TX 1965-'66
  • Le Grand Échiquier - Paris, France 1981
  • World Class Championship Wrestling - Dallas, TX 1981 (see Ring announcers)
  • Warner-Amex Special Gene Summers 'Live' At Zebo's - 1983
  • Backlot (movie-short) - 1986
  • No Safe Haven (movie) - 1989
  • Rob's Chop Shop (TV Pilot) - 1996
  • Billy Martin (movie) - 2000
  • Big Beat Generation Vol. 1 (DVD) - 2009 (Big Beat Records, France)
  • Big Beat Story Vol. 2 (DVD) - 2011 (Big Beat Records, France)

Cover versions of Gene Summers songs[edit]

Many songs popularized by Gene Summers have been recorded by other artists. Cover versions include:

  • Alabama Shake - by Crazy Cavan and the Rhythm Rockers (1976), The Flying Saucers (1976), C.S.A (1978), Teddy and The Tigers (1979), The Rockabilly Rebs (1979), Rockin' Lord Lee & The Outlaws (1988), Tony Vincent (1993), Badland Slingers (1999), The Shaking Silouets (1999), The TTs (2002), Rawhide (2004), King Drapes (2003), Hurricains (2007) ("live" video), The Muskrats (2009), ("live" video), Deke Dickerson (2010) ("live" video),
  • Almost 12 O'Clock - by Rock-Ola (1981),
  • Big Blue Diamonds - by Jacky Ward (1971), Ernest Tubb (1972), Mel Street (1972), Jerry Lee Lewis (1973), Bobby Crown (1980), Dan Walser (1996), Dennis Gilley (2000), Lembo Allen (2004), Rance Norton (2008), Back In Time Band (2009) ("live" video),
  • The Clown - by J. Frank Wilson (1969),
  • Crazy Cat Corner - by Bill Peck (1998) (re-written vocal adaptation titled "The Night Elvis Missed The Boat"),
  • Fancy Dan - by Darrel Higham (1998), The Rocking Boys (2003), Eddie & The Flatheads (2003), Houserockers (2005), Roughcuts (????). John Lewis Trio (2010) ("live" video),
  • Gotta Lotta That - by Johnny Devlin (1958), Andy Lee & Tennessee Rain (2000), Rudy LaCrioux and the All-Stars (2001), Alan Leatherwood (2013)
  • I'll Never Be Lonely - by Eddie Clendening (2006)
  • My Picture - by The Sprites (Original Drifters) (1962)
  • Nervous - by Johnny Devlin (1959), Robert Gordon with Link Wray (1979), Lonestars (1981), Rock-Ola & The Freewheelers (2000), T-Bird Gang (2009). NOTE: Gene Vincent attempted twice to record a demo of "Nervous" in home recordings in Dallas in 1957 which were released in 1998 on Dragon Street Records CD "The Lost Dallas Sessions"
  • Reminisce Cafe - by Pete Moss (2004) (Taped during a "live" broadcast on The Pete Moss Show on KDWN-AM Radio, Las Vegas, Nevada)
  • Rockaboogie Shake - by Lennerockers (2002)
  • School Of Rock 'n Roll - by Savage Kalman and The Explosion Rockets (1979), The Polecats (1980), Red Hot Max And The Cats (1989), The Rhythm Rockets (1989), Johnny Reno (1990), The Lennerockers (1991), The Alphabets (1991), Mess Of Booze (1993), The Vees (1995), The Blue Moon Rockers (1996), The Cornell Hurd Band (2002), Thierry LeCoz (2003), Rockin' Ryan and The Real Goners (2003), Lucky Strike Band (2003), Los Aceleradores (2004) ("live" video), Alan Leatherwood (2004), The Starlight Wranglers (2004), The Greyhounds (2004), Black Knights (2004), Rory Justice (2004), Big Sandy & his Fly-Rite Boys (2005) ("live" video), Mike Mok and The Em-Tones (2007) ("live" video), Bob Glazebrook & Houserockers (2009) ("live" video), Dixie Stompers (2009) ("live" video), The Muskrats (2009) ("live" video), Black Knights (2010), The Jets & Lights Out (2010) ("live" video), The Bop A Tones (2010) ("live" video),
    • Gene Vincent - UNISSUED private recording, (late 1960s). According to a 1998 Now Dig This! magazine review of Derek Henderson's book "Gene Vincent A Discography", there's a complete A-Z listing of the 217 song titles that he's (Vincent) known to have recorded-everything from the Capitol biggies such as "Say Mama", Rocky Road Blues" and "Wildcat" to lesser known items such as private recordings of "Stand By Me", "Chain Gang" and "School Of Rock 'n Roll".
  • She Bops A Lot - by The Lightcrust Doughboys (2000)
  • Straight Skirt - by The Diamonds (1958), Johnny Devlin (1958), Ronnie Dawson (1958), The Sureshots (2005)
  • Turnip Greens - by Darrel Higham & The Enforcers (1992), Eddie Clendening (2012)
  • Twixteen - by Teddy and The Tigers (1979), Runnin' Wild (1997), Jimmy Velvit (2000) (The Velvit version is a re-written vocal adaptation titled "Waiting For Elvis")
  • You Said You Loved Me - by Sid and Billy King (1988)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gene Summers discography from Rockin' Country Style USA
  2. ^ Gene Summers discography from Rocky Productions France
  3. ^ Gene Summers discography from Wangdangdula Finland

Bibliography[edit]

  • Bob Dylan Plays "School of Rock 'n Roll"
  • "100 Greatest Rock 'n Roll Records"
  • ARSA Radio Surveys Archive 11/9/63
  • "Texas Music" by Rick Koster
  • Dallas Sportatorium (World Class Championship Wrestling#Ring announcers)
  • Catch That Rockabilly Fever by Sheree Homer (published by McFarland & Company, Inc) USA 2009 ISBN 978-0-7864-3841-9
  • The Golden Age of American Rock 'n Roll: Reelin' & Rockin' : 1956-1959 by Lee Cotten (Published by Popular Culture Ink) USA 1995 ISBN 978-1-56075-039-0
  • Feature article 'Gene Summers Picked For Pakefield' in issue 58 of UK Rock Magazine, February 2009 UK
  • Popular Music by Michael H. Gray (published by Bowker Publishing) USA 1983 ISBN 0-8352-1683-7
  • The Handbook of Texas Music by Roy R. Barkley and Cathy Brigham (published by Texas State Historical Association) USA 2003 page 259
  • The Mercury Labels: A Discography: The 1964-1969 Era by Michael Ruppli and Ed Novitsky USA 1993 page 371
  • A Dream Deferred By Matt Weitz, Dallas Observer, July 31-Aug. 6, 1997 Volume 752, pages 73–79
  • Gene Summers Fan Club Bulletin, USA 1985
  • Rockabilly: A Forty-Year Journey by Billy Poore (published by Hal Leonard) USA 1998
  • The Journal of Country Music, Volumes 20-21 by Ed. Paul Kingsbury (published by Country Music Foundation Press) USA 1998
  • Legends Of Our Time (published by Escape Today Publishing USA 2005)
  • Texas Music by Rick Koster (published by St. Martin’s Press USA 2000)
  • The Sound of The City: The Rise Of Rock And Roll by Charlie Gillett (published by Da Capo Press USA 1996)
  • Race With The Devil by Susan Van Hecke (published by St. Martin’s Press USA 2000)
  • Go Cat Go by Craig Morrison (published by University Of Illinois Press USA 1998)
  • Sun Records: The Brief History of The Legendary Record Label by Colin Escott and Martin Hawkins (published by Quick Fox Books UK 1975/1980)
  • Texas Rhythm Texas Rhyme by Larry Willoughby (published by Texas Monthly Press USA 1984)
  • Who’s Who In The South And Southwest (published by Marquis Who’s Who In America 1984-1985 Edition) USA)
  • Blood Will Tell: The Murder Trials Of T. Cullen Davis by Gary Cartwright (published by Pocket Books USA 1978/1980)
  • The International Who's Who in Popular Music 2002 by Andy Gregory (Published by Routledge USA 2002)
  • The Handbook Of Texas Music by Texas State Historical Association (published by The University Of Texas at Austin) USA) 2003
  • Cover Versions Of The Songs Made Famous By Gene Summers School Of Rock 'n Roll USA 2007
  • Texas Music Industry Directory (published by The Texas Music Office) Office of the Governor, Austin, Texas USA 2007
  • Article and sessionography in issue No. 15 of New Kommotion Magazine 1977 UK
  • Feature article with photo spread in issue 53 of Bill Griggs' Rockin' 50s Magazine, 2002 USA
  • Feature article with photo spread in issue 54 of Bill Griggs' Rockin' 50s Magazine, 2002 USA
  • Full Cover photo and article in issue 28 of UK Rock Magazine, 2006 UK

External links[edit]