Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey!

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey"
Single by Little Richard
A-side "Good Golly, Miss Molly"
Released January 1958 (1958-01)
Format 7" 45 rpm record
Recorded New Orleans
May 9, 1956
Genre R&B, Rock and roll
Length 2:02
Label Specialty (Cat. no. 624)
Writer(s) Richard Penniman
Producer(s) Bumps Blackwell
Little Richard singles chronology
"Jenny Jenny"/ "Miss Ann"
(1957)
"Good Golly, Miss Molly"
(1958)
"Ooh! My Soul"/ "True Fine Mama"
(1958)

The song "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey", also known as "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey! (Goin' Back to Birmingham)", was written by Little Richard and recorded in May 9, 1956 at J&M Studio, New Orleans (supervised by Bumps Blackwell).

Personnel[edit]

It was released in January 1958 as B-side of Specialty single 624 Good Golly, Miss Molly and in July 1958 on Little Richard.[2]

Story[edit]

The story of creation and covering of this song is complicated and concerned with another song performed by Little Richard, "Kansas City".

In 1955 Little Richard recorded two rather different versions of "Kansas City": on September, 13 (supervised by Bumps Blackwell), and on November, 29 (with five vocalists, supervised by Art Rupe).[3] The first version, which was very close to the original song, was released much later, in November 1970, on compilation album Well Alright! The second version which had the same name, but which had been substantially re-worked by Little Richard (in particular, this version featured the new refrain starting with words "Hey, hey, hey, hey; Hey baby, hey child, hey now") was released in March 1959 on The Fabulous Little Richard and in April 1959 as single.[4] Later this particular version has been covered by The Beatles.

The song "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey", recorded six months later than the second version of "Kansas City", turned out to be very similar to a part of this recording (in particular, it had the same refrain as mentioned above). So a new song had been introduced — it included most of the changes made by Little Richard to the second version of "Kansas City" and got a new name and new writer, Richard Wayne Penniman (Little Richard himsef).

So it happened that the public perceived the song "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey" (released in 1958) as an earlier work than "Kansas City" (released in 1959) and as its predecessor (while in fact it was actually the other way around). This allowed Little Richard to claim co-authorship with respect to this version of the song. In 1964 when The Beatles released their album featuring the cover of "Kansas City" performed by Little Richard (naturally, the second version, as the first one was not yet released at that time) the attorneys representing Venice Music made a complaint, and as a result the record label was revised to read: "Medley: (a) Kansas City (Leiber/Stoller) (P)1964 Macmelodies Ltd./KPM; (b) Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey (Penniman) Venice Mus. Ltd. (P)1964." Formally, however, this song could hardly be called a medley, as by definition a medley is a piece composed from parts of existing pieces. Moreover, when Little Richard was recording "Kansas City", the song "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey" did not yet exist.

As "Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey" is very similar to the second Little Richard's version of "Kansas City", it could hardly to define, what exactly of two songs is covered sometimes.

Covers[edit]

The song was claimed to be covered by The Beatles in the medley with "Kansas City" on Beatles for Sale and the US album Beatles VI (in fact that was a cover of Little Richard's version of "Kansas City"). It was later covered by The Libertines in a one-off Radio 1 Live set in September 2003. A cover by Ten Years After on their 1974 album Positive Vibrations was titled "Going Back To Birmingham". The Jim Jones Revue also cover the song on their first record and as a staple of their live shows. Bob Seger also recorded a version of the song in the same session that produced his cover of Fats Domino's "Blue Monday" for the 1989 Road House soundtrack album. Seger's take on the song remained unreleased until 2011, when it was released as the lead single on the retrospective album Ultimate Hits: Rock and Roll Never Forgets.[5][6] Seger stated that the track hit number one on classic rock radio, less than two months after its release.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Little Richard – The Specialty Sessions – 8 Album Set (booklet). London: Ace Records Ltd. 1989. p. 29. ABOXLP 1 (set), ABOXBK1 (booklet). 
  2. ^ White, Charles (1994). The Life and Times of Little Richard: The Quasar of Rock. Da Capo Press. p. 259. ISBN 0-306-80552-9. 
  3. ^ Little Richard – The Specialty Sessions – 8 Album Set (booklet). London: Ace Records Ltd. 1989. p. 29. ABOXLP 1 (set), ABOXBK1 (booklet). 
  4. ^ White, Charles (1994). The Life and Times of Little Richard: The Quasar of Rock. Da Capo Press. p. 259. ISBN 0-306-80552-9. 
  5. ^ "Recorded but Unreleased". The Seger File. Retrieved 2011-10-26. 
  6. ^ "Ultimate Hits". BobSeger.com. Retrieved 2011-10-26. 
  7. ^ Video on YouTube