Hey! Bo Diddley

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"Hey! Bo Diddley"
Single by Bo Diddley
from the album Bo Diddley
B-side "Mona"
Released April 1957 (1957-04)[1]
Format 7" 45 RPM, 10" 78 RPM
Recorded February 8, 1957 in Chicago, Illinois[2]
Genre Rhythm and blues
Length 2:17
Label Checker 860
Writer(s) Ellas McDaniel
Producer(s) Leonard Chess, Phil Chess, Bo Diddley[2]
Bo Diddley singles chronology
"Cops & Robbers"
(July 1957)
"Hey! Bo Diddley"
(October 1957)
"Say, Boss Man"
(February 1958)

"Hey! Bo Diddley" is Bo Diddley's eighth Checker Records single (not to be confused with the song "Bo Diddley" released as a single in April 1955 by Checker Records).[1] The single's b-side was "Mona" (sometimes known as "I Need You Baby").


"Hey! Bo Diddley" was recorded in Chicago, Illinois on February 8, 1957 – the same day as "Mona". The song was produced by Diddley with Leonard and Phil Chess, and backing Diddley (vocals, guitar) were Jerome Green (maracas), and either Frank Kirkland or Clifton James (drums). The backing vocals on the song were Peggy Jones and the Flamingos.[2]


Like many of Bo Diddley's songs (e.g. "Bo Diddley", "Gunslinger, and "Pretty Thing") "Hey! Bo Diddley" features a Bo Diddley beat.[3]

Live versions[edit]

The song was recorded either July 5 or 6 at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and released on the 1964 live album, Bo Diddley's Beach Party with the Dutchess. The song was performed live with Ronnie Wood on Live at the Ritz in 1988.

Cover versions[edit]

"Hey! Bo Diddley" was covered by Bill Black, John P. Hammond, Kenny Rogers, Ronnie Hawkins, the Grateful Dead on Steppin' Out with the Grateful Dead: England '72, and The Temptations.

"Mona (I Need You Baby)"[edit]

The song "Mona (I Need You Baby)" was covered by many artists such as The Rolling Stones for their debut album in 1964, the Troggs on 1967's Trogglodynamite and by Quicksilver Messenger Service released on their second album Happy Trails in 1969. "Mona" was also recorded by soap opera star Craig McLachlan (as Craig McLachlan & Check 1-2), reaching #2 in the United Kingdom[4] and #3 in Australia in 1990. It was also recorded by Buddy Holly in 1957, though it was never released. It was also performed twice by the Grateful Dead, first with Bo Diddley on March 25, 1972 (released on Dick's Picks Volume 30) and then again on October 27, 1991 with guests Gary Duncan and Carlos Santana. Frank Marino & Mahogany Rush covered "Mona" on their 1980 album What's Next.

According to his obituary in the New York Times, “Mona” was a song of praise he wrote for a 45-year-old exotic dancer who worked at the Flame Show Bar in Detroit.[5]

Album releases[edit]

In 1962 Chess Records released a 12" L.P. titled Hey! Bo Diddley.[6] In November 1963 Pye International Records released a 7" EP titled Hey! Bo Diddley.[7] In 1996 Beat Goes On released a compilation CD called Hey! Bo Diddley/Bo Diddley with "Hey! Bo Diddley" as the first track.[8] The song was also released on several greatest hits albums including 16 All-Time Greatest Hits and His Best".


  1. ^ a b "Review Spotlight on R&B Records". Billboard: 58. April 6, 1957. Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c His Best (CD liner). Bo Diddley. United States: Chess Records/MCA Records. 1997. CHD-9373 http://aln3.albumlinernotes.com/Bo_Diddley_His_Best.html |url= missing title (help). 
  3. ^ Hey! Bo Diddley at AllMusic
  4. ^ "Craig McLachlan And Check 1-2 - Mona". Chart Stats. Retrieved 2012-01-06. 
  5. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/03/arts/music/03diddley.html?pagewanted=all
  6. ^ Hey! Bo Diddley at AllMusic
  7. ^ Strong, Charles (2002) [Originally published in 1994]. The Great Rock Discography (Sixth ed.). United Kingdom: Canongate Books. p. 371. ISBN 1-84195-312-1. 
  8. ^ Hey! Bo Diddley at AllMusic