Proud Mary

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This article is about the song by Creedence Clearwater Revival. For the band, see Proud Mary (band).
"Proud Mary"
Single by Creedence Clearwater Revival
from the album Bayou Country
B-side "Born on the Bayou"
Released January 1969 (1969-01)[1][2]
Format 7" 45 RPM
Recorded 1968 at RCA Studios in Hollywood, California[3]
Genre Roots rock, swamp rock
Length 3:07
Label Fantasy
Writer(s) John Fogerty
Producer(s) John Fogerty[1]
Certification Platinum (RIAA)[4]
Creedence Clearwater Revival singles chronology
"I Put a Spell on You"
(June 1968)
"Proud Mary"
(January 1969)
"Bad Moon Rising"
(April 1969)

"Proud Mary" is a rock song written by American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist John Fogerty, and recorded by his band Creedence Clearwater Revival. The song was released by Fantasy Records as a single from the band's second studio album, Bayou Country, which was released by the same record company in January 1969. The single is generally considered to have been released in early January 1969 [1][2] although at least one source[3] states that it came out just before Christmas 1968. The song became a hit in the United States, peaking at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in March 1969, the first of five non-consecutive singles to peak at #2 for the group.[5]

Background and recording[edit]

In a 1969 interview, Fogerty said that he wrote it in the two days after he was discharged from the National Guard.[6] In the liner notes for the 2008 expanded reissue of Bayou Country, Joel Selvin explained that the songs for the album started when John Fogerty was in the National Guard, that the riffs for "Proud Mary," "Born on the Bayou," and "Keep on Chooglin'" were conceived by Fogerty at a concert in the Avalon Ballroom, and "Proud Mary" was arranged from parts of different songs, one of which was about a "washerwoman named Mary."[3] The line "Left a good job in the city" was written following Fogerty's discharge from the National Guard, and the line "rollin' on the river" was from a movie by Will Rogers.[7]

In the Macintosh program "Garage Band," Mr Fogerty explained that he liked Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, and wanted to open a song with a similar intro, informing the way "Proud Mary" opens with the repeated C chord to A chord. The basic track for "Proud Mary," as with the other songs on the album, was recorded by John Fogerty (lead guitar), Tom Fogerty (rhythm guitar), Stu Cook (bass), and Doug Clifford (drums) at RCA Studios in Hollywood, California, with John overdubbing instruments and all the vocals later.[3]

Charts[edit]

Chart (1969) Peak
position
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[8] 1
Canada (RPM)[9] 2
Norway (VG-lista)[10] 6
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[11] 8
Germany (Media Control Charts)[12] 4
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[13] 8
US Billboard Hot 100[5] 2

Solomon Burke version[edit]

"Proud Mary"
Single by Solomon Burke
from the album Proud Mary
Released 1969
Recorded 1969
Genre Country soul
Length 3:26
Label Bell Records
783
Writer(s) John Fogerty

In 1969 Burke had a small hit with his cover of the song, which was his second release for Bell and was co-produced by singer Tamiko Jones,[14] who was being rehabilitated after a bout of polio,[15] and was at the time Burke's fiance and manager. Burke recalls: “We went to Muscle Shoals and recorded Proud Mary, which they didn’t like at all. They thought it was stupid to record a song Proud Mary, which was already on the charts. I was explaining to them that it was a very big record, but it’s a very white record, a pop record. We will redo the record, open up the doors for it to get on the r&b charts and make the black stations to play the record... It was a Solomon Burke record made in Muscle Shoals. We proved that we can make a hit record without Jerry Wexler eating sandwiches with us. This record was a hit without anybody’s help. Proud Mary was only promoted by Tamiko Jones and myself.” According to Mark Denning, "While that may have seemed like a bald-faced bid for pop radio play, in Burke's hands the song became a bracing tale of life in the Deep South as African-Americans searched for liberation aboard the ship that carried them as slaves and put them to undignified labor serving wealthy whites."[16] John Fogerty, the song's composer, was impressed by Burke's version of his song: "Two thousand miles away this man had crawled right up inside my head to learn what Proud Mary was all about. Sure it's great when someone sings your song, but when he understands it, you listen like it was the first time." "Reworked as a celebration of black consciousness, his potent mix of gospel and country – the kind that defined his earlier sides for Atlantic – and driven by a Southern funk-like strut, .... it returned Burke to the US R&B Top 20",[17] with the single reaching #15 on the R&B charts and #45 on the pop charts. According to Burke in a 2002 interview: "I was in Vegas for sixteen weeks at the Sands Hotel. I missed this record being a hit, because we weren’t there to promote the record, we had no backing. The greatest thing I ever did was tell Ike Turner, “Hey man, you should get on this record… I think you and Tina could tear this thing up.”[18] On 24 May 1969 Burke sang his version of "Proud Mary" on American Bandstand.[19][20][21]

Tina Turner versions[edit]

"Proud Mary"
Single by Ike & Tina Turner
from the album Workin' Together
Released January 30, 1971
Format 45 single
Recorded 1970, Los Angeles, California
Genre Funk rock
Length 5:00
3:15 (7" version)
Label Liberty Records
Writer(s) John Fogerty
Producer(s) Ike Turner
Ike & Tina Turner singles chronology
"Workin' Together"
(1970)
"Proud Mary"
(1971)
"Ooh Poo Pah Doo"
(1971)
"Proud Mary"
Single by Tina Turner
from the album
What's Love Got to Do With It
B-side "Disco Inferno"
Released November 19, 1993
Format Promotional recording
Recorded 1993
Genre Rock, soul
Length 5:27
Label Parlophone
Writer(s) John Fogerty
Producer(s) Chris Lord-Alge, Tina Turner, Roger Davies
Tina Turner singles chronology
"Why Must We Wait Until Tonight"
(1993)
"Proud Mary"
(1993)
"GoldenEye"
(1995)

Tina Turner first covered "Proud Mary" in 1970 with her husband at the time, Ike Turner. The Ike & Tina Turner version was released as a single from their Workin' Together album and the song differed greatly from the structure of the original, but is also well known and has become one of Tina's most recognizable signature songs. The Turners' version was substantially rearranged by Soko Richardson[22][23] and Ike Turner. The song started off with a slow, sultry tone in which Tina introduced the song and warned them that they were gonna start it off "nice and easy" as "we never do nothing nice and easy" but said they would finish it "nice and rough". After the lyrics are first sung softly by the Turners, the song is then turned into a funk rock vamp with Turner and assorted background singers delivering soulful vocals. It reached #4 on the pop charts on March 27, 1971, two years to the week after Creedence Clearwater Revival's version was at its peak, and won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Group in 1972.

In the Tina Turner biopic, What's Love Got to Do with It, the song is performed in a timeline of events in Ike and Tina's career in which the couple are transformed from an opening act to The Rolling Stones to a major headlining act by the mid-1970s. However, the film took significant liberties with that timeline; for instance, the film has the group performing the song in 1968 when they reportedly opened for The Stones in the UK, but the Turners didn't open for them until 1969 and "Proud Mary" had not yet been released by Creedence Clearwater Revival.

Following the original version's release and its success, Ike and Tina included the song in their live act and first performed a version of the song on The Ed Sullivan Show. It was also performed in 1971 (the year of the Turners' version's release) and 1974.

In 1988, a live solo version was included on the album Tina Live in Europe. Tina Turner later re-recorded the song in the studio for the biopic's 1993 soundtrack album of the same name. This version was released as a promotional single issued to radio stations and DJs. Tina's solo version was later included on her 2004 greatest hits album All the Best. After a contestant's performance of the song on The X Factor in 2010, this version entered the UK Singles Chart at #62 and fell to #121 the next week, it also entered the Scottish Singles Chart at #40.

Another live version was released in 2009 on the Tina Live album. It was recorded on March 21, 2009 in Arnhem, Netherlands as part of Turner's 50th Anniversary Tour. The song has now become a staple in all of Tina's live shows, including live duet versions with Beyoncé and Cher.

Chart performance[edit]

Ike & Tina Turner version

Chart (1971) Peak
position
Canadian RPM 100 Singles[24] 11
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[25] 4
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B Songs[25] 5

Tina Turner version

Chart (2010) Peak
position
Scottish Singles Chart 40
UK Singles Chart 62

Accolades[edit]

"Proud Mary" placed at #155 on Rolling Stone's 2004 list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[26] Both CCR and Ike & Tina Turner's versions of the song received Grammy Hall of Fame Awards, in 1998 and 2003, respectively.[27]

Other versions[edit]

"Proud Mary" has, over the years, been covered by a number of artists, including an early recording by Solomon Burke, and one by Ed Ames on his 1969 Windmills of Your Mind album. Anthony Armstrong Jones' 1969 version reached number 22 on the U.S. country charts. Also in 1969, version recorded by the Checkmates, Ltd. and produced by Phil Spector reached #30 on the U.K. Singles Chart.

When Bruce Springsteen inducted Creedence Clearwater Revival into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, he said:

In addition to playing "Proud Mary" live with his early band, Child, Springsteen performed the song twice with the E Street Band during The River Tour in 1981, and several times from 1982 to 1987 at small clubs, including The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, New Jersey.[28]

Elvis Presley also often performed the song in his Las Vegas shows and on tour in the early 1970s. Versions can be found on the albums On Stage (1970), Elvis: As Recorded at Madison Square Garden (1972) and An Afternoon in the Garden (1972).

Neil Sedaka performed the song during a concert Sydney, Australia. It was released on the RCA International album Neil Sedaka On Stage.

George Jones and Johnny Paycheck covered the song on their 1980 album Double Trouble. In 1996, "Proud Mary" was covered by Status Quo on their album Don't Stop and Polish thrash metal band Acid Drinkers recorded it on their 1998 album High Proof Cosmic Milk. In 2010, Marco Mengoni performed the song during his Italian 'Re Matto Tour'.

The Leningrad Cowboys sang "Proud Mary" a cappella at the 1992 Provinssirock festival; this performance was released on the album Live in Prowinzz.

Lisa Simpson performs the tune in the 1992 episode of The Simpsons, "Lisa the Beauty Queen."

In 2004, Australian Idol season 2 finalist Ricki-Lee Coulter performed "Proud Mary" on the Final 10 60s Night. She received fantastic comments from the judges for this performance and was voted safe on the following verdict show.[citation needed] Ricki-Lee also covered this song on Australian Idol Season 2: The Final 10 Cast Album. The song was also covered three times American Idol. It was covered in 2003 by Trenyce, in 2008 by Syesha Mercado, and in 2012 by Jessica Sanchez. All three were declared safe the next day. In 2009 the song was sung by Rachel Adedeji and Misha B on The X Factor (UK).[citation needed]

The song was covered in the "Wheels" episode of the first season of the television show Glee by Jenna Ushkowitz, Amber Riley and Kevin McHale. The show used Turner's interpretation of the lyrics.

Leonard Nimoy covered the song on his album The New World of Leonard Nimoy; the recording also appeared on his album titled Highly Illogical.

The song was performed by The Chipettes in the Alvin and the Chipmunks episode "Goin' Down To Dixie." An edited version of the song is sung by the slugs at the end of the movie Flushed Away.

Mi Banda El Mexicano recorded a Spanish-language version called "Mary La Orgullosa" for their 1993 album El baile del caballito, as did Banda Pachuco for their 1994 debut album Pachuco Bailarin.

Cambodian rock artist Ros Serey Sothea's song "Cry Loving Me" based its musical arrangement on the tune.

Swiss hard-rock band China recorded a rendition on their 1991 live album titled "Live".

The 2011 drama film Bringing Up Bobby includes a version of "Proud Mary" (based on Ike & Tina Turner's rendition) sung by lead actress Milla Jovovich in her native language, Ukrainian.[29] The recording plays in the background at the beginning of the film.[30]

Other versions were made by Santigold, David Bowie, Kenny Rogers, Black Lace, Buck Owens and many more.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Chronicle: The 20 Greatest Hits (CD booklet). Creedence Clearwater Revival. U.S.A.: Fantasy Records. 1991. FCD-CCR2-2. 
  2. ^ a b Bordowitz, Hank. Bad moon rising: the unauthorized history of Creedence Clearwater Revival. Schirmer Books, 1998, p. 58
  3. ^ a b c d Selvin, Joel (2008). Bayou Country [Expanded Reissue] (CD booklet). Creedence Clearwater Revival. U.S.A.: Concord Music Group. FAN-30877-02 http://www.concordmusicgroup.com/assets/documents01/Artists/Creedence-Clearwater-Revival/FAN-30877-02/Bayou-Country-40th-Anniversary-Liner-Notes.pdf |url= missing title (help). 
  4. ^ "RIAA". Riaa.com. Retrieved 2014-09-19. "Type "Proud Mary" under Title" 
  5. ^ a b "Creedence Clearwater Revival - Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 21, 2010. 
  6. ^ John Fogerty interviewed on the Pop Chronicles (1970)
  7. ^ Michael Goldberg (1993). "Fortunate Son: John Fogerty - The 1993 Rolling Stone Interview". In Jann S. Wenner. Rolling Stone (United States: Jann S. Wenner). Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Creedence Clearwater Revival – Proud Mary – Austriancharts.at" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  9. ^ "RPM - Item Display: Top Singles - Volume 11, No. 3, March 17, 1969" (.Php). Library and Archives Canada. March 31, 2004. 
  10. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Creedence Clearwater Revival – Proud Mary". VG-lista.
  11. ^ "Top40: Creedence Clearwater Revival - Proud Mary". Dutch Top 40. November 10, 2004. 
  12. ^ "Die ganze Musik im Internet: Charts, News, Neuerscheinungen, Tickets, Genres, Genresuche, Genrelexikon, Künstler-Suche, Musik-Suche, Track-Suche, Ticket-Suche – musicline.de" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  13. ^ "Archive Chart" UK Singles Chart.
  14. ^ John S. Wilson, "CAREER RESUMED BY TAMIKO JONES; Recent Polio Victim Presents Songs at Rainbow Grill", The New York Times (January 14, 1971):43; "Solomon Burke – Proud Mary"; "Tamiko Jones: The Collection (1963–1986)" (18 November 2009); "Original Soul Man Cared for Spiritual and Temporal Needs Right to the Grave", The Age (October 13, 2010). For more regarding Tamiko Jones, see "Tamiko Jones"
  15. ^ Cordell S. Thompson, "New York Beat", Jet (8 October 1970):63.
  16. ^ The Soul Clan Album & Song Chart History. Billboard.com (1968-07-27). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  17. ^ Mojo, Issues 158–161 (EMAP Performance Ltd., 2007).
  18. ^ Solomon Burke, in James Porter, "Songs of Solomon: Solomon Burke Interview", Roctober 33 (2002)
  19. ^ "Saturday on Eight", Lewiston Evening Journal (May 23, 1969):22
  20. ^ American Bandstand: The Guess Who / Solomon Burke Episode Summary on. Tv.com. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  21. ^ Watch American Bandstand Season 12 Episode 39|The Guess Who / Solomon Burke. SideReel. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  22. ^ Soko Richardson press release from pressnetwork.com January 30, 2004
  23. ^ Noted Soul Drummer Soko Richardson Dies Paiste Cymbals, February 2004
  24. ^ "RPM - Item Display: Top Singles - Volume 15, No. 8, April 10, 1971" (.Php). Library and Archives Canada. March 31, 2004. 
  25. ^ a b "Ike & Tina Turner - Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 21, 2010. 
  26. ^ "The RS 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". 2004-12-09. Archived from the original on 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  27. ^ "Grammy Hall of Fame". Grammy Awards. United States: National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Retrieved January 10, 2011. 
  28. ^ Barker, Derek (2009). Liner notes to Bruce Springsteen's Jukebox: The Songs that Inspired the Man [CD]. Chrome Dreams.
  29. ^ "What's New?". MillaJ.com. 2011-01-11. Retrieved 2011-12-12. 
  30. ^ DeYoung, Bill (2011-11-01). "Bringing up Famke". Connect Savannah. Retrieved 2011-12-12. 

External links[edit]