Rockin' Robin (song)

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"Rockin' Robin"
Single by Bobby Day
Released 1958
Format 7" single
Recorded 1958
Genre Rock and roll, R&B
Length 2:31 (Single version)
Label Class Records
Writer(s) Leon René
Producer(s) Jimmie Thomas
Bobby Day singles chronology
"Rockin' Robin"
"Over and Over"

"Rockin' Robin" is a song written by Leon René under the pseudonym of Jimmie Thomas and recorded by Bobby Day in 1958. It was Day's only hit single, becoming a number-two hit on the Billboard Hot 100 and spent one week at the top of the charts (number one hit) in R&B sales.[1] The 45 single release by Bobby Day showed "Rock-in Robin"

Michael Jackson version[edit]

"Rockin' Robin"
Single by Michael Jackson
from the album Got to Be There
B-side "Love Is Here and Now You're Gone"
Released February 17, 1972
Format 7" single
Recorded October 1971
Genre Rock and roll, pop, R&B
Length 2:31
Label Motown
Writer(s) Leon René
Producer(s) Mel Larson
Jerry Marcellino
Certification Gold
Michael Jackson singles chronology
"Got to Be There"
"Rockin' Robin"
"I Wanna Be Where You Are"
Got to Be There track listing
"Got to Be There"
"Rockin' Robin"
"Wings of My Love"

Michael Jackson recorded and released a cover version of "Rockin' Robin" in 1972, which was taken from his Gold-certified solo album titled Got to Be There. It was the biggest hit from the album, hitting #1 on the Cash Box singles chart and peaking at #2 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts.

Track listing[edit]

Cover versions and samples[edit]

  • The Hollies included a cover of the song on their 1964 album Stay With The Hollies.
  • In 1965 by Australian band, "The Henchmen". The song made its way into the Australian top 10.
  • In 1981, Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem led by Janice performed this song on an episode of The Muppet Show.
  • UK singer Lolly covered this song in 1999, as a double A-side with "Big Boys Don't Cry". The single peaked at number ten in the UK singles chart, in December of that year.
  • The song was covered by Paul Anka on the album Rock Swings (2005).
  • The Boys performed this song seen on a Kidsongs video and DVD: A Day with the Animals. When this MP3 version of this song was first heard in the Kidsongs' website, an extended version is heard which means the repeat of the bridge and third verse comes.
  • Hasil Adkins recorded a version of this song, which was included on the 1986 compilation Out to Hunch.
  • The Miami Showband have performed this, with lead singer Gerry covering the Michael Jackson version, voice and all.
  • The UK band McFly have often covered this song, especially at Christmas time.
  • Season 8 American Idol contestant Megan Joy sang "Rockin' Robin" during Michael Jackson Week.
  • Michelle Creber recorded a version of "Rockin' Robin" for her cover album Timeless: Songs of a Century.
  • The song was sang on an episode of Full House.
  • The song was also covered by The Rivieras of South Bend, Indiana on their 1964 album, "Let's Have a Party". They are famous for the hit "California Sun", also on the "Let's Have a Party" recording.
  • Zendaya and Valentin Chmerkovskiy had the song chosen for their Instant Jive on the finale of Dancing with the Stars Season 16.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1958) Peak
US Billboard Hot 100 2
Chart (1972) Peak
Australian Singles Chart[2] 23
Canadian RPM Top Singles[3] 13
Ireland Singles Chart[4] 16
UK Singles Chart[5] 3
US Billboard Hot 100[6] 2
US Billboard Best Selling Soul Singles[6] 2
  • 1958: Bobby Day
  • 1972: Michael Jackson



  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 148. 
  2. ^ "22 July 1972". Retrieved 11 June 2013. 
  3. ^ "Rockin' robin in Canadian Top Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 11 June 2013. 
  4. ^ "Rockin' robin in Irish Chart". IRMA. Retrieved 11 June 2013.  2nd result when searching "Rockin' robin"
  5. ^ "Michael Jackson". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 June 2013. 
  6. ^ a b - Artist Chart History - Michael Jackson