Shotgun (Junior Walker & the All Stars song)

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For other songs named Shotgun, see Shotgun (disambiguation).
Single by Junior Walker & the All Stars
from the album Shotgun
Released February 13, 1965
Format 7" single
Recorded Hitsville, USA (Studio A), Detroit, Michigan, 1964
Genre Soul
Length 2:53
Label Soul Records (Motown)
Writer(s) Autry DeWalt
Producer(s) Berry Gordy
Junior Walker & the All Stars singles chronology
"Do the Boomerang"

"Shotgun" is a 1965 single by Junior Walker & the All Stars, which was written and composed by Walker and produced by Berry Gordy Jr. and Lawrence Horn.[1] It reached number one on the U.S. R&B Singles chart for four non-consecutive weeks and peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100.[2] Guitarist Jimi Hendrix performed the song live with the All Stars.

Shotgun uses only one chord throughout the entire song -- A-flat seventh. Other songs featuring this same structure (or non-structure) are Chain of Fools and Land of 1000 Dances.[3]


Shotgun in film[edit]

It was used in Martin Scorsese's debut feature film, Who's That Knocking At My Door? (1967).

The song has been used in the films Misery (1990), Malcolm X (1992), and How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1998).

The song was also used as the theme song for "Ain't Nothin' But a Woman". A sketch-comedy segment previously featured on BET's ComicView

It was likewise referenced in Sister Act 2 during the opening number, "The Greatest Medley Ever Told."

The song was performed by Public Enemies in the Norwegian film Hurra for Andersens in 1966. Public Enemies brought Shotgun to the seventh position on the Radio Luxembourg's Top 20 Chart.

Cover versions[edit]

In 1965, by:

The Wailers, with slightly modified lyrics, as a ska song
Sam The Sham and the Pharaohs, on their Wooly Bully album
The Kingsmen, on The Kingsmen On Campus album

In 1969, by Vanilla Fudge in a heavily psychedelic version, on Near the Beginning
In 1988, by Vanity with Kareem and Dave Koz, for the soundtrack of Action Jackson
In 2001, by saxophonist Richard Elliot, as an instrumental on Crush[6]
In 2006, by Yo La Tengo, on Yo La Tengo Is Murdering the Classics

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bronson, Fred (1993). The Billboard Book of Number One Rhythm & Blues Hits. New York: Billboard Books:Watson-Guptill Publications. p. 3. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 607. 
  3. ^ "Shotgun by Junior Walker & the All-Stars". Retrieved 10 November 2012. 
  4. ^ Schlueter, Brad (December 2007). "The Greatest Grooves of R&B and Soul". DRUM! Magazine. Retrieved 19 August 2012. 
  5. ^ Nicholls, Geoff (September 7, 1992). "Obituary: Larrie Londin". The Independent. Retrieved 19 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "Crush overview".