Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar
|"Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar"|
Sheet music cover
|Single by Will Bradley and His Orchestra featuring Ray McKinley|
|B-side||"Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar Pt. 2"|
|Format||10-inch 78 rpm record|
|Recorded||May 21, 1940|
|Label||Columbia (no. 35530)|
"Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar" is a song written in 1940 by Don Raye, Ray McKinley, and Hughie Prince. It follows the American boogie-woogie tradition of syncopated piano music. The song was first recorded in 1940 by the Will Bradley orchestra, featuring drummer McKinley on vocals and Freddie Slack on piano. The single placed in Billboard's "Leading Music Box Records of 1941" at number ten.
The title adopts 1940s' hipster slang coined by Raye's friend, Ray McKinley, a drummer and lead singer in the Jimmy Dorsey band in the 1930s. McKinley kicked off certain uptempo songs by asking pianist Freddie Slack (nicknamed "Daddy") to give him a boogie beat, or "eight to the bar". For that reason Raye gave a partial songwriting credit to McKinley. The song was formally published under McKinley's wife's name, Eleanore Sheehy, because McKinley was under a songwriting contract with another publisher. The nickname "Daddy Slack" was also used in the 1941 recording by "Pig Foot Pete" with Don Raye singing in Slack's band.
- Will Bradley and His Orchestra in 1940 on Columbia Records, set C-123.
- Andrews Sisters, first in 1940; their 1941 hit, "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy", which praises a fictional trumpet player, resembles this hit. Both songs were written by Don Raye and Hughie Prince.
- Glenn Miller and His Orchestra in 1940 on RCA Victor Bluebird.
- Woody Herman in 1940 on Decca.
- Ella Fitzgerald recorded this song with arrangements by Russell Garcia on her Verve release Get Happy! (1959).
- Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen on their album Lost in the Ozone (1971).