Bobby Day

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Bobby Day
Birth nameRobert James Byrd
Born(1930-07-01)July 1, 1930
Fort Worth, Texas, U.S.
DiedJuly 27, 1990(1990-07-27) (aged 60)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
GenresSoul, R&B, pop, rock and roll
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter, record producer
InstrumentsVocals, piano, keyboards
Years active1950–1990
Associated actsThe Hollywood Flames
Bob and Earl

Robert James Byrd (July 1, 1930[1] – July 27, 1990),[2] known by the stage name Bobby Day, was an American rock and roll and R&B singer, multi-instrumentalist, music producer and songwriter. He is best known for his hit record "Rockin' Robin", written by Leon René under the pseudonym Jimmie Thomas.[3]


Born in Fort Worth, Texas, United States,[4] Day moved to Los Angeles, California, at the age of 15.[4] His first recording was "Young Girl" in 1949 as "The Flames" released 1950 on the Selective Label. He went several years with minor musical success limited to the West Coast. He recorded under numerous other names, as The Jets, The Voices, The Sounds, The Crescendos, including being the original "Bob" in the duo Bob & Earl with singer Earl Nelson. As a member of the R&B group the Hollywood Flames,[3] he used the stage name Bobby Day to perform and record. His penned song, "Buzz Buzz Buzz" was the outfit's first and biggest success.[4] In 1957, Day formed his own band called the Satellites, following which he recorded three songs that are seen today as rock and roll classics.[5]

Day's best known songwriting efforts were "Over and Over", later made popular by The Dave Clark Five in 1965,[6][7] and "Little Bitty Pretty One", popularized by Thurston Harris in 1957,[8] Frankie Lymon in 1960, Clyde McPhatter in 1962, and the Jackson Five in 1972. However, Day is most remembered for his 1958 solo recording of the Billboard Hot 100 No. 2 hit, Rockin' Robin,[4] written by Leon Rene under the pseudonym Jimmie Thomas. It sold over one million copies and was awarded a gold record.[9] "Rockin' Robin" was a song covered by Bob Luman at Town Hall Party on October 28, 1958, The Hollies in 1964, Gene Vincent in 1969, Michael Jackson in 1972, and by McFly in 2006.

Harris' version of "Little Bitty Pretty One" appears in the 1996 motion picture, Matilda, as Matilda learns to control her telekinetic powers.

In 2012–2013, his uncharted recording, "Beep-Beep-Beep", was the musical soundtrack for a Kia Sorento television commercial shown nationwide in the U.S.

Day died of prostate cancer in 1990 and is buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California.[10]


Year Title Recording as Chart positions
1950 "Young Girl" / "Please Tell Me Now" The Flames
1952 "Wheel of Fortune" / "Later" The Four Flames
1957 "Buzz Buzz Buzz" The Hollywood Flames 11 5
1957 "Little Bitty Pretty One" Bobby Day and the Satellites 57
1958 "Rockin' Robin" Bobby Day 2 1
"Over and Over" Bobby Day 41 1
"The Bluebird, The Buzzard, and The Oriole" Bobby Day 54
1959 "That's All I Want" Bobby Day 98
"Gotta a New Girl" Bobby Day 82
1960 "Gee Whiz" Bob and Earl 103

Television appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Talevski, Nick (May 2006). Rock Obituaries: Knocking On Heaven's Door. London: Omnibus Press. pp. 123–124. ISBN 978-1846090912.
  2. ^ News, Deseret (July 30, 1990). "SINGER BOBBY DAY DIES OF CANCER AT AGE 60". Retrieved August 22, 2021.
  3. ^ a b Doc Rock. "The Dead Rock Stars Club 1990 – 1991". Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d Colin Larkin, ed. (1992). The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. p. 648/9. ISBN 0-85112-939-0.
  5. ^ "Bobby Day Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved April 14, 2013.
  6. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 188. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  7. ^ Chris Kenner. "Greatest Hits - The Dave Clark Five : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  8. ^ "Little Bitty Pretty One – Thurston Harris : Listen, Appearances, Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  9. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 100. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  10. ^ Boyer, Edward J. (July 30, 1990). "Bobby Day; Had No. 2 Hit With 'Robin'". Los Angeles Times.

External links[edit]