Needles and Pins" is a song written by Jack Nitzsche and Sonny Bono. In his autobiography, Bono states that he sang along with Nitzsche's guitar-playing, thus creating both the tune and the lyrics, being guided by the chord progressions.  Jackie DeShannon tells the story differently, that the song was written at the piano, and that she was a full participant in the song's creation, along with Nitzsche and Bono, although she didn't get formal credit.  
The song was written for and originally recorded by Jackie DeShannon. Other notable versions of the song were recorded by
The Searchers, Del Shannon, Cher, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers with Stevie Nicks, Willie DeVille, Thorleifs, Gary Lewis & the Playboys, Smokie, the Turtles and Ramones. It was a number 1 hit in France when recorded in French with new lyrics by Petula Clark entitled 'La Nuit N'en finit Plus'. It was also covered by Czech singer Václav Neckář, with a rewritten text and under the name 'Mýdlový princ' ('Soap Prince').
Jackie DeShannon version (1963) [ edit ]
The song was first recorded by
Jackie DeShannon in 1963; in the US it peaked at number 84 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in May of that year. Though it was only a minor US hit, DeShannon's recording of the song topped the charts in Canada, hitting number one on the  CHUM Chart in 1963.
CHUM Singles Chart 1
Billboard Hot 100 84
The Searchers version (1964) [ edit ]
The Searchers heard British performer Cliff Bennett perform "Needles and Pins" at a club in Hamburg, Germany, and instantly wanted it to be their next single. The Pye Records single was released in January 1964. It was number one in the  United Kingdom,  Ireland and South Africa and peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the United States. Soon after, in April 1964, "Needles and Pins" appeared on the Searchers' next album, . It's the Searchers
Audible during the Searchers' recording of "Needles and Pins" is a faulty bass drum pedal, which squeaks throughout the song. It is particularly noticeable during the opening of the number.
Part of The Searchers' version can be heard as the intro of the song "
Use the Man" from Megadeth's album, although it does not appear on the remastered version. Cryptic Writings
A German version sung by The Searchers is called
Tausend Nadelstiche 
Smokie version (1977) [ edit ]
In 1977, at the height of their popularity, English rock band
Smokie covered the song as a rock ballad for the album , and got a European hit with "Needles and Pins". The song reached number 1 in some European countries. Bright Lights and Back Alleys
Ramones version (1978) [ edit ]
The Ramones covered "Needles and Pins" on their 1978 album
. Their version was also included on the band's first greatest hits collection, Road to Ruin . Ramones Mania
pop-punk band The Commercials recorded the song for the tribute album . Ramones Maniacs
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers version (1985; live) [ edit ]
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers released their first live album in 1985 called , where singer-songwriter and Pack Up the Plantation: Live! Fleetwood Mac vocalist Stevie Nicks performed on "Needles and Pins" with Tom Petty at the Forum in Los Angeles, California.
Genesis reference [ edit ]
The song is referenced in
Genesis's 1974 song "Broadway Melody of 1974" from their album . The lyrics run "And as the song and dance begins, the children play at home with needles...Needles and pins" with the phrase "Needles and pins" played to the original song's notes. The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway
References [ edit ]
^  Archived 27 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
^ LaBate, Steve (December 18, 2009). "Jangle Bell Rock: A Chronological (Non-Holiday) Anthology… from The Beatles and Byrds to R.E.M. and Beyond". Paste . Retrieved . July 24, 2016
^ a b c d Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 76. ISBN 0-85112-250-7.
^ Sonny Bono, And the Beat Goes On (New York: Pocket Books, 1991).
^ Terry Gross, Jackie DeShannon (June 14, 2010). "What The World Needs Now Is Jackie DeShannon [interview transcript]". Fresh Air. National Public Radio . Retrieved . February 21, 2017 And I had some I did contribute to that song, but I did not get writing credit at the time, I did not pursue it.
^ Kubernik, Harvey (2009). . Sterling. p. 34. Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon ISBN 978-1402797613 . Retrieved . February 21, 2017 We were at the piano going over musical riffs and finally settled on the one starts off 'Needles and Pins'.
^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990, Record Research, Inc., Menomonee Falls WI, 1991
^ "Chartverfolgung > The Searchers > Needles and Pins" (in German). Media Control Charts. Musicline.de. 1984-04-19 . Retrieved . 2011-02-05
^ "The Irish Charts – All There Is To Know". Irish Recorded Music Association. Irishcharts.com. 1984-01-22 . Retrieved . 2009-07-03
^ "ChartArchive - The Searchers - Needles And Pins". Archive.is . Retrieved . 2014-02-09
^ Steffen Hung. "The Searchers - Needles And Pins". norwegiancharts.com . Retrieved . 2014-02-09
Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 Record Research, Inc., Menomonee Falls WI, 1990 ISBN 0-89820-089-X