Rockin' Robin (song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"Rockin' Robin"
Single by Bobby Day
from the album Rockin' with Robin
B-side"Over and Over"
Length2:31 (single version)
Songwriter(s)Leon René
Producer(s)Jimmie Thomas
Bobby Day singles chronology
"Rockin' Robin"
"Over and Over"

"Rockin' Robin" (originally released as "Rock-In Robin" on the Class Records 45 single) is a song written by Leon René under the pseudonym Jimmie Thomas, and recorded by American singer Bobby Day in 1958. It was Day's biggest hit single, becoming a number two hit on the Billboard Hot 100, and spent one week at the top of the R&B sales chart.[3] Michael Jackson recorded his own version of the song in 1972, which also achieved success.

One streaming version of this song incorrectly states it is by Chuck Berry.[4]


Copyright status[edit]

"Rockin' Robin" is in the public domain, as the owners never renewed the copyright.[8]


Chart performance for "Rockin' Robin"
Chart (1958) Peak
Australia (Kent Music Report)[9] 9
Canada (CHUM Charts)[10] 3
US Billboard Hot 100[11] 2
US Billboard Rhythm & Blues Records[11] 1

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"
ReleasedFebruary 1972[12]
StudioMotown Recording Studios (Los Angeles, California)[12]
GenreBubblegum pop[13]
Songwriter(s)Leon René
  • Mel Larson
  • Jerry Marcellino
Michael Jackson singles chronology
"Got to Be There"
"Rockin' Robin"
"I Wanna Be Where You Are"
Official audio
"Rockin' Robin" on YouTube

In 1972, Michael Jackson released his own version of "Rockin' Robin", which was released as a single from his gold-certified solo album titled Got to Be There as a follow-up single to the song of the same name. It was the biggest hit from the album, hitting number 1 on the Cash Box singles chart and peaking at number two on both the Billboard Hot 100, behind "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" by Roberta Flack,[14] and the Billboard soul singles chart, behind "In the Rain" by the Dramatics.[15]

Record World said that "little Michael rocks in with a revival of the big Bobby Day hit of the rockin' 1950s".[16]

Track listing[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart performance for "Rockin' Robin" by Michael Jackson
Chart (1972) Peak
Australia (Go-Set National Top 40)[17] 23
Australia (Kent Music Report)[18] 16
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[19] 13
Ireland (IRMA)[20] 16
Swedish Singles Chart (Kvällstoppen)[21] 1
UK Singles (OCC)[22] 3
US Billboard Best Selling Soul Singles[23] 2
US Billboard Hot 100[23] 2

Certifications and sales[edit]

Certifications and sales for "Rockin' Robin" by Michael Jackson
Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[24] Silver 200,000
United States 2,000,000[25]

Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Lolly version[edit]

In 1999, English singer Lolly released a cover of "Rockin' Robin" as a double A-side single with "Big Boys Don't Cry". It was a top 10 hit on the UK Singles Chart, peaking at No. 10 in December of that year and remaining on the chart for a total of 11 weeks.[26]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bush, John. "Rockin' Robin – Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  2. ^ Breihan, Tom (August 22, 2018). "The Number Ones: The Dave Clark Five's "Over And Over"". Stereogum. Retrieved June 12, 2023. Bobby Day wrote the song and used it as the B-side to his 1958 novelty hit "Rockin' Robin".
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 148.
  4. ^ "Spotify". Retrieved December 27, 2023.
  5. ^ de Heer, Dik (September 2015). "Plas Johnson". Retrieved October 6, 2017.
  6. ^ Scherman, Tony (1999). Backbeat: The Earl Palmer Story. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press. p. 174. ISBN 978-1-56098-844-1.
  7. ^ "Barney Kessel – Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved September 8, 2019.
  8. ^ Mersereau, Jeremy (October 30, 2015). "6 songs surprisingly in the public domain". A.Side TV. Retrieved February 22, 2020.
  9. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Chart Positions Pre 1989 Part 3". Hung Medien. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  10. ^ "CHUM Hit Parade - August 11, 1958".
  11. ^ a b "Bobby Day – Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  12. ^ a b Lecocq, Richard; Allard, François (2018). "Got to Be There". Michael Jackson All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Track. London, England: Cassell. ISBN 9781788400572.
  13. ^ Breithaupt, Don; Breithaupt, Jeff (October 15, 1996). "Post-Nuclear Families: Bubblegum". Precious and Few - Pop Music in the Early '70s. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 23. ISBN 031214704X.
  14. ^ "The Hot 100". Billboard. April 22, 1972. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
  15. ^ "Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. April 15, 1972. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  16. ^ Record World staff (March 4, 1972). "Hits of the Week" (PDF). Record World. p. 1. Retrieved April 2, 2023.
  17. ^ "Go-Set Australian charts". Go-Set. July 22, 1972. Archived from the original on June 4, 2012.
  18. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – CHART POSITIONS PRE 1989, part 2". Hung Medien. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  19. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 7632." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  20. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Rockin' Robin". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  21. ^ "Kvällstoppen 18 Juli 1972 - Hela topplistan, se videos, lyssna på låtarna - NostalgiListan". NostalgiListan. Retrieved May 15, 2024.
  22. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  23. ^ a b "Got to Be There – Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  24. ^ "British single certifications – Michael Jackson – Rockin' Robin". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved November 16, 2021.
  25. ^ Michael Jackson the Solo Years. Authors On Line. 2003. ISBN 9780755200917.
  26. ^ "LOLLY | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". Official Charts.