School of Rock 'n Roll

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"School Of Rock 'n Roll"
Single by Gene Summers & His Rebels
A-side "Straight Skirt"
B-side "School Of Rock 'n Roll"
Released 1958
Format Vinyl record, 45rpm
Recorded 1958 - Los Angeles, CA
Genre Rockabilly
Length 1:58
Label Jan Records (United States)
Apex Records (Canada)
Rave Records (South Africa)
Songwriter(s) James McClung

"School Of Rock 'n Roll" is a song composed by James McClung in 1958 and published by Song Productions, BMI the same year. It was originally recorded by Gene Summers and his Rebels, a rockabilly band from Dallas, Texas and was first released in February 1958 by Jan Records #11-100.[1] It was flipped with "Straight Skirt" [2] a teen novelty 45 which became the group's first big regional hit.

"School Of Rock 'n Roll" later became widely known as one of the top 100 rock 'n roll records of the era. In the 1970s, at the beginning of the rockabilly revival in Europe, "School Of Rock 'n Roll" was re-discovered by a new legion of rockabilly fans and bands. Since that time it has become a classic dance floor-filler and has renewed Gene's career to the extent of worldwide concert appearances since 1980.


In 2005 "School of Rock 'n Roll" was selected by Bob Solly and Record Collector Magazine as one of the 100 Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Records. "School Of Rock 'n Roll" was also present in the British television series "You've Been Framed" and was included on the Rhino Records CD box sets "Wild, Fast And Out Of Control" (1999) and "Rockin' Bones" (2006). The song has also been featured on "Bob Dylan's Theme Time Radio Hour" (2006) and also appears on the Bob Dylan 4-CD box set "Radio Radio" issued in 2011.


  • Teenage: Teenagers & Youth In Music 1951-1960 Various Artists CD-Bear Family Records (Germany) UPC 4000127172426, 2011

"Nice to have here Gene Summers singing about the place where all the up- turned collar cats wanted to walk and any Richard Dadier wanted to teach, “School of Rock ‘n Roll”. It was Gene’s first record (Jan 11-100) and a fabulous slice of Texas Rock ‘n’ Roll that could scare any teacher. A definitive classic even issued in Canada and South Africa!" - Dominique “Imperial” Anglares

  • School of Rock 'n Roll, Gene Summers and His Rebels CD (import)

"Where Chuck Berry's "School Day" is a precise sketch of the tedium of a typical American
high school, whether it is the Class of 1958 or 2007, Gene Summers' "School of Rock 'N Roll"
is pure greaser fantasy, the kind of place where the only use for books is to steady a wobbling amplifier".

  • Various Artists - Shake Rattle & Roll CD (import)

"Gene Summers' "School of Rock’n’Roll" is right up there when it comes to chalking the demarcation line between the teenage and adult worlds. No one can be left in any doubt after hearing this rip-roaring two minutes of rockin’ at its wildest that Summers & his Rebels were aiming straight for the hormonal jugular – squares beware!" -CD liner notes

  • Various Artists - Rock The Joint: Roots & Branches Of Rock & Roll 3CD Box Set (import)

"...this is the sound of a country spreading its wings musically, exploring the roots and preparing to enter Gene Summer's "School of Rock'n'Roll". Be there or be square!" -CD Liner notes

  • 100 Greatest Rock ‘N’ Roll Records- Record Collector Magazine

"School of Rock 'n Roll" is a gas! It lives up to its title. It is one of the most perfect rock 'n roll records that never became a hit. Everything about it is just right. Summers' voice rasping great juvenile lyrics - they rock on the blackboard, they rock on the desk - at this here school all you learn to do is rock! - is matched by a truly rocking band, bopping piano, thundering drums and cutting guitar solos from (James) McClung. If you are only allowed one rock 'n roll record on your desert island, this is the one to take." -Bob Solly, 2005

  • Bob Dylan's Theme Time Radio Hour - September 20, 2006

"...Each week, Mr. Dylan picks a theme and plays music around that theme. For example, today's show will be School featuring songs such as "Homework" by Otis Rush, "School's Out" by Alice Cooper and "School of Rock 'n Roll" by Gene Summers." - nexistepas, posted by Dan

Cover versions of "School Of Rock 'n Roll"[edit]

  • The Alphabets LP The Alphabets “Bowl You Over”

Rockhouse LPL 9201. 1991 Netherlands

  • The Blue Moon Rockers CD The Blue Moon Rockers “School Of Rock & Roll”

Rarity Records CD-192527, 1996 Belgium

  • Johnny Reno LP Johnny Reno “Third Degree”

Wildcat Records LP-JE3D, 1990 United States

  • Mess of Booze CD Mess Of Booze “Ungehobelt & Versoffen”

Tomb Records CD-2009, 1993 Germany

  • The Vees CD The Vees “Crash Boom Bang It Out”

Rockhouse Productions CD RHS-50421-3, 1995 United States

  • Alan Leatherwood CD Alan Leatherwood “Rock, Bop, Folk, And Pop”

Ohio Moon Records CD-790, 2004 United States [3]

  • The Starlight Wranglers CD Starlight Wranglers “Rough House R&R Vol. 3 Various Artists”

Rough House Records CD RHCD-003, 2004 Japan

  • The Greyhounds CD The Greyhounds “Songs Our Daddies Taught Us”

Pair Of Dice Records CD PODR-002, 2004 United States [4]

  • The Lennerockers LP The Lennerockers “Rebels Of Nowadays”

Rockhouse Records LP-9106, 1991 Netherlands

The Lennerockers CD Lennerockers “Rebels And More” Lenne Records 2CD LR-00008, 2002 Germany (previously unissued Lennerockers tracks)

  • Fairlane Rockets CD Fairlane Rockets “Fairlane Rockets”

Raucous Records (record #) (date) UK

  • Red Hot Max And The Cats LP Red Hot Max and the Cats “Cuckoo Clock Rock”

Eagle Records LP NMLP-32, 1989 Sweden [5]

  • Savage Kalman & Explosion Rockets LP Savage Kalman “School Of Rock And Roll”

Killroy Records LP KFA-13065, 1979 Netherlands

Savage Kalman & Explosion Rockets CD Savage Kalman “School Of Rock And Roll” SKY/Telstar Records (record #), 1998 Netherlands

  • Black Knights CD Black Knights “Jack In The Box”

Old Rock Records CD ORR-20041, 2004 Sweden

  • The Rhythm Rockets 7” 45rpm single “School Of Rock & Roll” b/w “Let’s Dance”

Presto Records P-101, 1989 United States

  • Rory Justice CD Rory Justice “The Rockabilly Kid”

Golly Gee Records CD GGR-1031, 2004 United States [6]

  • Rockin’ Ryan and The Real Goners CD “Alive And Lowdown” ( w/ Rory Justice –‘live’ version

of "School Of Rock 'n Roll") Golly Gee Records CD GGR-(#), 2003 United States [7]

  • The Polecats CD “Birth Of British Rockabilly Vol.2 Various Artists”

NV Records CD NVCD-10, 1994 UK

  • Hicksville Bombers CD Hicksville Bombers “Bombs Away”

Cool And Crazy Records COOL CD002, 1998, UK. “School Of Rock ‘n Roll” guitar riff was adapted to track #10 titled “Yes, I Do”

  • Robby Vee CD "The Early Years"

Arffytune Records, 2014 USA

  • Gene Vincent [8] UNISSUED. Gene Vincent “School Of Rock ‘n Roll”

Private recording, late 1960s. According to a 1998 Now Dig This! review of Derek Henderson's book "Gene Vincent A Discography",[9] there is a Complete A-Z listing of the 217 song titles he’s (Vincent) known to have recorded-everything from the Capital biggies such as "Say Mama", "Rocky Road Blues", and "Wildcat" to lesser known items such as private recordings of "Stand by Me", "Chain Gang" and "School Of Rock 'n Roll". Also, according to Rockin' Ronnie Weiser[10] during a May 19, 1997 interview: -“At first I tried to get Gene (Vincent) to record Gene Summers’ "School Of Rock 'n Roll" without much success. So then I told him to do whatever he wanted. The gem out of this 4-song recording session was “The Rose of Love” which brings tears to my eyes.”

  • Teen Kats 10” LP Teen Kats “After School Rock ‘n Roll”

Big Beat Records BBR-0013, 1981 France “School Of Rock ‘n Roll was a huge influence for this record.” -Thierry LeCoz of the Teen Kats, 1999

*Thierry Lecoz CD Thierry LeCoz “Tex-French Connection”[11] Big Beat Records CD BBR-0081, 2003 France Recorded Onstage at the House Of Live, Paris, France July 3, 2002

Thierry LeCoz DVD “Tex-French Connection” BIG Beat Records BBR DVD 0001, 2003 France Recorded Onstage at the House Of Live, Paris, France July 3, 2002

  • Gary U.S. Bonds CD Gary U.S. Bonds School Of Rock ‘n Roll: The Best Of Gary U.S. Bonds Rhino/WEA, 1990 USA (Album title obviously inspired by Gene’s “School Of Rock ‘n Roll” 45 which was released in 1958. Bond’s earliest release was in 1960.)
  • Lucky Strike Band CD Lucky Strike Band "If I Had Me A Woman" (label) (CD #), UK 2003
  • Big Sandy & his Fly-Rite Boys YouTube Video Big Sandy & his Fly-Rite Boys “School Of Rock ‘n Roll” 'Live from Café Sport - Delft, Netherlands 2005
  • Mike Mok and The Em-Tones mp3 Mike Mok and the Em-Tones “School Of Rock ‘n Roll” “Live” studio overdubs, United States 2007
  • Los Aceleradores mp3 Los Aceleradores “School Of Rock ‘n Roll”, 2004 Santiago, Chile, 2007
  • Various Artists School of Rock 'n Roll was used as the title for a (2) CD Box Set compilation released in the late 1990s. CD featured artists from the 1980s including: J. Geils Band, Billy Squier, Steve Miller, The Motels, Glass Tiger, Culture Club, Sheena Easton and others. (CD title obviously inspired by the Gene Summers original, classic 'School Of Rock ‘n Roll')


  • Liner notes "The Ultimate School Of Rock & Roll" 1997 United States
  • Article and sessionography in issue 15 (1977) of New Kommotion Magazine UK
  • Article and sessionography in issue 23 (1980) of New Kommotion Magazine UK
  • Feature article and sessionography in issue 74 (1999) of Rockin' Fifties Magazine Germany
  • Feature article with photo spread in issue 53 (2000) of Bill Griggs' Rockin' 50s Magazine United States
  • Feature Article with photo spread in issue 54 (2000) of Bill Griggs' Rockin' 50s Magazine United States


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2][dead link]
  3. ^ "Alan Leatherwood - Rock, Bop, Folk and Pop Vol. 1 featuring REMEMBER THE ALAMO - CD Baby Music Store". Retrieved 25 December 2014. 
  4. ^ [3] Archived September 28, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Archived from the original on July 11, 2007. Retrieved August 6, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^ Archived from the original on April 26, 2007. Retrieved August 6, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ Archived from the original on May 4, 2007. Retrieved August 6, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "GENE VINCENT and his Blue Caps". Retrieved 25 December 2014. 
  9. ^ Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved August 8, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  10. ^ Archived from the original on September 3, 2007. Retrieved August 21, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  11. ^ Archived from the original on September 26, 2007. Retrieved August 8, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]