Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah

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"Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah"
Song
Recorded 1946
Composer(s) Allie Wrubel
Lyricist(s) Ray Gilbert

"Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" is a song composed by Allie Wrubel with lyrics by Ray Gilbert from the Disney 1946 live action and animated movie Song of the South, sung by James Baskett.[1] For "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah", the film won the Academy Award for Best Original Song[1] and was the second in a long line of Disney songs to win this award, after "When You Wish upon a Star" from Pinocchio (1940).[1] In 2004 it finished at number 47 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs survey of top tunes in American cinema.

For many years the song was part of an opening theme medley for the Wonderful World of Disney television program and it has often been used in other TV and video productions by the studio. It is one of many popular songs that features a bluebird ("Mr. Bluebird on my shoulder"), epitomized by the "Bluebird of Happiness," as a symbol of cheer.

The song is influenced by the chorus of the pre-Civil War folk song "Zip Coon", a "Turkey in the Straw" variation: "Zip a duden duden duden zip a duden day".[2] The term "Zip Coon" is now considered racist as it plays on a derogatory slang term for African Americans.[3]

Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans version[edit]

"Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah"
Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah Bob B. Soxx.jpg
Single by Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans
from the album Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah
B-side "Flip and Nitty"
Released 1962
Format 7"
Genre Pop
Length 2:40
Label Philles
Writer(s) Allie Wrubel, Ray Gilbert
Producer(s) Phil Spector
Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans singles chronology
"Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah"
(1962)
"Not Too Young to Get Married"
(1963)

Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans, a Phil Spector-produced American rhythm and blues trio from Los Angeles, recorded a cover version of "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" using the Wrecking Crew[4] in late 1962. According to the Beatles' George Harrison: "When Phil Spector was making 'Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah', the engineer who's set up the track overloaded the microphone on the guitar player and it became very distorted. Phil Spector said, 'Leave it like that, it's great.' Some years later everyone started to try to copy that sound and so they invented the fuzz box."[5] The song also marked the first time his Wall of Sound production formula was fully executed.[6]

Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans took their version of the song to number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1963. Their song also peaked at number 45 in the UK Singles Chart the same year.[1] The song was included on the only album the group ever recorded, Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah, issued on the Philles Records label.

Track listings[edit]

  1. "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" – 2:40
  2. "Flp and Nitty" - 2:20

Personnel[edit]

[7][8]

Johnny Mercer versions[edit]

Johnny Mercer had a no. 8 hit with his rendition of the song in 1947.[9] As a result, Mercer had to correct listeners who mistakenly assumed that he wrote it.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Brown, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 134. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  2. ^ Emerson, Ken (1997). Doo-dah!: Stephen Foster and the Rise of American Popular Culture. New York: Simon & Schuster. p. 60. ISBN 978-0684810102. 
  3. ^ "Blackface!". black-face.com. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Hartman, Kent (2012). The Wrecking Crew: The Inside Story of Rock and Roll's Best-Kept Secret. Thomas Dunne. ISBN 031261974X. 
  5. ^ Runtagh, Jordan (April 13, 2015). "9 Beatles Songs That Clearly Influenced Heavy Metal". VH1. 
  6. ^ Buskin, Richard (April 2007). "CLASSIC TRACKS: The Ronettes 'Be My Baby'". Sound on Sound. Sound on Sound. Retrieved August 19, 2014. 
  7. ^ Clemente, John (2000). Girl Groups—Fabulous Females That Rocked The World. Iola, Wisc. Krause Publications. p. 27. ISBN 0-87341-816-6.
  8. ^ Betrock, Alan (1982). Girl Groups The Story of a Sound (1st ed.). New York: Delilah Books. pgs. 120-122. ISBN 0-933328-25-7
  9. ^ Johnny Mercer chart entries
  10. ^ Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854.  Tape 3, side A.