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RIP Jack Ely..

Never heard of him.......or his band the Kingsmen. But on hearing his one hit I realised this tune has been seared into my brain many years ago without me realising!


  • Louie Louie a classic, RIP
  • Another one gone, RIP
  • brogib said:

    Louie Louie a classic, RIP

    This .. and so is the 'B' side, Long Green .. Louie Louie was one of the first 45s I ever bought, Surfin USA was the first (I think I remember) .. RIP Jack, a unique and raw voice in a unique, raw band
  • Classic song.. allegedly the most covered song ever.. love the Motorhead version
  • Great track. RIP...Can see Sting dancing just listening to that.
  • Great band, sad loss

  • RIP. Great soundtrack to the 60's
  • edited April 2015
    Fascinating reading about the FBI's investigation into this track. If you go to page 14 of the FBI file on the investigation, in the link below, you can read what the FBI , after many hours of listening to the track at different speeds, thought the lyrics were. Trouble is I can't listen to the track now without hearing those lyrics.
  • Great band, sad loss

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  • Originally written and recorded by Richard Berry and his group The Pharaohs, in 1957, on Flip Records. Richard was heavily influenced at this time by the music coming out of Jamaica.

    It started out as a B-side but the local DJ's in San Francisco started playing it and it became a regional hit in the Bay area.

    The Kingsmen recorded the song in 1963 and was a "sleeper" for many months before it finally took off.

    By the 1980's, like so many Black American musicians of the 1950's, Richard was living on benefits having been well and truly shafted by the music industry.

    However, about this time a company in California wanted to use the Kingsmens version for a TV ad and hired a lawyer to track down the writer and get his written permission to use the song. Having found Richard the lawyer listened to his story and thought he had a good case to sue for unpaid royalties.

    The publishing company settled out of court and Richard Berry became a millionaire overnight!

    Dig the original on You Tube. IMHO by far the superior vesion. The song was finally released in the UK on Ember Records on an EP, which, if you are lucky enough to find a copy is worth about £250.
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Roland Out!