Saturday, January 2, 2016

Bobby Darin - The Music

Since the other website doesn't allow us to post music or links, we've decided to make this a full-on Bobby Darin Weekend ...

First with information about our series FINALLY being posted in its entirety (followed by all of the great press we received the first time around) ...

Then with The Bobby Darin Hit List ... GREAT renditions (and long lost tracks) of Bobby's Greatest Hits ...

And, finally tomorrow, a log of great Bobby covers and incidentals that you just may have missed along the way.

Enjoy it all as we celebrate The Bobby Darin Story ... EXCLUSIVELY in Forgotten Hits!!!

Bobby's first television appearance ... performing the Lonnie Donegan skiffle hit "Rock Island Line" on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show ... a week after Elvis first appeared on the program.

Bobby had just recorded this song earlier that same week ... and wasn't completely familiar with the lyrics ... plus he was a nervous wreck appearing on TV for the very first time ... so, rather than take any chances of flubbing a live performance, he wrote the lyrics on the palms of his hands in case he got stuck.  Problem was he was SO nervous that he was sweating, blurring and wiping away the lyrics!!!  If you watch closely, you'll see him make numerous glances to his palms (while trying to look every bit of non-chalet in his first tv appearance!)  He later joked about the whole experience .. but the film doesn't lie!

Here's "Splish Splash", Bobby's first big hit, as performed on The Dick Clark Beech-Nut Show, 1958 ... Clark and Darin remained friends for life and Bobby made several appearances over the years on various Dick Clark programs and television specials.

"Queen Of The Hop" - Bobby's second Top Ten Hit, recorded at the same session!

Hedging his bets should Atlantic / Atco Records have dropped him if "Splish Splash" wasn't a hit, Bobby recorded a "back-up" track for Brunswick records called "Early In The Morning as The Ding Dongs.  When Atco found out, they seized the master and re-released it by The Rinky-Dinks (so as not to compete with Bobby's other hit on the charts at the time.)  Not wanting to lose the momentum of the record as it was climbing the charts, Brunswick quickly cut another version by a young rock and roll singer by the name of Buddy Holly!

And then, another #2 Smash ... and one of Bobby's greatest hits, "Dream Lover" from 1959!

Give a listen to "Bullmoose" ... with none other than the great Neil Sedaka on piano. (When's the last time you ever heard the Julliard protege play like this???)

And then, the biggest hit of his career ... going completely against type (and disregarding all of the advise given to him by his peers), Bobby cut "Mack The Knife" ... and watched it climb the charts and sit in the #1 Spot for nine straight weeks!!!

This was followed by another Top Ten Hit from the same LP, "Beyond The Sea", in 1960.

"Clementine" ... a #11 Hit from 1960

Won't You Come Home, Bill Bailey, 1960

And the flipside, "I'll Be There", later a hit for Gerry and the Pacemakers

Artificial Flowers, #14 in 1960

One of the best examples of the smooth, swingin' style of Bobby Darin ... "Lazy River", a #11 hit in 1961.

Nat "King" Cole reportedly hated it ... but one of MY all-time Bobby Darin favorites has got to be his hepped-up version of "Nature Boy"  (#31, 1961)

"You Must Have Been A Beautiful Baby", another hit resurrected during The British Invasion by The Dave Clark Five ... first a hit in 1938 for Bing Crosby ... and then again for Bobby Darin in 1961 (#4)

Darin cut an entire album of Ray Charles classics in 1962 ... including this #24 hit, "What'd I Say"

Things, a #3 Smash in 1962

I don't care what ANYBODY says ... this still sounds like a poor man's version of "I Can't Stop Loving You" to me ... Ray Charles went country, so why not Bobby Darin?  "You're The Reason I'm Living" was a #3 hit in 1963.  (He later claimed it was based on "Happy Birthday" ... so I guess it's a rip-off either way you look at it!!!)

Another one of my all-time favorites ... "18 Yellow Roses" from 1963.  Nine times out of ten this one brings a tear to my eye ... if you've never watched your first-born daughter get married, it'll happen to YOU someday, too!

Bobby resurrects the feel of "Mack The Knife" on this cover version of the Broadway hit, "Hello Dolly", 1965.

A big comeback hit for Bobby in 1966.  It never left his act after that.  "If I Were A Carpenter", the Tim Hardin tune, a #5 hit in 1966.

Bobby finally scored with a John Sebastian tune when "Lovin' You" went to #31 in 1967.  (Read all about the songs he turned away in our Bobby Darin Series on The Official Forgotten Hits Website ...

My greatest discovery ...
While researching the Bobby Darin series I came across this INCREDIBLE B-Side ... a sure-fire hit in its own right if only given a chance ... the epitome of the Darin style.
When we did our Favorite, Forgotten B-Sides Poll a few years later, I actually campaigned for votes for this tune ... an undiscovered gem. "Rainin'"

And here's Bobby accompanying Linda Ronstadt on one of my all-time favorite songs by her ... "Long Long Time" ...
Bobby Darin and Linda Ronstadt