Monday, November 11, 2013

Quiet Hearts and Rock'n'Roll

I don't have the imagination to paint a picture of my life without rock'n'roll. My mom really did bring me home the best hillbilly and rhythm and blues records in the world. She took me to shows to see Sam Cooke, Bo Diddley, Bill Haley and the Comets, Little Willie John, Benny Joy, LaVern Baker, Clyde McPhatter, the Drifters, Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers, Big Joe Turner, Marv Johnson, the Platters, Brenda Lee and, oh, so many others. The best one was Hank Ballard and the Midnighters.

She had bought me loads of their 45's on King and Federal and I loved them all. My favorite, of course, was The Twist. Hank recorded it 55 years ago today. Hank seems to have told several versions of just exactly where the song came from. All of the versions tell the story of him seeing a girl dancing the twist in Tampa, providing his inspiration for the song.

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