|Single by Richard Berry|
|A-side||You Are My Sunshine|
|Genre||Rhythm and blues|
|Richard Berry singles chronology|
"Louie Louie" is a rhythm and blues song written and composed by American musician Richard Berry in 1955. It is best known for the 1963 hit version by the Kingsmen and has become a standard in pop and rock. The song is based on the tune "El Loco Cha Cha" popularized by bandleader René Touzet and is an example of Latin influence on American popular music.
"Louie Louie" tells, in simple verse–chorus form, the first-person story of a Jamaican sailor returning to the island to see his lover.
"Louie Louie" has been recognized by organizations and publications worldwide for its influence on the history of rock and roll. A partial list (see "Recognition and rankings" table below) includes the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Grammy Hall of Fame, National Public Radio, VH1, Rolling Stone Magazine, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Recording Industry Association of America. Other major examples of the song's legacy include the celebration of International Louie Louie Day every year on April 11; the annual Louie Louie Parade in Philadelphia from 1985 to 1989; the LouieFest in Tacoma from 2003 to 2012; the ongoing annual Louie Louie Street Party in Peoria; and the unsuccessful attempt in 1985 to make it the state song of Washington.
The Kingsmen's recording was the subject of an FBI investigation about the supposed, but nonexistent, obscenity of the lyrics, an investigation that ended without prosecution.The nearly unintelligible (and innocuous) lyrics were widely misinterpreted, and the song was banned by radio stations as well as being investigated by the FBI.
Dave Marsh, in his book The History and Mythology of the World's Most Famous Rock 'n' Roll Song wrote, "It is the best of songs, it is the worst of songs"and rock historian Peter Blecha noted, "Far from shuffling off to a quiet retirement, evidence indicates that 'Louie Louie' may actually prove to be immortal."
Richard Berry was inspired to write the song in 1955 after listening to an R&B interpretation of "El Loco Cha Cha" performed by the Latin R&B group Ricky Rillera and the Rhythm Rockers.The tune was written originally as "Amarren Al Loco" ("Tie Up the Madman") by Cuban bandleader Rosendo Ruiz Jr., also known as Rosendo Ruiz Quevedo, but became best known in the "El Loco Cha Cha" arrangement by René Touzet which included a rhythmic ten-note "1-2-3 1–2 1-2-3 1–2" pattern.
Touzet performed the tune regularly in Los Angeles clubs in the 1950s. In Berry's mind, the words "Louie Louie" superimposed themselves over the repeating bassline. Lyrically, the first person perspective of the song was influenced by "One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)," which is sung from the perspective of a customer talking to a bartender ("Louie" was the name of Berry's bartender).Berry cited Chuck Berry's "Havana Moon" and his exposure to Latin American music for the song's speech pattern and references to Jamaica.
Los Angeles-based Flip Records issued Berry's adaptation with his backing band the Pharaohs in April 1957 as a single B-side of "You Are My Sunshine". The single was a regional hit on the west coast, particularly in San Francisco. When the group toured the Pacific Northwest, local R&B bands began to play the song, increasing its popularity. The song was then re-released as an A-side single. However, the single never appeared on the various Billboard R&B charts nor broader Hot 100. Berry's label reported that the single had sold 40,000 copies. After a series of unsuccessful follow-ups, Berry sold his portion of publishing and songwriting rights for $750 to the head of Flip Records in 1959.
While the title of the song is often rendered with a comma ("Louie, Louie"), in 1988, Berry told Esquire magazine that the correct title of the song was "Louie Louie" with no comma.
Although similar to the original, the version on Rhino's 1983 The Best of Louie, Louie compilationis actually a note-for-note re-recording created because licensing could not be obtained for Berry's 1957 version. The original version was not legitimately re-released until the Ace Records Love That Louie compilation in 2002.
"Louie Louie" is one of the world's most recorded rock songs, with published estimates ranging from over 1,600to more than 2,000.
|Single by Rockin' Robin Roberts|
Robin Roberts developed an interest in rock 'n' roll and rhythm and blues records as a high school student in Tacoma, Washington. Among the songs he began performing as an occasional guest singer with a local band, the Bluenotes, in 1958 were "Louie Louie", which he had heard on Berry's obscure original single, and Bobby Day's "Rockin' Robin", which gave him his stage name.
In 1959, Roberts left the Bluenotes and began singing with another local band, the Wailers. Known for his dynamic onstage performances, Roberts added "Louie Louie" to the band's set and, in 1960 recorded the track with the Wailers as his backing band.The arrangement, devised by Roberts with the band, included Roberts' ad-lib "Let's give it to 'em, RIGHT NOW!!" Released on the band's own label, Etiquette, in early 1961, it became a hit locally and was then reissued and promoted by Liberty Records in Los Angeles, but it failed to chart.
Roberts was killed in an automobile accident in 1967.Dave Marsh dedicated his 1993 book "For Richard Berry, who gave birth to this unruly child, and Rockin' Robin Roberts, who first raised it to glory."
|Single by The Kingsmen|
|from the album The Kingsmen In Person|
|Released||June 1963 (Jerden)|
October 1963 (Wand)
|Recorded||April 6, 1963|
|The Kingsmen singles chronology|
On 6 April 1963,the Kingsmen, a rock and roll group from Portland, Oregon, chose "Louie Louie" for their second recording, their first having been "Peter Gunn Rock". The Kingsmen recorded the song at Northwestern, Inc., Motion Pictures and Recording in Portland. The session cost $50, and the band split the cost.
The session was produced by Ken Chase, a local disc jockey on the AM rock station 91 KISN who also owned the teen nightclub that hosted the Kingsmen as their house band. The engineer for the session was the studio owner, Robert Lindahl. The Kingsmen's lead vocalist, Jack Ely, based his version on the recording by Rockin' Robin Roberts with the Fabulous Wailers, unintentionally introducing a change in the rhythm as he showed the other members how to play it with a 1–2–3, 1–2, 1–2–3 beat instead of the 1–2–3–4, 1–2, 1–2–3–4 beat on the Wailers record.The night before their recording session, the band played a 90-minute version of the song during a gig at a local teen club. The Kingsmen's studio version was recorded in one take. They also recorded the B-side of the release, an original instrumental by the group called "Haunted Castle”.
A significant error on the Kingsmen version occurs just after the lead guitar break. As the group was going by the Wailers version, which has a brief restatement of the riff twice over before the lead vocalist comes back in, it would be expected that Ely would do the same. Ely, however, overshot his mark, coming in too soon, before the restatement of the riff. He realized his mistake and stopped the verse short, but the band did not realize that he had done so. As a quick fix, drummer Lynn Easton covered the pause with a drum fill. The error is now so well known that multiple versions by other groups duplicate it.[ citation needed ]
The Kingsmen transformed Berry's easy-going ballad into a raucous romp, complete with a twangy guitar, occasional background chatter, and nearly unintelligible lyrics by Ely.Ely had to stand on tiptoe to sing into a boom mike, and his braces further impeded his singing. A guitar break is triggered by the shout, "Okay, let's give it to 'em right now!", which first appeared in the Wailers version, as did the entire guitar break (although, in the Wailers version, a few notes differ, and the entire band played the break). Critic Dave Marsh suggests it is this moment that gives the recording greatness: "[Ely] went for it so avidly you'd have thought he'd spotted the jugular of a lifelong enemy, so crudely that, at that instant, Ely sounds like Donald Duck on helium. And it's that faintly ridiculous air that makes the Kingsmen's record the classic that it is, especially since it's followed by a guitar solo that's just as wacky." Marsh ranks the song as number eleven out of the 1001 greatest singles ever made.
First released in May 1963, the single was initially issued by the small Jerden label, before being picked up by the larger Wand Records and released by them in October 1963. It entered the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for December 7, and peaked at No. 2 the following week, a spot which it held for six non-consecutive weeks; it would remain in the top 10 throughout December 1963 and January 1964 before dropping off in early February.In total, the Kingsmen's version spent 16 weeks on the Hot 100. Dominique by the Singing Nun and There! I've Said It Again by Bobby Vinton prevented the single from reaching No. 1. "Louie Louie" did reach No. 1 on the Cashbox pop chart for two weeks, as well as No. 1 on the Cashbox R&B chart. It was the last No. 1 on Cashbox before Beatlemania hit the United States with "I Want to Hold Your Hand". The version quickly became a standard at teen parties in the U.S. during the 1960s and reappeared on the charts in 1966, reaching No. 65 on the Cashbox chart and No. 97 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Another factor in the success of the record may have been the rumor that the lyrics were intentionally slurred by the Kingsmen—to cover up lyrics that were allegedly laced with profanity, graphically depicting sex between the sailor and his lady. Crumpled pieces of paper professing to be "the real lyrics" to "Louie Louie" circulated among teens. The song was banned on many radio stations and in many places in the United States, including Indiana, where it was personally prohibited by Governor Matthew Welsh.
These actions were taken despite the small matter that practically no one could distinguish the actual lyrics. Denials of chicanery by Kingsmen and Ely did not stop the controversy. The FBI started a 31-month investigation into the matter and concluded they were "unable to interpret any of the wording in the record."However, drummer Lynn Easton later admitted that he yelled "Fuck" after fumbling a drum fill at 0:54 on the record.
Sales of the Kingsmen record were initially so low (reportedly 600) that the group considered disbanding. Things changed when Boston's biggest DJ, Arnie Ginsburg, was given the record by a pitchman. Amused by its slapdash sound, he played it on his program as "The Worst Record of the Week". Despite the slam, listener response was swift and positive.
By the end of October, it was listed in Billboard as a regional breakout and a "bubbling under" entry for the national chart. Meanwhile, the Raiders version, with far stronger promotion, was becoming a hit in California and was also listed as "bubbling under" one week after the Kingsmen debuted on the chart. For a few weeks, the two singles appeared destined to battle each other, but demand for the Kingsmen single acquired momentum and, by the end of 1963, Columbia Records had stopped promoting the Raiders version, as ordered by Mitch Miller.
By the time the Kingsmen version had achieved national popularity, the band had split. Two rival editions—one featuring lead singer Jack Ely, the other with Lynn Easton who held the rights to the band's name—were competing for live audiences across the country. A settlement was reached later in 1964 giving Easton the right to the Kingsmen name but requiring all future pressings of the original version of "Louie Louie" to display "Lead vocal by Jack Ely" on the label.[ citation needed ]
On 9 November 1998, after a protracted lawsuit that lasted five years and cost $1.3 million, the Kingsmen were awarded ownership of all their recordings released on Wand Records from Gusto Records, including "Louie Louie". They had not been paid royalties on the songs since the 1960s.
When Jack Ely died on 28 April 2015, his son reported that "my father would say, 'We were initially just going to record the song as an instrumental, and at the last minute I decided I'd sing it.'" When it came time to do that, however, Ely discovered the sound engineer had raised the studio's only microphone several feet above his head. Then he placed Ely in the middle of his fellow musicians, all in an effort to create a better "live feel" for the recording. The result, Ely would say over the years, was that he had to stand on his toes, lean his head back and shout as loudly as he could just to be heard over the drums and guitars.
|Single by Paul Revere & the Raiders|
|from the album Here They Come!|
|Paul Revere & the Raiders singles chronology|
Paul Revere & the Raiders also recorded a 1963 version of "Louie Louie", probably on April 11 or 13, 1963, in the same Portland studio as the Kingsmen.The recording was paid for and produced by KISN radio personality Roger Hart, who soon became personal manager for the band. Released on Hart's Sandē label, their version was more successful locally. Columbia Records issued the single nationally in June 1963 and it went to #1 in the West and Hawaii. The quick success of "Louie Louie" suddenly halted, however, and a few years later Paul Revere & the Raiders learned the reason—Columbia A&R man Mitch Miller, a former bandleader ( Sing Along With Mitch ) who hated rock and roll, had pulled the plug on their version.
Robert Lindahl, president and chief engineer of NWI and sound engineer on both the Kingsmen and Raiders recordings, noted that the Raiders version was not known for "garbled lyrics" or an amateurish recording technique. Despite or because of these attributes, the single never seized the public's attention the way the less-polished Kingsmen version did.[ citation needed ]
The Raiders version contains a scarcely audible "dirty lyric" when Mark Lindsay says, "Do she fuck? That psyches me up!" behind the guitar solo.
"Louie Louie" repeatedly figured in the musical lexicon of Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention in the 1960s. His original compositions "Plastic People" and "Ruthie-Ruthie" (from You Can't Do That on Stage Anymore, Vol. 1) were set to the melody of "Louie Louie" and included Richard Berry co-writer credits.Zappa said that he fired guitarist Alice Stuart from the Mothers of Invention because she couldn't play "Louie Louie", although this comment was obviously intended as a joke.
At a 1967 concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London, Mothers of Invention keyboardist Don Preston climbed up to the venue's famous pipe organ, usually used for classical works, and played the signature riff (included on the 1969 album Uncle Meat ). Quick interpolations of "Louie Louie" also frequently turn up in other Zappa works.
After the Kingsmen and Raiders versions, many other bands recorded the song:
|Single by Motörhead|
|from the album Overkill (re-issue)|
|B-side||"Tear Ya Down"|
|Released||September 30, 1978|
|Motörhead singles chronology|
"Louie Louie" was Motörhead's first single for Bronze Records in 1978, following their initial release on Chiswick Records in 1977. It was a relatively faithful cover of the song, with Clarke's guitar emulating the Hohner Pianet electric piano riff. It was released as a 7" vinyl single and reached number 68 on the UK Singles Chart. The song was released with "Tear Ya Down" and appears on the CD re-issues of Overkill and The Best of Motörhead compilation. On 25 October 1978 a pre-recording of the band playing this song was broadcast on the BBC show Top of the Pops .
|Single by Black Flag|
The Hermosa Beach, California hardcore punk band Black Flag released a cover version of "Louie Louie" as a single in 1981 through Posh Boy Records.It was the band's first release with Dez Cadena as singer, replacing Ron Reyes who had left the group the previous year. Cadena would go on to sing on the Six Pack EP before switching to rhythm guitar and being replaced on vocals by Henry Rollins. Cadena improvised his own lyrics to "Louie Louie", such as "You know the pain that's in my heart / It just shows I'm not very smart / Who needs love when you've got a gun? / Who needs love to have any fun?" The single also included an early version of "Damaged I", which would be re-recorded with Rollins for the band's debut album, Damaged , later that year. Demo versions of both tracks, recorded with Cadena, were included on the 1982 compilation album Everything Went Black .
The front cover art shows the main verse of the lyrics to "Louie Louie" over a photograph by Edward Colver featuring Black Flag's third singer Dez Cadena.
Bryan Carroll of AllMusic gave the single four out of five stars, saying that "Of the more than 1,500 commitments of Richard Berry's 'Louie Louie' to wax ... Black Flag's volatile take on the song is incomparable. No strangers to controversy themselves, the band pummel the song with their trademark pre-Henry Rollins-era guitar sludge, while singer Dez Cadena spits out his nihilistic rewording of the most misunderstood lyrics in rock history."Both tracks from the single were included on the 1983 compilation album The First Four Years , and "Louie Louie" was also included on 1987's Wasted...Again . A live version of "Louie Louie", recorded by the band's 1985 lineup, was released on the live album Who's Got the 10½? , with Rollins improvising his own lyrics.
In February 1964, an outraged parent wrote to Robert F. Kennedy, then the Attorney General of the United States, alleging that the lyrics of "Louie Louie" were obscene, and saying that "The lyrics are so filthy that I can-not [sic] enclose them in this letter."
The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the complaint,and looked into the various rumors of "real lyrics" that were circulating among teenagers. In June 1965, the FBI laboratory obtained a copy of the Kingsmen recording and, after 31 months of investigation, concluded that it could not be interpreted, that it was "unintelligible at any speed," and therefore the Bureau could not find that the recording was obscene. In September 1965, an FBI agent interviewed one member of the Kingsmen, who denied that there was any obscenity in the song. The FBI never interviewed songwriter Richard Berry nor consulted the actual lyrics that were on file with the U.S. Copyright Office.
A history of the song and its notoriety was published in 1993 by Dave Marsh, but he was unable to obtain permission to publish the song's actual lyrics.Richard Berry told Esquire Magazine, in 1988, that the Kingsmen had sung the song exactly as written.
The lyrics controversy resurfaced briefly in 2005 when the superintendent of the school system in Benton Harbor, Michigan, refused to let the marching band at one of the schools play the song in a parade; the superintendent later relented.
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The Kingsmen version has remained the most popular version of the song, retaining its association with wild partying. It enjoyed a comeback in 1978–1979 and was associated with college fraternity parties when it was sung, complete with the supposedly obscene lyrics, by Bluto (John Belushi) and his fellow Delta House brothers in the movie National Lampoon's Animal House despite the anachronism of the film taking place in 1962, a year before the Kingsmen recording (although this is mitigated because the Deltas were fans of at least one black R&B musician and 1962 was five years after Richard Berry released his original version of the song, plus the song had been popular with local bands in the Northwest following Rockin' Robin Roberts' 1961 single). Aside from the Animal House appearance, the song appeared in many other films, typically in raucous and humorous contexts. The 1995 film, Mr. Holland's Opus , however, used the song in a serious context as an example of music that is just plain fun with no pretensions.
Some bands have taken liberties with the lyrics, including attempts to record the supposed "obscene lyrics," notably the Stooges, whose version can be heard on their live album Metallic K.O. Iggy Pop later recorded a more civilized cover version of the song, with new lyrics composed by Pop, for his 1993 album American Caesar . He continues to play it live at shows.
The Who were directed in their early recording career by the riff/rhythm of "Louie Louie", owing to the song's influence on the Kinks, who, like the Who, were produced by Shel Talmy — the Kinks on the Pye label and the Who on Brunswick. Talmy wanted the successful sounds of the Kinks' 1964 hits "You Really Got Me", "All Day and All of the Night", and "Till the End of the Day" to be copied by the Who. As a result, Pete Townshend penned "I Can't Explain", released in March 1965. (In 1979 "Louie Louie" would be featured on the soundtrack album to Quadrophenia.)
Ian Curtis of Joy Division can be heard saying "You should hear our version of 'Louie Louie', woah" at the end of the band's live cover of The Velvet Underground's Sister Ray on their Still album.
"Louie Louie" is referenced in the John Prine song "Lake Marie" and uses the words, "Oh baby, we gotta go now"
During a change in format from adult-contemporary to all-oldies, radio station WMXP-FM in Peoria, Illinois became "all Louie, all the time," playing nothing but covers of "Louie Louie" for six straight days.
Various versions of "Louie Louie" have appeared in the films listed below.
|Year||Title||Version(s)||On OST |
|1969||Zavolies (Ζαβολιές)||Fotis Lazaridis Orchestra||n/a||Greece release|
|1973||American Graffiti||Flash Cadillac||No|
|1978||National Lampoon's Animal House||Kingsmen, John Belushi||Yes|
|1983||Heart Like A Wheel||Jack Ely||No|
|1984||Blood Simple||Toots and the Maytals||No|
|1986||The Cult: Live In Milan||The Cult||No||Italy release|
|1987||Survival Game||Kingsmen||n/a||Also in trailer|
|The Return of Sherlock Holmes||Cast (uncredited bar band)||n/a||TV movie|
|1988||The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!||Marching Owl Band||Yes|
|Coupe de Ville||Kingsmen, Young MC||Yes|
|Love at Stake||Kingsmen||No|
|1989||Fright Night Part 2||Black Flag||No|
|1991||Reality 86'd||Black Flag||n/a|
|Dave||Cast (Kevin Kline)||No|
|1993||Wayne's World 2||Robert Plant||Yes|
|1994||A Simple Twist of Fate||Cast (party singalong)||No|
|1995||Mr. Holland's Opus||Cast (student band instrumental)||No|
|Man of the House||Kingsmen||n/a|
|1996||Down Periscope||Cast (Kelsey Grammer and others)||n/a|
|1997||My Best Friend's Wedding||Kingsmen||No|
|1998||ABC - The Alphabetic Tribe||Kingsmen, Sandpipers||n/a||Swiss release|
|Wild Things||Iggy Pop||No|
|2001||Say It Isn't So||Kingsmen||No|
|2002||La Bande du drugstore||Full Spirits||Yes||France release|
|24 Hour Party People||John The Postman, Factory All Stars||Yes||UK release|
|2003||Old School||Black Flag||Yes|
|Coffee and Cigarettes||Richard Berry, Iggy Pop||Yes|
|2004||Friday Night Lights||Cast (marching band instrumental)||No|
|2006||This Is England||Toots and the Maytals||Yes||UK release|
|Bobby||Cast (Demi Moore)||No|
|2009||Capitalism: A Love Story||Iggy Pop||n/a|
|Knight and Day||Kingsmen||No|
|Tournée||Nomads, Kingsmen||Yes||France release|
|2012||Best Possible Taste: The Kenny Everett Story||Kingsmen||n/a||UK TV movie|
|2013||Il était une fois les Boys||King Melrose||Yes||Canada release|
|2014||Desert Dancer||Jack Ely||No||UK release|
|2018||A Futile and Stupid Gesture||Kingsmen||n/a|
|2020||The Way Back||Cast (pep band instrumental)||No|
|2021||Penguin Bloom||Kingsmen||n/a||Australia release|
The Kingsmen version was also used in television commercials for Spaced Invaders (1990) but did not appear in the movie.
In 1985, Ross Shafer, host and a writer-performer of the late-night comedy series Almost Live! on the Seattle TV station KING, spearheaded an effort to have "Louie Louie" replace "Washington, My Home" by Helen Davis as Washington's official state song.Picking up on this initially prankish effort, Whatcom County Councilman Craig Cole introduced Resolution No. 85-12 in the state legislature, citing the need for a "contemporary theme song that can be used to engender a sense of pride and community, and in the enhancement of tourism and economic development". His resolution also called for the creation of a new "Louie Louie County". While the House did not pass it, the Senate's Resolution 1985-37 declared April 12, 1985, "Louie Louie Day". A crowd of 4,000, estimated by press reports, convened at the state capitol that day for speeches, singalongs, and performances by the Wailers, the Kingsmen, and Paul Revere & the Raiders. Two days later, a Seattle event commemorated the occasion with the premiere performance of a new, Washington-centric version of the song written by composer Berry. While the effort failed in the end, the song is still played, following "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" during the seventh-inning stretch at all Seattle Mariners home games.
April 11 (Richard Berry's birthday) is celebrated as International Louie Louie Dayand is listed by Chase's Calendar of Events, the National Special Events Registry, and other sources. This date was chosen as the most significant date for the observance of International Louie Louie Day from a list of "Louie Louie"-related dates occurring in April, including:
April 6, 1963 – The Kingsmen recorded the version that made "Louie Louie" famous.
April 13, 1963 – Paul Revere and the Raiders recorded their competing version in the same studio.
April 1, 1985 – First annual WMMR Louie Louie Parade in Philadelphia (canceled in 1989 due to excessive rowdiness).
April 12, 1985 – "Louie Louie Day" proclaimed by the state of Washington.
April 14, 1985 – "Louie Louie Day" proclaimed by the mayor of Seattle.
April 2, 1986 – "Louie Louie Day" proclaimed by the state of Oregon.
April 10, 1998 – The Kingsmen won a historic legal case against Gusto Records/GML, regaining ownership and royalty rights to all their recordings.
Support for International Louie Louie Day and other "Louie Louie"-related observances is provided by the Louie Louie Advocacy and Music Appreciation Society (LLAMAS)and "Louie Louie" fans worldwide. Commemorations of International Louie Louie Day have included newspaper articles, magazine stories, and radio programs with discussions of the song's history and playlists of multiple "Louie Louie" versions. In 2011, KFJC celebrated International Louie Louie Day with a reprise of its 1983 "Maximum Louie Louie" event, featuring multiple "Louie Louie" versions, new music by Richard Berry and appearances by musicians, DJs, and celebrities with "Louie Louie" connections.
The City of Tacoma held a summer music and arts festival from 2003 to 2012 in July named LouieFest. The event began in 2003 as the "1000 Guitars Festival" and featured a group performance of "Louie Louie" open to anyone with a guitar. The event was renamed LouieFest in 2004. Members of the Wailers, Kingsmen, Raiders, Sonics and other groups with "Louie Louie" associations regularly made appearances. The grand finale each year was the "Celebration of 1000 Guitars" mass performance of "Louie Louie" on the main stage.
Peoria, Illinois has held an annual "Louie Louie" street parade and festival every year since 1988. The Children's Hospital of Illinois is the most recent charitable beneficiary.
A sculpture titled "Louie Louie, 2013" by Las Vegas-based artist Tim Bavington is displayed on the lobby wall of the Edith Green - Wendell Wyatt Federal Building in Portland, Oregon. The work is constructed of 80 colored glass and acrylic panels representing the waveforms of the song using Bavington's concept of sculpting sound waves.
Summary of "Louie Louie" rankings and recognition in major publications and surveys.
|Rock & Roll Hall of Fame||Hall of Fame Singles||2018||None|
|Rock & Roll Hall of Fame||Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll||1995||None|
|National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences||Grammy Hall of Fame||1999||None|
|National Public Radio||The 300 Most Important American Records of the 20th Century||1999||None|
|The Wire Magazine||The 100 Most Important Records Ever Made||1992||None|
|Mojo Magazine||Ultimate Jukebox: The 100 Singles You Must Own||2003||#1|
|Paste Magazine||The 50 Best Garage Rock Songs of All Time||2014||#3|
|Rolling Stone Magazine||40 Songs That Changed The World||2007||#5|
|All Time Top 1000 Albums , Colin Larkin||The All-Time Top 100 Singles||2000||#6|
|VH1||100 Greatest Songs of Rock and Roll||2000||#11|
|The Heart of Rock and Soul, Dave Marsh||The 1001 Greatest Singles Ever Made||1989||#11|
|Rolling Stone Magazine||The 100 Best Singles of the Last 25 Years||1989||#18|
|VH1||100 Greatest Dance Songs||2000||#27|
|Mojo Magazine||100 Greatest Singles of All Time||1997||#51|
|Rolling Stone Magazine||The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time||2004||#54|
|NEA and RIAA||Songs of the Century||1999||#57|
|Mojo Magazine||Big Bangs: 100 Records That Changed The World||2007||# 70|
|Pitchfork Magazine||The 200 Best Songs of the 1960s||2006||#154|
|NME Magazine||The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time||2014||#157|
|WCBS-FM||Top 1001 Songs of the Century||2005||#184|
"Smells Like Teen Spirit" is a song by American rock band Nirvana. It is the opening track and lead single from the band's second album, Nevermind (1991), released on DGC Records. The unexpected success of the song propelled Nevermind to the top of several albums charts at the start of 1992, an event often marked as the point when grunge entered the mainstream.
Garage rock is a raw and energetic style of rock and roll that flourished in the mid-1960s, most notably in the United States and Canada, and has experienced a series of subsequent revivals. The style is characterized by basic chord structures played on electric guitars and other instruments, sometimes distorted through a fuzzbox, as well as often unsophisticated and occasionally aggressive lyrics and delivery. Its name derives from the perception that groups were often made up of young amateurs who rehearsed in the family garage, although many were professional.
Richard Berry, Jr. was an American singer, songwriter and musician, who performed with many Los Angeles doo-wop and close harmony groups in the 1950s, including The Flairs and The Robins.
The Kingsmen are a 1960s garage rock band from Portland, Oregon, United States. They are best known for their 1963 recording of Richard Berry's "Louie Louie", which held the No. 2 spot on the Billboard charts for six weeks and has become an enduring classic.
Paul Revere & the Raiders was an American pop-rock band that saw considerable U.S. mainstream success in the second half of the 1960s and early 1970s, with music veering from garage rock to psychedelic pop, but their early sound combined fast-paced, guitar-and-vocal-dominated rock and roll with an intimidating R&B flavor. The band was known for including Revolution War-style clothes in their attire.
The Sonics are an American garage rock band from Tacoma, Washington that formed in 1960. Their aggressive, hard-edged sound has been a major influence on punk and garage music worldwide, and they have been named inspirations to the White Stripes and other musical artists.
"Get Ready" is a Motown song written by Smokey Robinson, which resulted in two hit records for the label: a U.S. No. 29 version by The Temptations in 1966, and a U.S. No. 4 version by Rare Earth in 1970. It is significant for being the last song Robinson wrote and produced for the Temptations, due to a deal Berry Gordy made with Norman Whitfield, that if "Get Ready" did not meet with the expected degree of success, then Whitfield's song, "Ain't Too Proud to Beg", would get the next release, which resulted in Whitfield more or less replacing Robinson as the group's producer.
"Roll Over Beethoven" is a 1956 hit single written by Chuck Berry, originally released on Chess Records, with "Drifting Heart" as the B-side. The lyrics of the song mention rock and roll and the desire for rhythm and blues to replace classical music. The title of the song is an imperative directed at the composer Ludwig van Beethoven to roll over out of the way and make room for the rock and roll music that Berry was promoting. The song has been covered by many other artists, including the Beatles and the Electric Light Orchestra. Rolling Stone magazine ranked it number 97 on its list of the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time".
The Wailers, often credited as The Fabulous Wailers, were an American rock band from Tacoma, Washington. They became popular around the United States Pacific Northwest around the late 1950s and the start of the 1960s, performing saxophone-driven R&B and Chuck Berry rock and roll. Their biggest hit was "Tall Cool One", first released in 1959, and they have been credited as being "one of the very first, if not the first, of the American garage bands."
"Stand" is a song by the American alternative rock band R.E.M., released as the second single from the album Green in 1989. The song peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming R.E.M.'s second top 10 hit in the United States, and topped both the Mainstream Rock Tracks and Modern Rock Tracks charts. The song reached number 48 on the UK Singles Chart and number 16 in Canada. It was placed on R.E.M.'s Warner Bros. Records "best of" album In Time: The Best of R.E.M. 1988–2003 in 2003, as well as the 2011 compilation album Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage.
American Caesar is the tenth studio album by American rock singer Iggy Pop, released in September 1993 by record label Virgin.
Mark Lindsay is an American musician, best known as the lead singer of Paul Revere & the Raiders.
"Louie, Go Home" is a song written by Paul Revere and Mark Lindsay as a sequel to "Louie Louie" by Richard Berry. It was recorded by Paul Revere and the Raiders in 1963 and released in March 1964.
"Do You Love Me" is a 1962 hit single recorded by The Contours for Motown's Gordy Records label. Written and produced by Motown CEO Berry Gordy Jr., "Do You Love Me?" was the Contours' only Top 40 single on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. Notably, the record achieved this feat twice, once in 1962 and again in 1988. The song references the 1960s dance moves the Mashed Potato and the Twist.
LouieFest is an American music festival featuring the prominent contributions to rock and roll by bands and performers, both emerging and established, from the Northwest region. Organized in 2003 by John 'Buck' Ormsby and Kent Morrill, founding members of The Wailers, LouieFest is an annual fundraising event for the Wailers Performing Arts Foundation which provides scholarships, instruments, music lessons and mentoring for youth music education.
Lawrence Fewell Roberts II, known as Robin Roberts and in his music career as "Rockin' Robin" Roberts, was an American singer best known for his performances in the early 1960s with the Wailers, a rock and roll band based in Tacoma, Washington. His best known record was the earliest cover version of Richard Berry's "Louie Louie", recorded in 1960 and released the following year.
Jack Brown Ely was an American guitarist and singer, best known for singing the Kingsmen's version of "Louie Louie". Classically trained in piano, he began playing guitar after seeing Elvis Presley on television. In 1959, he co-founded the Kingsmen and with them recorded "Louie Louie" in 1963; Ely's famously incoherent vocals were partly the result of his braces and the rudimentary recording method. Before the record became a hit Ely was forced out of the group and began playing with his new band, the Courtmen. Ely died in Terrebonne, Oregon, on April 28, 2015 at age 71.
The Kingsmen in Person is the first album by the rock band The Kingsmen, released in 1963. The album featured "Louie Louie", the band's biggest success. Jack Ely, the singer of "Louie Louie", appeared on no other track on the album because he quit before it was recorded.
Kearney Whitsell Barton was an American record producer active in Seattle, Washington, from the 1950s to the 2000s. Particularly known for his 1950s and 1960s-era recordings of garage rock bands, Barton recorded many Pacific Northwest musicians such as The Fleetwoods, The Ventures, The Wailers, The Sonics, The Frantics, The Kingsmen, Quincy Jones, Ann and Nancy Wilson, Bonnie Guitar, and Dave Lewis.
Don and the Goodtimes were an American garage rock band formed in Portland, Oregon, in 1964. Fronted by Don Gallucci, former keyboardist of the Kingsmen, the group made a name for itself in the Northwest rock scene performing in a similar style as their contemporaries the Wailers and the Sonics. Over time, Don and the Goodtimes honed their vocal harmonies and earned two hits on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967, including their biggest hit "I Could Be So Good to You". The band released their album, So Good, and later experimented with psychedelia under the moniker Touch before disbanding in 1969.