For a long time record collectors thought Fire records 1008, “Fannie Mae” b/w “Lost In A Dream” by Buster Brown, was the last American 78 record. Since then several even later 78s have been unearthed. But this is still a great rock and roll (actually blues) song released in November 1959 and considered a 1960 hit.
Bell 120 was a budget version of Jan and Dean’s “Baby Talk.” I wondered if “Tom & Jerry” was a pseudonym for Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel before they became famous under their own name. The reason is that Bell issued a song called “Hey Schoolgirl” by Tom & Jerry in 1958 that really was S&G. But, while “Baby Talk” from the next year is also credited to Tom & Jerry, the actual identities of the singers are unknown. Such was the world of budget record labels.
Note that this release, which was issued in August 1959, came with a picture sleeve. The flip side was a cover of Lloyd Price’s “I’m Gonna Get Married” by Ronnie Lawrence.
From the Album “The Genius of Ray Charles”, Atlantic 2047 was “Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying” b/w “Let The Good Times Roll”, released in December 1959. I have “The Genius” album in stereo. But there were no stereo 78s. Both of these songs were recorded by Louis Jordan in the 1940s. This was the next-to-last known Atlantic 78.
Here it is – the Holy Grail of Late 78s: Bobby “Blue” Bland’s “Cry Cry Cry” from September 1960. It was Duke 327. The A-side rose to #9 on Billboard Magazine’s R&B charts that fall, and even charted #71 on the pop music charts. The B-side was “I’ve Been Wrong So Long.”
I have confirmed with record collector extraordinaire John Tefteller that this is authentic and not a photoshop creation. He regularly auctions off high quality collector records at his website, tefteller.com .
Unbelievable – fall of 1960. This may very well be the last regular issue, non-niche/fringe/novelty American 78 rpm record.
A January 1960 78 record: “Goodbye Kansas City” backed with “1960” by Wilbert Harrison on Fury 1028. This follow up to his no. 1 hit “Kansas City” featured the same melody, written back in 1952 by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. However, as you can see on the record label, the didn’t get co-composer credit on this. They probably could have pressed the issue if they wanted to, like Chuck Berry did with ‘Surfin’ USA”, or what happened with “My Sweet Lord” and Ronnie Mack’s heirs.
Lightnin Hopkins’s “I’m Achin'” backed with “Let’s Move” was originally recorded in 1954, but not released until September 1959 on Herald Records. That same year Herald also released an album of Lightnin’s 1954 sessions titled, “Lightnin’ and the Blues.” The label had been releasing songs from the sessions over a five year period. There would only be one more after this one, and it was in January 1960. Wouldn’t it be cool if that one was on 78, too?
In June 1959 Argo records released their issue #5338 – You’re On My Mind b/w My Life is a Mystery by “swamp pop” artist Rod Bernard. This was the follow up to his early 1959 hit “This Should Go On Forever.”