Graham Reid | | <1 min read
When white artists discovered the vast catalogue of black rhythm and blues and began to cover many of the songs -- thus giving birth to rock'n'roll in the mid Fifites -- it was to Big Joe Turner that many went.
Bill Haley had a decent sized hit with his cover of Turner's Shake Rattle and Roll, and Johnny Burnette picked up on Honey Hush, a song which starts off good humoured but ends with a threat of physical violence against his jaw-gabbin' woman.
He's got a baseball bat.
The Beatles heard Burnette's version and played it live apparently on their first night in Hamburg when they realised they needed a lot of songs -- a lot! -- to fill the hours they were contracted to play.
In fact, according to the authorative Mark Lewisohn in his Beatles bio Tune In, they played whole albums full of songs (Burnette, Elvis, Holly etc) which they'd memorised.
Later McCartney would sing Honey Hush at a Cavern party with David Gilmour (see the clip below).
Burnette really rocked it up as you can hear.
Honey Hush by Johnny Burnette
but Elvis Costello also delivered an especially furious version on his album Almost Blue
Honey Hush by Elvis Costello
It seems telling your woman to shut up never really goes out of style.
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