1959 blues, jazz, funk, rock, soul, motown and fusion

We can go back to 1959!  (this page is still being edited… )


1959, the Year that Changed Jazz, Blues, Soul, Motown and rock…

          1959 The Year that Changed Jazz

Image result for miles davis 1959 blues

Miles Davis Kind Of Blue Full Album 1959

Mix – John Lee Hooker – Graveyard Blues (1959)

Image result for john lee hooker

Mix – Buddy Rich: Blues In The Closet – 1959
Mix – EDDIE COCHRAN – Summertime Blues (Live 1959)
Mix – Mose Allison Young Man’s Blues Mose Allison Sings 1959
Mix – Johnny Cash – Folsom Prison Blues THP 1959
Mix – James Brown – Messing With The Blues (1959)
Mix – Joe Turner – Saint Louis Blues 1959
Mix – Willie Nelson Rainy Day Blues (1959)
Mix – Billy Eckstine and Count Basie – Stormy Monday Blues 1959
Mix – №3 © Louis Armstrong – Basin Street Blues – 1959 in Stuttgart Germany
Mix – Miles Davis – Best of (So What, Blue in Green, Love Me or Leave Me and more hits!)
Mix – Blues With Big Bill Broonzy · Sonny Terry · Brownie McGhee 1959 (Full Album Vinyl)
Mix – DUKE ELLINGTON – Live at the Blue Note Club, 1959 (part 1)
Mix – Ben Webster Sextet – C jam blues (1959)
Mix – Horace Silver – Blowin The Blues Away (1959) {Full Album}
Mix – Jimmy Rushing w Dizzie Gillespie Quintet – Blues After Dark – France 1959 (LIve Video)
1959 Monterey Jazz Festival FULL ALBUM Live 1950s Rhythm & Blues Music Fest
1959-1965: Girl groups, Rhythm & Blues, Gospel blues, Blues, Jazz … Inocencia frente a la sofisticación del jazz
Mix – Kenny Dorham – Blue Spring Shuffle [from 1959 album Quiet Kenny]
Mix – Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers – Paris 1959 – Blues March [1-5]
Curtis Fuller – ‘Five Spot After Dark’ (1959) Original not Remix
Blues & Roots (Charles Mingus, 1959, Jazz)
Mix – The Cry Of Jazz (1959)
Mix – Wayne Shorter – Blues a La Carte (1959)
Mix – Milt Jackson & Coleman Hawkins – Sandra’s Blues (1959)
John McLaughlin montage 1959-75; Music: ‘Blues for the Mahavishnu’ from the album ‘Sunset Cavaliers’
Mix – Kansas City-Wilbert Harrison-1959
Mix – Teddy Edwards – Tempo De Blues – 1959
Mix – Bobby Brown-Bobby’s Blues 1959
Mix – Jimmy Witherspoon – No Rollin’ Blues 1959
Mix – ROOSTER BLUES – Lightnin Slim [Excello 2169] 1959
Mix – Nina Simone – Wild Is The Wind – Live 1959
Mix – Billie Holiday – Body and Soul [Live on Verve 1945 – 1959]
Mix – Sonny Stitt 1959 – New York Blues
BB King & Count Basie Orchestra – Everyday I Have The Blues – (Bonus Track Crown 5111) – 1959
Mix – Jack Dupree Blues From The Gutter 1959 Bad Blood vinyl
Mix – Elmore James ~ ”The Sky Is Crying”&”Dust My Broom”(Electric Delta Blues 1959)
Marvin Gaye 1959-1991
Mickey Baker – Night And Day
1959 rhythm and blues
Rhythm & Blues Greats 1951-1959
Mix – Titus Turner – Taking Care Of Business – 1959 Rhythm & Blues
Mix – Ray Charles – What’d I Say (1959)
Mix – irma thomas dont mess with my man
Mix – THE FIESTAS – “SO FINE” (1959)
Mix – Billie Holiday – Body and Soul [Live on Verve 1945 – 1959]
Mix – Little Richard – Ooh! My Soul (1959)
Mix – THE MIRACLES – “BAD GIRL” (1959)
50-60’s Blues/Rock’n’Roll/Pop/Soul
Soul / Blues / Funk / Early Rock n Roll Albums
20th February 1959: Jimi Hendrix plays his first gig
Mix – Big Bill Broonzy – Willie May Blues – 1959 US COUNTRY BLUES
Mix – Blues Music, Traditional Blues Classics Compilation

Song Hits 1959

FROM A PAGE BY Roger Lee Hall


There was the growing popularity of R&B and Rock n’ Roll music. Also, there was a broadening of music categories on records, radio, movies and television. Just consider these different categories:

Broadway tunes: “Everything’s Coming Up Roses” from GYPSY

Country & Western songs: “The Battle of New Orleans”
(21st best seller of 1950s)

Easy Listening: “Mack the Knife” (the 5th best selling record of the 1950s)

Ethnic/ Latino: “La Bamba”

Exotica/Lounge music: “Quiet Village”

Movie songs: “High Hopes” from A HOLE IN THE HEAD
(Oscar winning song)

Nostalgia: “My Happiness”

Patriotic: “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”
(only hit for Mormon Tabernacle Choir)

Rhythm & Blues: “Stagger Lee”

Rock n’ Roll: “A Big Hunk O’ Love” (another No. 1 hit for Elvis Presley)

This was also the year when three Rock n’ Roll legends died in a plane crash on February 3, 1959: J.P. (The Big Bopper) Richardson, Richie Valens, and Buddy Holly.

And it was the year that Elvis returned from his Army service in Germany and kept his hit records rolling along.

1959 was the year when the first Rock guitar instrumental (“Sleep Walk”) reached No. 1 on the charts.

And it was year of scandal when New York disc jockey, Alan Freed, was brought to trial for taking money for promoting records in the so-called “Payola Scandal.” Other disc jockeys were also fined, like Peter Tripp from WMGM in New York, who pioneered the Top 40 format.

So look at this list and see how many you know from these…

50 Song Hits from 1959

All My Tomorrows — Frank Sinatra

Along Came Jones — The Coasters

+The Battle of New Orleans — Johnny Horton

The Battle Hymn of the Republic — Mormon Tabernacle Choir

The Best is Yet to Come — Tony Bennett

+A Big Hunk O’ Love — Elvis Presley

+The Big Hurt — Miss Toni Fisher

Charlie Brown — The Coasters

Climb Ev’ry Mountain — Patricia Neway from THE SOUND OF MUSIC

+Come Softly To Me — The Fleetwoods

+Donna — Ritchie Valens

+Don’t You Know — Della Reese

+Dream Lover — Bobby Darin

El Paso — Marty Robbins

+The Happy Organ — Dave “Baby” Cortez

+Heartaches By The Number — Guy Mitchell

High Hopes — Frank Sinatra

It Doean’t Matter Anymore — Buddy Holly

+It’s Just A Matter of Time — Brook Benton

+Kansas City — Wilbur Harrison

La Bamba — Ritchie Valens

+Lavender Blue — Sammy Turner

+Lonely Boy — Paul Anka

The M.T.A. — The Kingston Trio

+Mack the Knife — Bobby Darin

+Mr. Blue — The Fleetwoods

+My Happiness — Connie Francis

My Wish Came True — Elvis Presley

+(Now and Then There’s) A Fool Such As I — Elvis Presley

Oh! Carol — Neil Sedaka

Peter Gunn Theme — Ray Anthony & His Orchestra

+Put Your Head On My Shoulder — Paul Anka

Quiet Village — Martin Denny & His Orchestra

Sea of Love — Phil Phillips & The Twilights

See You in September — The Tempos

Shout — The Isley Brothers

Since I Don’t Have You — The Skyliners

+16 Candles — The Crests

+Sleep Walk — Santo & Johnny

Small World — Johnny Mathis

+Smoke Gets in Your Eyes — The Platters

+Stagger Lee — Lloyd Price

Talk to Me — Frank Sinatra

A Teenager in Love — Dion & The Belmonts

+There Goes My Baby — The Drifters

+The Three Bells — The Browns

+(‘Til) I Kissed You — The Everly Brothers

+Venus — Frankie Avalon

What’d I Say — Ray Charles

+Why — Frankie Avalon


No. 1 Songs from 1959

Arranged by number of weeks at No. 1 and alphaebtical titles for tied weeks
(according to The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits by Joel Whitburn)

Mack The Knife — Bobby Darin (9 weeks at #1)

The Battle Of New Orleans — Johnny Horton (6 weeks at #1)

Venus — Frankie Avalon (5 weeks at #1)

Come Softly To Me — The Fleetwoods (4 weeks at #1)

Lonely Boy — Paul Anka (4 weeks at #1)

Stagger Lee — Lloyd Price (4 weeks at #1)

The Three Bells — The Browns (4 weeks at #1)

Smoke Gets In Your Eyes — The Platters (3 weeks at #1)

A Big Hunk Of Love — Elvis Presley (2 weeks at #1)

Heartaches By The Number — Guy Mitchell (2 weeks at #1)

Kansas City — Wilbert Harrison (2 weeks at #1)

Sleep Walk — Santo & Johnny (2 weeks at #1)

The Happy Organ — Dave “Baby” Cortez (1 week at #)

Mr. Blue — The Fleetwoods (1 weeks at #1)

Why — Frankie Avalaon (1 week at #1)

Ten Top Albums from 1959


KIND OF BLUE — Miles Davis (No. 3)


HEAVENLY — Johnny Mathis (No. 7)

TIME OUT — The Dave Brubeck Quartet (No. 10)

THE SOUND OF MUSIC — Broadway Cast (No. 17)

AT LARGE — The Kingston Trio (No. 18)

THE MUSIC OF PETER GUNN — Henry Mancini (No. 19)

HERE WE GO AGAIN! — The Kingston trio (No. 22)

THE LORD’S PRAYER — The Mormon Tabernacle Choir (No. 29)

COME DANCE WITH ME! — Frank Sinatra (No. 35)

— Source: 100 Best-Selling Albums of the 50s
by Charlotte Greig

Recommended Recordings on CD

Cruisin' 1959

Cruisin’ 1959

Billboard Top Rock & Roll Hits: 1959

1959: Billboard Top Rock n’ Roll Hits

Timeline - 1959

Timeline – 1959 (sights & sounds – music & memories)

Styles of Music Popular in the Fifties


Rock ‘n’ Roll Musicians

Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Chubby Checker, Billy Haley & the Comets, Buddy Holly, Carl Perkins, The Coasters, Bobby Darin, Ritchie Valens, Roy Orbison, Gene Vincent

Pop Music Musicians

Nat King Cole, Rosemary Clooney, Perry Como, Dean Martin, Tony Bennett, Peggy Lee, Ella Fitzgerald, Johnny Mathis, Andy Williams, Frank Sinatra, Frankie Laine, Patti Page, Teresa Brewer, Ames Brothers, Andrews Sisters, The Four Aces, Doris Day, Pat Boone

Country Musicians

Johnny Cash, Gene Autry, Hank Williams, Conway Twitty, Patsy Cline, The Everly Brothers, June Carter Cash, Les Paul & Mary Ford

Rhythm & Blues

Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers, Sam Cooke, The Orioles, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, The Ravens, The Penguins, The Crows, The Platters, Billy Ward & his Dominoes, James Brown, Lloyd Price, Bobby Day

Rock ‘n’ Roll

The 1950’s saw the emergence and rise of Rock ‘n’ Roll and Rockabilly. Carl Perkins was one of the pioneers in the creation of rock music and his style is often referred to as “Rockabilly” because it sounds like a combination of country and R&B music with rock influences. Some other artists that were popular in the rockabilly genre were Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and Gene Vincent. Perkins wrote and recorded his chart-topping hit “Blue Suede Shoes” in 1955 and the song was then covered by Elvis Presley and enjoyed even more success.

Elvis Presley is thought to be the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll” by many and rose to fame after beginning a professional relationship with Sam Phillips – a studio owner who wanted to market “black music” to white audiences. Elvis was more successful in this endeavor than any other artist of the time and he epitomized the Rock ‘n’ Roll style and teenage rebellion of the 1950’s. One incident that best exemplifies these qualities in Elvis was his controversial performance with hip gyrations on the Milton Berle Show in 1956, a performance that shocked the conservative sensibilities of adults during the time but drew in the youth as his performance on the Ed Sullivan Show only a few weeks later drew in nearly eighty-percent of the television viewing audience.

While Elvis is largely responsible for the popularization of rock music, it is important to remember the original African-American artists who created the genre and were pushed out of the rock scene like Little Richard, Chuck Berry, The Coasters, Chubby Checker, Fats Domino and the many others who were not afforded the opportunity to even record their music.

The Buddy Holly Collection Chuck Berry Definitive Collection

Elvis Presley Essentials Gene Vincent Album

Traditional Pop and Standards

Traditional Pop music of the 1950’s refers to the music that was popular before rock music came into the mainstream in the middle of the fifties, it also refers to music that was popular at the same time as the beginning of rock music during the rest of the decade but remained largely free of rock influences. Some examples of traditional pop artists who were popular during the decade were Perry Como, Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Patti Page and Dean Martin.Often the most popular musicians in this genre translated well onto television as they would sometimes have their own television variety shows or music specials. They sang a lot of original material, but a lot of their most popular hits were American standards, or songs that had been released many years previously but were already well known by the public. Most songs in this genre could be classified as being simple and melodic with catchy lyrics.

Many of the traditional pop artists of the 1950’s were interpreters of pop standards who would take the old well-known songs and put their own individual style into it. Some of the most popular interpreters were Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee, and Doris Day. This genre was greatly influenced by jazz, swing and big band.

Nat King Cole Greatest Hits Patti Page Mercury Years

Perry Como Very Best Of The Essential Tony Bennett


Johnny Cash and Hank Williams defined the Country and Western style of music during this decade. Cash’s music was more of a country sound with a rockabilly influence and his songs often centered around a certain theme, including life, sorrow, and relationships. He also strived to integrate humor into his lyrics to make his collection well-rounded and respected by a variety of audiences. Because of his compassion for his fellow human being, he performed many times for inmates in several prisons across the country and his most famous performances resulted from Folsom Prison.

In similar musical style, Hank Williams was a prominent singer and songwriter of the decade. He continues to be a country music icon and helped to popularize the Honky Tonk style of country music, characterized by the piano and ragtime sound combined with country and rockabilly harmonies. His most popular songs, including “Hey Good Lookin’” and “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” have come to define the country style of the 1950s. He also helped to create the Outlaw Country genre – a style which included songs about spirituality and rowdy times.

Other country artists also began their careers in the 1950s but did not reach the height of their success until the next decade, like Patsy Cline and Conway Twitty. Country music also served as catch-all genre where many artists, like Connie Francis, Frankie Laine, and Pat Boone, might record one or two singles with a country influence but would remain largely producers of traditional pop music during the decade.

The Essential Johnny Cash Patsy Cline Ultimate Collection

Gene Autry Greatest Hits Hank Williams Greatest Hits

Rhythm and Blues

Rhythm and Blues emerged from the jazz music of the 1940’s and it came to be a term for blues music that was slightly more upbeat. Rhythm and Blues of the fifties combined jazz, doo-wop, blues, and gospel to create a unique sound during the decade. It also spurred the creation of such genres as Rock ‘n’ Roll, soul, Motown, and funk music.Many R&B artists of the decade were originators of rock music and a lot of the songs that came out of the fifties in the rhythm and blues genre are one in the same with the rock ‘n’ roll genre. A lot of the most popular songs of rock music enjoyed time on the R&B charts during the decade. Many African-American musicians who pioneered rock music were somewhat pushed into the category of R&B artists by music producers who were trying to make way for white rock ‘n’ rollers to capitalize on the new genre.

This genre is largely populated by African-American musicians with many white artists and musical groups covering the original material and turning R&B songs into traditional pop songs with a more mainstream sound (like the Chordettes and the Crew-Cuts). Some of the most notable R&B artists of the decade include Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers, Sam Cooke, The Drifters, The Platters, Ray Charles and Lloyd Price.

The Very Best of Little Richard The Penguins Mercury Years

Lloyd Price Greatest Hits Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers Greatest Hits

**As you read through this section you may think that some artists listed in one genre should be featured in a different genre. This is because that a majority of the popular and well-known artists were well versed in a number of genres and enjoyed great cross-over success during this decade.

Nearly all music from the fifties featured influences from rock, R&B, country, and pop. We tried our best to break down these genres and the examples of artists for each were chosen on the basis of if you were to hear their most popular songs today, what genre would it most feel like. It is important to recognize that many of the musicians of the fifties focused on gaining mainstream recognition and to do so they needed to appeal to all audiences and therefore dabbled in many genres.

It was also one of those perfect times in music history where a confluence of genres just happened to produce some of the most loved and well-known music of the past eighty years.**

Popular Songs Each Year in the 50’s

Popular Songs from the 1950's -- 1950 - Sentimental Me - Ames Brothers, Mona Lisa - Nat King Cole, All My Love - Patti Page, I Wanna Be Loved - Andrews Sisters, Music! Music! Music! - Teresa Brewer, 1951 - If - Perry Como, How High the Moon - Les Paul, Unforgettable - Nat King Cole, Because of You - Tony Bennett, Be My Love - Mario Lanza, 1952 - You Belong to Me - Jo Stafford, Here in My Heart - Al Martino, Heart and Soul - The Four Aces, A Guy is a Guy - Doris Day, Delicado - Percy Faith, 1953 - Your Cheatin’ Heart - Hank Williams, That’s Amore - Dean Martin, Vaya Con Dios - Les Paul & Mary Ford, I’m Walking Behind You - Eddie Fisher, Crying in the Chapel - The Orioles, 1954 - Secret Love - Doris Day, Mr. Sandman - The Chordettes, I Need You Now - Eddie Fisher, Sh-Boom - The Crew-Cuts, Hey There - Rosemary Clooney, 1955 - Rock Around the Clock - Bill Haley, Earth Angel - The Penguins, Tutti Frutti - Little Richard, Love & Marriage - Frank Sinatra, Maybellene - Chuck Berry, 1956 - I Walk the Line - Johnny Cash, Blue Suede Shoes - Carl Perkins, Hound Dog - Elvis Presley, The Great Pretender - The Platters, Blueberry Hill - Fats Domino, 1957 - You Send Me - Sam Cooke, Great Balls of Fire - Jerry Lee Lewis, All Shook Up - Elvis Presley, That’ll Be the Day - Buddy Holly, Banana Boat Song - Harry Belafonte, 1958 - Fever - Peggy Lee, Tequila - The Champs, Johnny B. Goode - Chuck Berry, Connie Francis - Who’s Sorry Now?, La Bamba - Ritchie Valens, 1959 - Mack the Knife - Bobby Darin, Venus - Frankie Avalon, Personality - Lloyd Price, What’d I Say - Ray Charles, Lonely Boy - Paul Anka

Some more hits from the 50’s

You’re Breaking My Heart Ink Spots 1950

I Believe Frankie Laine 1953

Three Coins In The Fountain Frank Sinatra 1954

Stranger In Paradise Tony Bennett 1955

Rock Around The Clock Bill Haley & His Comets 1955

Memories Are Made Of This Dean Martin 1956

All Shook Up Elvis Presley 1957

Jailhouse Rock Elvis Presley 1958

Great Balls Of Fire Jerry Lee Lewis 1958

Smoke Gets In Your Eyes The Platters 1959


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