June 5 – Elvis ‘Hound Dog’, Sam the Sham ‘Wooly Bully’

Elvis sings a little R&B ditty called ‘Hound Dog‘ on the The Milton Berle Show.

Try the (August 13, 1952) Big Mama Thornton version if you want the real story.

It was written and produced by the amazing Leiber and Stoller. (It was their first production; Peacock Records #1612, Johnny Otis on drums.) ▷AllMusic:Thornton bio ▹

Anyway, 40 million people saw the show — and Elvis recorded (30 takes of) the song a few weeks later. It pretty much owns the #1 spot from August through October.


Rock and roll singer Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs have a US#2 hit with single Wooly Bully.

Domingo Zamudio was born in Dallas in 1937 and ‘hauled his equipment in a 1952 Packard hearse with maroon velvet curtains’. While the conjunto-influenced single — recorded for the Pen label in Memphis — is kept out of the top spot by Help Me, Rhonda, Billboard still names it the record of the year.

Sam, with a new group of Pharoahs, has another hit in 1966 with Li’l Red Riding Hood — which also reaches US#2,CA#2 !!

 ( Website ▷CB:Sam the Sham ▹

See also: List of Billboard Year-End number-one singles and albums