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Bruce Channel "Hey! Baby"

Pop Tunes

Bruce Channel teamed up with good friend Margaret Cobb to write “Hey! Baby” in 1959. The doo wop group The Ban-Lons recorded it in 1959 (and there are various theories as to whether Channel sang lead on that recording).  Channel performed the song for a few years, and one day Bill Smith, a Fort Worth record producer, asked him to make a demo. Smith released the record on his own label, and it was later picked up by Smash Records. The song went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1962 as well as to #2 on the R&B Chart and the U.K. singls chart. “Hey! Baby” was featured in the film Dirty Dancing.

Delbert McClinton played the harmonica part on the song. There are stories about how at one of Channel’s shows, during a European tour, Channel was supported by a then-unknown Liverpool group, The Beatles. John Lennon, who could play the harmonica, was  impressed with McClinton’s riffs in the song.  Regardless of which legends are true, it is said that the harmonica on “Hey! Baby” inspired the harmonica part on the Beatles song “Love Me Do.”

Here are the lyrics to “Hey! Baby” by Bruce Channel:

“Hey, hey, hey baby
I want to know if you’ll be my girl
Hey, hey, hey baby
I want to know if you’ll be my girl

When I saw you walking down the street
I said that’s a kind of girl I’d like to meet
She’s so pretty, Lord, she’s fine
I’m gonna make her mine, all mine

Hey, hey, hey baby
I want to know if you’ll be my girl

When you turned and walked away
That’s when I want to say
C’mon baby, give me a whirl
I want to know if you’ll be my girl

Hey, hey, hey baby
I want to know if you’ll be my girl

When you turned and walked away
That’s when I want to say
C’mon baby, give me a whirl
I want to know if you’ll be my girl

Hey, hey, hey baby
I want to know if you’ll be my girl
Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, baby
C’mon, baby

If you are interested in the original recording of the song by The Ban-Lons:

For More Golden Oldies Music                                

The Daily Doo Wop Rec Room has daily featured doo wop, rock and roll, R&B, or rockabilly songs that were hits during the first era of rock and roll (that is, from about 1952 until the British invasion in 1964). After a song is featured, it then goes into the juke box. You are welcome to listen to any of the 40+ selections there. Every weekend, there is a Golden Oldies Juke Box Saturday Night, and the juke box is full of song requests from the 1950s and 1960s.

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3 Comments

  1. bob says:

    Bruce Channel’s “Hey Baby” could be one of the most famous songs by a one-hit wonder. I have it by BC and Anne Murray. Since about the mid 90’s I’ve become a big fan of Delbert McClinton. My wife and I have seen him twice at the Nashville City Winery. “People Just Love to Talk” is my most frequently played song of his on i-tunes. To my knowledge, he’s never had any meaningful chart success.

  2. Diane Millican says:

    Where is the song I requested?Hurt by Elvis Presley,not Timi Yuro?

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