It was covered by Jimmy LaFave and the Ribbon of Highway Cast, The Fureys & Davey Arthur, Eddy Drake, Eduard Jimmy Matešić and other artists. Billboard ranked this version as the No. General Comment"The song, however, was not written by Leadbelly.Its origins actually stretch back to a song by Gussie L. Davis in 1889, and Leadbelly learned the song from his uncle. Goodnight, Irene by Eddy Arnold was written by Leadbelly and John Lomax and was first recorded by Leadbelly in 1933. This information is shared with social media, sponsorship, analytics, and other vendors or service providers. He though claimed to have been taught it by an uncle. In some of his recordings, such as in one of his versions of the folk ballad "John Hardy", he performs on the accordion instead of the guitar. It was first released by Lead Belly in 1943. The Library of Congress Recordings: Leadbelly - Midnight Special, Vol. Seeger says Lead Belly must have made a few changes to the original tune. One of the first recordings of 13 year-old Jimmy Page in 1957 and the rise of Skiffle. 15 Songs. [1993:] [We] found ourselves in a most unexpected situation. After Leadbelly's "discovery" and consequent fame from the song in the 1940s, The Weavers picked it up and hit number one with it in 1950, a year after Leadbelly's death." He told the Lomaxes he’d heard the song sung by his uncles as a child. Find album reviews, stream songs, credits and award information for Goodnight Irene: The Weavers, 1949-1953 - The Weavers on AllMusic - 2000 - There are great records, and then there are… This is a great album to understand why so many rock/folk musicians look back in time for their direction, so many good songs. Although generally faithful, the Weavers chose to omit some of Lead Belly’s more controversial lyrics, leading Time magazine to label it a “dehydrated” and “prettied up” version of the original. ... "In 1950, everybody knew this song." The Weavers’ version of Goodnight, Irene, derived from Lead Belly.Lead Belly was a Louisiana-born African-American blues and folk artist. The lyrics tell of the singer's troubled past with his love, Irene, and express his sadness and frustration. This gave him lots of time to listen to, and learn, the music of older inmates. In the summer of 1950 you couldn't escape it. Thanks to the enthusiasm of bandleader Gordon Jenkins, we'd recorded one of the songs of Leadbelly, who'd died penniless the year before. 1 (1934-1935) (2005) on the album Leadbelly Vol. 1 song of 1950. It was first released by Lead Belly in 1943. Lead Belly drives the car, assists with recording equipment, and helps to encourage singers. Wikipedia. This is a great album to understand why so many rock/folk musicians look back in time for their direction, so many good songs. The song Goodnight Irene was written by Leadbelly and John Lomax and was first recorded by Leadbelly in 1933. While made widely known by Lead Belly, this song was also a major hit for a group called The Weavers, featuring a young Pete Seeger. Other Statistics; Songs. 4 (1939-1947) (2005) on the album Leadbelly Vol. See details. The 1888 song "Irene, Goodnight," sung by the Haverly Minstrels and credited by Spaeth to "Davis" (but dated 1892), is a separate piece. This single first reached the Billboard Best Sellers in Stores chart on June 30, 1950 and lasted 25 weeks on the chart, peaking at #1 for 13 weeks. John Lomax recorded a version of Huddie Ledbetter's song "Irene" in 1933, on a prison visit to Angola (Louisiana State Penitentiary). Comments: 8. Huddie ‘Lead Belly’ Ledbetter – Goodnight, Irene (1933). It was covered by Jimmy LaFave and the Ribbon of Highway Cast, The Fureys & Davey Arthur, Eddy Drake, Eduard Jimmy Matešić and other artists. A waltz yet! The "Davis" cited by Spaeth is Gussie L. Davis, and according to Guy Logsdon & Jeff Place the date is 1887, not 1888. Leadbelly - Country Roots - 125 Original Recordings (Remastered) Album Lyrics; 1. The 1888 song "Irene, Goodnight," sung by the Haverly Minstrels and credited by Spaeth to "Davis" (but dated 1892), is a separate piece. The Lomaxes brought him to New York, where he delighted audiences who were astonished by the raw power of "down home" music. Leadbelly died Dec. 6, 1949, six months later Irene became a hit & sold 2 million & was translated into every European language". He changed everything he ever sung. - RBW The "Davis" cited by Spaeth is Gussie L. Davis, and according to Guy Logsdon & Jeff Place the date is 1887, not 1888. * As you can see if you follow that link to The Life and Legend of Leadbelly , Wolfe and Lornell also connect the song (per Ledbetter family folklore) to Huddie’s niece Irene Campbell. It was covered by John Stewart & Darwin's Army, Second Line Jazzband, The Perch Creek Family Jugband, Ivo Robić and other artists. 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