Sunday Music – Walk On By

Posted on Sun 03/18/2018 by

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Today’s music video is Walk On By, sung here in this clip by the American Country singer Leroy van Dyke.

Link to Video at You Tube

This video was posted to You Tube by CaptainJimKirk

The Friday just passed was the anniversary of ten years blogging for me. I have more than 1700 individual Posts under my own name.

At the end of that first year late in December, I posted a quick Music Post, and another a week later while on was on holidays with my family. I thought it would be rude of me to sit at the computer for hours a day while visiting with my family, so I just found a favourite music clip and added some text to it. When I got back home, I thought it would be a good thing to do this on a regular basis, hence the start of my Sunday Music Posts. Over the intervening years I have only missed a couple of Sundays. I was going back over some of those old music Posts, and while I have more than 1700 Posts in all, around 450 of those have been my Music Posts, and that surprised me somewhat.

As I expected, the most popular of those music Posts were the songs in the Bob Dylan Series I did. In the beginning I started out with Instrumentals only, and that also surprised me, just how many of those songs there were, all without lyrics, and I liked all of them, mainly because I only posted songs I actually liked. One of the most popular of those Instrumentals was a song from Hank Garland, and that name probably does not ring many bells in people’s recollection of music. That song was Sugarfooot Rag, which was far and away his biggest hit, and highlighted his wonderful skill with the guitar. The song is at this link. While this was a solo hit for Hank Garland, he was without doubt one of the biggest names in Country Music, even if behind the scenes as his excellence with the guitar saw him being personally called on as a session guitarist for what is a large number of the biggest recording artists of the time, in the late 50s, as you will see when you take the link to his solo hit.

One of the artists he did backing guitar work for was Leroy van Dyke, who had a major hit in 1956 called The Auctioneer, about his cousin, a real life auctioneer. That song was a huge hit for Leroy, the fast paced lyrics the same as that of a real auctioneer.

In 1961, he released the song I have featured today. Hank Garland was the session guitarist on the recording of the Single, and you can hear the guitar work in this studio version of this huge hit.

The song Walk On By was written by Kendall Hayes, and released in mid 1961. The song rocketed straight to Number One and then in an amazing feat, it stayed at Number One on the Country Charts for a record 19 weeks. In those days, well, in any days really, it’s a rare thing to spend 19 weeks in the Charts, let alone 19 weeks at Number One. The song spent more than 40 weeks on the Country Charts and crossed over onto the mainstream charts, peaking at Number Four. It sold almost two million copies. In 1994, it was voted as the Greatest Country song of all time, based on weeks spent on the chart, weeks at Number One and sales of the record, and radio plays of the song.

Keep in mind that this song was released in 1961. It took until July of 2013 for that record to be equalled, and that was the song Cruise, recorded by Florida Georgia Line, and the following week that song broke the record spending a total of 20 weeks at Number One. So, it took 52 years for that record to be broken.

Listen closely to the song. The lyrics are suggestive, and sung from the perspective of a man who sees someone else he is ‘involved with’, but he belongs to another, so it’s not right to be seen with this other person. I could make an observation that in this day and age, the song would not be so innocent sounding, but a lot more explicit. I think I prefer those old lyrics.

It’s hard to believe that songs which were once so huge are hardly heard of these days at all, and songs with a huge following at the time, part of music history that we are all the better for. So many of those early singers, songwriters, and guitarists like Hank Garland are the ones who paved the way for the musicians we all like today, and their songs, while rarely played, and less rarely heard, still stand that test of time.

Posted in: Music, Videos