In memory of Phil Everly, who passed away on Friday from COPD, I felt it would be appropriate to pick one of The Everly Brothers’ early hits for the first rewind of 2014.
Released in 1957, “Wake Up Little Susie” was not The Everly Brothers’ first hit single (“Bye Bye Love” has that distinction), but it was their first single to top the Billboard Pop charts, also topping the country charts for seven weeks after its release. This was indicative of their crossover success, being embraced by both the country and rock communities in the 1950s.
Interestingly, the song achieved chart success despite being banned for a time from the Boston radio market. The song tells the story of a teenage couple who fall asleep during a drive-in movie date and wake up at 4:00 a.m. Although the song doesn’t imply anything sexual (much the opposite, in fact), the idea of being alone in a car after curfew was still considered suggestive.
The video below is a classic live television performance of the song. Enjoy!