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This was written by the husband and wife team of Felice and Boudleaux Bryant, who wrote most of The Everly Brothers songs in the '50s. Their songs were also recorded by Bob Dylan, Elvis, and Buddy Holly.
This is about a young couple who fall asleep at the drive-in, realize they are out past curfew, and make up a story to tell Susie's parents.
Some Boston radio stations banned this because of the lyrics, which imply that the young couple spent the night together. At the time, staying out late with a girl was a little controversial.
For The Everly Brothers, this was the first of 4 US #1 hits. It also went to #1 on the Country & Western charts.
At an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show while campaigning for President in year 2000, George W. Bush was asked by Oprah what his favorite song was. He said: "Wake Up Little Susie - by Buddy Holly."
Simon and Garfunkel played this at their 1981 concert in Central Park. The live recording was released as a single the next year and hit #27 in the US.
Chet Atkins played guitar on this. Atkins, who died of cancer in 2001, was a Nashville musician who created a distinctive sound using a 3-fingered picking technique.
Steven Tyler of Aerosmith
Tyler talks about his true love: songwriting. How he identifies the beauty in a melody and turns sorrow into art.
Tony Joe White
The writer of "Rainy Night in Georgia" and "Polk Salad Annie" explains how he cooks up his Louisiana swamp rock.
Al Jourgensen of Ministry
In the name of song explanation, Al talks about scoring heroin for William Burroughs, and that's not even the most shocking story in this one.