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Little Red Riding Hood by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs

Album: Greatest HitsReleased: 1966Charted:
2
46
  • Also known as "Lil' Red Riding Hood," is an updated version of the Little Red Riding Hood fairy tale, with the lead singer portraying the wolf. In this context, the singer is preying on the girl through lies and deception in an attempt to win her favor and take advantage of her. It's a scene played out in many social situations, as an aggressive guy might play lots of tricks to seduce an unsuspecting girl.
  • Written by Ronald Blackwell and produced by Stan Kesler, this was the second big semi-novelty hit for the Texas band Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs. Their debut hit "Wooly Bully" also made it to #2.

    Sam, whose real name is Domingo Samudio, developed his act in the Dallas area where he played lots of local dances. With the Pharaohs, he became a comedy act, touring in a hearse and wearing turbans and Egyptian garb on stage. Some of their other songs were "The Hair On My Chinny Chin Chin," "I Couldn't Spell †&%$@?!" and "Pharoah A-Go Go."
  • The group's female backup singers were known as The Sham-Ettes, and when "Little Red Riding Hood" took off, the group's record label, MGM, had the Sham-Ettes release an answer song called "Hey There Big Bad Wolf."
  • The Big Bopper released a different song called "Little Red Riding Hood" in 1958.
  • In 2011 the actress Amanda Seyfried recorded a new version of this song. Seyfried starred in the movie Little Red Riding Hood, which was a Twilight-style update on the fairy tale. Her version was produced by Matt Sorum, formerly of Guns 'N' Roses.
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Comments: 13

On June 5th 1966, "Lil' Red Riding Hood" by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #99; and on July 31st it peaked at #2 (for 2 weeks) and spent 18 weeks on the Top 100 (and for 7 of those 18 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
It also reached #2 on the Canadian RPM Top Singles chart...
For the 2 weeks it was at #2 on the Top 100, the #1 record for the first week was "Wild Thing" by the Troggs and for the second week it was "Summer In The City" by the Lovin' Spoonful...
Between 1965 and 1967 the group had nine records make the Top 100 chart; with two making the Top 10 and both those records reached #2, the other #2 was "Wooly Bully" and also for two weeks.
Barry - Sauquoit, Ny
My favorite song on this album was The Peace Loving Bull, El Toro de Goro. My favorite line from the song? "If you get too conceited, some peace loving fool, Will smack you a good one in the Rear - Oh!" It was a novelty song with a very powerful message behind it.Charles - 79928, Tx
"Little Red Riding Hood" was a big hit in '66 & very popular. Back then, I was a fan of Sam the Sham & The Pharoahs with all their wild costumes and unusual hits. But in the mid-Sixties, the music charts were full of a wide variety of music (i.e. instrumentals, ballads, adult pop, acid rock, soft rock, folk rock, novelty, R&B, bubble gum, and dance hits). A fun time before the music scene changed again. This band had several hits & misses. Of their hits, I loved this one, Wooly Bully, Ju Ju Hand, Ring Dang Doo, Red Hot, Big Blue Diamond, Medicine Man, and The Hair on my Chinny Chin-Chin. It's not cerebral stuff, but it's fun. And I believe that is what true rock & roll is all about anyway.Raunchy - Tulsa, Ok
Hey, it's a fun song & it was a huge hit from 1966. In the years 1965-67, my brother had several albums & 45s by Sam the Sham & The Pharoahs & that's how I know their music. The band was sorta odd, but in 1966 a lot of rock bands were supposed to be odd anyway. The mid-Sixties were just giving way to the advent of changes in rock to new things like acid rock, psychedelic rock, hard rock, etc. And Sam the Sham still managed to rack up some hits. Their costumes they wore on their LPs and concerts were sure "groovy" and "funky." I think they were a pretty tight rock band technically and talented, despite some of the material they recorded. One under-appreciated hit of theirs I recall was "Red Hot" an old rocker originally from the 50s & they do it real justice.Elmer H - Westville, Ok
A tongue-in-cheek song that's so bad it's good. Great comic turn; should be rated as a novelty tune. Those HOWLSSham & company surprised themselves by doing so well with this, that they tried to repeat it with "The Hair on My Chinny Chin Chin,"--and succeeded, to some extent.Matthew - Toronto, On
I've always thought of this song as a metaphor for a man with a tough, scary exterior or reputation. He is in love with a girl who is much higher in class than him and knows sadly that she would never have anything to do with him. He admires her painfully in the song.Lenny - Brookfield, Oh
my dad showed me this song when i was like 5 or 6 and i loved it. im 23 now and its a great song lyrically and musically. back when rock and roll was simple entertainment.Marcus - Fresno, Ca
My mother did NOT understand rock'n'roll. We were eating lunch one day in the summer of '66 (I was working nights between college years), had WLS tuned in, and they played "Eleanor Rigby"--tight string quartet arrangement, serious social commentary lyrics, and she didn't like it. Then hey played "Little Red Riding Hood," and she loved it. Go figure.Dave - Cullman, Al
I love this song. It is so cute and funny. Someone sent it to me a couple days ago because I had mentioned that I was going to be Red Riding Hood for Halloween. lolKimberly - Centreville, Ms
this song's funny...me likey:)Nady - Adelaide, Australia
lol this is from way back in the day when you had greasers and stuff. The song is about this guy who looks bad ie long hair or leather jacket. He makes a portrayal of himself to society as a bad man. As most kids are wont to do. Where he meets a girl and trys to explain that he is actually a nice guy on the inside and not to let the exterior distract her from that.Shawn - Edmonton, Ab
Christian band The Lost Dogs did a hilarious teaser of this on their album "Little Red Riding Hood".Richard - Talladega, Al
I respectfully submit that Bertrand hasn't heard the same version of the lyrics I have. Sam's wolf is a sympathetic character, well aware of his reputation for ferocity, and in the song he begs LRR for understanding.Mark - Lancaster, Oh