Tallahassee Lassie

Album: All Time Hits, Vol. 1 (1959)
Charted: 17 6

Songfacts®:

  • This was the first of eight US Top 40 hits for Freddy Cannon, whose most memorable song is the #3 "Palisades Park" from 1962. Cannon was nicknamed "Boom Boom" for the big bass drum sound on his recordings.
  • Cannon spoke with Paul Russo of Cool Scoops ice cream parlor, who tells this story about the song: "In November 1958, Bob Crewe and Frank Slay booked a session for Freddy Cannon and the band at Boston's Ace Studio. Even with Slay on the piano, the session didn't go well. Determining that Freddy's guitar playing wasn't good enough, Kenny Paulson, who had formerly been with Dale Hawkins, was brought in to play lead. After 50 takes and still unhappy with the results, the producers and musicians called it quits. The sound on the demo was decided to be too crude for commercial release. This was confirmed when every New York label they approached turn them down. A few months later, Slay played it for a New Jersey deejay that thought it was great. They then offered it to Philadelphia based Swan Records, which was partially owned by Dick Clark. Clark liked the song, but suggested the vocal bridge, the part that begins with the pounding bass drum that begins "She dances to the bop" be repeated. Clark's instinct's were right in seeing this as the songs true hook. Unwilling to try and re-record the song, they simply spliced a copy of the bridge on the end, and that's the way the record was released."
  • Cannon's mother Mimi Picariello wrote this song. She got the songwriter credit along with Bob Crewe and Frank Slay. The lyrics were originally a poem that Mimi Picariello had written called "Rock and Roll Baby."
  • This song was influential on a number of 1960s bands, especially the Rolling Stones. "Brown Sugar" was directly inspired by Mick Jagger's repeated playing of this song.
  • Although it is actually a post-'78 tour/early Emotional Rescue outtake, The Rolling Stones released their cover of the song for the Deluxe edition of Some Girls in 2011. Mick Jagger explained: "This is a song made famous by Freddy Cannon. The original version we did at the time of Some Girls sounds like it was recorded in a wind tunnel. It now sounds like we're coming towards the end of the tunnel. Quite funky. I left it alone. Didn't do anything new, except add some handclaps - which is very close to the feel of the original." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France

Comments: 13

  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaWow Tracy if that is true does he know who played drums? thanks.
  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaLoved Kenny's guitar on this tune. Wonder who played drums?
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyPer: http://www.oldiesmusic.com/news.htm
    Chuck Barris, creator of game shows like 'The Newlywed Game' and 'The Dating Game', as well as TV's 'Gong Show', died Tuesday (March 21st, 2017) at his Palisades, New York home, the Philadelphia native was 87...
    He started as a page and moved into sales for NBC television in New York. But Chuck's later job as overseer of 'American Bandstand' for ABC-TV after the payola scandal nearly came to an end when a song he wrote, "Palisades Park*" (recorded by Freddy Cannon) became a hit on the show and across the country. In addition to his game shows, he also produced Bobby Vinton's syndicated variety TV show from 1975-1978. In his biography 'Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind' (later made into a movie), Chuck claimed to have once been a CIA agent, a claim denied by the agency...
    May he R.I.P.
    * "Palisades Park" entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart on May 6th, 1962 at #69; six weeks later on June 17th it peaked at #3 {for 2 weeks} and spent 15 weeks on the chart.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn May 1st 1959, Freddy Cannon performed "Tallahassee Lassie" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    Four days later on May 5th, 1959 it entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart...
    (See next post below for more info on Freddy).
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn April 24th 1965, Freddy Cannon performed "Tallahassee Lassie" on the syndicated TV program 'Hollywood A Go-Go'...
    Six years earlier on May 5th, 1959 it entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; eventually it peaked at #6 and spent 15 weeks on the Top 100...
    It was his debut record on the charts and between 1959 and 1981 he had twenty-two Top 100 records, with three making the Top 10...
    Mr. Cannon, born Frederick Anthony Picariello Jr., will celebrate his 74th birthday this coming December 4th.
  • Tracy from Concord, NhMy father; Gary Hicks was the lead player on the final cut of Tallahassee Lassie. He's still gigging & recording at 73 =D
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyBoth "Way Down Yonder in New Orleans" and "Palasades Park" peaked at No. 3 and both also stayed in the Top 100 for 15 weeks!!!
  • John from Brooklyn, InI thought Palasades Park was his biggest hit...at least I heard Chuck Ferris said it was...back when he was the head gong on the Gong Show...now that was a true Americas Got Talent Show...
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn October 29th, 1960 Dick Clark's Caravan of Stars rolled into Utica, NY. The headliner was Fabian; others acts were Brenda Lee, Duane Eddy, and Chubby Checker. Freddy Cannon opened the show with two songs, "Tallahassee Lassis" and "Jump Over"...
  • Frank from Granchester Meadows, GreenlandShe's got a HI-FI chassy!
  • Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, Caa lot of "woos" in dere...;)
  • Sam from Hipsville, CaThis is a great one!...but it's not as cool as the song he did called "Where The Action Is", also the themesong for the T.V. show in 1965.
  • Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, Cai'm not sure I like this record....
    I guess it's better than "Transistor Sister", but not as good as "Way Down Yonder In New Orleans..."
    (a solid song)
see more comments

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