In late 1968 Small Faces frontman Steve Marriott formed Humble Pie with Peter Frampton, who had been the vocalist and lead guitarist for pop band The Herd, along with ex Spooky Tooth bassist Greg Ridley and Jerry Shirley, who had been the drummer for the mod band Apostolic Intervention. Because they had previously played in high-profile groups many viewed Humble Pie as a "supergroup" and they were signed to Small Faces' label Immediate Records, which was headed by Andrew Loog Oldham. This was their debut single, which roared up the UK singles charts in the summer of 1969 becoming a #4 hit and was quickly followed by the album As Safe As Yesterday Is, which didn't include the song.
Shirley recalled to Mojo magazine February 2010: "'Natural Born Bogie' was written after we had completed the album. If we had been smart we would have put it on the album. It was the first song that Andrew Oldham heard that he said had single sensibilities. I remember Steve at a rehearsal saying, 'Here, I've got this, what do you think? I'm pretty sure he had the whole song. Funny thing was, we hardly ever played it live. We played it later when I was with Stevie in Packer of Three."
Despite their instant debut hit, Humble Pie never became a singles act - none of their other British 45s reached the charts. Hitting big in America, they were an album band that concentrated on the live experience. In the US their most successful single was "Hot 'n' Nasty," which peaked at #52.