Mercy, Mercy, Mercy

Album: Time & Changes (1967)
Charted: 5

Songfacts®:

  • This song was originally an instrumental Jazz song recorded by saxophonist Julian "Cannonball" Adderley; his version peaked at US #11 a few months before the Buckinghams' vocal version. It was composed by Joe Zawinul and lyrics were later added by a variety of lyricists. The Buckinghams' version contains lyrics by Johnny "Guitar" Watson and Larry Williams. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jerro - New Alexandria, PA

Comments: 9

  • C.g. Dee from Big D, Texas, UsaPeople of a certain generation may not realize that American acts in the mid-1960s pretended to be British in order to make it in the music biz. In many cases, it Worked.

    https://tinyurl.com/yd4zfk7j
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 4, 1967, 'Cannonball' Adderley performed "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy"* on the Dick Clark ABC-TV Saturday-afternoon program 'American Bandstand'...
    At the time the song was in it's second of two weeks at #11 on Billboard's Top 100 chart, that was also it's peak position on the chart, plus it spent eleven weeks on the Top 100...
    The following week it peaked at #3 {for 1 week} on Billboard's Hot R&B Singles chart...
    Besides "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy", the Florida native had four other Top 100 records, "African Waltz" {#41 in 1961}, "The Jive Samba" {#66 in 1963}, "Why? (Am I Treated So Bad)" {#73 in 1967}, and "Country Preacher" {#86 in 1970}...
    Julian Edwin 'Cannonball' Adderley passed away at the young age of 46 on August 8th, 1975 {cerebral hemorrhage}...
    May he R.I.P.
    *Three other versions of "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" also charted in 1967; the Buckinghams {#5}, Marlena Shaw {#58}, and Larry Williams & Johnny Watson {#96}.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn May 27, 1967, the Buckinghams performed "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" on the Dick Clark ABC-TV network Saturday-afternoon program 'American Bandstand'...
    Two weeks later on June 11th the song entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at #81; eight weeks later it would peak at #5 {for 1 week} and it spent 12 week on the Top 100..
    Seems many artists like the word 'Mercy':
    Three other versions of "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" also charted in 1967; Cannonball Adderley Quintet {#11}, Marlena Shaw {#58}, and Larry Williams & Johnny Watson {#96}...
    Other Top 100 records containing just only the word 'Mercy':
    "Mercy" by the Ohio Express {#30in 1969}
    "Mercy, Mercy" by Don Covay & the Goodtimers {#35 in 1964}
    "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" by Phoebe Snow {#52 in 1981}
    And three other 'Mercy' records; "Mercy, Mercy Me" by Marvin Gaye {#4 in 1971}, "Have Mercy Baby" by the Bobbettes {#66 in 1960}, and "Somebody Have Mercy" by Sam Cooke [#70 in 1962}...
    Of course all of the above songs are available on You Tube.
  • Larry from BostonRegarding the first couple of lines of the lyrics in the lyric posting: I hear it as "My baby she made out of love / Like one of those bunnies out of the Playboy Club" NOT "My baby she may not a-look / Like one of those bunnies out of a Playboy Club."
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn June 11th 1967, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" by the Buckinghams entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #81; eight weeks later on August 6th, 1967 it would peak at #5 {for 1 week} and it stayed on the chart for 12 weeks...
    Between 1966 and 1968 the Chicago quintet had seven Top 100 records; three made the Top 10 with one reaching #1, "Kind of A Drag"* for 2 weeks on February 18th, 1967...
    They just missed having a fourth Top 10 record when "Susan" peaked at #11 {for 2 weeks} in January 21st, 1968...
    * "Kind of a Drag" ended the Monkees seven week reign at #1 with "I'm A Believer".
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny
    * Double Lucky Elevens *

    On January 1st 1967, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" by Cannonball Adderley entered the Hot Top 100 chart; and on February 19th it peaked at #11 (for 2 weeks) and also spent 11 weeks on the Top 100...
    Three months later on March 5th Marlena Shaw's covered version charted, it reached #58 and stayed on the Top 100 for 5 weeks...
    Then three months later Buckingham's covered version entered the Top 100 on June 10th; it peaked on August 6th at #5 (for 1 week) and remained on the Top 100 for 12 weeks...
    Also in 1967 the duo of Larry Williams & Johnny 'Guitar' Watson released their version, it peaked at #96 on the Top 100...
    R.I.P. Mr. Adderly, born Julian Edwin Adderley, (1928 - 1975) and Ms. Shaw, born Marlina Burgess,
    celebrated her 71st birthday four months ago on September 22nd.
  • Matthew from Toronto, OnGreat change-of-pace hit for the Buckinghams. They tried to get away from their easy-going sweetness here. I'm not sure the vocal performance is up to say, Ray Charles, but it's a damned good attempt & a great song to sing along with.
  • Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, CaGreat horn arrangement by Jimmy Guercio?
    : )
    shades of things to come(BS&Tears,and Chicago
  • Kevin from Syracuse, UtIt makes perfect sense that Joe Zawinul composed this. It has that same, bright jazz feel as "Birdland," another timeless Zawinul composition.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Grunge Bands QuizMusic Quiz

If the name Citizen Dick means anything to you, there's a chance you'll get some of these right.

90s MetalFact or Fiction

Test your metal - Priest, Maiden, and Beavis and Butt-head show up in this one.

George HarrisonFact or Fiction

Did Eric Clapton really steal George's wife? What's the George Harrison-Monty Python connection? Set the record straight with our Fact or Fiction quiz.

Matt SorumSongwriter Interviews

When he joined Guns N' Roses in 1990, Matt helped them craft an orchestral sound; his mezzo fortes and pianissimos are all over "November Rain."

Jack Tempchin - "Peaceful Easy Feeling"They're Playing My Song

When a waitress wouldn't take him home, Jack wrote what would become one of the Eagles most enduring hits.

Songs in Famous Movie Scenes: '80s EditionMusic Quiz

You know the scenes - Tom Cruise in his own pants-off dance off, Molly Ringwald celebrating her birthday - but do you remember what song is playing?