You Ain’t Nothing But a Hound Dog

Facts About the Elvis Presley Song That Changed the Direction of Music Forever

The phenomenal blues-rock n’ roll song was written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stroller. It contains 12 bars and was originally recorded on August 13, 1952, by Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton in Los Angeles. Late in the following February, the song was released by Peacock Records.

Facts about Elvis Presley's Hound Dog

Houndog may have been her only hit record, but sales of Thornton’s version reached more than 500,000 copies. In the R&B music charts, it stayed number one for 7 weeks. One of the first ever “crossovers'” it also remained on top of the Country & Western and pop charts.

It took a while, but Hound Dog, in February 2013, was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for playing an important role in the development of Rock and Roll music.

Due to the popularity of the song, Hound Dog has been recorded over 250 times. Elvis Presley had the most famous version. He recorded it in July 1956. In the list of 500 Greatest Songs of All time in Rolling Stone magazine, it in #19.

The sales of Presley’s Hound Dog surpassed a historical  10 million copies and marked the beginning of the rock and roll revolution. Many music historians and writers considered as the most commercial song of Presley during his life.

Elvis
Elvis Presley's Hound Dog

Hound Dog has appeared in movie soundtracks including Nowhere Boy, Indiana Jones and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Hounddog, Lilo & Stitch, Forrest Gump, Grease and A Few Good Men.

Prior to Presley recording it, Hound Dog had been covered in 10 different versions including records by Freddy Bell, Billy Starr, Tomy Duncan, and Eddie Hazelwood.

Elvis Presley's Hound Dog Facts

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.
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