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Blue Suede Shoes

Words & Music by Carl Perkins

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Blue Suede Shoes

Words & Music by Carl Perkins

Well, it's one for the money,
Two for the show,
Three to get ready,
Now go, cat, go.

But don't you step on my blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my Blue suede shoes.

Well, you can knock me down,
Step in my face,
Slander my name
All over the place.

Do anything that you want to do, but uh-uh,
Honey, lay off of my shoes
Don't you step on my Blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my blue suede shoes.

Burn my house,
Steal my car,
Drink my cider
From my old fruitjar.

Do anything that you want to do, but uh-uh,
Honey, lay off of my shoes
Don't you step on my blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my blue suede shoes

First album:

LPM-1254, 1956, Elvis Presley

First recorded:

Studio New York, January 30, 1956

More info: »


Blue Suede Shoes was written by Carl Perkins in late 1955. There are two versions of how Perkins came to write the song. Perkins had said that he played for a high school dance in Jackson, Tennessee, on December 4, 1955. During the dance, he spotted a boy with blue suede shoes dancing with a gorgeous girl. The boy told her, "Uh-uh! Don't step on my blue suede shoes!" Perkins couldn't get the image out of his mind. He awoke at three o'clock the next morning with the lyrics to Blue Suede Shoes and wrote them down on a brown paper potato sack. Originally, the first line was "One for the money, two for the show, three get ready, and go, man, go". But while recording the song at Sun Records, Perkins substituted the word cat for man. That opening phrase was borrowed from Bill Haley's 1953 recording What 'Cha Gonna Do (Essex 321).

Johnny Cash told a different story about the origin of Blue Suede Shoes. While Perkins, Elvis, and Cash were performing in Amory, Mississippi, one night in 1955, Cash told Perkins about a black sergeant he had in the Air Force by the name of C.V. White. Sergeant White would frequently step into Cash's room and ask him how he (White) looked and then say, "Just don't step on my blue suede shoes!" (Never mind that Sergeant White was wearing regulation Air Force shoes). Perkins thought that Cash's story was a good idea for a song. While Elvis was performing on stage, Perkins wrote Blue Suede Shoes.

Whatever the story, Perkins's Blue Suede Shoes (Sun 234) was released on January 1, 1956. By March it was #4 on Billboard's Top 100 chart, #2 on the country chart (Heartbreak Hotel kept it from being number one), and #2 on the rhythm & blues chart - the first song in music history to reach all three charts. Blue Suede Shoes was a million-seller.

Three versions of Blue Suede Shoes charted in 1956: Perkins's, Elvis's, and that by Boyd Bennet and His Rockets (King 4903), who reached #63 on the Top 100 chart. In 1973 Johnny Rivers (United Artists 198) peaked at #38 with his recording.

Elvis recorded Blue Suede Shoes on January 30, 1956, at RCA's New York City studios. Although the September 1956 single did not chart, earlier in the year Blue Suede Shoes had reached #24 on Billboard's Top 100 chart as part of the EP Elvis Presley (RCA EPA-747). It had a 12-week stay on the chart.

Elvis sang Blue Suede Shoes during his screen test for Paramount Pictures on April 1, 1956, and on the following TV programs: Stage Show (February 11, 1956; March 17, 1956), The Milton Berle Show (April 3, 1956), and Elvis: Aloha From Hawaii (January 14, 1973). In addition, a performance of the song at the International Hotel in Las Vegas in August 1970, was used in the documentary Elvis - That's The Way It Is. Blue Suede Shoes was recorded for the 1968 TV special, Elvis, but was not used. However, a spliced version, using the first portion of the song recorded on June 27, 1968, at the 6:00 P.M. show, and the last portion recorded on June 29, 1968, at the 8:00 P.M. show, was heard in the 1981 documentary This Is Elvis. The version of Blue Suede Shoes heard on a jukebox in G.I. Blues was recorded at RCA's Hollywood studios on April 28, 1960.

In 1985 RCA issued a music video of Elvis's Blue Suede Shoes in which Carl Perkins made a cameo appearance.

«


Well, it's one for the money,
Two for the show,
Three to get ready,
Now go, cat, go.

But don't you step on my blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my Blue suede shoes.

Well, you can knock me down,
Step in my face,
Slander my name
All over the place.

Do anything that you want to do, but uh-uh,
Honey, lay off of my shoes
Don't you step on my Blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my blue suede shoes.

Burn my house,
Steal my car,
Drink my cider
From my old fruitjar.

Do anything that you want to do, but uh-uh,
Honey, lay off of my shoes
Don't you step on my blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my blue suede shoes

First album:

LPM-1254, 1956, Elvis Presley

First recorded:

Studio New York, January 30, 1956


Blue Suede Shoes was written by Carl Perkins in late 1955. There are two versions of how Perkins came to write the song. Perkins had said that he played for a high school dance in Jackson, Tennessee, on December 4, 1955. During the dance, he spotted a boy with blue suede shoes dancing with a gorgeous girl. The boy told her, "Uh-uh! Don't step on my blue suede shoes!" Perkins couldn't get the image out of his mind. He awoke at three o'clock the next morning with the lyrics to Blue Suede Shoes and wrote them down on a brown paper potato sack. Originally, the first line was "One for the money, two for the show, three get ready, and go, man, go". But while recording the song at Sun Records, Perkins substituted the word cat for man. That opening phrase was borrowed from Bill Haley's 1953 recording What 'Cha Gonna Do (Essex 321).

Johnny Cash told a different story about the origin of Blue Suede Shoes. While Perkins, Elvis, and Cash were performing in Amory, Mississippi, one night in 1955, Cash told Perkins about a black sergeant he had in the Air Force by the name of C.V. White. Sergeant White would frequently step into Cash's room and ask him how he (White) looked and then say, "Just don't step on my blue suede shoes!" (Never mind that Sergeant White was wearing regulation Air Force shoes). Perkins thought that Cash's story was a good idea for a song. While Elvis was performing on stage, Perkins wrote Blue Suede Shoes.

Whatever the story, Perkins's Blue Suede Shoes (Sun 234) was released on January 1, 1956. By March it was #4 on Billboard's Top 100 chart, #2 on the country chart (Heartbreak Hotel kept it from being number one), and #2 on the rhythm & blues chart - the first song in music history to reach all three charts. Blue Suede Shoes was a million-seller.

Three versions of Blue Suede Shoes charted in 1956: Perkins's, Elvis's, and that by Boyd Bennet and His Rockets (King 4903), who reached #63 on the Top 100 chart. In 1973 Johnny Rivers (United Artists 198) peaked at #38 with his recording.

Elvis recorded Blue Suede Shoes on January 30, 1956, at RCA's New York City studios. Although the September 1956 single did not chart, earlier in the year Blue Suede Shoes had reached #24 on Billboard's Top 100 chart as part of the EP Elvis Presley (RCA EPA-747). It had a 12-week stay on the chart.

Elvis sang Blue Suede Shoes during his screen test for Paramount Pictures on April 1, 1956, and on the following TV programs: Stage Show (February 11, 1956; March 17, 1956), The Milton Berle Show (April 3, 1956), and Elvis: Aloha From Hawaii (January 14, 1973). In addition, a performance of the song at the International Hotel in Las Vegas in August 1970, was used in the documentary Elvis - That's The Way It Is. Blue Suede Shoes was recorded for the 1968 TV special, Elvis, but was not used. However, a spliced version, using the first portion of the song recorded on June 27, 1968, at the 6:00 P.M. show, and the last portion recorded on June 29, 1968, at the 8:00 P.M. show, was heard in the 1981 documentary This Is Elvis. The version of Blue Suede Shoes heard on a jukebox in G.I. Blues was recorded at RCA's Hollywood studios on April 28, 1960.

In 1985 RCA issued a music video of Elvis's Blue Suede Shoes in which Carl Perkins made a cameo appearance.