Twist and Shout

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"Twist and Shout"
Twist and Shout by The Top Notes B-side US vinyl label.jpg
Single by the Top Notes
A-side"Always Late (Why Lead Me On)"
Released1961 (1961)
RecordedFebruary 23, 1961
StudioAtlantic, New York City
GenreRock and roll
Length2:05
LabelAtlantic
Songwriter(s)Bert Berns, Phil Medley
Producer(s)Phil Spector
The Top Notes singles chronology
"Hearts of Stone"
(1961)
"Twist and Shout"
(1961)
"Wait for Me Baby"
(1962)

"Twist and Shout" is a 1961 song written by Phil Medley and Bert Berns (later credited as "Bert Russell"). It was originally recorded by the Top Notes, but it did not become a hit in the record charts until it was reworked by the Isley Brothers in 1962. The song has been covered by several artists, including several that appeared in the record charts.

Original version

The Top Notes, an American R&B vocal group, recorded "Twist and Shout" at the Atlantic Studios on February 23, 1961. The session was arranged by Teddy Randazzo and produced by Phil Spector.[1] The Top Notes' Howard "Howie" Guyton provided the lead vocals,[2] with accompaniment by saxophonist King Curtis, guitarist John Pizzarelli, drummer Panama Francis, and backing vocalists the Cookies.[3]

In a song review for AllMusic, Richie Unterberger described the Top Notes recording as "a Latin-tinged raveup with a drab generic R&B melody" that he felt was "not very good".[4] Bert Berns, the song's co-writer, was dissatisfied with the recording and Spector's production.[5]

The Isley Brothers version

"Twist and Shout"
Twist and Shout by The Isley Brothers US vinyl 1962.jpg
Single by the Isley Brothers
from the album Twist & Shout
B-side"Spanish Twist"
ReleasedMay 1962 (1962-05)
RecordedNew York City, 1962
Genre
Length2:27
LabelWand
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Bert Russell
The Isley Brothers singles chronology
"Shout"
(1962)
"Twist and Shout"
(1962)
"Twistin' With Linda"
(1962)

When the Isley Brothers decided to record the song in 1962, Berns (who also used the name Bert Russell) assumed the role of producer. According to Unterberger, the new arrangement infused the tune with more "gospel-fired soul passion":[4]

[T]he real master trick of this rearrangement was a new bridge consisting solely of four ascending sung notes, the tempo becoming more emphatic and dramatic, ending in exultant sustained whooping before a "shake it on baby" led the Isleys back into the verse.[4]

"Twist and Shout" became the group's first single to reach the Top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.

Personnel

Charts

Chart (1962–1963) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[6] 17
US Hot Rhythm & Blues Singles[7] 2
US Cash Box Top 100[8] 7
US Cash Box Rhythm & Blues Singles[9] 3
UK Singles (OCC)[10] 42

The Beatles version

"Twist and Shout"
Twist and Shout by The Beatles Side-A US vinyl.png
US single of the Beatles recording
Single by the Beatles
B-side"There's a Place"
Released
  • March 22, 1963 (1963-03-22) (UK Please Please Me album)
  • March 2, 1964 (US single)
RecordedFebruary 11, 1963
StudioEMI, London
GenreRock and roll
Length2:32
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)George Martin
The Beatles US singles chronology
"My Bonnie"
(1964)
"Twist and Shout"
(1964)
"Can't Buy Me Love"
(1964)

The Beatles' rendition of "Twist and Shout" was released on their first UK album Please Please Me, based on the Isley Brothers' version. John Lennon provided the lead vocals and initially felt ashamed of his performance in the song "because I could sing better than that, but now it doesn't bother me. You can hear that I'm just a frantic guy doing his best." A second take was attempted, but Lennon had nothing left, and it was abandoned.[11]

The song was released as a single in the US on March 2, 1964, with "There's a Place" as its B-side. It was released by Chicago-based Vee-Jay Records on the Tollie label and reached No. 2 on April 4, during the week that the top five places on the chart were all Beatles singles. It was the only million-selling Beatles single in the U.S. that was a cover song, and the only Beatles cover single to reach the Top 10 on a national record chart. The song failed to hit No. 1 because the group's own followup single "Can't Buy Me Love" held the spot.

In the UK, "Twist and Shout" was released by Parlophone on an EP with "Do You Want to Know a Secret", "A Taste of Honey", and "There's a Place" from the Please Please Me (1963) album. Both the EP and album reached No. 1. In Canada, it became the title track to the second album of Beatles material to be issued by Capitol Records of Canada on February 3, 1964.

The song was used as a closing number on Sunday Night at the London Palladium in October 1963 and at The Royal Variety Show in November 1963; the Royal Variety performance was included on the Anthology 1 compilation album in 1995. The Beatles performed the song on their Ed Sullivan Show appearance in February 1964, and they continued to play it live until the end of their 1965 American tour. Additionally, they recorded "Twist and Shout" on nine occasions for BBC television and radio broadcasts, the earliest of which was for the Talent Spot radio show on November 27, 1962.

In 1986, Matthew Broderick lip-synced to the Beatles' version of it in the film Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Coincidentally, the Rodney Dangerfield film Back to School (released two days after Ferris) also featured the song, this one sung by Dangerfield himself and patterned after the Beatles' arrangement. The use in the two films helped propel the single up the Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at No. 23 at the issue date September 27, 1986, giving the group their second chart single of the 1980s (the other being "The Beatles Movie Medley" in 1982).[12]

In November 2010, 47 years after its recording, the Beatles' version of "Twist and Shout" made a debut on the UK Singles Chart. The highest charting Beatles track in the aftermath of their new availability on iTunes, it entered the charts at No. 48.

Charts

Chart (1963–64) Peak
position
Australian Kent Music Report[13] 5
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[14] 9
New Zealand (Lever Hit Parade)[15] 1
Norway (VG-lista)[16] 7
Swedish Kvällstoppen Chart[17] 2
US Billboard Hot 100[18] 2
US Cash Box Top 100[19] 1
West German Media Control Singles Chart[20] 10
Chart (1986) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[21] 23
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[22] 16
Chart (2010) Peak
position
UK Singles (OCC)[23] 48
Chart (2015) Peak
position
Sweden Heatseeker (Sverigetopplistan)[24] 5

Certifications

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Italy (FIMI)[25] Gold 25,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[26] Gold 400,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[27] Platinum 1,000,000double-dagger

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Brian Poole and the Tremeloes' version

In 1962, Decca Records signed Brian Poole and the Tremeloes, a British group from Dagenham, East London, in preference to the Beatles. Both groups had auditioned on the same day, and it has become legend that the Beatles were rejected by the label. Ironically, Brian Poole and the Tremeloes had no chart success until the beat boom in British rock had surfaced, following the success of the Beatles. This triggered the frenzied signing of most of the popular Liverpool rock groups of that period by the major record labels, and their distinctive "sound" became known as Merseybeat. Brian Poole and the Tremeloes imitated this style, and covered "Twist and Shout" four months after the Beatles had released their version, and achieved the No. 4 position in the UK Singles Chart.[28]

Salt-N-Pepa version

American hip hop trio Salt-N-Pepa recorded a cover version on their 1988 album A Salt with a Deadly Pepa. It was released as a single and was met with success, reaching the top five in Spain, the Netherlands and the UK, where it reached No. 4, as well as the top 40 in Ireland, Belgium and Germany.

Weekly charts

Chart (1988–1989) Peak
position
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[29] 11
Germany (Official German Charts)[30] 37
Ireland (IRMA)[31] 18
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[32] 5
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[33] 5
Spain (AFYVE)[34] 5
UK Singles (OCC)[35] 4
US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)[36] 45
US Hot Rap Songs (Billboard)[37] 18

Year-end charts

Chart (1988) Position
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[38] 91

Chaka Demus & Pliers version

"Twist and Shout"
Chaka Demus & Pliers Twist and Shout.jpg
Single by Chaka Demus & Pliers featuring Jack Radics and Taxi Gang
from the album Tease Me
ReleasedDecember 6, 1993 (1993-12-06)[39]
GenreReggae fusion
Length3:58
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
Chaka Demus & Pliers singles chronology
"She Don't Let Nobody"
(1993)
"Twist and Shout"
(1993)
"Murder She Wrote"
(1994)
Music video
"Twist and Shout" on YouTube

Jamaican reggae duo Chaka Demus & Pliers, collaborating with Jack Radics and Taxi Gang, recorded "Twist and Shout" for their fourth album, Tease Me. It was released as single on December 6, 1993, and topped the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in January 1994. It was also a top-10 hit in Ireland (No. 9), Flanders (No. 7), the Netherlands (No. 6), Denmark (No. 4), and New Zealand (No. 2).

Critical reception

Rick Anderson from AllMusic said the song "is a fun novelty".[40] Larry Flick from Billboard wrote, "Who'da thunk this Beatles evergreen would become viable fodder for a reggae reconstruction? It has, and it works far better than you might imagine." He added, "With assistance from Jack Radis and Taxi Gang, Chaka Demus & Pliers playfully skip around a fast and jaunty island groove, darting in and out of familiar lyrics with bits of chatter and toasting. Visionary programmers will find this will flow over playlists like a fresh, cool breeze."[41] In a review for the Gavin Report, Dave Sholin commented, "Summertime—time to hit the beach and party! And what better for the occasion than this upbeat production that puts a new twist on the Isley Brothers' original and Beatles' cover?"[42] Alan Jones from Music Week deemed it a "fine regga re-reading" that "contains all the usual Chaka Demus & Pliers hallmarks, with sweetly cooed verses alternating with rapped passages. Just right for the party season."[43] James Hamilton from the magazine's RM Dance Update described it as a "'La Bamba' based raver's reggae inflected but surprisingly conventional Sly & Robbie revival, a party season smash".[44]

Charts

Certifications

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[64] Gold 35,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[71] Gold 5,000*
United Kingdom (BPI)[72] Gold 400,000^

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.

See also

References

  1. ^ In 1961, Spector was staff producer at Atlantic Records, before he developed his trademark "Wall of Sound".
  2. ^ Leszczak, Bob (2013). Who Did It First?: Great Rhythm and Blues Cover Songs and Their Original Artists. p. 228. ISBN 978-0810888678 – via Googlebooks.
  3. ^ Selvin, Joel (2014). Here Comes the Night: The Dark Soul of Bert Berns and the Dirty Business of Rhythm and Blues. p. 369. ISBN 978-1619023789 – via Googlebooks.
  4. ^ a b c Unterberger, Richie. "The Isley Brothers: 'Twist and Shout' – Review". AllMusic. Retrieved October 23, 2020.
  5. ^ Edwards, David; Callahan, Mike. "The Atlantic Records Story". Bsnpubs.com. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  6. ^ "Hot 100". Billboard. August 11, 1962 – via Googlebooks.
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