1964 Chuck Berry – Nadine (Is It You?)
Chuck Berry grew up in St. Louis. He was arrested for armed robbery while still in school, and they sentenced him to reform school. While incarcerated, he started a singing quartet that turned out to be good enough to even play concerts outside of the facility. At age 21, they finally released him.
Chuck got married, and they had a kid. He supported the family by working at local factories and plants. He also began playing guitar in several local bands in the early fifties.
In 1955, Chuck went to Chicago and signed with Chess Records. His first single was Maybelline, which topped the R&B chart and reached #5 on the Hot 100. Chuck continued releasing records and appearing in live performances and even appeared in several films.
In 1959, they convicted Chuck of violating the Mann Act after he had sexual relations with a fourteen-year-old girl. Chuck went to prison until 1963. Many of the British Invasion bands performed covers of some of Chuck’s early music, and that helped him keep a high profile in the music industry while imprisoned.
Chuck recorded new music for Chess, and in 1964, he returned to the charts with his first new single. Nadine (Is It You?) took Chuck back onto the charts. The single peaked at #23 on both the Hot 100 and the R&B chart in 1964.
Chuck finally reached the top ten on the Hot 100 again with his next single, No Particular Place To Go. You Never Can Tell provided a third hit in 1964, reaching #14 on the Hot 100 that Summer.
Chuck released five more singles in 1964 and 1965, but while a few of them charted in the Hot 100, none of them reached the top forty.
Chuck started releasing singles and albums on Mercury Records beginning in 1966, but none of his singles reached the Hot 100 until a few years after he returned to Chess Records in 1970. His only #1 record came in 1972 with the release of his live recording of My Ding-A-Ling. Since then, countless films have included some of Chuck’s music on their soundtracks.
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