Sleepy Sunday, Vol. 41

I have lots of tunes by Sleepy LaBeef, national treasure, but no Christmas tunes. So our regular Sunday feature will carry on with another fine cover.

Johnny Cash is widely credited as having written “Rock ‘n’ Roll Ruby,” which was a big hit for rockabilly singer Warren Smith on Sun Records in 1956. However, Smith insisted George Jones wrote the tune and sold it to Cash for $40. Hmmm. Good story if true.

Sleepy is loose as a goose on this one, counting off “1, 2, 3, 4” to get things started, a yelp breaking out from his deep baritone and name-checking lead guitarist Cliff Parker. It was recorded March 6, 1979, at Singleton Sound Studio in Nashville.


“Rock ‘n’ Roll Ruby,” Sleepy LaBeef, from “A Rockin” Decade,” 1997.

Video bonus: Watch Sleepy and the boys lip-sync to the same tune!


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Filed under December 2007, Sounds

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