When was it recorded? Jul. 10, 1963 (one version anyway)
When was it first released, and on which album? Nov. 30, 1994 on “Live at the BBC”
Who wrote it? Chan Romero
Have I heard this song before? Yup
What my research dug up:
Robert Lee “Chan” Romero wrote “Hippy Hippy Shake” when he was only 17 years old. An American musician, he is best known for this number, released as a single in 1959. After hitchhiking to Los Angeles in 1958, Romero launched his recording career with “Hippy Hippy Shake,” which was a #3 hit in Australia and enduringly popular in the US and UK. Romero is still alive, though not as active in the music community as he once was.
The single “soon came to the attention of Paul McCartney who liked the song and sang it at the Cavern Club in Liverpool and the Star Club in Hamburg during his early years with The Beatles” (Wikipedia). Here’s the version that appears on the Beatles bootleg “Live at the Star Club.”
According to the Beatles Bible, the band recorded “Hippy Hippy Shake” four times for various BBC Radio programs in 1963.
- Recorded Mar. 16 for “The Saturday Club”
- Recorded May 24 for the inaugural “Pop Go the Beatles,’ aired Jun. 4
- Recorded Jul. 10 for “Pop Go the Beatles” #7, aired Jul. 30
- Recorded Sept. 3 for “Pop Go the Beatles” #13, aired Sept. 10
As noted above, the version from the seventh “Pop Go the Beatles” appeared on 1994’s “Live at the BBC” compilation.
In Dec. 1963, another band from Liverpool, The Swinging Blue Jeans, released “Hippy Hippy Shake” as a single. This version was massively successful in Britain and America. Paul was not amused, viewing the tune as one of his signature songs.
The Beatles recorded “Hippy Hippy Shake” one last time for “The Saturday Club” on Jan. 7, 1964. This version aired Feb. 15.