You just can’t sit down when one of those Cameo-Parkway classics comes on the stereo. Cameo Records – launched by Kal Mann and Bernie Lowe, the team that penned the Elvis hip-shaker “Let Me Be Your Teddy Bear” – and its sister label Parkway dominated the pop charts from 1958 to 1967 with dance crazes like “The Twist” and “The Wah-Watusi” as well as hits by the likes of Bobby Rydell, The Orlons, The Dovells, Dee Dee Sharp, Don Covay, Evie Sands, and of course, Twist king Chubby Checker. Now, ABKCO will revisit the Cameo-Parkway catalogue (plus a couple tracks from subsidiary labels Good Times and Fairmount) with a new three-part series of digital compilations, all due June 19.
The first, Dancin’ Party: The Chubby Checker Collection 1960 – 1966, is touted as “the definitive set of tunes” from Checker’s classic era. In those six years, Chubby Checker established himself as the most successful on the label’s roster. Sure, there was the landmark dance classic “The Twist” and its sequel song “Let’s Twist Again,” but Dancin’ Party also highlights fifteen other Top 40 hits, ten of which hit the Top 20. You can enjoy one such success, “Hey You! Little Boo-Ga-Loo,” here. (Completists might note that ABKCO’s 2005 CD release The Best of Chubby Checker had 24 tracks vs. the 21 on this set.)
Also due on June 19 is a set called You Can’t Sit Down: Cameo Parkway Dance Crazes 1958-1964 , featuring some of the most enduring sides from the Cameo-Parkway catalogue, songs that still get the hips shaking and the feet on the dance floor. The 22-track collection features Checker again, plus the likes of Bobby Rydell (“The Cha-Cha-Cha”), The Orlons (“The Wah-Watusi”), The Dovells (“Bristol Stomp”), and Dee Dee Sharp (“Mashed Potato Time”). Just try keeping still when you listen to The Dovells’ “You Can’t Sit Down,” available here to preview.
The final set – You Got The Power: Cameo Parkway Northern Soul 1964 -1967 – spotlights the soul classics that would make up the soundtrack to Britain’s Northern Soul movement. These include crate-digger favorites that received a cult-like following across the pond decades after they were released. Among the collection’s 20 floor-fillers are recordings by Frankie Beverly & The Butlers, Bunny Sigler, The Orlons, Evie Sands, Candy and the Kisses, Christine Cooper, and Eddie Holman. Check out a preview with “Who Do You Think You Are” by The Soul City, available at this link.
So whether you’re in the market for some hard-to-find soul gems, dance craze classics, or the many successes of Chubby Checker, ABKCO has you covered with their trio of digital releases. Mark your calendars for June 19, pre-save on your preferred streaming platform, and get your dancing shoes ready!
Various Artists, You Can’t Sit Down: Cameo Parkway Dance Crazes 1958-1964 (ABKCO, 2020) (Available from your preferred streaming service)
- The Twist – Chubby Checker
- The Wah-Watusi – The Orlons
- Bristol Stomp – The Dovells
- Mashed Potato Time – Dee Dee Sharp
- You Can’t Sit Down – The Dovells
- The Third House (In From The Right) – Bobby Rydell
- Do The Bird – Dee Dee Sharp
- Slow Twistin’ – Chubby Checker w/Dee Dee Sharp
- Shimmy Shimmy – The Orlons
- The 81 – Candy And The Kisses
- (Everybody Do) The Swim, Pt. 1 – The Marlins
- The Popeye Waddle – Don Covay
- Do The New Continental – The Dovells
- Baby, Do The Froog – Dardenelles
- Rocka-Conga – The Applejacks
- The Hucklebuck- Chubby Checker
- The Mash – Tom Young & The Hippies
- Mexican Hat Rock – The Applejacks
- The Cha-Cha-Cha – Bobby Rydell
- When You Dance – The Turbans
- Everybody South Street – The Taffys
- Twistin’ U.S.A. – Chubby Checker
Tracks 1 and 22 released as Parkway single P-811, 1960.
Track 2 released on Cameo single C-218, 1962.
Track 3 released on Parkway single P-827, 1961.
Track 4 released on Cameo single C-212, 1962.
Track 5 released on Parkway single P-867, 1963.
Track 6 released on Cameo single C-192, 1961.
Track 7 released on Cameo single C-244, 1963.
Track 8 released on Parkway single P-835, 1962.
Track 9 released on Cameo single C-295, 1964.
Track 10 released on Cameo single C-336, 1964.
Track 11 released on the various artist box set Cameo Parkway 1957-1967, ABKCO OXO1-92232, 2005.
Track 12 released on Cameo single C-239, 1960.
Track 13 released on Parkway single P-833, 1961.
Track 14 released on Cameo single C-271, 1963.
Track 15 released on Cameo single C-155, 1958.
Track 16 released on Parkway single P-813, 1960.
Track 17 released on Cameo single C-224, 1962, credited to Tony Young and The Hippies.
Track 18 released on Cameo single C-149, 1958.
Track 19 released on Cameo single C-228, 1962.
Track 20 released on Parkway single P-820, 1961 — re-recording of Herald single H-458, 1955.
Track 21 released on Fairmount single F-610, 1963.
Various Artists, You Got The Power: Cameo Parkway Northern Soul 1964-1967 (ABKCO, 2020) (Available from your preferred streaming service)
- You Got The Power – The Four Exceptions
- Because Of My Heart – Frankie Beverly & The Butlers
- (Whoa, Whoa) I Love Him So – Nikki Blu
- Girl Don’t Make Me Wait – Bunny Sigler
- It’s Rough Out There – Jerry Jackson
- Envy (In My Eyes) – The Orlons
- Picture Me Gone – Evie Sands
- Country Girl – Vickie Baines
- Night Owl – Bobby Paris
- Village Of Tears – Ben Zine
- You Just Don’t Know (What You Do To Me) – Chubby Checker
- The 81 – Candy And The Kisses
- Shake And Shingaling (Pt. 1) – Gene Waiters
- S.O.S. (Heart In Distress) – Christine Cooper
- Eddie’s My Name – Eddie Holman
- Pass Me By – Hattie Winston
- The Grass (Will Sing For You) – Lonnie Youngblood
- (Your Love Was Just A) False Alarm – Tari Stevens
- Who Do You Think You Are – The Soul City
- You Didn’t Say A Word – Yvonne Baker
Track 1 released on Parkway single P-986, 1966.
Track 2 released on Fairmount single F-1017, 1967.
Track 3 released on Parkway single P-931, 1964.
Track 4 released on Parkway single P-123, 1966.
Track 5 released on Parkway single P-100, 1966.
Track 6 released on Cameo single C-383, 1965.
Track 7 released on Cameo single C-413, 1966.
Track 8 released on Parkway single P-966, 1966.
Track 9 released on Cameo single C-396, 1966.
Track 10 released on Parkway single P-996, 1966.
Track 11 released on Parkway single P-965, 1965.
Track 12 released on Cameo single C-336, 1964.
Track 13 released on Fairmount promo single F-1018, 1966.
Track 14 released on Parkway single P-971, 1965.
Track 15 released on Parkway single P-981, 1965.
Track 16 released on Parkway single P-956, 1965.
Track 17 released on Fairmount single F-1016, 1966.
Track 18 released on Fairmount single F-1001, 1966.
Track 19 released on Good Time single GT-802, 1967.
Track 20 released on Parkway single P-140, 1967.
Chubby Checker, Dancin’ Party – The Chubby Checker Collection: 1960-1966 (ABKCO, 2020) (Available from your preferred streaming service)
- The Twist
- The Hucklebuck
- Pony Time
- Dance The Mess Around
- Let’s Twist Again
- The Fly
- Dancin’ Party
- Slow Twistin’
- Popeye The Hitchhiker
- Limbo Rock
- Let’s Limbo Some More
- Twist It Up (single version)
- Birdland (single version)
- What Do Ya Say!
- Loddy Lo
- Hooka Tooka
- Hey, Bobba Needle
- Lazy Elsie Molly
- (At The) Discotheque
- You Just Don’t Know (What You Do To Me)
- Hey You! Little Boo-Ga-Loo
Track 1 released on Parkway single P-811, 1960.
Track 2 released on Parkway single P-813, 1960.
Track 3 released on Parkway single P-818, 1960.
Track 4 released on Parkway single P-822, 1961.
Track 5 released on Parkway single P-824, 1961.
Track 6 released on Parkway single P-830, 1961.
Track 7 released on Parkway single P-842, 1962.
Track 8 released on Parkway single P-835, 1962.
Tracks 9 and 10 released as Parkway single P-849, 1962.
Track 11 released on Parkway single P-862, 1963.
Track 12 released on Parkway single P-879, 1963.
Track 13 released on Parkway single P-873, 1963.
Track 14 released on Parkway single P-806, 1963.
Tracks 15 and 16 released as Parkway single P-890, 1963.
Track 17 released on Parkway single P-907, 1964.
Track 18 released on Parkway single P-920, 1964.
Track 19 released on Parkway single P-949, 1965.
Track 20 released on Parkway single P-965, 1965.
Track 21 released on Parkway single P-989, 1966.