Thursday, February 25, 2016

Musical Interlude: Running Bear (1969)

"Running Bear", written by J. P. Richardson, aka The Big Bopper, reached the top of the charts for Johnny Preston in 1959, then peaked at #10 for Sonny James on the country chart 10 years later.

Richardson's tale of a Native American reboot of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet has been covered by a diverse group of artists, including Led Zeppelin, which would include the song as part of a rock medley in concert, and Danny Davis & the Nashville Brass. Satirist Ray Stevens recorded it for a box set some years back.

In memory of James, who passed away on Monday at 87, we present his version, taken from an episode of Hee Haw, complete with an intro by co-host Buck Owens.

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