Big Joe Turner was often regarded as one of the most influential Blues performers of all time. In fact, many claim that he made a path for rock and roll, one which allowed that genre of music to unfold as it did. If you want to know more about his music, here are 10 of his best songs, complete with YouTube links for each one. The songs are ranked from number 10 all the way down to number one, so see if you have any favorites on the list.
10. S.K. Blues, Pt. 2 (1942)
This is probably one of the more interesting songs he ever recorded. It’s also the one that essentially cemented his career. The lyrics to the song are similar in tone to a lot of the popular Blues songs of the time, but they are also unique. In fact, there is even one point where the singer talks about a wig that he bought for his girlfriend before their love turned sour. They go on to say that he wants that wig back, even though she is completely bald.
9. Chains of Love (1957)
As you might have already guessed, this song about falling in love isn’t as sweet as you might think at first. In fact, the lyrics go on to talk about how the singer can’t do anything because he is now chained to the other person and will be forever. Even though their love isn’t exactly going as planned, he can’t get away from her grasp.
8. The Chicken And The Hawk (1956)
Here, you have a tongue-in-cheek song about a girl who falls in love, yet the person she falls for isn’t exactly the upstanding individual she believes him to be. Of course, she seems to be completely clueless to it all, thinking that her significant other is going to sweep her off her feet for the rest of her life. It’s meant to serve as a cautionary tale about not putting too much trust in someone before you’re absolutely certain that they have earned that trust.
7. Honey Hush (1957)
This song would probably never make it to the air waves today. It’s about someone who is upset because of issues in a relationship. The man in that relationship keeps telling her to be quiet and stop crying. He then goes on to tell her that she needs to stop being so emotional and go fix his supper. At the time the song was recorded, it was widely accepted. As previously mentioned, that’s not likely to be the case today. Nevertheless, it remains one of the songs that he’s best remembered for.
6. Shake, Rattle & Roll (1954)
Here is a song about refusing to allow the world to pass you by. The lyrics discuss getting out of bed and starting the day, all with the intention of getting the most out of every moment of the day. It’s a great song for people that consider themselves movers and shakers. It’s also a good option for those who are having a hard time getting started and need some serious motivation.
5. Oke-She-Moke-She (1953)
At its core, this is a song about being from a small town and then moving to the city. In the song, another person begins to try and take advantage of the singer, believing that it will be easy to do so because he’s from a small town and not smart enough to figure out the ways of the big city. He sings about not falling for the games that this person is playing as well as knowing more than he lets on.
4. Corrine Corrina (1956)
This is a love song, pure and simple. It’s one that talks about being head-over-heels in love with someone and wanting to love that person forever. Furthermore, the lyrics try to explain what it feels like to be in this kind of love.
3. Flip Flop and Fly (1955)
This is an interesting song that talks about many different emotions that people commonly go through at some point during their lives. The first verse talks about being depressed and getting a rocking chair to get rid of that depression, saying that the singer will rock until his blues go away. In the next verse, he talks about getting lonely. He refuses to give in to the loneliness, as he starts calling up old friends to pass the time. The song progresses from there to talk about falling in love and hoping that the love will last forever. According to the lyrics, the singer doesn’t want to live unless his love pans out, largely because he can’t imagine a life without the person he has fallen for.
2. Roll ‘em Pete (1939)
Oddly enough, this too is a love song. It may not sound like it according to the title, but the song is indeed all about love. In it, the singer talks about having a girlfriend that isn’t entirely sold on the idea of being with him, yet he refuses to accept the possibility that she may not be as interested in the relationship as he seems to be.
1. Boogie Woogie Country Girl (1956)
As you can imagine, this is a song about falling in love. It’s meant to be a bit more lighthearted than many of the other songs on this list, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is still a love song at the heart of it all. Furthermore, it’s also one of the most popular songs that the singer ever recorded.