“Big Blue Diamonds” was penned by Earl “Kit” Carson and first issued on a 1950 King 78 sung by Red Perkins. Tex Ritter also put out a version that very same year. Jimmy Dean covered it in the mid-50s, Sam the Sham & the Pharoahs in the mid-60s.
And then in the early 70s, a relative flurry of versions: Arthur Prysock and Gene Summer both put out singles in 1971, while Mel Street and Ernest Tubb released honky tonk versions the following year. 1972 also saw the release of Jacky Ward‘s country top 40 hit version on the Target label – check out the naff piano, pedal steel & vibraslap opening:
“Big Blue Diamond” Jacky Ward 1972
Jerry Lee Lewis would also record the song in 1973 on his Southern Roots album.