One of my favorite Link Wray tunes is one that humorously fuses our two American national anthems – “Dixie” and “Yankee Doodle”:
Interesting to learn that, on the strength of his hugely influential top 40 hit, “Rumble” – a menacing instrumental that was actually banned from radio in several markets including, surprisingly, New York City – Link was able to get signed to Epic, an imprint of the almighty Columbia label, who released “Dixie Doodle” in 1959. Thanks to Cub Koda’s liner notes in Rhino’s Link Wray anthology, I also learned that “Dixie Doodle” was an attempt by Link to emulate the “Rebel” sound of Duane Eddy, who was hot in the late 1950s (and, some 50 years later, royally received at Glastonbury in 2011). Fascinating to find out, too, that “Dixie Doodle” ended up on the flip side, even though it was originally pushed to be the A-side, with Confederate money printed as a novelty promotion.
“Dixie Doodle” was released as the B-side to “Rawhide,” which went top 40 in January 1959 (#23) – both songs written by Link, along with the very able assistance of TV teen dance show host, Milt Grant.
Not to be confused, by the way, with the 8-verse parody of “Yankee Doodle” that was popular in the South during the Civil War.