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Song Stories

“Tutti-Frutti”

Little Richard | 1955

“I wrote ‘Tutti Frutti’ in the kitchen,” said Little Richard of the bus station in his native Macon, Georgia,where he worked as a dishwasher. One day, the dishes piled up so high he thought he’d never get out of there alive for all the pots and pans; that’s when frustration rubbed up against gospel inspiration and out popped, “Womp-bomp-a-loo-momp a-lop-bomp-bomp.” It was the sound of what he was going to happen if he had to wash one more pan.

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Song Stories

“Wake Up Everybody”

John Legend and the Roots | 2010

A Number One record by Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes in 1976 (a McFadden- and Whitehead-penned classic sung by Teddy Pendergrass) inspired the title and lead single from Wake Up!, John Legend's tribute album to message music. The more familiar strains of "Wake Up Everybody" also fit his agenda. "It basically sums up, in a very concise way, all the things we were thinking about when we were putting this record together in that it's about justice, doing the right thing and coming together to make the world a better place," he said. Vocalists Common and Melanie Fiona assist Legend on this mission to connect.

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