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mule-train

Mule Train

"Mule Train" is a popular song written by Johnny Lange, Hy Heath, and Fred Glickman. It is a novelty cowboy song, supposedly sung by an Old West wagon driver spurring on his mules as he recites the goods he is delivering to far-flung mail order customers.

Charting versions

Charting versions were recorded by Frankie Laine, Bing Crosby, Tennessee Ernie Ford, and Vaughn Monroe.

The Frankie Laine recording was recorded on October 2, 1949, and released by Mercury Records as catalog number 5345.The record first reached the Billboard magazine charts on November 4, 1949 and lasted 13 weeks on the chart, peaking at #1. Laine's recording of the song was produced by Mitch Miller. It featured a bellowed vocal delivery (like that of a real driver shouting to be heard) and studio-created gimmicks such as whipcracking sound effects. It is often cited as an outstanding early example of studio production techniques.

The Bing Crosby recording was recorded on October 26, 1949, and released by Decca Records as catalog number 24798. The flip side was "Dear Hearts and Gentle People." The record first reached the Billboard magazine charts on November 25, 1949 and lasted 16 weeks on the chart, peaking at #2. This recording was featured in an episode of the NBC radio network radio program Lassie Show entitled Mule Train, which aired on 12/17/1949.

The Tennessee Ernie Ford recording was recorded on October 18, 1949, and released by Capitol Records as catalog number 40258. The record first reached the Billboard magazine charts on November 25, 1949 and lasted 9 weeks on the chart, peaking at #10. Ford's version also charted on the Billboard country charts, reaching No. 1 in December.

The Vaughn Monroe recording was released by RCA Victor Records as a 78rpm single (catalog number 20-3600) and a 45rpm single (catalog number 47-3106). The record first reached the Billboard magazine charts on November 18, 1949 and lasted 9 weeks on the chart, peaking at #10. In the 1950 Republic Western "Singing Guns," Monroe played a coach driver and sang the song.

Other versions

Woody Herman and The King Cole Trio, along with Irving Ashby, Joe Comfort and Gene Orloff, made a recording of "Mule Train" on November 7, 1949 in New York City, as well as the track "My Baby Just Cares For Me", which were both released by Capitol Records as a single, catalog number 787, which gave label credit to Herman for "Mule Train" and to the trio for "My Baby Just Cares For Me".

Gordon MacRae made a recording on October 1, 1949, which was released by Capitol Records in the United States as the flip side of the single "Dear Hearts and Gentle People" (which he recorded on October 21, 1949) as catalog number 777, and in England as catalog number CL 13226.

Les Welch and his Orchestra made a recording in Australia in February, 1950, which was released by Pacific Records (in Australia) as catalog number 10-0019.

The song was subsequently recorded in England by Frank Ifield in the 1960s.

In 1950, a satirical version of the song, "Chinese Mule Train," was recorded by Spike Jones with Fladdy Morgan singing (RCA Victor 20-3741).

A reggae version was recorded by Count Prince Miller in 1971 and then again with Sly and Robbie in the 1980s.

References

External links

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