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Fats Domino

The most popular exponent of the classic New Orleans R&B sound, Fats Domino sold more records than any other black rock & roll star of the 1950s. His relaxed, lolling boogie-woogie piano style and easygoing, warm vocals anchored a long series of national hits from the mid-'50s to the early '60s. Through it all, his basic approach rarely changed. He may not have been one of early rock's most charismatic, innovative, or threatening figures, but he was certainly one of its most consistent.

Domino's first single, "The Fat Man" (1949), is one of the dozens of tracks that have been consistently singled out as a candidate for the first rock & roll record. As far as Fats was concerned, he was just playing what he'd already been doing in New Orleans for years, and would continue to play and sing in pretty much the same fashion even after his music was dubbed "rock & roll."

The record made number two on the R&B charts, and sold a million copies. Just as important, it established a vital partnership between Fats and Imperial A&R man Dave Bartholomew. Bartholomew, himself a trumpeter, would produce Domino's big hits, co-writing many of them with Fats. He would also usually employ New Orleans session greats like Alvin Tyler on sax and Earl Palmer on drums -- musicians who were vital in establishing New Orleans R&B as a distinct entity, playing on many other local recordings as well (including hits made in New Orleans by Georgia native Little Richard).

Domino didn't cross over into the pop charts in a big way until 1955, when "Ain't That a Shame" made the Top Ten. Pat Boone's cover of the song stole some of Fats' thunder, going all the way to number one (Boone was also bowdlerizing Little Richard's early singles for pop hits during this time). Domino's long-range prospects weren't damaged, however; between 1955 and 1963, he racked up an astonishing 35 Top 40 singles. "Blueberry Hill" (1956) was probably his best (and best-remembered) single; "Walking to New Orleans," "Whole Lotta Loving," "I'm Walking," "Blue Monday," and "I'm in Love Again" were also huge successes.

After Fats left Imperial for ABC-Paramount in 1963, he would only enter the Top 40 one more time. The surprise was not that Fats fell out of fashion, but that he'd maintained his popularity so long while the essentials of his style remained unchanged. This was during an era, remember, when most of rock's biggest stars had their careers derailed by death or scandal, or were made to soften up their sound for mainstream consumption. Although an active performer in the ensuing decades, his career as an important artist was essentially over in the mid-'60s. He did stir up a bit of attention in 1968 when he covered the Beatles' "Lady Madonna" single, which had been an obvious homage to Fats' style. ~ Richie Unterberger, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Walking To New Orleans

Disc 1
Disc 2
Disc 3
Disc 4

Comments

Fats Domino was, is, & always WILL BE
a SUPERSTAR., 4 more reasons than 1.
Tru DAT!!!!!!!!! :-)
Love it!
I love this song I wish they have this on the radio
bsettoon8
My dad was in a band and they played a lot of Fat's songs. We all love his music back then and now!
He's great
justinsloan7 6
Most people here r elderly. I'm young and 50s/60's had the best music! Wish I could've been there!
poppa_bear49
Fats is the man!!
dima.pns
I was born when he started his music and I think he's among greatest artists I ever heard
dcoble27
Saw Fats in Fayetteville NC in 56. Great music. Still listen to his music often.
@rdmdam0603 I really hope that you were being facetious.
rdmdam0603
Who would name their kid fats
Fats your style will last for ever .
Still listening.
Yea love his music forever.
I saw Fats at the Cowpalace in Abilene Tx in 1964. Bomb scare cleared the place out about half way through the concert. Too bad--love Fats!!
This brings back memories
to lastgasp61 et al pat boone should be fieldstript a slow death.
On a sadder note I heard that hurricane kat took all his posessions,
and he was not doing well, Iwish him well
I second that! Maria, thanks for making me smile. Shake a tail feather girl!
Maria, you're a HOOT! You need to move for sure.
I like the Fats Domino
I love his music not just fat woman like his music.
Pandora love you...took me 70 years to find you...
Only fat chicks like this music.
It's just about the best piano playing there is in RnR - and of course JLL!
I'll never understand why people get fat, ugly, old, sick and depressed and boring when there is God First and then Rock & Roll to dance to! This is the medicine people of all ages need, not drugs that cure nothing! So lets keep walking and dancing till 110! Yea, a Vegetarian diet too with supplements. That's how I stay young and happy!
Love oldies Rock & Roll! Good to exercise dancing. Like a few Artist. Can't find anyone who loves it to dance with! Ha! People in my building too old or sick, boring and depressed. I have to move from here ASAP! Ha!
loooooooooov e you Fats
Fsts Domino & Little Richard got the rock&roll started when R&R started and never looked back in the (50)s Whites & Blacks boogied to these fantastic entertainers ,so many memories
Fats Domino's best song is Sick And Tired BY FAR!!
lastgasp61
He got his thrill on Blueberry Hill.
There is a place in Hell waiting for Pat Boone.
Saw the Fat Man at Allen Freed's Show in Brooklyn 1956..What a performer
"The Fat Man". None better.
Pat Boone managed to ruin everything.
Pure Louisiana blues and R&B. Also Rock and Roll.
Nothing better once you've heard THE BEST
FATS. THERE IS NO ONE AND THERE WILL NEVER BE ANYBODY
THAT CAN TAKE YOUR PLACE.
GOD BLESS YOU FOR ALL THE
GREAT MUSIC MR. FATS, YOU ARE THE BEST.
I seen him in LAS VEGAS JUST GREAT ''!!!
Yes have always like his music he was great and still is.
v comments like that make my day
Fats was in a league of his own. Saw him in Farmington, NM 1960 & 62. First time in white suit and shoes and neither time did he stop to introduce a song (wasn't required - we knew them all), just sang to the break and then back from break to the end of the shows. Awesome
I think Fats is great,howeve r he should stick to his own music. He covered 3 classic songs and did a lousy job. My Blue Heaven,Blueb e r r y Hill, last but not lease I Hear You Knocking. STICK TO YOUR MUSIC FATS!!!!!!
vidvisions
Fats is one of the BEST, saw him in DC, best R&R show I ever saw. Love You Fats
The Fat Man sure could write and play those songs. Pat Boone could not come anywhere near him. Ain't that a shame?
i love fats domino
malloy61141
saw fats in concert in jax in 1962 put on great show evev agfter being stoppedbuy fhp
such a good artist
saw the fat man in pittrberg , pa ., in 1954 . i will never forget the performance
He always sounded good.
I am 72yrs. now. From Port Arthur, Tx. /Groves area. Saw Fats when he came to Port Arthur & performed. Have always loved his music. I will always put him at the top. Listened to him constantly when a teenage, now as an antique kid, still love his music. He is Rock N Roll.
R&B, back before it turned to s**t. Back when the blues was actually a part of that name.
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