What was the number one song in the UK on 14th March 1953?

By Steve McSteveface

“She Wears Red Feathers” by Guy Mitchell was Number One on 14th March 1953 and it remained at number one for 4 weeks.

When I was first putting together my playlist, this song was playing all the time and I actually did work in a bank at the time – not a London Bank, however. I also didn’t wear red feathers or a hooly, hooly skirt (well not at work anyway).

It’s probably the first of these number ones that is fairly upbeat and not the standard “gramophone record” and after watching the video I think that Guy was possibly the Robbie Williams of his day…

Wikipedia

“She Wears Red Feathers” (also erroneously known as “She Wears Red Feathers and a Huly-Huly Skirt” after the opening lyrics) is a popular song, which was written by Bob Merrill in 1952.

The best-known recording of the song was made by Guy Mitchell in 1952 and was a No. 1 single in the UK Singles Chart in March 1953 for four weeks. It was only the sixth single to reach the top spot in the UK.

Alberto Semprini, on pianoforte with rhythm accompaniment, recorded it in London as the first song of the medley “Dancing to the piano (No. 20) – Hit medley of quick-steps” along with “Wild Roses” and “Don’t Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes”. The medley was released by EMI on the His Master’s Voice label as catalog number B 10457.

The band Mud also released a cover of this song. Another cover performed in a cabaret club, featured in the opening scene of the 1989 film, Scandal.

Lyrics

(She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt)
She lives on just cokey-nuts and fish from the sea
A rose in her hair, a gleam in her eyes
And love in her heart for me
I work in a London bank, respectable position
From nine to three they serve you tea
But ruin your disposition
Each night of music calls, rather lost I seem
And once a pearl of a native girl came smilin’ right at me
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She lives on just cokey-nuts and fish from the sea
A rose in her hair, a gleam in her eyes
And love in her heart for me
Goodbye to the London bank, I started in a-sailin’
The fourteenth day from Mandalay I spied her from the railin’
She knew I was on my way, waited, and was true
She said “You son of an Englishman, I’ve dreamed each night of you”
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She lives on just cokey-nuts and fish from the sea
A rose in her hair, a gleam in her eyes
And love in her heart for me
I went to her Ma and Pa and said I loved her only
And they both said we could be wed, oh, what a ceremony
An elephant brought her in, placed her by my side
While six baboons got out bassoons and played “Here Comes the Bride”
I’m back here in London town and, though it may sound silly
She’s here with me and you should see us walk down Picadilly
The boys at the London bank kinda hold their breath
She sits with me and sips her tea which tickles them to death
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She wears red feathers and a hooly-hooly skirt
She lives on just cokey-nuts and fish from the sea
A rose in her hair, a gleam in her eyes
And love (and love) in her heart (in her heart) for me

The Playlist

Relive, enjoy and share every song and keep following Talk About Pop Music for more Number One posts!

Every UK Number One Song

Do you remember these songs?

Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @PopAndTalk

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Written by Steve

I’m Steve and live in a village called Alford (home of Emeli Sande & birthplace of the Aberdeen Angus cow) in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. I currently work in the IT industry (yawn) I just want to share my ideas, findings and general reflections with whoever wants to listen.

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