Saturday Night Beech-Nut Show. August 27, 1960. Re-posted by request.
"Walk, Don't Run" is an instrumental composition written and first recorded by jazz guitarist Johnny Smith in 1954. The tune is essentially a contrafact of the chord changes to the standard "Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise".
The Tacoma-based instrumental rock band the Ventures released their version of the tune as a single in spring 1960 on Dolton Records. This version is often regarded as one of the first surf songs to make the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at #2 and reaching #3 on the Cash Box magazine chart for five weeks in August and September 1960.
This single, their first national release, vaulted the Ventures' career. The song was recorded before the band officially had a drummer. The Ventures' website lists "the drummer on Walk, Don't Run as Skip Moore, not Howie Johnson as many assume. Skip was given the choice of $25 or 25% of the money the record would make for playing on the session. He took the $25". The band would later rerecord the song in 1964, and would become the first band to score two top ten hits with two versions of the same song.
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