This week in 1955: Bell Telephone used sunlight to power a phone call for the first time; The U.S. Army commissioned the first male nurse; the U.S. Navy launched the USS Saratoga in New York; and a singer from Saratoga, Texas, had his first hit record.
A lot of hit songs have been written from something someone heard in a conversation and as the story goes, the idea for "Why Baby Why" was one of those tunes.
The idea reportedly came from Darrell Edwards, who overheard a couple fussing at each other in their car. He and George Jones co-wrote the song that brought Jones into the country music spotlight by scoring a No. 4 hit in 1955.
The Starday single came on the charts October 29th, 1955, peaked at No. 4 and was on the charts for 18 weeks.
Jones placed 169 songs on the country music charts between 1955 and 2013 including 13 No. 1s. Eleven of his 169 country charted songs also scored on the pop charts. His 169 hits included duets with Jeanette Hicks, Margie Singleton, Melba Montgomery, Gene Pitney, Brenda Carter, Tammy Wynette, Johnny Paycheck, Merle Haggard, Ray Charles with Chet Atkins, Brenda Lee, Lacy J. Dalton, Shelby Lynne, Randy Travis, Sammy Kershaw, Alan Jackson and Garth Brooks.
He joined The Grand Ole Opry in 1956 and was inducted into The Country Music Hall Of Fame in 1992. George Jones died in 2013 at age 81.
"Why Baby Why" proved its staying power with Red Sovine and Webb Pierce's version scoring a No. 1 in 1956 and later that same year, Hank Locklin's cut on the song went to No. 9.
And in 1983 Charley Pride put the song back in the No. 1 spot.
Radio stations received two versions of Pride's recording. One side of the radio 45 rpm single was the original cut from Charley's "Country Classics" album. The flipside was the same recording but with canned applause added. The "added to" version became a part of "Charley Pride Live" album.
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