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Greatest "Roots of Rock" Songs of the '40s

Criteria: - These songs were selected and ranked based on their influence and importance in leading to the emergence of rock 'n' roll as a genre unto itself, and also on each song's initial popularity, lasting popularity. and impact If there were two or more versions of a song that were fairly equal in significance then each artist is listed in that song's slot. (Artists in parenthesis are the vocalist for that recording)

Newly added names are in Red

Edited By: Bruce
Last Updated: 12-03-09

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100 Greatest Roots of Rock Songs of the 1940s
 100 Greatest Songs by Year | 1940 | 1941 | 1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945 | 1946 | 1947 | 1948 | 1949   
  1. Good Rockin' Tonight - Wynonie Harris
  2. It's Too Soon To Know - Orioles
  3. Caldonia - Louis Jordan
  4. The Honeydripper - Joe Liggins
  5. Choo Choo Ch'Boogie - Louis Jordan
  6. Straighten Up And Fly Right - King Cole Trio
  7. Lovesick Blues - Hank Williams
  8. Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee - Stick McGhee & His Buddies
  9. Saturday Night Fish Fry - Louis Jordan
10. Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop - Lionel Hampton
11. Till Then - Mills Brothers
12. Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well - Lucky Millinder (Wynonie Harris)
13. Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens - Louis Jordan
14. Chicken-Shack Boogie - Amos Milburn
15. The Hucklebuck - Paul Williams
16. Merry Christmas Baby - Johnny Moore's Three Blazers (Charles Brown)
17. Tomorrow Night - Lonnie Johnson
18. Let The Good Times Roll - Louis Jordan
19. Move It On Over - Hank Williams
20. Cherry Red Blues - Cootie Williams (Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson)
21. Blues In The Night - Jimmie Lunceford
22. God Bless The Child - Billie Holiday
23. Get Your Kicks On Route 66 - King Cole Trio
24. Flying Home - Lionel Hampton featuring Illinois Jacquet
25. Drifting Blues - Johnny Moore's Three Blazers (Charles Brown)
26. Walking The Floor Over You - Ernest Tubb
27. Boogie Chillen' - John Lee Hooker
28. The Christmas Song - King Cole Trio
29. G.I. Jive - Louis Jordan
30. Call It Stormy Monday - T-Bone Walker
31. I'll Get Along Somehow - Larry Darnell
32. Buzz Me - Louis Jordan
33. Confessin' The Blues - Jay McShann (Walter Brown)
34. Jack, You're Dead - Louis Jordan
35. Honky Tonkin' - Hank Williams
36. Don't Cry, Baby - Erskine Hawkins (Jimmy Mitchelle)
37. Fine Brown Frame - Nellie Lutcher
38. Romance In The Dark - Lil Green
39. I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry - Hank Williams
40. Ol' Man River - Ravens
41. I Don't Want To Set The World On Fire - Ink Spots
42. Blues Stay Away From Me - Delmore Brothers
43. New San Antonio Rose - Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys
44. Ain't That Just Like A Woman - Louis Jordan
45. Ain't Nobody's Business - Jimmy Witherspoon
46. For You My Love - Larry Darnell
47. Pistol Packin' Mama - Al Dexter & His Troopers
48. White Christmas - Ravens
49. What Are You Doing New Year's Eve - Orioles
50. Blue Moon Of Kentucky - Bill Monroe
51. The Deacon's Hop - Big Jay McNeely
52. King Size Papa - Julia Lee
53. That's My Desire - Frankie Laine / Hadda Brooks
54. Boogie Woogie Blue Plate - Louis Jordan
55. Open The Door Richard - Dusty Fletcher / Jack McVea / Louis Jordan
56. Long Gone - Sonny Thompson
57. Tippin' In - Erskine Hawkins
58. Long John Blues - Dinah Washington
59. Bewildered - Amos Milburn / Red Miller Trio
60. Good Rockin' Tonight - Roy Brown
61. Shout, Sister, Shout - Lucky Millinder (Sister Rosetta Tharpe)
62. Tell Me So - Orioles
63. Trouble Blues - Charles Brown
64. I Wonder - Private Cecil Gant / Roosevelt Sykes
65. I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town - Louis Jordan / Jimmie Lunceford
66. All She Wants To Do Is Rock - Wynonie Harris
67. Rockin' At Midnight - Roy Brown
68. See See Rider Blues - Bea Booze
69. I Almost Lost My Mind - Ivory Joe Hunter
70. When Things Go Wrong With You - Tampa Red
71. Cow Cow Boogie - Ella Fitzgerald & the Ink Spots / Freddie Slack (Ella Mae Morse)
72. Why Don't You Do Right? - Lil Green / Benny Goodman (Peggy Lee)
73. Move On Up A Little Higher - Mahalia Jackson
74. Pretty Mama Blues - Ivory Joe Hunter
75. Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby - Louis Jordan
76. Rock The Joint - Jimmy Preston
77. Sweet Georgia Brown - Brother Bones
78. Run, Joe - Louis Jordan
79. Boogie At Midnight - Roy Brown
80. That's All Right - Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup
81. Strange Things Happening - Sister Rosetta Tharpe
82. Stormy Monday Blues - Earl Hines (Billy Eckstine)
83. R.M. Blues - Roy Milton & His Solid Senders
84. My Bucket's Got A Hole In It - Hank Williams
85. Be-Baba-Leba - Helen Humes
86. Blues For The Red Boy - Todd Rhodes
87. Tennessee Saturday Night - Red Foley
88. Blow Top Blues - Lionel Hampton (Dinah Washington)
89. Snatch And Grab It - Julia Lee
90. Corn Bread - Hal Singer
91. So Glad You're Mine - Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup
92. Why Don't You Haul Off And Love Me - Bullmoose Jackson
93. The House Of Blue Lights - Freddie Slack (Ella Mae Morse)
94. (I Feel Like) Going Home - Muddy Waters
95. Junker Blues - Champion Jack Dupree
96. Long About Midnight - Roy Brown
97. That's The Stuff You Gotta Watch - Buddy Johnson (Ella Johnson)
98. Shake The Boogie - Sonny Boy Williamson
99. S.K. Blues - Pete Johnson (Joe Turner)
100. We're Gonna Rock, We're Gonna Roll - Wild Bill Moore

101. I Can't Be Satisfied - Muddy Waters
102. Baby Please Don't Go - Big Joe Williams
103. Down The Road A Piece - Will Bradley / Amos Milburn
104. Jimmy's Blues - Count Basie (Jimmy Rushing)
105. Got A Right To Cry - Joe Liggins
106. Midnight Special - Leadbelly (Golden Gate Quartet)
107. Key To The Highway - Big Bill Broonzy
108. Since I Fell For You - Paul Gayten (Annie Laurie) / Buddy & Ella Johnson
109. I Love You, Yes I Do - Bullmoose Jackson
110. I Want To Be Loved - Savannah Churchill
111. This Land Is Your Land - Woody Guthrie
112. Evil Gal Blues - Lionel Hampton (Dinah Washington)
113. Just A-Sittin' And A-Rockin' - Delta Rhythm Boys
114. Jole Blon - Harry Choates / Moon Mullican
115. Kidney Stew Blues - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
116. Rock Me, Mama - Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup
117. Sneaky Pete - Bullmoose Jackson
118. Take It And Git - Andy Kirk
119. You Always Hurt The One You Love - Mills Brothers
120. Cadillac Boogie - Jimmy Liggins
121. A Little Bird Told Me - Paula Watson
122. Riders In The Sky - Vaughn Monroe
123. Mule Train - Frankie Laine / Tennessee Ernie Ford
124. My Heart Belongs To You - Arbee Stidham
125. Messin' Around - Memphis Slim
126. Blues After Hours - Pee Wee Crayton
127. 3 X 7 = 21 - Jewel King
128. Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy - Red Foley
129. Up Above My Head, I Hear Music In The Air - Sister Rosetta Tharpe
130. Hop, Skip And Jump - Roy Milton
131. West Side Baby - T-Bone Walker / Dinah Washington
132. Beat Me Daddy, Eight To The Bar - Will Bradley
133. I Know Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well - Bullmoose Jackson
134. Smoke! Smoke! Smoke (That Cigarette) - Tex Williams
135. Step It Up And Go - Blind Boy Fuller
136. Somebody's Gotta Go - Cootie Williams (Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson)
137. Guitar Boogie - Arthur Smith
138. Hurry, Hurry - Benny Carter (Savannah Churchill)
139. Old Maid Boogie - Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
140. Boogie Blues - Gene Krupa (Anita O'Day)
141. That Lucky Old Sun - Frankie Laine
142. Rag Mop - Johnnie Lee Wills
143. Lollipop Mama - Wynonie Harris
144. Miss Fanny Brown - Roy Brown
145. So Long - Ruth Brown
146. Country Boy - Dave Bartholomew
147. Sweet Black Angel - Robert Nighthawk
148. Five Guys Named Moe - Louis Jordan
149. My Gal's A Jockey - Joe Turner
150. Worried Life Blues - Big Maceo
151. There's Good Blues Tonight - Lucky Millinder (Anisteen Allen)
152. New Orleans Blues - Johnny Moore's Three Blazers (Charles Brown)
153. I Miss You So - Cats And The Fiddle
154. For Sentimental Reasons - King Cole Trio
155. Don't You Lie To Me - Tampa Red
156. Beware, Brother, Beware - Louis Jordan
157. Let Me Play With Your Poodle - Tampa Red
158. Mop Mop - Louis Jordan
159. Sally Zu-Zazz - Joe Turner
160. Am I Asking Too Much - Dinah Washington
161. Reet Petite And Gone - Louis Jordan
162. Three O'Clock Blues - Lowell Fulson
163. I Want A Bowlegged Woman - Bullmoose Jackson
164. Voo-it!! Voo-it!! - Blues Woman (Marion Abernathy)
165. Baby, Get Lost - Dinah Washington
166. Sittin' On It All The Time - Wynonie Harris
167. Roomin' House Boogie - Amos Milburn
168. Blues At Sunrise - Ivory Joe Hunter
169. Grandma Plays The Numbers - Wynonie Harris
170. Pot Likker - Todd Rhodes
171. When My Man Comes Home - Buddy & Ella Johnson
172. Paper Doll - Mills Brothers
173. The Gypsy - Ink Spots
174. Texarkana Baby - Eddy Arnold
175. Sneakin' Around - Rudy Render
176. Roly-Poly - Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys
177. Born To Lose - Ted Daffan (Leon Seago)
178. Wynonie's Blues - Wynonie Harris
179. That Chick's Too Young To Fry - Louis Jordan
180. Texas Hop - Pee Wee Crayton
181. Cocaine Blues - Roy Hogsed
182. Gloria - Mills Brothers / Johnny Moore's Three Blazers (Charles Brown)
183. Hold Me, Baby - Amos Milburn
184. Broken Hearted - Eddie Williams (Floyd Dixon)
185. Mind Your Own Business - Hank Williams
186. Solo Flight - Benny Goodman (Charlie Christian)
187. Deacon Jones - Louis Jordan
188. Corrine, Corrina - Joe Turner
189. Sail On Boogie - T-Bone Walker
190. Rusty Dusty Blues - Count Basie (JImmy Rushing)
191. Gee Baby, Ain't I Good To You - King Cole Trio
192. Harlem Nocturne - Johnny Otis
193. Mardi Gras - Joe Lutcher
194. Mr. Five By Five - Freddie Slack
195. Swingin' The Boogie - Hadda Brooks
196. Texas And Pacific - Louis Jordan
197. Write Me A Letter - Ravens
198. You're Gonna Miss Me (When I'm Gone) - Lowell Fulson
199. (It's Gonna Be A) Lonely Christmas - Orioles
200. Irene - Leadbelly
big band radio

Good Rockin' Tonight


It's Too Soon To Know



Caldonia by Louis Jordan


The Honeydripper



Lovesick Blues


Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee



Saturday Night Fish Fry


Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop



The Hucklebuck


Merry Christmas Baby



Route 66



Boogie Chillin'
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Disclaimer: There is nothing 'Official' about these lists. They are compiled by the 'editor' using the
stated criteria, and revised considering the competent suggestions of visitors to this website only.


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