Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)

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"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
Cover of sheet music folio
Single by Cher
from the album The Sonny Side of Chér
B-side"Needles and Pins" "Our Day Will Come"
Released1966
Format7" single
Recorded1966
GenrePop rock
Length2:44
LabelImperial Records
Writer(s)Sonny Bono
Producer(s)Sonny Bono
Certification3xPlatinum (as of 1984), (US)
Cher singles chronology
"Where Do You Go"
(1965)
"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
(1966)
"Alfie"
(1966)
 
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"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
Cover of sheet music folio
Single by Cher
from the album The Sonny Side of Chér
B-side"Needles and Pins" "Our Day Will Come"
Released1966
Format7" single
Recorded1966
GenrePop rock
Length2:44
LabelImperial Records
Writer(s)Sonny Bono
Producer(s)Sonny Bono
Certification3xPlatinum (as of 1984), (US)
Cher singles chronology
"Where Do You Go"
(1965)
"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"
(1966)
"Alfie"
(1966)
"Bang-Bang (promo single)"
Single by Cher
from the album Cher
B-side"I Found Someone"
Released1988
Recorded1986 - 1987
GenreRock
Length3:48
LabelGeffen
Writer(s)Sonny Bono
Producer(s)David Geffen
Cher singles chronology
"Skin Deep"
(1988)
"Bang Bang"
(1988)
"Main Man"
(1988)

"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" is the second single by singer-actress Cher from her second studio album The Sonny Side of Chér. The song was written by Cher's then-husband Sonny Bono and released in 1966. The song reached number three in the UK Singles Chart and number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and is one of Cher's biggest selling singles of the 1960s.

Song History[edit]

The single proved successful, charting high on many national charts worldwide. In the United States, it was Cher's biggest solo hit of the 1960s, peaking at #2. This was Cher's first top-three hit in the UK, charting at #3. It would be her last top-three hit until The Shoop-Shoop Song twenty-five years later.

Allmusic's Joe Viglione reviewed the song positively: "Metaphors abound as the old world mix of strings collides with the new world of pop neatly edited into this under 3 minute hit..."[1] Modern critic Tim Sendra, when he reviewed the "The Sonny Side of Cher" album, wrote a mixed review: "The only track that has any real zest is the Bono-written novelty "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)," the kind of dramatic song Cher could knock out in her sleep but also a song with no real heart."[2] In 1987, Cher recorded a rock version of the song for her comeback album Cher (1987 album) which was released as a promo single only. The 1987 version was performed on Cher's Heart of Stone Tour (1990), Living Proof: The Farewell Tour (2002-2005) and Dressed to Kill Tour (2014).

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1966)Peak
position
Australian Singles Chart11
Austrian Singles Chart[3]6
Belgian Singles Chart9
Canadian Singles Chart9
Dutch Singles Chart16
German Singles Chart17
Irish Singles Chart3
Italian Singles Chart6
New Zealand Singles Chart2
Polish Singles Chart15
South Africa Singles Chart10
Swedish Singles Chart9
UK Singles Chart[4]3
U.S. Billboard Hot 1002

Year-end charts[edit]

Country (1966)Position
Germany[5]114

Cover versions[edit]

Also in 1966, Nancy Sinatra released her version of the song on her album How Does That Grab You?. It featured tremolo effect guitar (played by Billy Strange[6]) and melancholy singing. This version remained relatively obscure[citation needed] until it was used in the opening scenes of the 2003 movie Kill Bill Volume 1. This exposure caused Sinatra's version to be the one chosen by Audio Bullys when, in 2005, they used a sample of the song for their top ten UK hit "Shot You Down", credited officially to Audio Bullys featuring Nancy Sinatra. Canadian rapper Kardinal Offishall also sampled this version for his single "Bang Bang", which appeared on his mixtape Kill Bloodclott Bill in 2004. Rapper Young Buck sampled Sinatra's version on his song "Bang Bang" from his album Straight Outta Cashville. Rapper MMJC sampled this song for his track "C-Town Beat Down" on his album "Teaser". "Bang Bang" was included on Vanilla Fudge’s 1967 release, “Bang Bang”. This version of the song was later used in David Fincher’s 2007 film Zodiac. A portion of this song version was also used in Netflix original TV Series Lilyhammer Season 2 episode 8.

Other artists who recorded this song include: Stevie Wonder for his 1966 album Down to Earth, The Beau Brummels on their 1966 album Beau Brummels '66, Petula Clark in 1966 for her album I Couldn't Live Without Your Love, Gábor Szabó on his 1966 album Spellbinder, Vanilla Fudge for their 1967 album Vanilla Fudge, Bulgarian artist Lili Ivanova included a Bulgarian-language version called "Benk-benk" on an album of her songs released in Russia in 1968 called "More molodosti", Terry Reid for his 1968 album Bang Bang You're Terry Reid, Frank Sinatra for his 1981 album She Shot Me Down, Cliff Richard, Crazyhead on their "Baby Turpentine" 12" single in 1987, Paul Weller on his 2003 compilation album Fly On The Wall - B Sides And Rarities and Isobel Campbell on her 2004 EP Time Is Just the Same. American Rapper, Lil' Wayne samples the Nancy Sinatra version of this song on his mix-tape Dedication 2 on a song under the same name. The German artist Rainald Grebe used the refrain for his tragicomic song "Bengt Bangt" in his program "Lagerfeuer des Grauens". Japanese pop/rock singer Minako Honda recorded a Japanese cover on her 1989 album WILD CATS (as MINAKO with WILD CATS), while a Vietnamese version can be heard from singer Mỹ Tâm with the title “Khi xưa ta bé (Bang Bang)”.

This song was also very popular in the Sixties in Italy and has been covered by the following artists: Mina, Dalida and the bands Equipe 84 and, in a psych-garage style, I Corvi.[7] In France, the French version with French-language lyrics written by Claude Carrère and Georges Aber was sung by Sheila, and became a big hit there in summer 1966. Still in France, Jacno and Mareva Galanter did a cover of the French version (2006). In Quebec, Claire Lepage did a French cover in 1966.Also, in 1966-67, the song was sung in French by popular artist Dalida.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Song review by Allmusic's Joe Viglione, Retrieved 15 October 2013
  2. ^ The Sonny Side of Cher - Cher | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards | AllMusic
  3. ^ Austrian Singles Chart [1] . Retrieved October 22, 2010.
  4. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (1966). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 53. 
  5. ^ German Singles Chart (1966). "German Singles Chart; End of year charts". Archived from the original on 18 July 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  6. ^ "Guitarist Billy Strange Talks About Nancy Sinatra’s ‘Bang Bang’ « Lost & Sound". Lostandsound.wordpress.com. 2008-06-06. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  7. ^ "I Corvi - Bang bang (1966)". YouTube. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  8. ^ "Web database with cover versions and musical quotations". 
  9. ^ Butler Track Listing-Last FM Retrieved: May 20, 2013.
  10. ^ Bang Bang/Reach Out on YouTube Retrieved: 20 May 2013
  11. ^ Encyclopaedia Metallum: The Metal Archives

External links[edit]