List of 1950s one-hit wonders in the United States

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This is a list of musical artists whose one hit came out in the 1950s.

The list contains recording artists who reached the Top 40 of the U.S. pop chart (the Billboard "Best Sellers in Stores" chart from January 1, 1955 to November 12, 1955, the Billboard Top 100 from November 12, 1955 to August 4, 1958 and the Billboard Hot 100 from August 4, 1958 on) with just one single. In some special cases, a "J" may appear next to the peak position, denoting that the act's only Top 40 hit was on the "Most Played by Jockeys" chart. An asterisk is shown when the date the song reached its peak position on the pop chart is unavailable.

This list begins in 1955, the traditional start of the modern rock and roll era that gave rise to the popularity of the top 40.

Artists in italics have only one Top 40 hit, but either

Years[edit]

1955[edit]

SongPerformerPeak datePeak
"Runaround"The Three ChucklesNovember 13, 1954*20
"Let Me Go, Lover!"The Lancers[1]December 18, 1954*6
"Let Me Go, Lover!"Joan WeberJanuary 1, 19551
"Earth Angel (Will You Be Mine)"The PenguinsFebruary 5, 19558
"Make Yourself Comfortable"Peggy KingFebruary 5, 195530
"(My Baby Don't Love Me) No More"DeJohn SistersFebruary 12, 19556
"Pledging My Love"Johnny Ace[2]March 19, 195517
"The Ballad of Davy Crockett"The Voices of Walter SchumannApril 9, 1955*29
"Dixie Danny"Laurie SistersApril 16, 195530
"Plantation Boogie"Lenny DeeMay 4, 195519
"Don't Be Angry"Nappy BrownMay 7, 195525
"The Breeze and I (Andalucia)"Caterina Valente[3]May 14, 19558
"Blue Star (The "Medic Theme")"Felicia Sanders[4]May 28, 1955*29
"Alabama Jubilee"Ferko String BandJune 18, 1955*18
"Love Me or Leave Me"Lena Horne[5]July 9, 195519
"The Bandit (O'Cangaceiro)"Eddie Barclay and His OrchestraJuly 16, 195518
"The Man in the Raincoat"Marion MarloweJuly 16, 1955*14 (J)
"The Man in the Raincoat"Priscilla Wright with Don Wright and The SeptetteAugust 6, 195516
"The Popcorn Song"Cliffie Stone and His OrchestraAugust 20, 195514
"The House of Blue Lights"Chuck MillerAugust 27, 19559
"I Want You to Be My Baby"Lillian BriggsOctober 1, 195518
"At My Front Door (Crazy Little Mama)"The El DoradosNovember 12, 195517
"Daddy-O"Bonnie LouDecember 3, 195514
"It's Almost Tomorrow"Snooky LansonDecember 3, 1955*20
"Autumn Leaves"Steve Allen[6]December 10, 195535
"Cry Me a River"Julie London[7]December 17, 19559
"Oh! Susanna"The Singing Dogs[8]December 17, 195522
"(I'm Gettin') Nuttin' for Christmas"Ricky Zahnd and the Blue JeanersDecember 24, 195521
"Nuttin' for Christmas"Barry GordonDecember 31, 19556
"Nuttin' for Xmas"Joe WardDecember 31, 195520

1956[edit]

SongPerformerPeak datePeak
"Band of Gold"Kit CarsonJanuary 7, 195611
"When You Dance"The TurbansJanuary 14, 195633
"April in Paris"Count Basie[9]February 4, 1956*28
"(A Theme from) the Three Penny Opera (Moritat)"Richard Hayman and Jan AugustFebruary 11, 1956*12
"Chain Gang"Bobby ScottFebruary 18, 195613
"Cry Baby"Bonnie SistersMarch 3, 195618
"Lovely One"The Four VoicesMarch 17, 195620
"Eloise"Kay ThompsonMarch 17, 195639
"Lullaby of Birdland"The Blue StarsMarch 24, 195616
"Mr. Wonderful"Teddi KingMarch 24, 195618
"11th Hour Melody"Lou Busch and His OrchestraMarch 24, 195635
"Eddie My Love"The Teen QueensMarch 31, 195614
"(Themes From) The Man with the Golden Arm"Richard Maltby and His Orchestra[10]March 31, 1956*32
"Main Theme from The Man with the Golden Arm"Elmer Bernstein[10]April 28, 195632
"Blue Suede Shoes"Carl Perkins[11]May 19, 19562
"Moonglow and Theme from Picnic"Morris Stoloff Conducting the Columbia Pictures Orchestra[10]June 2, 19562
"The Happy Whistler"Don Robertson[12]June 2, 19566
"Ivory Tower"Cathy CarrJune 16, 19562
"Portuguese Washerwomen"Joe "Fingers" CarrJune 16, 1956*25
"Graduation Day"The Rover BoysJune 23, 195616
"Free"Tommy LeonettiJuly 7, 1956*23
"Stranded in the Jungle"The CadetsJuly 28, 195615
"Stranded in the Jungle"The JayhawksJuly 28, 195618
"Stranded in the Jungle"The GadaboutsAugust 4, 195639
"The Old Philosopher"Eddie LawrenceSeptember 1, 195634
"A Casual Look"The Six TeensSeptember 1, 195625
"The Fool"Sanford ClarkSeptember 22, 19567
"When the White Lilacs Bloom Again"Helmut Zacharias and His Magic ViolinsSeptember 22, 195612
"Tonight You Belong to Me"The Lennon Sisters[13]September 29, 1956*16
"True Love"Grace Kelly[14]October 6, 1956*3
"Peanuts"Little Joe and the ThrillersOctober 13, 195622
"True Love"Jane PowellOctober 27, 195615
"Priscilla"Eddie CooleyNovember 24, 195620
"City of Angels"The HighlightsNovember 24, 195619
"Confidential"Sonny KnightNovember 24, 195617
"Garden of Eden"Joe ValinoDecember 8, 195612
"Blueberry Hill"Gordon Jenkins and His Orchestra and ChorusDecember 15, 1956*29
"Slow Walk"Sil AustinDecember 22, 195617
"Cindy, Oh Cindy"Vince MartinDecember 22, 19569
"Rock-a-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody"Jerry Lewis[6]December 29, 195610
"Since I Met You Baby"Ivory Joe Hunter[15]December 29, 195612

1957[edit]

SongPerformerPeak datePeak
"Your Wild Heart"Joy LayneFebruary 23, 195720
"Cinco Robles (Five Oaks)"Russell ArmsFebruary 23, 195722
"The Swingin' Shepherd Blues"Moe Koffman QuartetteFebruary 23, 195723
"Love Is Strange"Mickey & Sylvia[16]March 2, 195711
"The Walk"Jimmy McCracklin with his BandMarch 9, 19577
"Bad Boy"The Jive BombersMarch 16, 195736
"Sittin' in the Balcony"Johnny Dee[17]March 16, 195738
"Marianne"Terry Gilkyson and the Easy RidersApril 6, 19574
"Almost Paradise"Lou SteinApril 6, 195731
"I'm Stickin' with You"Jimmy Bowen with The Rhythm OrchidsApril 27, 195714
"Pledge of Love"Ken Copeland[18]May 6, 195712
"Rosie Lee"The Mello-TonesMay 13, 195724
"After School"Randy StarrMay 13, 195732
"Dark Moon"Bonnie GuitarJune 10, 19576
"Gonna Find Me a Bluebird"Marvin RainwaterJune 10, 195718
"Freight Train"Charles McDevitt Skiffle GroupJune 10, 195740
"A Fallen Star"Jimmy NewmanJune 10, 195723
"With All My Heart"Jodie SandsJune 24, 195715
"Let the Four Winds Blow"Roy Brown[19]July 1, 195729
"(Main Theme) Around the World"Victor Young and His Singing StringsJuly 8, 1957*26
"Over the Mountain; Across the Sea"Johnnie & JoeJuly 22, 19578
"White Silver Sands"Dave GardnerJuly 29, 195722
"Rainbow"Russ HamiltonSeptember 16, 19577
"Mr. Lee"The BobbettesSeptember 13, 19576
"Moonlight Swim"Tony PerkinsOctober 7, 195724
"Black Slacks"Joe Bennett and the SparkletonesOctober 14, 195717
"Happy, Happy Birthday Baby"The Tune WeaversOctober 28, 19575
"Silhouettes/Daddy Cool"The RaysNovember 4, 19573
"Little Bitty Pretty One"Thurston HarrisNovember 11, 19576
"Alone (Why Must I Be Alone)"Shepherd SistersNovember 11, 195718
"Liechtensteiner Polka"Will Glahe and His OrchestraNovember 25, 195716
"Could This Be Magic"The DubsDecember 2, 195723
"The Joker (That's What They Call Me)"Billy MylesDecember 2, 195725
"Hey Little Girl"The Techniques[20]December 9, 195729
"Raunchy"Bill Justis[21]December 16, 19572
"Raunchy"Ernie FreemanDecember 30, 19574
"I'm Available"Margie RayburnDecember 16, 19579

1958[edit]

SongPerformerPeak datePeak
"Buzz-Buzz-Buzz"The Hollywood FlamesJanuary 27, 195811
"At the Hop"Nick ToddFebruary 10, 195821
"The Swingin' Shepherd Blues"Moe Koffman QuartetteFebruary 10, 1958*36
"Get a Job"The SilhouettesFebruary 24, 19581
"She's Neat"Dale Wright with the Rock-ItsFebruary 24, 195838
"Oh Julie"The CrescendosMarch 3, 19585
"Oh Julie"Sammy SalvoMarch 3, 195823 (J)
"7-11"The Gone All StarsMarch 3, 195830
"We Belong Together"Robert & JohnnyMarch 3, 195832
"You Can Make It If You Try"Gene AllisonMarch 10, 195836
"Been So Long"The PastelsMarch 10, 195824
"Tequila"Eddie PlattMarch 31, 195820
"Dinner with Drac–Part 1"John Zacherle "The Cool Ghoul"[22]March 31, 19586
"He's Got the Whole World in His Hands"Laurie LondonApril 14, 19581
"Lollipop"Ronald & RubyApril 14, 195820
"Don't You Just Know It"Huey "Piano" Smith and the Clowns[23]April 14, 19589
"Book of Love"The MonotonesApril 21, 19585
"Chanson D'Amour (Song of Love)"Art and Dotty ToddMay 5, 19586
"Wishing for Your Love"The VoxpoppersMay 5, 195818
"You"The AquatonesMay 26, 195821
"Torero"Renato CarosoneJune 2, 195818
"Padre"Toni ArdenJune 2, 1958*18
"Purple People Eater"Sheb Wooley[24]June 9, 19581
"For Your Love"Ed TownsendJune 9, 195813
"When the Boys Talk About the Girls"Valerie CarrJune 9, 195819
"Cha-Hua-Hua"The PetsJune 9, 195834
"(It's Been a Long Time) Pretty Baby"Gino and GinaJune 23, 195820
"Jennie Lee"Jan and Arnie[25]June 30, 19588
"Endless Sleep"Jody ReynoldsJune 30, 19585
"Got a Match?"The Daddy O'sJuly 7, 195839
"Delicious"Jim Backus and Friend[26]July 21, 195840
"One Summer Night"The DanleersJuly 28, 19587
"Judy"Frankie VaughanJuly 28, 195822
"Baubles, Bangles and Beads"Kirby Stone FourJuly 28, 195825
"Willie and the Hand Jive"Johnny Otis Show [27]August 4, 19589
"The Freeze"Tony and JoeAugust 4, 195833
"Crazy Eyes for You"Bobby HamiltonAugust 4, 195840
"Early in the Morning"The Rinky Dinks[28]August 11, 195824
"Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)"Domenico Modugno[29]August 18, 19581
"Little Star"The ElegantsAugust 25, 19581
"Born Too Late"The Poni-TailsSeptember 15, 19587
"Down the Aisle of Love"The Quin-TonesSeptember 15, 195818
"Tea for Two Cha Cha"The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra[9] and Warren CovingtonSeptember 15, 1958*7
"Summertime, Summertime"The JamiesSeptember 22, 195826
"Weekend"The Kingsmen[30]September 22, 195835
"Cerveza"Boots BrownSeptember 29, 195823
"You Cheated"The ShieldsOctober 6, 195812
"Itchy Twitchy Feeling"Bobby HendricksOctober 6, 195825
"Need You"Donnie OwensOctober 6, 195825
"Rockin' Robin"Bobby Day[11]October 13, 19582
"The End"Earl GrantOctober 13, 19587
"Susie Darlin'"Robin LukeOctober 13, 19585
"The Blob"The Five BlobsNovember 3, 195833
"Back to School Again"Timmie "Oh Yeah" RogersNovember 18, 195836
"Poor Boy"The RoyaltonesDecember 1, 195817
"To Know Him Is to Love Him"The Teddy Bears[31]December 15, 19581
"Philadelphia, U.S.A."The Nu-TornadosDecember 22, 195826

1959[edit]

SongPerformerPeak datePeak
"The Little Drummer Boy"Harry Simeone ChoraleJanuary 12, 195913
"Gotta Travel On"Billy Grammer[32]January 19, 19594
"Teasin'"The Quaker City BoysJanuary 26, 195939
"Manhattan Spiritual"Reg OwenFebruary 9, 195910
"The Little Space Girl"Jesse Lee TurnerFebruary 9, 195920
"Pretty Girls Everywhere"Eugene Church and the FellowsFebruary 23, 1959*36
"Petite Fleur (Little Flower)"Chris Barber's Jazz Band[33]March 2, 19595
"I've Had It"The Bell NotesMarch 9, 19596
"You Can Make It If You Try"Gene AllisonMarch 9, 195936
"I Got a Wife"The Mark IVMarch 16, 195924
"Tragedy"Thomas Wayne with the DeLonsMarch 23, 19595
"Guess Who"Jesse BelvinMarch 30, 195931
"Sea Cruise"Frankie FordApril 6, 195914
"This Should Go on Forever"Rod BernardApril 13, 195920
"Pink Shoe Laces"Dodie StevensApril 13, 19593
"Tell Him No"Travis and BobApril 27, 19598
"Guitar Boogie Shuffle"The VirtuesApril 27, 19595
"Three Stars"Tommy DeeMay 4, 195911
"Kookie, Kookie (Lend Me Your Comb)"Edward Byrnes[29][34]May 11, 19594
"Sorry (I Ran All the Way Home)"The ImpalasMay 11, 19592
"Only You"Franck Pourcel's French FiddlesJune 1, 19599
"Lonely for You"Gary StitesJune 1, 195924
"I've Come of Age"Billy StormJune 1, 195928
"No Chemise, Please"Gerry Granahan[35]June 9, 195923
"So Fine"The FiestasJune 15, 195911
"Tall Cool One"[36]The Wailers[37]June 22, 195936
"Bongo Rock"Preston EppsJune 29, 195914
"Hushabye"The MysticsJune 29, 195920
"Little Dipper"Mickey Mozart Quintet[38]July 6, 195930
"You're So Fine"The FalconsJuly 13, 195917
"Waterloo"Stonewall Jackson[39]July 13, 19594
"Mona Lisa"Carl MannAugust 10, 195925
"Ciao, Ciao Bambina"Jacky Noguez and His Musette OrchestraAugust 10, 195924
"Here Comes Summer"Jerry KellerAugust 17, 195914
"Robbin the Cradle"Tony BellusAugust 17, 195925
"Mary Lou"Ronnie Hawkins and the Hawks[40]August 17, 195926
"Sea of Love"Phil Phillips with the TwilightsAugust 24, 19592
"The Mummy"Bob McFadden and Dor[41]August 24, 195939
"See You in September"The TemposSeptember 7, 195923
"The Three Bells (The Jimmy Brown Story)"Dick FloodSeptember 14, 195923
"Morgen"Ivo Robic and the Song-MastersSeptember 21, 195913
"Makin' Love"Floyd RobinsonSeptember 28, 195920
"I Loves You, Porgy"Nina Simone[42]October 5, 195918
"Say Man"Bo Diddley[23]October 26, 195920
"Battle Hymn of the Republic"Mormon Tabernacle Choir[43]October 26, 195913
"You Were Mine"The FirefliesOctober 26, 195921
"Deck of Cards"Wink Martindale[44]November 2, 19597
"The Enchanted Sea"The IslandersNovember 16, 195915
"High School U.S.A. (Area)"Tommy FacendaNovember 16, 195928
"Woo Hoo"The Rock-A-TeensNovember 23, 195916
"Midnight Stroll"The RevelsNovember 30, 195935
"In the Mood"Ernie FieldsDecember 14, 19594
"Marina"Rocco Granata and the International QuintetDecember 21, 195931
"Uh! Oh! Part 2"The Nutty SquirrelsDecember 28, 195914
"The Happy Reindeer"Dancer, Prancer and Nervous[45]December 28, 195934

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ and Teresa Brewer.
  2. ^ A star of rhythm and blues singing in the United States.
  3. ^ Many hits in continental Europe.
  4. ^ Also provided vocals for The Song from Moulin Rouge, a #1 hit for Percy Faith and his orchestra in 1953
  5. ^ Better known as an actress and Broadway star.
  6. ^ a b Better known as a comedian and actor.
  7. ^ Better known as an actress.
  8. ^ The B-side, "Jingle Bells," is more widely known today. The Singing Dogs was a pioneering novelty act that introduced the concept of sampling to popular music.
  9. ^ a b A highly influential jazz artist and big band leader.
  10. ^ a b c Better known as a film composer.
  11. ^ a b A highly influential singer.
  12. ^ Better known as a songwriter and a record producer
  13. ^ and Lawrence Welk.
  14. ^ and Bing Crosby. Kelly is better known as the Princess of Monaco and as an actress.
  15. ^ His only top 40 pop hit, but he was a popular R&B artist with multiple #1 songs
  16. ^ Group member Mickey Baker has a career as a successful studio musician, and Sylvia Robinson later had success on the R&B charts, including another top-40 hit as a solo artist.
  17. ^ Better known as a songwriter, under his real name John D. Loudermilk.
  18. ^ Better known as a televangelist
  19. ^ An influential R&B singer and pianist.
  20. ^ Not the 1960s Jamaican band, but an American vocal group
  21. ^ A highly influential session saxopohonist.
  22. ^ Better known as a television personality.
  23. ^ a b An influential artist in the rock and roll genre.
  24. ^ Four top-40 hits on the country charts (including one number-one), both under his own name and as "Ben Colder." Also better known as an actor.
  25. ^ Featured Jan Berry of Jan and Dean.
  26. ^ Backus was better known as an actor. At the time, he was best known as the voice of the animated character Mr. Magoo. He went on to play Thurston Howell III on Gilligan's Island.
  27. ^ Otis had a long career including a #2 hit in the UK and many US R&B hits
  28. ^ A band that featured Bobby Darin.
  29. ^ a b Better known in the US as an actor.
  30. ^ The group is actually The Comets without Bill Haley. They should not be confused with the 1960s rock band of the same name.
  31. ^ A doo-wop group that featured songwriter and producer Phil Spector.
  32. ^ A country singer who is more popular on his own genre's charts, and he is a member of the Grand Ole Opry.
  33. ^ Partnership between frontman Chris Barber and band member Pat Halcox was the longest in jazz history.
  34. ^ and Connie Stevens, who had a #3 hit of her own as a solo artist and has had a long and successful acting career.
  35. ^ A member of Dicky Doo and the Don'ts and The Fireflies.
  36. ^ A re-issue peaked at #38 on the Hot 100 in 1964.
  37. ^ One of the first garage rock groups.
  38. ^ Robert Maxwell later had a hit under his own name.
  39. ^ An influential country singer.
  40. ^ A singer whose career has spanned over 50 years, Hawkins is widely popular in his adopted homeland of Canada, and has a star on Canada's Walk of Fame. Also, some members of the group would later form The Band.
  41. ^ "Dor" is a pseudonym of Rod McKuen, a highly prolific songwriter who is better known for his role in revitalizing popular poetry in the 1960s and early 1970s.
  42. ^ A pianist who played in many styles, with hits on the R&B chart and in the UK
  43. ^ A well-known choral group.
  44. ^ Better known as a game show host.
  45. ^ Russ Regan, the composer and producer of this piece, would go on to have more success as a record executive in the 1960s and 1970s.

See also[edit]