"Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop" is a 1946 song by Lionel Hampton and His Orchestra. The song's lead vocals were performed by Lionel Hampton himself and featured Herbie Fields on alto sax. The song went to number one on the R&B Juke Box charts for sixteen non-consecutive weeks and reached number nine on the national charts.
BUT "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop"
had a few precursors, like "Ee-Ba-Ba-Lee-Ba", "Be-Baba-Leba", "E-Bob-O-Le-Bob", "Ee-Bobaliba" and "Oo-Oo-Ee-Bob-A-Lee-Bob"
"Ee-Ba-Ba-Lee-Ba" was originally recorded on June 18, 1945 in the NBC Studios in Hollywood by it's composer Tina Dixon with the band of Jimmie Lunceford backing her.
The recordings were made for the Jubilee Radio Show, which aired from the Armed Forces Radio Service, Casa Manana, Culver City.
Here are the program details of that song in the Jubilee Radio show
Jubilee programme No. 138
AFRS program announcer: Vernon Smith
Master of Ceremonies: Ernest “Bubbles” Whitman
Studios: NBC, Hollywood
Pre-recording dates: June 1945
Date of dubbing: June 18, 1945
Side 1, wax info: HD5-MM-7711-1
"Obbla-Ee-Eebop Is The Thing" - vocal Tina Dixon and Jimmie Lunceford and his orchestra
Probably Jimmy Lunceford, playing most reed instruments including the flute, fronting:-
Freddy Webster, Harry “Pee-Wee” Jackson, Robert Mitchell, Paul Webster, trumpets;
Fernando Arbello, Russell Bowles, James Young, trombones; Omer Simeon, alto saxo & clarinet;
Benny Waters, Dan Grissom, Kurt Bradford, alto saxes; Joe Thomas, tenor sax; Earl Carruthers, baritone and
alto saxes, clarinet; Edwin Wilcox, piano; Al Norris, guitar; Charles
“Truck” Parham, string bass; Jimmy Crawford, drums; Tina Dixon, vocal; band vocal.
The ORIGINAL version was finally released in 2010 on the Jimmie Lunceford CD: "The Minor Riff"
But the first officially released version (as "Be-Baba-Leba") is by Helen Humes:(#3 R'nB Hit)
Recorded in Los Angeles in August 1945 -
Released in September - Philo PV 106, .
With the the Bill Doggett Octet
Ross Butler tp/ Johnny Brown as/ Wild Bill Moore ts/ Ernest Thompson bari/ Bill Doggett p/ Elmer Warner g/ Alfred Moore, b/ Charles Harris d/ Helen Humes voc :I
But possibly there is an earlier version by the Flennoy Trio backing up singer Tina Dixon.
This version (as "E-Bob-O-Le-Bob"), with composer-credits by Tina Dixon, was apparantly released (or recorded ?) in September 1945 on the Excelsior Records label.
See next link on Marv Goldberg's Radio Show # 541 broadcasted 09/23/2007
But on the next link you can read that Jim Wynn claims he has written the song years before he finally recorded it in September 1945.
(c) Jim Wynn's Bobalibans
1945 (as "Ee-Bobaliba")
Stanley Casey (trumpet) David Graham (alto saxophone) Freddie Simon (tenor saxophone) Jim Wynn (tenor, baritone saxophone) Luther "Lord" Luper (piano, vocals) Theodore Shirley (bass) Robert "Snake" Sims (drums) Claude Trenier, Pee Wee Wiley (vocals)
Los Angeles, CA, circa September, 1945
Released on 4 Star 1026 and Foto 1026
Texas-born "Big" Jim Wynn (aka James A. Wynn), who was a 33 y.o. L.A. bandleader at the time (1945), had been working as both a tenor and baritone sax player. Along with putting together one of the 1st stripped-down R&B bands in the early 40s, Wynn is credited with being one of the proto-"honkers" who wielded his instrument like a madman onstage, although his recordings don't give much evidence of this. One thing does seem certain, however. During the war years his band, the Bobalibans, had a lazy, swinging theme they'd sing, with the audience's participation, called "Ee-Bobaliba", made up mostly of nonsense blues and scat lyrics: "She's got a head like a rooster, she's shaped like a frog [also to be listened in Clarence "Frogman" Henry's "I ain't got no home], but when she starts lovin' me, ooh-eee bobaliba!"
Nobody is sure how Helen Humes came up with her lyrics. Wynn insisted that she got "be-baba-leba" refrain from him, although he never took her to court on the matter.
BUT, then again, how original was Wynn's tune ?
Jazz pianist Jelly Roll Morton called "Be-Baba-Leba"'s boogie line "a riff so old it's got whiskers."
A more contemporary version of that ancient riff-with its eight-to-the-bar rhythm-was a song called "Boogie Woogie" recorded by Count Basie [musically based on Pine Top Smith's 1929 hit, "Pine Top's Boogie Woogie" (See: http://jopiepopie.blogspot.nl/2013/10/chicago-stomp-1924-pine-tops-boogie.html), but lyrically quite different.], with a vocal refrain by Jimmy Rushing, recorded for Columbia Records in 1936. The main difference is that Rushing didn't mention any thing about "ooh baba leba".
And listen here to Count Basie's instrumental version from 1938 on Decca
Bebop broadly meant "go, man, go".
This phrase, or something very similar, was widely used in jazz circles in the 1940s, giving its name to the bebop style, and possibly being ultimately derived from the shout of "Arriba! Arriba!" used by Latin American bandleaders to encourage band members
(c) Lionel Hampton 1946 (as "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop")
As soon as Helen Humes' "Be-baba-leba" charted in December, Decca rushed Lionel Hampton's band into the studio to record "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop". The "composers" were Hampton and drummer Curly Hammer (only for slighty adapting the lyrics)
"Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop" was recorded on December 1, 1945
Released on Decca 18754 (#1 R&B / #9 POP Hit)
Excactly 4 days later Charlie Barnet cut another version of this song (as "E-Bob-O-Lee-Bob") on the same label as Hampton, but this time the credits go to Tina Dixon.
(c) Charlie Barnet 1946 (as "E-Bob-O-Lee-Bob")
Recorded December 5, 1945
Vocal by "Peanuts" Holland.
Released on Decca 18761
(c) Bull Moose Jackson 1946 (as"Oo-Oo-Ee-Bob-A-Lee-Bob") ("composer": Walter Brown !?)
Bull Moose Jackson and his Orchestra featuring Annisteen Allen [vcl]
Recorded December 19, 1945
Released on Queen (and later on King 4107)
(c) Wynonie Harris with the Hamp-Tone All Stars (1946)
Wynonie Harris (voc), accompanied by Wendell Culley, Joe Morris (tp), Herbie Fields (cl-1, ts-2), Arnett Cobb (ts), Charlie Fowlkes (bar), Milt Buckner (p), Billy Mackel (g), Charlie Harris (b), George Jenkins (dr).
Los Angeles, December 1945 or January 1946
Recorded Los Angeles, December 1945 or January 1946
Released on Hamp-Tone 100
(c) Tex Beneke with the Glenn Miller Orchestra ("Hey! Ba-ba-re-bop")
Hit #4 POP (under the direction of Tex Beneke, following Miller's disappearance in a 1944 English Channel airplane crash);
Released on RCA Victor 1859
(c) The Ramblers 1947 (as "Hey-Ba-Ba-Re-Bob")
o.l.v. Theo Uden Masman.
Vocals: Ferry Barendse.
Label: Decca # M 32162 (AM 1036).
Recorded in Hof van Holland in Hilversum on January 6, 1947
(c) Helen Humes (with Dizzy Gillespie Orchestra) 1947 (as "Hey Baba Leba")
Listen and SEE her here:
(c) Lola Dee 1955 (as "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop")
(c) Jaques Helian 1957 (as "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop") (B. Michel, Sherman Edwards)
(c) Thurston Harris 1958
(c) Lillian Briggs 1958
(c) Blue Diamonds 1964
(c) Tony Sheridan and the Big Six 1965
(c) Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band 1970 (as "Woe-Is-Uh-Me-Bop")
(c) Father Abraham (1978)
(c) Peter Koelewijn en zijn Rockets 1981 (Klap Maar in Je Handen)
Dutch artist cleverly used the "Hey Ba-Ba-Re-Bop" riff and also some "Gloria" and scored another hit in The Netherlands.
(c) Wim Leys (2012)
From the album 'De planken uit de vloer'
And finally a version from the 1940's (artist unknown), For adults only (-: