The 6th Billboard #1 hit single- “Tom Dooley”- The Kingston Trio. #1 for 1 week November 17, 1958. Capitol Records. Written by Thomas Land. Genre: Folk. Time: 3:01. B-Side:”Ruby Red.” Grade: A+.
Here is a link to the story behind the folk song “Tom Dooley”
There are many versions of “Tom Dooley” but this 1958 version by The Kingston Trio is the most well known- it went to #1, sold six million copies, it won a Grammy Award for Best Country and Western Performance, and is credited by some as kicking off the folk music boom of the late 50’s- 1960’s. It was a big hit all over the world-#1 in Australia, Canada and Norway. It peaked at #5 in the UK. It was the first and biggest hit that The Kingston Trio ever had- they eventually had 17 Hot 100- and ten Top 40 hits from 1958-63. Five of their first six albums went to #1 on the album chart. The members of this San Francisco trio at the time of “Tom Dooley” were Dave Guard, Bob Shane and Nick Reynolds. The best known member of The Kingston Trio would be John Stewart who replace Guard in 1961 when he left to form another group.