‘Long Tall Sally’: Little Richard’s Long Tall Story And Rock‘n‘Roll Classic

One of the great double-sided hits of the era paired ‘Long Tall Sally’ with ‘Slippin’ and Slidin.’’

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Little Richard EP artwork - Courtesy: UMG
Little Richard EP artwork - Courtesy: UMG

Little Richard burst onto the emerging rock‘n’roll scene in the new year of 1956 with “Tutti-Frutti,” the American Top 20 hit that lit the fuse for an explosive follow-up. One of the great double-sided hits of the era, “Long Tall Sally,” backed with “Slippin’ and Slidin’ (Peepin’ and Hidin’),” was released on February 27 that year.

Like its predecessor, the Specialty 45 would end up in both the Grammy and Rock & Roll Halls Of Fame, and help spread the word about the unique entertainer we came to know as the Georgia Peach. Richard’s huge influence on The Beatles was due in no small part to this particular single, as they would demonstrate in later years.

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The Beatles recorded “Long Tall Sally” as the lead track of their 1964 EP, and Paul McCartney performed it with his new group Wings on their 1972 UK college tour. The Liverpool idols also played “Slippin’ and Slidin’” during their “Get Back” rehearsals, and John Lennon chose the song to be part of his covers album Rock ‘n’ Roll in 1975 — not to mention that McCartney’s fondness for a falsetto vocal came directly from the one and only Mr. Penniman. Paul would later joke that Richard never let him forget it.

Long Tall Sally (Remastered 2009)

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Both songs have been covered endlessly, “Long Tall Sally” also attracting versions by Elvis Presley, Eddie Cochran, the Kinks, Jerry Lee Lewis, and dozens of others. Aside from Lennon, “Slidin’” was done by Buddy Holly, Johnny Winter, and Otis Redding, to name only a few.

Listen to uDiscover Music’s Little Richard In 20 Songs playlist.

“Sally” went on to reach No.6 on the American chart, the highest ranking Little Richard ever achieved. “Slidin’” was so popular that it climbed to No.33 in its own right, as one of rock’n’roll’s true originals became a bigger star by the week. Both songs are on the deluxe edition of the unforgettable debut LP by the Georgia Peach, Here’s Little Richard.

Buy or stream Here’s Little Richard: 60th Anniversary Edition.



  1. sergio

    February 28, 2015 at 3:41 pm


  2. Phoghat

    June 1, 2015 at 2:18 am

    what about the Pat Boone cover of “Tutti Frutti” Bwahaha

  3. Jørgen Poulsen

    June 1, 2015 at 8:44 am

    Love Little Richard and the first I bay was : Little Richard Vol. 2
    Also se him in Consert in 1998 here in Denmark (How Great)

  4. Les Markowitz

    June 1, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    I have the ‘HERE’S LITTLE RICHARD” LP AND the EP of the Beatles singing “Long Tall Sally” as well. Classic stuff indeed.!!!

  5. Jules Starr

    February 27, 2016 at 1:23 pm

    Mr. Richard Penniman, “Little Richard,” is that rare musician/performer/writer/entertainer, who gives his audience Love, from the bottom of his Soul. He truly is The Architect of Rock n’ Roll,” because he drew the plans, and everyone else just built on those plans. Beloved by the Beatles, Elvis Presley – name your favorite band/singer, and I’ll bet they name-check Little Richard as an influence; a man who effortlessly sang down walls of racism. He is a treasure. Big love for Pastor Penniman from Atlanta.

    • Renzo Spinetti

      March 1, 2016 at 2:51 pm

      How could those guys pretend to compete with Him THE KIND & ARCHITECT OF R´N R ? and i mean guys like nevrotic Jerry Lee Lewis or the symphatic Elvis ?

  6. michael

    February 27, 2016 at 6:54 pm

    ‘Long Tall Sally’ shamelessly ripped of on CCR’s ‘Travelin’ Band’.

  7. Marco Romano

    February 27, 2021 at 2:40 pm

    Little Richard, although great in his own right, owed a lot to Esquerita

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