Sunday, May 13, 2007

50 years ago: The Everly Brothers “Bye Bye Love” charted

Bye Bye Love

The Everly Brothers

Writer(s): Boudleaux Bryant, Felice Bryant (see lyrics here)

Released: March 1957

First Charted: May 13, 1957

Peak: 2 US, 3 HP, 11 CB, 11 HR, 17 CW, 5 RB, 6 UK, 2 CN, 14 AU, 2 DF (Click for codes to singles charts.)

Sales (in millions): 1.0 US

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 3.0 radio, 13.0 video, 40.5 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

By 1957, rock and roll had become “ a vehicle for the banal contrivances of camera-friendly faces singing songs about teenage romance.” RY The term “rock and roll” had become a catchphrase for corporate-sponsored teen music with a beat.” RY There were exceptions, however. The Everly Brothers were one of the acts that “brought something new and innovative to their music.” RY They were the first to introduce lead-vocal harmony to the genre. RY

The Everlys came from a musical family. Their parents sang country music on the radio and brought the kids up “with the traditional country style of picking and singing.” AC Once Phil and Don Everly graduated from high school, they moved to Nashville and almost immediately were landing gigs in clubs, thanks to their father’s connections.Dad also asked his musician friend Chet Atkins to introduce his boys to Wesley Rose, a publisher, who convinced Archie Blyeyer to sign them to Cadence Records. SS

Meanwhile, the writing team of Boudleaux and Felice Bryant, who married five days after they met, had more than 80 songs and were seeking a publisher. A musician friend suggested they contact Fred Rose, a new publisher in Nashville. They found some success with a few country and pop hits over more than a decade of writing, SS but really hit gold when Cadence Records bought the song “Bye Bye Love” for the Everly Brothers after more than thirty other artists turned the song down. SS

Despite the absence of traditional country instruments such as fiddle or steel guitar, it was “a very country-sounding cut.” AC The Everlys took it to the top of the country charts and #2 on the pop chart. It was the first taste of success for the Everly Brothers, who would go on to have more than thirty more hits. “The unearthly combination of Don and Phil Everly’s voices was so perfect, so pure, that it seemed to emanate from a single source.” RY They also had songs, which – thanks to the Bryants in many cases – were infused “with thoughtful lyrics that spoke to the hearts and minds of teenagers.” RY


  • AC Ace Collins (1996). The Stories Behind Country Music’s All-Time Greatest 100 Songs. New York, NY; The Berkley Publishing Group. Pages 111-13.
  • RY Thomas Ryan (1996). American Hit Radio: A History of Popular Singles From 1955 to the Present. Prima Publishing: Rocklin, CA. Pages 19-20.
  • SS Steve Sullivan (2013). Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings (Volumes I & II). Scarecrow Press: Lanham, Maryland. Pages 690-1.

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First posted 8/26/2022.

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