(We're Gonna) ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK

All known BILL HALEY & HIS COMETS' performances

Sessionography, discography & sound archive (31 RealAudio samples)

Date, place Musicians Note First issue Audio
BILL HALEY & HIS COMETS
1953
Chester, PA (two sessions)
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
poss. Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
poss. Johnny Grande: piano;
poss. Marshall Lytle: bass;
poss. Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
poss. Dick Richards: drums
. unissued demos .
April 12, 1954
Pythian Temple, New York City
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Danny Cedrone: lead guitar:

Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: bass;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Billy Gussack: drums
Two takes were recorded. On the 1st take, Haley's vocal was all but drowned out by the band. On the 2nd take, only Haley's vocal was recorded. The engineer later combined the takes into one master.
Also present at the session was Dick Richards the Comets drummer.
This was the first issued and also the greatest performance of Rock Around The Clock by Bill Haley & his Comets.
Decca 29124
05/10/1954
Poss. late 1954 or early 1955
Poss. New York
Bill Haley: vocal/lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: accordion;
Marshall Lytle: bass;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Dick Richards: drums

From left to right: B.Williamson, J.Grande,
J.d'Ambrosio, B.Haley, M.Lytle, D.Richards
“Soundies” were produced for special visual Jukeboxes like today's video clips. Jukebox Soundie .
April 17, 1955
Masonic Temple, Cleveland, Ohio
Live show, set 1
. Hydra BCK 27105
1997
April 17, 1955
Masonic Temple, Cleveland, Ohio
Live show, set 2
. Hydra BCK 27105
1997
May 31, 1955
TV Studio
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: bass;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Dick Richards: drums
The song was lip-synched to the record, and then the group sang the opening a capella leading into a big production number with Berle and other guests all singing Rock Around The Clock TV Show .
August 7, 1955
CBS TV Studio 50, New York City
TV performance for Toast of the Town TV Show/TVT 9446
“In September 1955 Joey d'Ambrosio, Dick Richards and Marshall Lytle asked for an increase on their $150 a week salary. Ferguson and Haley thought that they were bluffing and turned them down. As a result they quit the line-up and formed the Jodimars, an acronym drawn from JOey, DIck and MARShall.” (Colin Escott, 1990)

Bill Haley and his renovated Comets
Early 1956
TV Studio
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: accordion;
Al Rex: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ralph Jones: drums
Some sources give the title of this program as The Ray Bolger Show but Bolger's biography indicates Washington Square was the proper title TV Show Washington Square
Hydra BCK 27107 (1998)
February 29, 1956
CBC TV Studio, Toronto, Canada
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Al Rex: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ralph Jones: drums

From left: R.Jones, B.Haley, B.Williamson,
middle row: Al Rex, R.Pompilli,
front row: J.Grande, F.Beecher
. TV Cross Canada Hit Parade .
March 28, 1956
TV Show, New York City
. TV Arthur Godfrey Show .
Mid. 1956
Brooklyn Theatre, New York City
. Wins LP 1012
January 7, 1957
Ampol Show, Sydney, Australia
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Al Rex: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ralph Jones: drums;
Dennis Collins & the Boys;
Jack Davie: MC
. Radio Show January 11, 1957;
Rockstar 022
October 15, 1958
Olympia, Paris, France
Live show
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Al Pompilli: bass;
Ralph Jones: drums;
Joe Olivier: rhythm guitar
. Europe CD GLS 1001
January 12, 1960
Bell Sound Studio, New York City
Live show
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar/vocal chorus;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar/vocal chorus;
Johnny Grande: piano/vocal chorus;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ralph Jones: drums;
Al Rappa: bass guitar
The very good performance! Warner LP W/S 1378
1960
WFIL Studio B, Philadelphia, PA
Live show
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Al Rappa: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
poss. Ralph Jones: drums
The songs of The American Bandstand Show were lip-synched by the artists American Bandstand TV .
BILL HALEY & THE COMETS
August 31, 1962
AFN Studio, Frankfurt, Germany
Live show
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Johnny Kay: lead guitar;
Billy Williamson: steel guitar;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Al Rappa: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: sax;
Dave Holly: drums
Radio performance for Armed Forces Network, Germany Hydra BCK 27113
October 1962
Star Club, Hamburg, Germany
Privately taped live recording unissued .
May 31, 1964
Waldbüchne, Berlin, Germany
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Johnny Kay: lead guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): steel guitar;
Al Rappa: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Dave Holly: drums
Privately taped live recording unissued .
September 11, 1964
ATV Studio, England
Live TV performance. The show was broadcast live TV Ready, Steady Go .
September 13, 1964
TV Studio, England
Song was lip-synched by the band TV Thank Your Lucky Stars
09/19/1964
.
March 13, 1965
NCO Club, Frankfurt, Germany
Privately taped live recording unissued .
January 28, 1966
Estudios Orfeon (Estudio A), Mexico City, Mexico
Live show
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Johnny Kay: lead guitar;
Mike Shay: guitar;
Julian Bert: piano;
Al Rappa: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Johnny “Bam Bam” Lane: drums
. Dimsa DML 8381
As above and others Mix of Bill Haleys & the Comets' recording with different effects showing that Bill Haley and Rock Around The Clock are still up to date in 2000 CD Swing Cats Remix (2000)
September 6, 1966
EM Club, Friedberg, Germany
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Johnny Kay: lead guitar;
Al Rappa: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
John “Bam Bam” Lane: drums
Privately taped live recording unissued .
September 24, 1966
Alhambra Theatre, Paris, France
Live recording Dr Kollector DK 006
October 16, 1966
Shout Club, Kaltenwelde, Germany
Privately taped live recording unissued .
October 18, 1966
Storyville Club, Frankfurt, Germany
Privately taped live recording unissued .
June 24, 1968
Phillips Studio, Stockholm, Sweden
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): lead guitar;
Al Rappa: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
John “Bam Bam” Lane: drums
. Sonet SLP 63
June 25, 1968
Europa Film Studio, Stockholm, Sweden
. Sonet GP 9945
Bill Haley: vocal;
Other musicians unknown
Haley's vocal track overdubbed by other musicians in 1988/89 Sonet BHEP 0001
July 8, 1969
Radio Station, Gothenburg
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Bill Nolte: drums
Radio performance. Only an incomplete recording is known to exist Radio Show .
October 18, 1969
Felt Forum, Madison Square Garden, New York City
This was the show with 8 minutes standing ovations for Bill Haley. For some reasons, when the live album from this show was released by Buddah Records, this performance has been replaced by a performance from the December 1969 Bitter End shows unissued .
December 16, 1969
1st show
The Bitter End, New York City
. Bear Family BCD 16157
December 16, 1969
2nd show
The Bitter End, New York City
. Kama Sutra KSBS 2014
October 30, 1970
Andy Williams Show, USA
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos: lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Bill Nolte: drums;
poss. Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar
Performed in a medley with Shake Rattle And Roll and See You Later Alligator. unissued .
April 23 or 24, 1972
Cobo Hall, Detroit, Michigan
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Chuck Huffman: lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Buddy Dee: drums;
Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar
Live recording for the film Let The Good Times Roll Bell Double LP 9002
August 5, 1972
Wembley Stadium, London, England
(with two encores)
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Johnny Kay: lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Buddy Dee: drums
This live show was filmed for a documentary movie The London Rock And Roll Show including several other artists. Only one encore was heard in the movie. Following the main performance of Rock Around The Clock there is a blooper in the film as Haley accidentally knocks his mike stand over with his guitar! Movie The London Rock And Roll Show
October 8, 1972
Musikhalle, Hamburg, Germany
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Bill Miller: lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Buddy Dee: drums
This live show has been privately taped. This was an unusual arrangement of the song that jumped from one verse to the next, then stopped and started again as an encore unissued .
1973
USA
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Freddy Moore: drums
The last known studio recording of Rock Around The Clock TV series Happy Days
February 27, 1974
Tops Of The Pops TV Show, London, England
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar;
Freddy Moore: drums
. unissued .
March 6, 1974
Wheeltappers & Shunters TV Show, Manchester, England
. unissued .
March 25, 1974
Hammersmith Palais, London, England
Live recording for the album Live in London 74 Antic K 51501
December 12, 1974
Salle Pleyel, Paris, France
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Bill Turner: lead guitar;
Jim Lebak: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
poss. Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar;
Freddy Moore: drums
Live recording originally released on the album Live in Paris Dr Kollector DK 006
Late 1974
Location unknown (Europe)
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Nick Nastos (Masters): lead guitar;
Ray Cawley: bass guitar;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar;
Freddy Moore: drums
Privately taped live recording unissued .
October 18 or 19, 1975
Rio di Janeiro, Brazil
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Bill Turner: lead guitar;
Jim Lebak: bass;
Rudy Pompilli: tenor sax;
Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar;
Tony Benson: drums
Live show unissued .
March 8, 1979
The Royalty, Southgate, London, England
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Jerry Tilley: lead guitar;
Jim Lebak: bass guitar;
Geoff Driscoll: tenor sax;
Ray Parsons: rhythm guitar;
Pete Spencer: rhythm guitar;
Steve Murray: drums
Live show Movie Blue Suede Shoes
March 15, 1979
Format V TV Show, Birmingham, England
Live performance videotaped by the program Format V TV (Episode: The Father of Rock & Roll) .
October 27, 1979
TV, Amsterdam, Netherland
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Jerry Tilley: lead guitar/tenor sax;
John Gordon: bass guitar;
Chico Ryan: rhythm guitar;
Steve Murray: drums
. TV
November 13, 1979
Star Club, Hamburg, Germany
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Jerry Tilley: lead guitar;
Pete Thomas: tenor sax;
John Gordon: bass guitar;
Chico Ryan: rhythm guitar;
Steve Murray: drums
Privately taped live recording unissued .
November 19, 1979
BBC Studios, London, England
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Jerry Tilley: lead guitar/tenor sax;
John Gordon: bass guitar;
Chico Ryan: rhythm guitar;
Steve Murray: drums
. BBC Radio 2 .
November 26, 1979
Theatre Royal, London, England
Bill Haley: vocal/rhythm guitar;
Jerry Tilley: lead guitar;
Pete Thomas: sax;
John Gordon: bass;
Chico Ryan: rhythm guitar;
Steve Murray: drums
TV show The King of Rock and Roll met the Queen of England! (Royal Comand Performance). This is the last known recording of Rock Around The Clock by Bill Haley, as this performance closed his 1979 European tour and no recordings have yet surfaced from his 1980 South African tour TV
The diverse COMETS
Over the years
Pennsylvania, USA
Joey Welz Welz recorded the song several times over the years sometimes changing the lyrics ana adding his name to the writer's credits Caprice and others .
1980s
Flamingo Sudios, Tallahassee, Florida
Bill Haley's Comets with Joey Rand:
Joey “Rand” Graziano: vocal;
Mike Garrison: guitar;
Pat Salvador: sax;
Alan Banks: piano;
Brian Fahey: drums
This Comets group was formed by Joey Rand, who had been hired as lead singer for a reunion of Bill Haley's Comets in 1982. In the late 1980s, the version of the Comets run by Al Rappa and John Lane, supported by the Jolly Joyce Agency, won a legal action which gave them the rights to the name Bill Haley's Comets over Rand's group, which subsequently disappeared Moon Track Records 1
1988
Little Darins, Orlando, Florida
The Comets:
John “Bam Bam” Lane: drums;
Al Rappa: bass;
Jack “The Sax”: sax;
Unknown guitar & electric bass
Live recording for the TV show Rock & Roll Palace. At some point after this recording, Lane and Rappa split up and continued to perform with their own separate groups of Bill Haley's Comets Prism Leisure PLATCD 345
November 16, 1991
Natchwerk, Munich, Germany
Bill Haley's Comets:
Jacko Buddin: vocal;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: double bass;
Dick Richards: drums;
Pete Davenport: steel guitar
Live recording for the CD We're Gonna Party. Davenport is a member of The Stargazers who satin with The Comets in order to complete the Original Comets sound Hydra BCK 27100
August 4–10, 1999
Rollin' Rock Studio, Las Vegas, Nevada
The Original Band:
Jacko Buddin: vocal;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: bass;
Dick Richards: drums
. Rollin' Rock CD 103 Still Rockin' Around The Clock
January 2000
Rollin' Rock Studio, Las Vegas, Nevada
. Rollin' Rock CD 114 Aged to Perfection
1987–2000
Various locations
Bill Haley's Comets:
Jacko Buddin: vocal;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: double bass;
Dick Richards: drums
A couple of live performances were videotaped and later released as part of a privately made documentary on Bill Haley & his Comets. Possibly two different performances were used Video .
Poss. May 2001
Florida
Chad Z & Marshall Lytle feat. Bill Haley's Comets:
Marshall Lytle: vocal/bass;
Chad Z: vocal;
Other musicians unknown
Hip-hop/rap version of the song CD single, USA .
Summer 2001
Los Angeles, CA
Marshall Lytle:
Marshall Lytle: vocal/poss. guitar
Lytle reportedly performed a solo version of the song during a guest appearance on the American game show I've Got a Secret unissued .
Summer 2002
Erie, Pennsylvania
Bill Haley's Comets feat. John “Bam Bam” Lane:
Lenny Longo: vocal/rhythm guitar;
John Lane: drums;
Dimitri Callis: lead guitar;
Sonny Edwards: sax;
Mike Lampe: bass
Live recording, released on a privately burnt CD sold by the band CD-R .
September 26, 2002
Florida Gymnasium, Gainsville, Florida
Bill Haley's Comets:
Marshall Lytle: vocal/double bass;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Dick Richards: drums
Live recording DVD/CD set Bill Haley's Original Comets (2003) .
November 9, 2003
Helde Volm Planegg, Munich, Germany
Bill Haley's Comets:
Jacko Buddin: vocal;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: double bass;
Dick Richards: drums
Live show Hydra BDVD 72100 The Fathers Of Rock & Roll — Live in Concert .
November 19, 2003
Messehalle, Erfurt, Germany
This TV show was lip-synched TV show Melodie fur Millionen .
April 17, 2004
Preussag Arena, Hannover, Germany
Bill Haley's Comets:
Peter Kraus: vocal;
Franny Beecher: lead guitar;
Joey d'Ambrosio: tenor sax;
Johnny Grande: piano;
Marshall Lytle: double bass;
Dick Richards: drums
. ZDF TV show 50 Years of Rock .
2CD set by HYDRA Records BCK 27128-1.5 “BILL HALEY & FRIENDS Vol. 3” (2006) contains all these 31 recordings (CD1), and also 33 versions of Rock Around The Clock performed by other artists (CD2):


This CD set at eShops:
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Go to ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK PERFORMED BY OTHER ARTISTS page

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© 2013 Valeri Orlov