There is something about the 1950s and 60s with great instrumentals. This one has that great echo swimming all around the guitar lines by the great guitarist Duane Eddy.
Speaking of swimming…this was recorded in a Phoenix studio that had an echo chamber that was originally a large water tank. A single speaker was placed at one end of the tank, the microphone at the other, and the guitar was piped in there.
Who said that the 70s and 80s were the two decades of albums with multiple singles? The 1958 album this song came off of was named…Have Twangy Guitar Will Travel.
Now that title demands respect. The title is not the only reason it demanded respect…FIVE charting singles came off of it. Ramrod #27, Cannonball #15, The Lonely One #23, Moovin’ N’ Groovin’ #72, and last but not least…our song for today…Rebel Rouser peaked at #6 in 1958.
The album was released in 1958 and it peaked at #5 in the Billboard Album Charts and #6 in the UK.
Lee Hazlewood produced this track and helped Eddy get his distinctive guitar sound. Hazlewood went on record duets with Nancy Sinatra and also her hit “These Boots Are Made For Walking.”
The hand claps and shouts were provided by The Sharps, who later changed their name to the Rivingtons and had hits with Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow and The Bird’s the Word. As any Family Guy fan will tell you…The Trashmen later covered The Bird’s The Word in 1963.
Duane Eddy: “We were recording in Phoenix, starting my first album, and one of the guys said, ‘Man, that guitar sounds twangy.’ And (Hazlewood’s business partner) Lester Sill fell down laughing. He’d never heard that word and it became a running joke. ‘Is that twangy enough?’ So we finished the album and called it Have Twangy Guitar Will Travel. To be honest I never really liked the word. I thought it was kind of corny and rather undignified, but at the same time so many people liked it I just shut up and went with it.”
No need for lyrics…just cool twangy guitar