The ‘Ricky’ LP: Ricky Nelson Arrives On The Album Scene

In January 1958, the ‘Ricky’ set gave the teenage phenomenon his first US No. 1 LP.


The teenage phenomenon that was Ricky Nelson proved that he was not just a singles sensation on 11 November 1957. After three big hit 45s in the US, he made his first-ever appearance on the American album chart with Ricky.

Listen to Ricky right now.

The young man from Teaneck, New Jersey was barely 17 years old when he crashed onto the singles scene as one of the biggest heartthrobs of the day, in the spring of 1957, with ‘A Teenager’s Romance,’ which raced to No. 2. To underline what big news Ricky was, the flip side, ‘I’m Walking,’ reached No. 4 in its own right. That debut hit was followed by a more modest success with ‘You’re My One And Only Love,’ but he was soon back in the top three with ‘Be-Bop Baby.’

Then came that first album, which steadily made its way up the charts until it made it all the way to No. 1 on 20 January 1958, taking over from Elvis’ Christmas Album. It was an appropriate accession, since Nelson had, by now, long since proved that he was so much more than just one of the countless Presley-imitating pack. The Ricky LP spent two weeks at the top of the American countdown, before Frank Sinatra made the top spot with Come Fly With Me.

Ricky was a strange mixture of material aimed at Nelson’s teenage female fanbase, including ‘Be-Bop Baby,’ plus covers of contemporary rock ‘n’ rollers like Jerry Lee Lewis’ ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On’ and Carl Perkins’ ‘Boppin’ The Blues’ and ‘Your True Love,’ and remakes of standards such as Cole Porter’s ‘True Love’ and other time-honoured songs like ‘Am I Blue’ and ‘I’m Confessin.” But Nelson could do no wrong for those teenage fans, who loved it no matter which era the songs came from.

Ricky can be bought here.