Once I was swimming across Turtle Creek
Man them turtles snapping at my feet
It sure was hard swimming cross that thing
With both hands holding my ding a ling a ling
It is a curious bit of rock lore that Chuck Berry's only No. 1 song was not one of his ground-breaking rockers, but the rude and raucous "My Ding-A-Ling." Ladies and gentlemen, here was the Billboard Top 5 on this very day in 1972:
1. My Ding-A-Ling, Chuck Berry
2. Use Me, Bill Withers
3. Burning Love, Elvis Presley
4. Everybody Plays the Fool, Main Ingredient
5. Nights in White Satin, Moody Blues
At least Berry had a No. 1. He certainly deserved it, having ushered in the rock era with classics like "Maybellene," "Rock and Roll Music," "Johnny B. Goode" and "Sweet Little Sixteen."
"My Ding-A-Ling" may have been a novelty tune, but Berry -- recording it live in England, where he was a big draw -- gave it just the right mischievous treatment to make it appeal to the masses. Word is he showed up late and in bad shape for that show, which adds even more to the song's allure.