Bo Diddley

Band members                              Related acts

- Bo Diddley (aka Elias McDaniels) (RIP 2008)  -- vocals, guitar 


  supporting musicians (1971)
- Kathy Allison -- backing vocals

- John Birganti -- drums

- Eddie Covi -- sax

- Bob Dorsa -- percussion

- Bob Gallo -- guitar, percussion

- Sonny Hahn -- guitar

- Al Kooper -- guitar, keyboards

- Mike Maatia -- keyboards, trumpet

- Don Olsen -- bass

- Carl Schickler -- guitar, trombone

- Vinny Traina -- percussion

- Cookie Vee (Cookie Vie) -- percussion, backing vocals

- Leslie Zimei -- backing vocals


  supporting musicians (1972)
- Dave Archuletta - keyboards 
- Richard Davis - bass 
- Terry Gotlieb - bass 
- Ed O'Donnell - drums
- Johnny Otis - drums
- Shuggie Otis - guitar

- Tom Thompson - guitar 


  supporting musicians (1976)

- Carmine Appice - drums 

- Elvin Bishop - guitar 
- Jeff Bogart - bass 
- Joe Coker - vocals 

- Billy Joel - keyboards 
- Corky Laing - percussion 
- Albert Lee - guitar 
- Alvin Lee - guitar 
- Roger McGuinn - guitar 
- Keith Moon - drums 
- Daniel Moore - back up vocals 
- Matthew Moore - back up vocals 
- Ted Neely - vocals 

- Leslie West - guitar 




- none known




Genre: rock

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Title:  500% More Man

Company: Checker

Catalog: LP 2996

Year: 1965

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG/VG+

Comments: minor ring wear; couple of pencil marks next to track listing on back cover; mono pressing

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4

Price: $80.00

Cost: $1.00


It's hard to imagine in this day and age, but back in 1965 "500% More Man" found Bo Diddley taking considerable risks with his career. Today it all seems rather innocuous, but in the mid-'60s the suggestive album title and cover art were both extremely risqué. Those moves may not have a major surprise considering that by the mid-'60s Diddley's career had cooled off. Feeling he'd become too mainstream black audiences had abandoned him, while seeing him as too R&B, white audiences turned their attention to Motown and Stax. Unfortunately, Chess/Checker didn't have a clue how to free Diddley from his commercial purgatory. Fumbling around for some sort of commercial sound, the end result proved one of Diddley's most diverse (or ill focused) efforts. Credit Diddley's professionalism and talent with avoiding the smell of desperation. That said, the title track, "Let Me Pass" and "Hey Red Riding Hood" all found Diddley returning to his "I'm a Man" roots. In contrast, "Stop My Monkey" sounded like something out of the Berry Gordy catalog. A should've-been hit, the rollicking instrumental "Soul Food" was an obvious attempt to tap into the Memphis sound. Elsewhere, backed by The Cookies, "Tonight Is Ours" offered up an atypical sweet ballad. At least to our ears, the set's lack of focus adds to it's charm. Personal favorites are the hysterical "Greasy Spoon" (wonder if there really was a Clyde's Place?), "Let Me Pass" and the catchy "Root Hoot". In the end it didn't matter since the LP failed to attract black or white audiences. Interestingly, when Checker reissued the set, they dropped the original cover in favor of a drab, nondescript replacement.

"500% More Man" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) 500 % Moe Man (McDaniel - Matthews) - 2:37
2.) Let Me Pass (McDaniel) - 2:34
3.) Stop My Monkey (McDaniel) - 2:43
4.) Greasy Spoon (McDaniel) - 2:38
5.) Tonight Is Ours (McDaniel) - 2:58
6.) Root Hoot (McDaniel) - 3:25

(side 2)

1.) Hey Red Riding Hood (Reynolds) - 2:59
2.) Let the Kids Dance (McDaniel) - 2:21
3.) He's So Mad (McDaniel) - 2:52
4.) Soul Food (McDaniel) - 2:45
5.) Corn Bread (McDaniel) - 2:52
6.) Somebody Beat Me (McDaniel) - 2:57



Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Another Dimension

Company: Chess

Catalog: CH 50001

Year: 1971

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 735

Price: $20.00


I'm guessing Chess Records marketing group intended 1971's "Another Dimension" as a way to expand Bo Diddley's early-'70s audience to the FM radio crowd.   Produced by Bob Gallo, the concept here was pretty straightforward - surround Diddley with a collection of rock classics and given him an occasional opportunity to showcase his guitar.   Needless to say, the concept was far better than the actually execution.   For his part, while Diddley didn't sound half bad (folks forget what an accomplished singer he was), he didn't sound particularly inspired surrounded by material like The Band's 'The Shape I'm In', or Al Kooper's 'I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know' (the end-of-song horn arrangement simply blew him out of the water).   Another curiosity was the decision to include three CCR covers ('Bad Moon Rising', 'Down On the Corner', and 'Lodi').   Diddley had previously toured with the band (apparently not an entirely pleasant experience for him) so you had to wonder why he'd want to line John Fogerty's pockets with additional income.   The collection also included a pair of Diddley originals; the funky 'Pollution' and the bluesy 'I Said Shutup Woman'.  Far from his creative zenith - more of an interest from the perspective of seeing a truly bad marketing concept fall flat.   (The three star rating is probably generous for this one - make it two and a half.)

"Another Dimension" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) The Shape I'm In   (Jaimie Robbie Robertson) - 5:21

So you had to admire him for being willing to cover 'The Shape I'm In', but there was no way this was going to make you forget The Band's original.    

2.) I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know   (Al Kooper) - 7:31

I'm guessing the prominent keyboards were Al Kooper himself ...   The sad thing is this song was simply soooooo wrong for Diddley.   What in the world was the concept here ?  rating: ** stars

3.) Pollution   (A.McDaniels) - 4:39

So give the man kudos for the funky and socially relevant 'Pollution'.  Yeah, lyrically there wasn't a great deal here, but he made the point without getting to ponderous and it had a great, funky rhythm going for it.   rating: **** stars

4.) Bad Moon Rising   (John Fogerty) - 2:42

In spite of myself, I have to admit a certain fondness for Diddley's country-tinged cover of CCR's 'Bad Moon Rising'.   It would have been even better without the cooing female backing singers.   rating: *** stars


(side 2)

1.) Down On the Corner   (John Fogerty) - 3:19

The second of three CCR covers, 'Down On the Corner' was passable - Diddley's cover did didn't mess with the original melody at all.  Song highlight was probably Don Olsen's fuzz bass.  rating: *** stars

2.) I Said Shutup Woman   (A. McDaniels) - 3:33

The second original, the bluesy, highly misogynistic 'I Said Shutup Woman' would have gotten Diddley's arrested in this day and age.   Overlooking the lyrics, the tune itself was a blazing blues number with some of Diddley's best guitar.  By the way, the backing female singer (Cookie Vie ?), essentially took Diddley to the aural woodshed on this one.  Musically she literally kicked his butt !!!   rating: **** stars

2.) Bad Side of the Moon   (Elton John - Bernie Taupin) - 2:58

Maybe because my expectations for this one were nonexistent, Diddley's Elton John cover proved the album's biggest surprise.   Liked the weird production effects and the fuzz guitar solo.   Hated the chirpy backing singers.   rating: *** stars

3.) Lodi   (John Fogerty) - 5:12

Probably the worst of the three CCR covers, Diddley managed to transform what was one of John Fogerty's best songs into an MOR ballad.   Forgettable.  rating: ** stars

4.) Go For Broke (instrumental)   (John Berganti - Mike Matia - Don Olsen - Carl Schickler) - 3:05

The instrumental 'Go For Broke' sounded like a studio jam that was added to fill out the album's running time.  There was a nice fuzz guitar solo, but I'm not even sure if was Diddley ...   rating: *** stars


As mentioned, the album spun off two singles:




- 1971's 'I Said Shut Up Woman' b/w 'I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know' (Chess catalog number CH 2117)

- 1971's 'The Shape I'm In' b/w 'Pollution' (Checker catalog number CH-1238)




Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Where It All Began

Company: Chess

Catalog: CH 50016

Year: 1972

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: cut corner; minor stain on front; die cut cover

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4

Price: $25.00

Cost: $1.00


Wow ! We'll have to admit that Diddley wasn't a major part of our musical lexicon. Were we ever stupid to have missed such a talented guy !!! 

Perhaps an attempt to cash-in on the public's growing interest in '50s rockers (witness Chuck Berry's early-'70s resurgence), 1972's "Where It All Began" is nothing short of spectacular. Co-produced by Johnny Otis and Pete Welding, rockers such as "I've Had It Hard", "Look At Grandma" and "Bo Diddley-Itis" captured the 50 year old Diddley rocking with more energy than 95% of his contemporaries (to say nothing of younger artists). Roaring his way through a mix of original and outside material, Diddley was simply in prime form. Elsewhere, anyone who doubted the man's chops need only check out the blazing anti-drug statement "Bad Trip". To be honest, the only disappointments were the throwaway "Hey, Jerome" (sounding like a Fat Albert takeoff) and the cheesy Joe Tex-styled "Take It All Off ". Unfortunately, apparently too rock oriented for black audiences and too black for white audiences, the album simply vanished. (The LP was originally released with a cool Doug Johnson designed die cut cover.)

"Where It All Began" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) I've Had It Hard (Eugene McDaniel) - 3:13
2.) Woman (K. McDaniel - Eugene McDaniel) - 3:06
3.) Look At Grandma (K. McDaniel - Connie Redmond) - 3:31
4.) A Good Thing (Oliver Sain) - 2:37
5.) Bad Trip (K. McDaniel - Eugene McDaniel) - 6:00

(side 2)

1.) Hey, Jerome (Eugene McDaniel - Connie Redmond) - 3:08
2.) Infatuation (K. McDaniel - Connie Redmond) - 3:43
3.) Take It All Off (Eva Darby) - 3:20
4.) Bo Diddley-Itis (Eugene McDaniel) - 5:40



Genre: rock

Rating: **** (4 stars)

Title:  Got My Own Bag of Tricks

Company: Chess

Catalog: 2CH 60005

Year: 1972

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG/VG

Comments: double LP; cut top left corner; gatefold sleeve

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4649

Price: $20.00

Cost: $1.00


This is the place for casual fans or the curious to start.  A 24 track, double LP set, it offers up an excellent mix of Diddley's hits and lesser known album tracks.  You even get an interesting bio from Pete Welding.


"Got My Own Bag of Tricks" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Bo Diddley   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:30

2.) I'm a Man   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:41

3.) Bring It To Jerome   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:37

4.) Diddley Daddy   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:11

5.) Before You Accuse Me   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:40

6.) Pretty Thing   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:48

(side 2)

1.) Who Do You Love   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:09

2.) Dearest Darling   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:32

3.) You Can't Judge a Book By It's Cover    (Willie Dixon)- 3:03

4.) Hey' Bo Diddley   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:17

5.) Say Man   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:30

6.) I'm Looking for a Woman   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:23


(side 3)

1.) Road Runner   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:45

2.) Mona (I Need You Baby)   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:18

3.) Cops & Robbers   (Elias McDaniel) - 3:21

4.) Story of Bo Diddley   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:42

5.) Say, Boss Man   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:18

6.) Hush Your Mouth    (Elias McDaniel)- 2:15

(side 4)

1.) 500% More Man    (Elias McDaniel - Matthews) - 2:57

2.) Bo's Blues   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:32

3.) Nursery Rhyme   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:43

4.) Whoa, Mule   (Shine) - 2:28

5.) Live My Life   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:35

6.) Bo Diddley Is Loose   (Elias McDaniel) - 2:57




Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  Big Bad Bo

Company: Chess

Catalog: CH 60047

Year: 1974

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: still in shrink wrap; cut top right corner

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4650

Price: $50.00

Cost: $1.00


1974's "Big Bad Bo" is somewhat unique in that it doesn't really sound like a Bo Diddley album.  Sure, his voice remains instantly recognizable, but the album features an atypical mix of non-originals (the bluesy 'Evelee' being the one self-penned effort) and pseudo-jazzy moves.  Recorded in New York with an impressive list of jazz sessions players (Wilbur Bascomb, Jimmy Johnson, Joe Newman, etc.), tracks such as 'You’ve Got A Lot Of Nerve' and '' aren't half bad, but simply don't seem to be Diddley's moniker.  Probably because they're the funkiest numbers, the other highlights include the leadoff 'Bite You' and the anti-drug 'Stop The Pusher'.


"Big Bad Bo" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Bite You   (Terri Lynn - Tommi MCDaniel) - 4:20

2.) He's Got All The Whisky   (Bobby Charles) - 4:40

3.) Hit Or Miss   (Odetta Fr. Gordon) - 3:40

4.) You’ve Got A Lot Of Nerve   (Connie Richmond - Kay MCDaniel) - 3:23

(side 2)

1.) Stop The Pusher    (Kay McDaniel) - 5:15

2.) Evelee   (Elisas McDaniel) - 6:23

3.) I've Been Working   (Van Morrison) - 4:50



Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  The 20th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll

Company: RCA Victor


Year: 1976

Country/State: USA

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: still in shrink wrap

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 4

Price: $25.00

Cost: $1.00



Signed by RCA, 1976's "The 20th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll" was a somewhat schizoid offering. Musically the set found Diddley supported by an impressive collection of "B" list all-stars, including Carmen Appice, Elvin Bishop, Joe Cocker, Billy Joel, Corky Laing, Albert Lee, Alvin Lee, Roger McGuinn, Keith Moon and Leslie West. Produced by Ron Terry, the set seemed interested in breaking Diddley to the AOR audience via a set of contemporary mid-'70s radio rockers. Overlooking the shrill female backing singers that seemed plastered over every one of the songs, tracks such as "Ride the Water", "Drag On" and "Kill My Body" weren't half bad, though they weren't exactly Diddley's forte. That said, his performances were never less than professional and he proved every bit as good as his supporting cast. Far stranger was the 17 minute "Bo Diddley Jam". Apparently meant to highlight past glories, the medley ran through Didley's three biggest hits ("I'm a Man," "Who Do You Love" and "Bo Diddley Is a Gunslinger" - guess RCA thought 17 year olds didn't have a clue as to what Diddley had done in the past ... Overlooking our initial reservations, we'll admit this is a pretty cool comeback ... A minor hit, the collection managed to hit #207.

"The 20th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Ride the Water (Part 1) (Ron Terry) - 4:20
2.) Not Fade Away (Petty 0 Hardin) - 2:58
3.) Kill My Body (Bedi - Greco) - 4:36
4.) Drag On (Ron Terry) - 3:15
5.) Ride the Water (Part 1) (Ron Terry) - 4:35

(side 2)

1.) Bo Diddley Jam - 16:59

2.) I'm a Man (Bo Diddley)
3.) Who Do You Love (Bo Diddley)
4.) Bo Diddley Is a Gunslinger (Bo Diddley)
5.) I'm a Man (reprise) (Bo Diddley)