1959Released
2:41

Did You Know?

Interesting facts and trivia about Johnny B. Goode. By Songfacts®.

This song is based on Berry's life. It tells the tale of a boy with humble beginnings with a talent for guitar. Some details were changed: Berry was from St. Louis, not Louisiana, and he knew how to read and write very well. He graduated from beauty school with a degree in hairdressing and cosmetology.

The line "that little country boy could play" was originally "that little colored boy can play." Berry knew he had to change it if he wanted the song played on the radio, and he didn't want to alienate his white fans, who could better relate to the tale of a "country" boy.

Berry got the name "Johnny" from Johnnie Johnson, a piano player who collaborated with Berry on many songs, including "Maybellene," "Roll Over Beethoven" and "Sweet Little 16." Johnson often wrote the songs on piano, and then Berry converted them to guitar and wrote lyrics. Berry joined Johnson's group, The Sir John Trio, in 1953, and quickly became the lead singer and centerpiece of the band. Johnson was very well-respected among many musicians. He played with Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, John Lee Hooker and many others before his death at age 80 in 2005.

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Song Analysis

Key, BPM (tempo) and time signature of Johnny B. Goode.
A♯Key
MajorMode
4/4Time Signature
168BPM

Album

The album Johnny B. Goode is released on.

Released By

The record label that has released Johnny B. Goode.
Geffen
© 1959 UMG Recordings, Inc.
A Geffen Records release; ℗ 1959 UMG Recordings, Inc.

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