Mickey & Sylvia - Vik X-0252 (1956)

Here's my second offering from the Canadian stash...

From wikipedia...

Love is Strange was a crossover hit by American rhythm and blues duet Mickey & Sylvia, which was released in late November 1956 by the Groove record label.

The song was based on a guitar riff by Jody Williams. The co-writers of the song are of some dispute. The song has also been recorded by Buddy Holly and Bo Diddley, among others. The guitar riff was also used by Dave "Baby" Cortez in his 1962 instrumental song Rinky Dink.

At a concert at Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C. Mickey & Sylvia heard Jody Williams play a guitar riff that Williams had played on Billy Stewart's debut single Billy's Blues. Billy's Blues was released as a single in June 1956 and the instrumentation combined a regular blues styling with Afro-Cuban styling.

Sylvia Robinson claims that she and Mickey Baker wrote the lyrics, while Bo Diddley claims that he wrote them.

(Sylvia later founded Sugar Hill Records and introduced the world to the Sugarhill Gang's Rapper's Delight and Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five's The Message.)

Recorded on October 17, 1956 on RCA’s Groove label.

Click here for a Ray Charles recording featuring Mickey Baker on guitar. 


  1. "Love is strange" was given by Bo Diddley (the author of the melody) to Mickey. They were close friends at this time. It's Mickey who personally tall the news to me. He was a good friend of mine too. The lyrics had been written by Mickey and nobody else.


  2. Thanks for the first hand account of the events surrounding this recording. It's always nice to hear from the source!