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Jimmie Cross

The song "I Want My Baby Back" by Jimmie Cross is a "follow-up" to "Leader of the Pack." In the song Cross and his girlfriend are the ones who ran into the "Leader of the Pack". By the end of the song, he misses his girl so much that he "digs her up" - complete with shovel sounds and the sound of the coffin lid opening.

Harry Nilsson once appeared on Kenny Everett's radio program in England and denied that he had recorded the song under the alias "Jimmie Cross" (as if anyone had every claimed he had!). This, of course, led to the rumor that Nilsson had recorded the song. An article about Kenny Everett in the Summer 1995 issue of the British Library National Sound Archive states:

"'Cuddly Ken's' occasional hit parade of the horrible, which grew into The Bottom Thirty, was truly a crawl down High Camp Street. He was not above or below including embarrassing novelty records made by other radio presenters. One of these wretched recordings was the ultimate 1960's teenage death genre non-hit, "I Want My Baby Back" recorded by Harry Nilsson under the alias of Jimmie Cross. The singer's grief is such that he digs up his beloved's coffin, crawls in, and sings the last chorus from inside. It was so tasteless that Nilsson, who later was a guest on Everett's programmes, never admitted his involvement in the record he wanted to remain dead and buried.'

To clear things up we asked Perry Botkin, Harry's friend and (with Gil Garfield) the composer of "I Want My Baby Back", about it. He said: "Sorry. . . Not Harry. There was a real Jimmie Cross. A very nice guy and dear friend of Harry, Gil, and me. He died about twelve years ago but his glorious and lilting performance on 'Baby Back' shall keep his memory alive forever in the annals of beautiful and deeply meaningful popular music."

Visitor Comments:

 Gene Autry Cross (October 16, 2011)
I am the older brother of Jimmie. I am retired Navy. I have most of his Demo records. Miss my brother. Gene
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