Legendary Michigan Songs

25.) Hot Rod Lincoln - Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen

Artist Name: Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen
Year Inducted: 2008

"Hot Rod Lincoln" (C. Ryan, W. Stevenson) - Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen;  Paramount label,  # 9 Billboard Hot 100 - 1972.  Inducted in 2008.

Although they were sometimes called the first hippie country band, Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen embraced a number of different styles as well, including rockabilly, western swing, boogie-woogie, and novelty tunes. The band's biggest hit, "Hot Rod Lincoln", would probably fall into the latter category. The humorous song originally provided Top 40 hits for both Johnny Bond and Charlie Ryan in 1960.

When the band started out, Commander Cody (a.k.a. George Frayne) was not one of the main singers in the group. He performed "Hot Rod Lincoln" in a fast-talking style reminiscent of comedian and recording artist Phil Harris.

When the song became a surprise hit, the band's Paramount label as well as much of the record-buying public expected more vocals from the Commander. In a recent interview, Cody claims that the fact that the real singers in the group weren't getting any hits was a major reason for the original band breaking up in 1976.

YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=868DSi85odQ