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Kenny Dino

Although he recorded his only hit, "Your Ma Said You Cried in Your Sleep Last Night," in 1961, Kenny Dino provided a major influence for Elton John and Robert Plant, who covered the song on his 1990 album, Manic Nirvana. A native of Astoria in Queens, NY, Dino moved with his parents to more-rural Hicksville, Long Island, in 1955. He spent seven summers on his grandfather's farm.

Enlisting in the U.S. Navy in 1957, Dino spent several months stationed in Iceland. While there, he succumbed to friends' urging and entered a music talent competition. Singing an Elvis Presley tune, he placed second in the contest. He continued to sing while stationed in Maine, Florida, and Texas. Forming a band with five Mexican-American vocalists, Dino spent three years touring throughout Texas and Louisiana. A semi-regular performer at the San Antonio Blues Club, he often jammed with a young Doug Sahm.

Moving to New York, Dino signed with the Dot label. The association was short-lived, however. When the label found that Dino was not the "new" Pat Boone as it had hoped, it severed the contract.

Switching to Columbia, Dino continued to struggle. An intended album was not released, while Dino turned down an invitation to form a duo with Paul Simon, who was using the name Jerry Landis. Although he recorded several demos for Elvis Presley, including "Good Luck Charm," Columbia was unsure whether to market him as an Elvis-like rocker or a Roy Orbison-esque balladeer and forced him to turn down an opportunity to record "Suspicious Minds." The song became a chart-topping hit for Terry Stafford 13 months later. ~ Craig Harris
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Golden Age Of American Rock 'N' Roll, Vol. 2

1. Memphis

3. You Belong To Me

4. Your Ma Said You Cried In Your Sleep Last Night

5. A Million To One

6. Rockin' In The Jungle

7. Wild Weekend

8. Stay

9. Down The Aisle Of Love

10. Mountain Of Love

12. Let The Little Girl Dance

13. There's A Moon Out Tonight

14. Get A Job

15. You

16. Buzz Buzz Buzz

17. I've Had It

18. I Know (You Don't Love Me No More)

19. Mister Lonely

20. In The Still Of The Night

21. Church Bells May Ring

22. That's LIfe (That's Tough)

23. Rumble

24. Let's Stomp

25. Oh Julie

26. Little Darlin'

27. Teen Beat

28. Diamonds And Pearls

29. Alley Oop

30. California Sun

Comments

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