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Dion vs. The Four Seasons

In the 1960s, Dion DiMucci and the Four Seasons probably contributed more girl name songs to the Top 50 than any other singer or group ever has.

Dion seemed to specialize in two-timing heartbreakers. “Runaround Sue” described a girl who cheats on her man: “People, let me put you wise, Sue goes out with other guys.” That was Dion’s first No. 1 hit record.


Then “Little Diane” (#8) came along, an out-of-control man-eating vixen that drove Dion wild.

Dion’s “Ruby Baby” (No. 2) is the most famous version about the girl he made a bet that he was gonna get. (Ewww!)

“Sandy” was another cheater like Runaround Sue that had to be dumped in spite of insane passion. “Why must I love you so much, Sandy, I long for your touch.”

In a bit of a departure from the unfaithful femme fatales of the previous songs, “Donna the Prima Donna” (#6) wouldn’t give you a tumble if you were broke. Gold digging Donna always wore “diamonds, diamonds and pearls galore.” She got them at the 5 and 10 cent store (probably Woolworth’s). Donna wanted to be “‘just like Zsa Zsa Gabor even though she’s the girl next door.”

The Four Seasons began their string of girl name songs with a No. 1 hit, too. “Sherry” is an invitation to a twist party provided she wears her red dress and asks her mama if she can dance the night away in it. We’re sure he’d let her in even if she didn’t.

Their next offering, “Dawn (Go Away)” (#3), implored a rich girl to go back to the right side of the tracks because Frankie Valli was “no good” for her.

“Candy Girl” (#3) and its flip side, “Marlena” (#36) were the next two. Candy was divine but Marlena was a shameless flirt and a liar.

“Ronnie” (#6) was his first love and broke up with him because she thought he cheated. Frankie swore he was innocent and vowed to “go on living and keep on forgiving” because she was his first love.

The group gave the name song thing a rest for a few years, then came back with “C’mon Marianne” (#9). Frankie admits that he was a bad boy (“She was a passing fling and not a permanent thing”) in this one and begs for forgiveness.

So that makes 5 Top 40 girl name hits for Dion and 7 for the Four Seasons.

Just for the record (no pun intended), Chuck Berry had 3 name songs in the Top 40– “Maybellene” (#5), “Nadine” (#18) and “Carol” (#23). Fats Domino only had one: “My Girl Josephine” (#14) aka Hello Josephine, which happens to be our favorite of all the girl’s name songs mentioned.

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