Jackie Wilson

Lonely Teardrops

Composed by Berry Gordy, Jr. / Gwen Fuqua / Gwendolyn B. Gordy / Tyran Carlo

Song Review by

"Lonely Teardrops" was seminal vocalist Jackie Wilson's second charting single of his post-Dominoes solo career. The hit was penned by a Detroit songwriting team who wrote Wilson's first several hits -- the duo of Tyran Carlo (the pen name of Wilson's cousin Roquel Davis) and a pre-Motown Berry Gordy Jr. In the song, all of the instruments play a more percussive role. Heard are a tambourine, handclaps, a walking bass -- even the guitar just plucks the chord changes. This simple structure leaves the song wide open, allowing Wilson's acrobatic voice room to really move. His intense, soul-drenched delivery places this finger-popping shuffle into the realms of timeless hits. "Lonely Teardrops" was Wilson's first crossover single of the late '50s, holding the number one spot on the R&B charts for many weeks in 1958, and reaching the Top Ten on the pop charts early the following year. Still regarded as one of the best singles of the 1950s, this song that Wilson defined has been covered by many artists, including José Feliciano, teen idol pop singer Brian Hyland, Michael Jackson, and country singer Narvel Felts.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
No Image 1959 Hallmark
Jackie Wilson at the Copa 1962 Brunswick 4:18
The Greatest Hits of Jackie Wilson 1969 Brunswick 2:32
The Jackie Wilson Story [Sony] 1983 Epic 2:42
Reet Petite [Ace] 1985 Ace 2:44
No Image 1986 Rhino
The Rock 'N' Roll Era: 1959 - Still Rockin' 1989
Various Artists
2:45
No Image 1990 Columbia
Rhythm & Blues: 1959 1990
Various Artists
Time/Life Music
Mr. Excitement 1992 Rhino
The Beach Music Anthology 1992
Various Artists
Ripete Records 2:43
The Very Best of Jackie Wilson [Ace] 1993 Ace 2:40
The Sullivan Years: Rhythm & Blues Revue 1993
Various Artists
TVT 3:00
All-Time Greatest Hits of Rock & Roll, Vol. 3 1994
Various Artists
Curb 2:45
The Very Best of Jackie Wilson [Rhino] 1994 Rhino 2:46
Jackie Wilson Story: The New York Years, Vol. 2 1994 Charly Records 2:48
Jackie Wilson 1994 Goldies 2:41
The Brunswick Years, Vol. 1 1995
Various Artists
Brunswick 2:43
Whole Lot of Shakin' [K-Tel] 1996
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 2:43
No Image 1996
Various Artists
ITC Masters 2:42
The Jackie Wilson Story: The New York Years, Vol. 1 1997 Charly Records 2:39
20th Century Rocks, Vol. 3: '50s Rock 'n Roll Whole Lot of Shakin' 1997
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 2:43
Soul Classics: Best of the 60's 1998
Various Artists
Rebound Records 2:44
Best Sellers of the 50's 1998
Various Artists
Disky Communications 2:42
Chart Toppers: R&B Hits of the 50s 1998
Various Artists
Priority Records / Priority 2:45
Great Love Album 1998
Various Artists
Goldies
The Titan of Soul 1998 Demon Records / Demon 2:43
Masters 1998 Eagle Rock
The Best of 50's Jukebox Rock, Vol. 1 1998
Various Artists
Priority
The Great 1999 BCD
Sweetest Feelin': The Very Best of Jackie Wilson 1999 MCI / Music Club International Records 2:43
Rock 'N' Roll Legends 1999
Various Artists
My Kind of Music
Best of the Best: 50's Pop & Rock, Vol. 1 1999
Various Artists
Primary Colors 2:45
Classic Rhythm & Blues 1999
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:40
Patio Mixer: Starbucks Sounds For Summer Shindigs 1999
Various Artists
Rhino
The  Jackie Wilson Story [Double Gold] 2000 Double Gold 2:42
Final Curtain 2000 Concert
The Classic Rhythm & Blues Collection, Vol. 6: Heroes & Legends 2001
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:44
The Sound of Motortown Detroit 2002
Various Artists
Goldies 2:40
20 Greatest Hits 2002 Brunswick 2:43
Live! 2002 EMI-Capitol Special Markets 4:18
The Best of Jackie Wilson [Metro] 2002 Metro 2:43
The Story of Brunswick: The Classic Sound of Chicago Soul 2002
Various Artists
Rerooted 2:44
The Best of Jackie Wilson, Vol. 1 1957-1965 [Collectables] 2003 EMI-Capitol Special Markets 2:44
Capital Gold: Rock & Roll Legends 2003
Various Artists
Phantom Import Distribution
Rhythm & Blues Collection: Classic R&B Hits 2003
Various Artists
Madacy Distribution / Madacy 2:40
Anthology 2004 Import 2:45
Golden Era of Rock 'n' Roll: 1954-1963 2004
Various Artists
Hip-O 2:43
Rock & Roll - The First 50 Years: The '50s 25 Top 10 Hits 2004
Various Artists
Varèse Sarabande 2:34
History, Vol. 1: Coast to Coast 2006 Edsel 2:44
People Get Ready: 24 Soul Legends 2006
Various Artists
Wonderful Music 2:39
Blowing the Fuse: 31 R&B Classics That Rocked the Jukebox in 1958 2006
Various Artists
Bear Family Records
Jackie Wilson Live 2006 Collectables 4:18
Malt Shop Memories: All I Have to Do Is Dream 2006
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
Malt Shop Memories, Vol. 5 2007
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
Dick Clark's American Bandstand 50th Anniversary 2007
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
Originals: Nostalgic 2007
Various Artists
Music Brokers 2:41
It All Started With Doo Wop: The Closer You Are 2007
Various Artists
2:32
The Ultimate Oldies But Goodies Collection: Raunchy 2008
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
No Image 2009
Various Artists
Backline 2:36
The Biggest 50s Stars & Hits 2009
Various Artists
Dance Street / Music & Melody 2:37
Soul Breakout '58 2009
Various Artists
Fantastic Voyage / Fantasic Voyage 2:43
Shake, Rattle And Roll: R&B's Greatest Hits 1953-1958 2009
Various Artists
Jasmine Records 2:43
Dancing, Strolling, Rock 'n' Rolling 2010
Various Artists
Go Entertain
Lemon Popsicles & Strawberry Milkshakes: Love Songs, Vol. 2 2010
Various Artists
Go Entertain
The Ultimate Oldies But Goodies Collection 2010
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
Lemon Popsicles and Strawberry Milkshakes: Million Sellers 2010
Various Artists
Go Entertain 2:38
Reet Petite [Performance] 2011 Delta Leisure Group / Performance 2:43
Jackie Wilson - Mr. Excitement 2011 DM Digital 2:43
Lemon Popsicles and Strawberry Milkshakes [10 Disc Box Set] 2011
Various Artists
Go Entertainment 2:41
The Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame - Jackie Wilson 2012 DLG Digital 2:43
America's Greatest Hits, Vol. 10: 1959 2012
Various Artists
Acrobat 2:43
Dick Clark's Jukebox Gems: Heat Wave 2012
Various Artists
Life / Time 2:32
Dick Clark's Jukebox Gems 2013
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
The  R&B No. 1s of the '50s 2013
Various Artists
Acrobat / Acrobat Music 2:43
No Image 2015
Various Artists
Crimson
Soul for Dancers, Vol. 2 2016
Various Artists
Fantastic Voyage 2:45
101 Hits from the Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame
Various Artists
DLG Digital 2:43
A Soul Awakening: From Sacred to Secular
Various Artists
History of Soul Records 2:45
Early R & B Classics, Vol. 1
Various Artists
Cherished Records 2:47
Golden Oldies Hit Series, Vol. 33
Various Artists
Forever Classic Hits 2:41
Great #1 R&B Hits of the 1950's
Various Artists
AAO Music / United Audio Entertainment 2:46
No Image Bru Records
Hot Hundred: Songs for Mum
Various Artists
Music Digital 2:44
It All Started with Doo Wop
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:32
Jukebox Favourites: The Best of Early R&B
Various Artists
AP Music
Lemon Popsicles and Strawberry Milkshakes, Vol. 2
Various Artists
Go Entertain
Oldies Hits A to Z, Vol. 3
Various Artists
Forever Classic Hits 2:42
Prince's Jukebox
Various Artists
Chrome Dreams 2:36
Rock 'n' Roll Forever: Best of the 50's
Various Artists
Dynamic 2:47
Rock 'n' Roll Legends One & Only Rock 'n' Roll
No Image
Various Artists
Acrobat Music 2:43
No Image Real Gone Music
Soul Music: The First Generation
Various Artists
Primo / Primo Records 2:37
No Image Jasmine
The  Original Sound of R&B 1958
Various Artists
Ideal 2:43
The  Sockhop Collection: Rescue Me
Various Artists
StarVista 2:32
What Made Mods
Various Artists
Music Digital 2:43
Yes Indeed: A Soul Chronology, Vol. 4 1957-1958
Various Artists
History of Soul Records / Redeye 2:43
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