John Lee Hooker

Boogie Chillen'

Composed by John Lee Hooker

Song Review by

The riff that launched a million songs, "Boogie Chillen" turned all the guitar players loose, each proffering their own brand of boogie after John Lee Hooker stormed to the top of the R&B charts with this crude little piece of Delta blues in 1948. The original was nothing more than Hooker, his electric guitar cranked right up, and his foot stomping away keeping the beat. Over a repeated monochord riff, Hooker made the original mold that all guitar players followed with. Most successful of all was Junior Parker, recording for the Memphis Sun label under the sobriquet of Little Junior's Blue Flames. Parker's "Feelin' Good" was a cover version, changing the tune just enough to skirt the issue of copyright and, in turn, spawning its own set of offshoot covers (Magic Sam, James Cotton) and sound-alike numbers including Sammy Lewis' "Feel So Worried," Slim Green and the Cats from Fresno's "Old Folks Boogie," and Parker's own "Feel So Bad." The tune had further legs into the hippie era, when the blues-rock group Canned Heat adapted the riff for their own "Fried Hockey Boogie." ZZ Top also appropriated a large part of it for "La Grange," their version of the riff being lifted from Norman Greenbaum's "Spirit in the Sky." As for the originator, Hooker cut several answer records to his own big hit, recorded with everyone from Canned Heat to Bonnie Raitt, making sure that no one forgot to boogie in the years to come.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Welcome to the Blues, Vol. 2 1951
Various Artists
EPM 2:39
The Great John Lee Hooker 1964 P-Vine Records 3:11
Get Back Home 1969 Evidence 2:42
No Image 1969
No Image 1980 Charly Records
No Image 1983 JSP
No Image 1984
Various Artists
40th Anniversary Album 1989 DCC Compact Classics 0:00
The Hook: 20 Years of Hits & Hot Boogie 1989 Capitol 2:28
The Collectables Blues Collection, Vol. 1 1990
Various Artists
Collectables 2:37
No Image 1991 Bella Musica
Guitar Player Presents Legends of Guitar: Electric Blues, Vol. 2 1991
Various Artists
Rhino 3:10
The Best of John Lee Hooker [JCI] 1991 JCI Associated Labels 2:33
The Ultimate Collection (1948-1990) 1991 Rhino 3:10
Evidence Blues Sampler 1992
Various Artists
Evidence 2:42
This Is Hip: Charly Blues Masterworks, Vol. 7 1992 Recall (UK) 2:35
Zeppelin Classics 1992
Various Artists
Jasrac 2:37
The Blues: A Smithsonian Collection of Classic Blues Singers 1993
Various Artists
Smithsonian Records 3:05
King of the Boogie [Drive Archive] 1994 Drive Archive
The Gold Collection [Fine Tune] 1994 Fine Tune 0:00
Blues Anthology [Millenium] 1994
Various Artists
Millenium Music 2:37
Blues Sampler [Drive Archive] 1994
Various Artists
Drive Archive 2:35
The Legendary Modern Recordings 1948-1954 1994 Point Blank / Flair / Virgin 3:06
Born Under a Bad Sign [Alex] 1995
Various Artists
The Very Best of John Lee Hooker [Rhino] 1995 Rhino 3:11
Best of the Blues, Vol. 1 [Cema] 1995
Various Artists
CEMA Special Markets 3:09
Blues Legends [Boxsets 1995] 1995
Various Artists
St. Clair / Boxsets 2:32
Mojo Workin': The Best of Ace Blues 1995
Various Artists
Ace 3:09
The Essential Blues [House of Blues] 1995
Various Artists
Trouble Blues 1995 St. Clair / Prime Cuts 0:00
The Very Best of John Lee Hooker [Charly] 1996 Charly Records 2:37
Box Full of Blues 1996 Drive Archive 2:37
The Great 1996 Goldies 2:36
Electric [Collector's Edition] 1996 Collector's Edition 2:40
Legends of Blues [Intercontinental] 1997
Various Artists
Intercontinental Records 2:34
Golden Classics 1997 Essex 2:35
Best Blues Masters, Vol. 2 1998 P-Vine Records 2:39
Back 2 Back [Intercontinental/Masters] 1998 Masters 2:34
Back 2 Back [Excelsior] 1998 Excelsior Recordings
Best of John Lee Hooker [Music Club] 1999 Music Club Records 2:37
Best of Blues [Platinum] 1999
Various Artists
Platinum Disc 3:09
Guitar Blues Legends 1999
Various Artists
Nostalgia 3:09
John Lee Hooker [Dressed To Kill] 1999 Dressed To Kill 2:37
Dimples [Charly] 1999 Charly Records 2:37
Forever Gold 1999 St. Clair 2:33
Boom Boom and Other Classics 1999 K-Tel Distribution / Intercontinental Records 2:33
King of Boogie [Prism] 1999 Prism Leisure 3:09
1949: The R&B Hits 2000
Various Artists
Indigo 3:10
Indigo Blues Collection, Vol. 5 2000
Various Artists
Indigo 3:09
Every Day I Have the Blues [Goldies Box] 2000
Various Artists
Goldies 2:37
20th Century Blues [Catfish] 2000
Various Artists
Catfish 3:08
Definitive Collection [Metro] 2000 Metro 2:36
As Good As It Gets: Jukebox Blues 2000
Various Artists
Disky 3:01
Nothing But the Blues [Import] 2000
Various Artists
Import 3:08
Boogie Chillen: 1948-1949 [EPM] 2000 EPM 3:10
The Blues: Young and Wild 1948-1949/Black 'n Blue Recordings 1969 2000 Frémeaux & Associés 2:44
Blues Greats: Blues All Time Favorites 2001
Various Artists
Town Sound 2:36
Back to Black: 1900-1999 2001
Various Artists
Universal International 3:08
The Legends Collection 2001 Dressed To Kill 2:37
Boogie Chillen [Indigo] 2001 Indigo 3:09
Say It Loud! A Celebration of Black Music in America [Box Set] 2001
Various Artists
Rhino 3:53
The Man, the Legend 2001 Collectables 2:35
Rock & Roll, Vol. 4: 1948 2001
Various Artists
Frémeaux & Associés 0:00
Bill Wyman's Blues Odyssey 2001
Various Artists
Document 2:35
Black & Proud 2002
Various Artists
Golden Stars 2:36
Boogie Chillen: Original 1948-1954 Blues Masterpieces [SACD] 2003 Audio Fidelity
Boogie Chillen' [Morada Music] 2003 Audio Fidelity 3:11
Le Blues 1925-1952 2003
Various Artists
Body & Soul 3:10
The Complete, Vol. 1 - Detroit 1948-1949 2003 Body & Soul 3:09
Burning Hell [Our World] 2003 Our World 3:08
I Heard It on NPR: Jazz for Blue Nights/At Home in the World/Shake These Blues 2003
Various Artists
NPR National Public Radio 3:07
Century of the Blues: The Definitive Country Blues Collection 2003
Various Artists
Chrome Dreams 3:12
A Proper Introduction to John Lee Hooker: I'm in the Mood 2004 Proper Sales & Dist. 3:12
Good Mornin' Blues 2004
Various Artists
ASV / Living Era 3:10
Back 2 Back: The Ultimate Collection 2004 Double Play Records 2:33
Bests of JLH 2004 GNP 2:40
The Blues, Vol. 2 [Platinum] 2004
Various Artists
Platinum Disc 2:31
Blowing the Fuse: 28 R&B Classics That Rocked the Jukebox in 1949 2004
Various Artists
Bear Family Records 3:09
Golden Legends [St. Clair] 2004 St. Clair 2:31
Best of John Lee Hooker [Essentials] 2004 St. Clair / Essential Records 2:31
Authentic Blues 2005
Various Artists
Fuel 2000 3:09
Legend: The Best of John Lee Hooker 2005 Music Club International Records 2:37
Black Cat Blues 2005 Pepper Cake 3:10
Blues Legend 2006 Universal Special Products 0:00
Early Blues Roots of Led Zeppelin 2007
Various Artists
Snapper 3:09
Roots of Van Morrison [Snapper UK] 2008
Various Artists
Catfish 3:10
No Image 2008
Various Artists
Uncut Music 3:08
The Very Best of John Lee Hooker [Not Now] 2009 Not Now Music 3:09
Gotta Boogie, Gotta Sing 2017 Jasmine Records 3:11
ABC of the Blues, Vol. 13 Documents 3:09
Blues Café
Various Artists
Allegro Corporation / Music Brokers 3:08
No Image
Various Artists
Time / Life Music
No Image QED
Half a Stranger Mainstream 3:07
No Image
Various Artists
Goodman Group
Meet Me Around the Corner History 3:08
Robert Plant & Led Zeppelin: Under the Influence - The Songs That Made Them Rock
Various Artists
Enlightenment / Enlightenment Series 3:14
Talking Blues Pepper Cake 3:09
The Boogie Chillen Man Blues Encore