“Louie Louie” Singer Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize? WTF?

Back in 1963, many parents (along with a suprising number of judicial and government officials) believed that the dirtiest song in the world was “Louie Louie” by The Kingsmen.  Although no one could make out the lyrics, they just had to be dirty.  At least that was the rumour.  It was a national scandal that went all the way up to the FBI.

Five years after “Louie Louie” hit Yank Berry–a Canadian from Montreal–joined the band and stayed with them for two years.  That was followed by a long and prolific career as a songwriter and producer for people such as, er, Englebert Humperdick, Tom Jones and Julio Iglesias.  

To be fair, he also worked for Alice Cooper, Jimi Hendrix and Steve Van Zandt.  And that was after he helped pioneer the quadraphonic record in the early 1970s.

Yank is also responsible for several other pieces of music that you must have heard.  As a jingle writer, he came up with “We build excitement, Pontiac!” and Red Lobster’s “For the seafood lover in you.” Yank also wrote jingles for Kodak, Dr. Pepper and Kellogg’s Raisin Bran.

None of the above has anything to do with being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.  Yet he’s been up for the same honour given Mother Teresa and the Dalai Lama. Three times.  How?

By partnering with Muhammed Ali to feed needy people all over the world. His philatropy has resulted in 910,000,000 meals being distributed through his and Ali’s group, the Global Village Champions Foundation. Read all about it here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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