Song: “Mother-In-Law” by Ernie K-Doe
Reached #1: May 22, 1961 (his first, 1 week)
This one’s for all the married folks out there (of which I’m not one). Now not every mother-in-law is a miserable Satan-spawn… if they were, nobody would get married… but if yours is, this 50-year-old ditty from Ernie K-Doe has been waiting for you.
It was the kind of off-beat song that would have a harder time making it to #1 in today’s SrsBsns musical era… especially since there would probably be fears that some mother-in-law PAC would organize a boycott of the record label.
It was Ernie K-Doe’s only #1 hit – and only pop hit – but he certainly did well with it. He became a local icon in New Orleans, eventually moving into radio in the ‘80s and eccentricity in the ‘90s. He started calling himself “the Emperor of the Universe”, complete with crown and cape.
Fortunately, while he was eccentric, he was also a good businessman, opening up the Mother-In-Law Lounge in New Orleans in 1994. The club survived K-Doe’s death in 2001… and even survived Hurricane Katrina in 2005. K-Doe’s widow, Antoinette, was able to re-open the club in 2006, and ran it until her death in 2009.
The K-Does are entombed in the Duval tomb in New Orleans, where Ernie is buried near his mother-in-law. Apparently, he was rather fond of her. Of course.
Tomorrow, we stay in the ‘60s for a duo who were musicians almost from the day they were born…
Other songs that reached #1 on May 22:
1965 – “Ticket To Ride” by the Beatles (their eighth, 1 week)
1976 – “Silly Love Songs” by the Wings (their fourth, 5 weeks)
2004 – “Burn” by Usher (his fifth, 8 weeks)
2010 – “Not Afraid” by Eminem (his third, 1 week)