10 Career-Defining Songs From Rick Derringer
via Rick Derringer/YouTube
His Best Works
Rick Derringer rose to prominence as a founding member of the rock band The McCoys in the ’60s. In the next decade, he embarked on a solo career and also went on to collaborate with other music greats like Johnny Winter, Steely Dan, Alice Cooper, and Todd Rundgren.
In an interview, Derringer said: “The challenge is to strive to be relevant. Listen to your own heart, follow your instincts. Music is a message from player to audience.”
Here are his ten best songs:
1. Real American
Made famous by Hulk Hogan because he used it as his entrance song, Derringer told Mel Magazine: “We were really happy about all that. But still somewhere in the back of my mind I thought, ‘Man, this song should be somehow more legit than just a wrestler’s theme song.’ We had wanted to write this fabulous patriotic song for all Americans. We saw it somehow on a different level than a wrestler’s theme song, so in some ways I was a little let down.” It has also been used several times in rallies.
2. Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo
Although it was written by Derringer, it was originally recorded by Johnny Winter And in 1970 – Derringer was a member of the band at the time. Derringer said, “The first song I wrote for Johnny was ‘Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo’. ‘Rock and Roll’ to satisfy the rock ‘n’ roll that I was supposed to be bringing into the picture, and ‘Hoochie Koo’ to satisfy the king of blues sensibility that Johnny was supposed to maintain. And it worked out great.”
3. Still Alive and Well
Written by Derringer, it’s the title track to Johnny Winter’s fifth studio album. Derringer played guitar on three songs and also produced the LP. In 2018, The Edgar Winter Group and The Rick Derringer Band embarked on a trek called “Still Alive And Well” as tribute to Johnny Winter.
4. Let Me In
From Derringer’s 1976 album, it’s catchy and infectious. He penned the song with songwriter Cynthia Weil.
Like the rest of his “Spring Fever” LP, this has a good hook and has aged pretty well.
6. Teenage Love Affair
From his debut solo album “All American Boy”, it’s one of the highlights of the record and is still addicting to listen to today.
7. Hang On Sloopy
It was first recorded by R&B vocal group the Vibrations but when Derringer’s band The McCoys covered it, the song topped the US Billboard Hot 100 and peaked at #5 on the UK Singles chart.
8. Sweet Evil
Unlike the other songs on this list, this one’s slower and a bit haunting. It’s rather long too – clocking in at over six minutes.
9. Somebody Loan Me A Dime
That intro is something else – two minutes of glorious guitar solo. It’s tasteful and electrifying. And the vocals are just as superb.
It’s the kind of song you can rock out to over and over again.