One of the songs that dominated the music scene in the early 1940’s was “When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again.” Composed by Gene Sullivan and Wiley Walker, the song became a hit for several famous singers including Cindy Walker, and Cliffie Stone. Likewise, other notable country music stars, the likes of Elvis Presley, Emmylou Harris, Jim Reeves, and Merle Haggard, among others, performed the song. One of the most remarkable performances of the hit was that of Presley’s. The King of Rock and Roll made his last appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show last January 6, 1957. There, he performed “When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again” in front of around 50 million viewers.
More recently, Haggard sang it on stage and his delivery was just as impressive. It’s probably one of the many memorable performances that he had at the latter part of his career. Though Haggard was looking quite old in this clip, there’s no denying the vibrancy in his voice. The song served as the flipside of “Ramblin Fever,” a No. 2 hit of Haggard in 1977.
Watch Merle Haggard’s live performance of the song below.
Brief Writing History
One of the songwriters, Gene Sullivan, shared how the song came about. According to him, it was penned out of necessity. Also, it’s a beautiful result of his and Walker’s recording mistakes. Having no knowledge about original songs, the two just recorded any song they wanted to sing. Finally, Art Satherley of Columbia Records sat with them and said that if they wanted to stay in the recording business, they need to create original songs. Determined to succeed, Sullivan started writing songs. And while on a trip, he wrote the song “When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again.”
“During that time, I was moving my family and everything we owned in our car from Lubbock Texas to Oklahoma City for a new job. I drove all night across Texas looking right into a bright full moon. The moon was so bright that I could even turn off the car headlights and still see the road. And that’s where I got the idea for ‘When My Blue Moon Turns To Gold Again.’
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Cindy Walker, Cliffie Stone, Gene Sullivan, merle haggard, When My Blue Moon Turns to Gold Again, Wiley Walker