Manfred Mann scores a No.1 in the UK on Valentine’s Day 1968 with Dylan’s cover of “The Mighty Quinn”

The popular song was originally written and recorded as a demo by Bob Dylan in 1967 under a different title

Manfred Mann scores a No.1 in the UK on Valentine’s Day 1968 with Dylan’s cover of “The Mighty Quinn”

“The Mighty Quinn” was written and first recorded by Bob Dylan as “Quinn the Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn)” in 1967, however, was first released first released in January 1968 as the “Mighty Quinn” by Manfred Mann. The subject of the song is the arrival of the mighty Quinn (an Eskimo), who changes despair into joy and chaos into rest, and attracts attention from the animals. Dylan is widely believed to have derived the title character from actor Anthony Quinn’s role as an Eskimo in the 1960 movie “The Savage Innocents”, but Dylan has also been quoted as saying that the song was nothing more than a “simple nursery rhyme.” The first official release of the Bob Dylan original version of the song was in 1970 on Dylan’s “Self Portrait” album, a live recording from 1969’s Isle of Wight Festival.The Manfred Mann version is noted for Klaus Voormann’s (The Beatles longtime collaborator, designer of the “Revolver” album cover and part of Plastic Ono Band) use of a distinctive flute part. Manfred Mann version remains the most popular one, and it reached #1 in the UK Singles Chart for the week of 14 February 1968 and remained there the following week. It also charted on the American Billboard chart, peaking at #10, and reached #4 in Cash Box.

Watch Manfred Mann performing “The Mighty Quinn” on German TV show Beat Club in 1968

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