Song of the Day: Lou Rawls, “Going To Chicago”

On this day in 1837, the city of Chicago was incorporated by the state of Illinois. Mary and I both born and raised there, and while we’ve lived in Atlanta for over 35 years, we still have a soft spot in our hearts for the city. A lot of great musicians came from Chicago, including Lou Rawls, one of Frank Sinatra’s favorite singers. This performance of "Going To Chicago" is from 1970.

10 thoughts on “Song of the Day: Lou Rawls, “Going To Chicago”

  1. What a great voice and, while watching that video, I wondered what treatment he received backstage. A book should be written about these famous African American singers from the 50s and 60s who were cherished while onstage but what did they deal with off stage and who helped them. I’m not a Sinatra fan bit I know he helped big time.


    1. Sinatra was a great friend to have. You’ve heard the story about him standing up to the big hotel owners in Vegas, telling them that if Sammy Davis Jr. was good enough to sing in their showrooms, he was good enough to stay at their hotel. He really thought the world of Lou as a singer and it was really a mutual admiration. I still feel badly that as much as Chicago meant to him, he couldn’t get his records played on the Top 40 stations there. A friend of mine who’s Black said that Lou’s songs were too much of a challenge to White audiences, but I never heard it… Anyway, that would be an interesting book…


  2. Fun fact, we got a night on the town care of Mr. Rawls. He was performing in the city and needed a certain medication. The manager of the 4 Seasons Hotel where he was staying called one of the docs I was working for who was a friend of his. All I did was call the prescription in to the pharmacy but they were so grateful that hubby and I got a free meal at the 4 Seasons. It’s a swanky place. We were quite impressed.


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