An obscure 1925 recording by clarinetist Buster Bailey is the inauspicious debut of “Squeeze Me,” but two more recordings that year probably had more to do with establishing the popularity of tune.
In the mid-1920s, the center of the recording industry was New York, although Chicago’s vital music scene and indie companies were putting it in a strong second place. Yet the big recording companies sensed there was talent to be found outside the Big Apple and the Windy City and began sending scouts throughout the country to find new artists. Consequently, cities like Atlanta, St. Louis, and New Orleans that had no recording facilities were visited by portable recording units. Columbia Records, on a visit to New Orleans in September, 1925, recorded the popular local jazz group, The Halfway House Orchestra, led by cornetist Abbie Brunies. Brunies’ band made the first important recording of “Squeeze Me” as an instrumental.
A month later, pianist/bandleader Clarence Williams (credited as lyricist of the tune) recorded a vocal rendition with his wife Eva Taylor singing and Louis Armstrong and tenor saxophonist Coleman Hawkins as part of the backup group.
Daddy you've been doggone sweet on me, Daddy you the only one I see. You know I need but you, 'cause you my man, You can love me like no-one can!
Somethin' 'bout you I can't resist, And when you kiss me daddy, I stay kissed! Now daddy, squeeze me, squeeze me again, Oh daddy, don't stop till I tell you when! Now daddy, squeeze me, kiss me some more, oh Lord! Like you did before.
You papa Cupid is standin' close by, Now daddy, don't let sweet baby cry; Pick me up on your kneee, I just get so, you know, when you squeeze me!
Squeeze me, squeeze me again, Now daddy, don't stop till I tell you when! Now daddy, squeeze me, kiss me some more, oh Lord! Like you did before.
You papa Cupid is standin' close by, Daddy, don't let sweet momma cry; Pick me up on your kneee, I just get so, you know daddy, when you squeeze me!