Apocalyptic hymn from the Book of Revelations. Developed as a song in the Bahamas and in New Orleans, where early in the twentieth century it became a funeral standard. Played in a slow version while on their way to the graveyard, quicker on the way out. Buddy Bolden was reported to be the very first to integrate this kind of church stuff into his dancehall routine.
Bo Weavil Jackson [as When The Saints Come Marching Home]
Barbecue Bob [as When The Saints Go Marching In]
Bill Haley [as Saints Rock And Roll; hit UK]
Elvis Presley [with Red West and Charlie Hooton]
Jerry Lee Lewis [on debut album]
Henri Salvador [als Oh! Quand les saints]
Annie Cordy [as Ca va comme ça]
Tony Sheridan & The Beat Brothers [B-side of My Bonnie]
Tommy McCook [reggae version as The Saint, produced by Duke Reid]
Snooky Pryor [all as When The Saints Go Marching In]
Little Georgie & The Shufflin Hungarians [in Saints Medley]
Dr. John [with Mavis Staples]
Eddie Bo [on Our New Orleans - A Benefit Album for the Gulf Coast]
Bruce Springsteen [with the Sessions Band Live In Dublin]
According to jazz critic Al Rose this tune was first published as a Baptist hymn in 1916 and credited to Edward Boatner, the man behind reli-classic He's Got The Whole World In His Hands (see there). Not to be confused with When The Saints Are Marching In, written by Katherine Purvis and James Black in 1896.