“Cherry, Cherry” is a song written, composed, and recorded in late January 1966 by American musician Neil Diamond. The song (originally intended as a demo) was arranged by Artie Butler and produced by Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich. It was issued as a 45 single in 1966 and became Diamond’s first big hit, reaching #6 on both the Billboard Hot 100 chart, in October 1966, and the Cash Box chart. Ellie Greenwich came up with the chorus and can be heard as the prominent background voice, accompanied by Jeff Barry. Neil Diamond has stated that the song was inspired by an early relationship with a significantly older woman.
In 1973 a live recording of “Cherry, Cherry” was issued as a 45 single from the Neil Diamond live album Hot August Night (1972). The live version hit #24 on the Cash Box chart and #31 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Rolling Stone would later label “Cherry, Cherry” as “one of the greatest three-chord songs of all time.”
Session guitarist Al Gorgoni (who later played on “The Sound of Silence” by Simon & Garfunkel and “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison) contributed to the song.
Two versions of “Cherry, Cherry” have been released. The version familiar to most listeners was recorded in late January 1966 and released by Bang Records in mid-1966, and was recorded as a demo, with Butler on keyboards, and Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich on backing vocals and hand-claps. The other version, with different lyrics and originally intended to be released as the single, was finally released by Diamond and Sony Music Entertainment in 1996 on the compilation album In My Lifetime.