"What Do You Want to Make Those Eyes at Me For?" is a song written by Joseph McCarthy, Howard Johnson and James V. Monaco in 1916. It was released in 1917 by Ada Jones and Billy Murray on Victor Records.
It became a UK hit in 1959 when a do-wop version, produced by Michael Barclay, became a number one hit for Emile Ford & The Checkmates over the Christmas and New Year of 1959/60, having overtaken Adam Faith's 'What Do You Want?'.Its stay in the UK Singles Chart began on 31 October 1959 and lasted 17 weeks. The last chart-topper of the 1950s, it retained the number one position for the first three weeks of 1960 until it was replaced by Michael Holliday's 'Starry Eyed' on 29 January 1960. Ford was the first black British artist to sell one million copies of a single.
I think a friend gave me this single around 1996.
A funny thing happened some years ago - I was playing christmas music in my flat one evening when one of the young people from the youth club called to give me a Christmas card. This song came on and she suddenly got really excited and shouted 'Oh Emile Ford and the Checkmates!' I was REALLY surprised at a 14 year old knowing an artist from the 50's so I asked her how she knew the song. She told me that he had been the guest singer at the holiday camp she had stayed at for the week, only 3 months ago, and she and her family had had a really great evening. She had even got his autograph!!