Santo and Johnny Farina were brothers born in Brooklyn, New York. Santo played a steel guitar and Johnny the rhythm guitar. While in school they were regulars on the dance and party circuit. Their big break came when they wrote “Sleepwalk” with their sister Ann. They signed to the brand new label Canadian-American, who released the song as a single.
“Sleepwalk” entered the BILLBOARD Hot 100 on July 27, 1959, and eight weeks later on September 21, 1959, it reached number one where it remained for two weeks. It was the last number one instrumental of the 1950’s.
The song has a plaintive quality that just takes your mind away to different places. The steel guitar is the key to the music.
Santo and Johnny remained active into the mid-1970’s but would never duplicate the success of their greatest hit. Today Santo is semi-retired while Johnny remains active in the music industry. They have left behind one of the most recognizable instrumentals in rock and roll history.