Many stories of Little Richard’s defection from rock and roll have been advanced. Some historians have claimed he spotted the flaming re-entry of Sputnik from the deck of a ship and threw all of his jewelry into the Pacific off the coast of Australia.Grady Chapman, of the Robins, who backed Little Richard on “The Girl Can’t Help It” – written for the Jayne Mansfield movie of the same title b/w “All Around the World” was around the world and on tour with Little Richard at the time.
“We went down to the Philippines with Little Richard on a Pan Am flight. One of the motors froze up and when we woke up they’d turned it off so it wouldn’t catch fire. Little Richard said, ‘If we get there, I won’t sing no more. Birds was meant to fly.’ He gave up singing, got rid of all his jewelry.” According to other accounts, after this incident, Joe Lutcher convinced him to keep away from rock and roll for a little less than a decade, but when the Beatles began having hits, Little Richard jumped back into the fray.