Cayet Mangiaracina attended a New Orlean's Jesuit High School and played piano for a group called "The Sparks". (Ronnie Massa, Don Bailey, Joe Lovecchio, Don Cornell and Cayet Mangiaracina) when he wrote "Merry, Merry Lou" (Cayet Mangiaracina) for that group and it became a local hit in 1953.

In 1958 Bill Haley and the Comets recorded the tune as "Mary, Mary Lou".

Country singer Johnny Duncan was the first to record "Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart" (Gene Pitney) in 1961.

Gene Pitney recorded his composition "Hello Mary Lou" and was sued successfully by The Sparks publisher thereby giving co-authorship to the priest. Until her death in 1988 royalties went to Father Cayet's mother, now royalties go to the Dominican Order.

Ricky Nelson's 1961 hit cover was the B side to "Travelin' Man" which topped the charts as "Hello Mary Lou" (Pitney) peaked at number nine. James Burton is playing lead guitar. This is from the album "Rick Is 21". The official title is "Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart" (Pitney - Mangiaracina).