“Your Cheatin’ Heart” may probably be the most famous song about infidelity. This million-selling hit reached an instant fame in the 1950s following the tragic death of its artist Hank Williams, Sr. Since its released, the song became an important standard in defining what country music is. Many songs on this subject have been written and recorded time and again. But even before Williams’ “Your Cheatin’ Heart” emerged, two songs about cheating came out both in 1949. These songs were written by Floyd Tillman. Also, two great singers, Margaret Whiting, and Jimmy Wakely brought both songs to popularity on that same year.
Tillmans’ Cheating Songs
American country musician Floyd Tillman was the first to record his self-penned tune “Slippin’ Around.” Several artists covered his original song after him. However, the most notable version was that of Margaret Whiting and Jimmy Wakely. The duo was able to take the song to the top of the Retail Folk Country Best Sellers chart in 1949. The song centers on two people, both married to their respective partners, who are having an affair. The narrator admitted that they’re committing mistakes slipping around. Also, doing it let them “live in constant fear.” However, the affection they have for each other is quite strong that the narrator still hopes they’ll be back to each other someday and won’t have to slip around.
But I’m so in love with you
I hope someday I’ll find a way
To bring you back to me
And I won’t have to slip around
To have your company
I’ll Never Slip Around Again”
After Whiting and Wakely’s successful cover of “Slippin’ Around,” Tillman wrote a follow-up to the song also in 1949. Just like the first hit, he and Whiting and Wakely recorded “I’ll Never Slip Around Again.” The tune answers the issues found in the previous song. The cheating narrator, after marrying the person he cheated with, now fears to be the one cheated on. In the first song, the narrator never realized the feeling of being cheated on. He only fears being caught cheating. But in this follow-up song, that issue was already addressed. But, the beauty of the song lies in the narrator’s realization of his mistake and vows to be more faithful now with his partner.
I had to learn the hard way
That slipping round don’t pay
And I’ll never slip around again
Til my dying days
Here’s Whiting and Wakely’s rendition of “I’ll Never Slip Around Again.”
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Cheating Song, Floyd Tillman, I'll Never Slip Around Again, jimmy Wakely, Margaret Whiting, Slippin' Around
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