January 25

From Montana Cafe and Hank Williams, “Mind Your Own Business”

“Mind Your Own Business” is a 1949 song that Hank Williams wrote and originally covered. It was the 10th track on his Montana Café album. Hank recorded this country, blues, rock and roll on March 2, 1949, at the Castle Studio in Nashville. During the same session, Williams also recorded “You’re Gonna Change (Or I’m Gonna Leave)”, “My Son Calls Another Man Daddy”, and “Honky Tonk Blues”. In the song, we can hear: Dale Potter on fiddle; Don Davis on steel guitar, Zeke Turner on lead guitar, Clyde Baum on mandolin, Jack Shook on rhythm guitar and Ernie Newton on bass.

“Mind Your Own Business” and Its Story

In the song, the narrator gives a local do-gooder—a person meddling with others’ affairs—a warning for snooping and gossiping. While the delivery is light and casual, the inspiration to “Mind Your Own Business” came from the singer’s own turbulent relationship. Since Mr. and Mrs. Audrey Williams created a buzz. The opening lines seem to illustrate this:

If the wife and I are fussin’, brother that’s our right

’Cause me and that sweet woman’s got a license to fight

Williams’ delivery is measured, laconic, and dry. The day before, Hank had cut several duets with his wife Audrey. In October 1949, Hank Williams introduced the song. He told his radio audience that it was a kind of prediction in a song. Eventually, it proved to be.

“Mind Your Own Business” is similar to Williams’ first Billboard hit “Move It on Over”. The tracks were of the same tone and structure. In both recordings, the singer expressed his ethical disgrace in humor, allowing his audience to know about the issue.

Its Success

“Mind Your Own Business” headed to spot number 6 on the C&W Best Seller list where it stayed for two weeks.

Charley Pride recorded it for his 1980 album: There’s a Little Bit of Hank in Me.

In late 1986, Hank Williams, Jr. recorded the song along with Reba McEntire, Tom Petty, Reverend Ike, and Willie Nelson. This version was the most successful that it became a chart-topper on the country chart for two weeks.


Tags

Hank Williams Sr., mind your own business


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