You Don't Know Me (Eddy Arnold song)

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"You Don't Know Me"
Single by Eddy Arnold
B-side The Rockin' Mockin' Bird
Released 1956
Format 45 vinyl single
Recorded 1955
Genre Country Music
Length 2:34
Label RCA Victor
Writer(s) Eddy Arnold
Cindy Walker

"You Don't Know Me" is a song written by Cindy Walker based on a title and storyline given to her by Eddy Arnold in 1955. "You Don't Know Me" was first recorded by Arnold that year and released as a single on April 21, 1956 on RCA Victor.[1] The first version of the song to make the Billboard charts was by Jerry Vale in 1956, peaking at #14 on the pop chart. Arnold's version charted two months later, released as an RCA Victor single, 47-6502, backed with "The Rockin' Mockin' Bird", which reached #10 on the Billboard country chart. Cash Box magazine, which combined all best-selling versions at one position, included a version by Carmen McRae that never appeared in the Billboard Top 100 Sides listing.

Origin[edit]

In his book Eddy Arnold: Pioneer of the Nashville Sound, author Michael Streissguth describes how the song came to be:[2]

Cindy Walker, who had supplied Eddy with "Take Me in Your Arms and Hold Me" (a number one country record in 1949 and Eddy's first Cindy Walker release), recalled discussing the idea for "You Don't Know Me" with Eddy as she was leaving one of Nashville's annual disc-jockey conventions. "I went up to the Victor suite to tell Steve Sholes good-bye," she explained, "and just as I was leaving, Eddy came in the door."

Walker remembered him saying, "I got a song title for you... 'You Don't Know Me.'"

"But I know you," teased Walker.

"This is serious, replied Eddy, who proceeded to outline his idea.

The songwriter promised to let the idea stew in her head for a while. And soon, she remembered, the lyrics tumbled onto the page. "The song just started singing. It sort of wrote itself..."

Notable recorded versions[edit]

The best-selling version of the song is by Ray Charles, who took it to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1962, after releasing the song on his #1 album Modern Sounds In Country And Western Music. This version also topped the "Easy listening" chart for three weeks in 1962, and was used in the 1993 comedy film Groundhog Day. The song also became the twelfth number one country hit for Mickey Gilley in 1981.[3]

The song has been performed or recorded by hundreds of artists, including Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, and Willie Nelson. Charles re-recorded the song with Diana Krall on his #1 album of duets, Genius Loves Company, the only song common to both of Charles' two #1 albums. It was sung by Meryl Streep in the 1990 film Postcards from the Edge, by John Legend in the 2007 Curb Your Enthusiasm episode "The Bat Mitzvah", by Robert Downey Jr in the 1998 film Two Girls and a Guy, and by Lizzy Caplan in the 2013 Masters of Sex episode "Phallic Victories".

Chart performance[edit]

Eddy Arnold[edit]

Chart (1956) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 10

Jerry Vale[edit]

Chart (1956) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 14

Ray Charles[edit]

Chart (1962) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 2
U.S. Billboard R&B Singles 5
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary Singles 1
U.K. Singles 9

Elvis Presley[edit]

Chart (1968) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 44
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary Singles 34

Ray Pennington[edit]

Chart (1970) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 61

Mickey Gilley[edit]

Chart (1981) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 1
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 55
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary 12
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 1
Canadian RPM Adult Contemporary Tracks 6

References[edit]

  1. ^ Second Hand Songs: You Don't Know Me.
  2. ^ "Eddy Arnold: Pioneer of the Nashville Sound". Upress.state.ms.us. Retrieved 2014-05-23. 
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book Of Top 40 Country Hits: 1944-2006, Second edition. Record Research. p. 137. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Roses Are Red (My Love)" by Bobby Vinton
"Billboard" Easy Listening number-one single
by Ray Charles

August 25, 1962
(three weeks)
Succeeded by
"Ramblin' Rose" by Nat "King" Cole
Preceded by
"Older Women"
by Ronnie McDowell
Billboard Hot Country Singles
number-one single by Mickey Gilley

September 19, 1981
Succeeded by
"Tight Fittin' Jeans"
by Conway Twitty
Preceded by
"Some Days Are Diamonds (Some Days Are Stone)"
by John Denver
RPM Country Tracks
number-one single

September 26-October 3, 1981
Succeeded by
"Midnight Hauler"
by Razzy Bailey