Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby

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"Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby"
Single by Louis Jordan
A-side "G.I. Jive"
Released 1944 (1944)
Format 10"
Recorded 1944
Genre Rhythm and blues
Label Decca Records
Writer(s) Billy Austin, Louis Jordan

"Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby" is a 1944 Louis Jordan song, released as the B-side of a single with "G.I. Jive". "Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby" reached #1 on the US folk/country charts.[1] The Louis Jordan recording also peaked at number two for three weeks on the pop chart and peaked at number three on the R&B charts.[2] This was Jordan's second and last country chart No. 1, and the last No. 1 country chart topper for an African American artist until Charley Pride scored his first No.1, All I Have to Offer You (Is Me) on August 9, 1969.

It was co-written by Jordan and Billy Austin. Austin (March 6, 1896 – July 24, 1964) was a songwriter and author, born in Denver, Colorado. The phrase "Is you is or is you ain't" is dialect, apparently first recorded in a 1921 story by Octavus Roy Cohen, a Jewish writer from South Carolina who wrote humorous black dialect fiction. Glenn Miller recorded this song on a radio broadcast from Europe during World War II.

Cover versions[edit]

  • A version by the JB Jazz and Blues Band featured prominently in the closing scenes of the final episode of the first series of Spaced by Simon Pegg and Jessica Hynes in 1999.
  • Joe Jackson covered this song on his Jumpin Jive album.
  • The song was used in an advertisement for credit card Access with the words changed to "does you do or does you don't take Access?"


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book Of Top 40 Country Hits: 1944-2006, Second edition. Record Research. p. 184. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 309. 
Preceded by
"Straighten Up and Fly Right" by King Cole Trio
Most Played Juke Box Folk Records
number one single by Louis Jordan

July 29, 1944 - August 26, 1944
(five weeks)
Succeeded by
"Soldier's Last Letter" by Ernest Tubb