Keep Your Hands to Yourself

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"Keep Your Hands to Yourself"
Kepp Your Hands to Yourself Georgia Satellites.jpg
Single by The Georgia Satellites
from the album Georgia Satellites
GenreSouthern rock, hard rock, rock and roll
Songwriter(s)Dan Baird
Producer(s)Jeff Glixman
The Georgia Satellites singles chronology
"Keep Your Hands to Yourself"
"Battleship Chains"
"Keep Your Hands to Yourself" on YouTube

"Keep Your Hands to Yourself" is a song by the American southern rock group The Georgia Satellites. The song was written by the group's lead singer, Dan Baird, and was released in 1986 as their debut single. The single reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 during the week of February 21, 1987, kept off the top spot by "Livin' on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi.

Edit from the 1985 Demo Tape[edit]

The original 1985 recording featured an additional repeat of the chorus along with a longer version of the instrumental part. But due to the budget for the album, the song was edited to the more notable version.[citation needed]


The song is a twelve-bar blues in the key of A major with a moderate tempo of about 112 beats per minute. It follows the chord pattern A-D-A-E-A, with vocals ranging from D4 to A5.[1]

The lyrics tell the story of a woman who refuses to become more intimate with her boyfriend until he marries her. Baird said the song "basically wrote itself" on a bus ride home from his construction job.[2]

Critical reception[edit]

Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic wrote that the song "rocked as hard as an old Chuck Berry song, as well as being almost as clever."[3] In the book 99 Red Balloons: And 100 All-Time One-Hit Wonders, Brent Mann wrote that "it's just a timeless, kick-out-the-jams rock 'n' roll number. Dan Baird digs into the song's vocals with a no-holds-barred zest straight out of a Texas honky-tonk."[4]

Music video[edit]

The video for the single begins with the band riding on a flatbed cruising down a highway, along with flashbacks of Dan Baird and his fiance preparing for their wedding. These scenes continue until just before the last verse, where they arrive at the wedding and are greeted by the guests. The band continue to play on the now parked flatbed. During the instrumental outro, Baird is stripped of his guitar and carried by two men over to the bride as the wedding cake comes out. As Baird (now in a tuxedo) kisses his new bride (after being forced by a shotgun) it is finally shown that the bride is quite pregnant. The same flatbed, now with tin cans tied to it and "just married" painted on the flat part, is seen cruising down the highway.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1986–87) Position
Australian (Kent Music Report)[5] 20
US Billboard Hot 100[6] 2
US Billboard Album Rock Tracks[7] 2
Year-end chart (1987) Position
US Top Pop Singles (Billboard)[8] 35

Cover versions[edit]

Several cover versions of the song, notably by many country artists, exist. A year after its release, Hank Williams, Jr. covered it on his album Born to Boogie.[9] John Anderson covered the song in 1994 for his album Country 'til I Die,[10] and released it as the B-side to that album's single "Bend It Until It Breaks". Sawyer Brown released a version from their 2005 album Mission Temple Fireworks Stand. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers performed a version of the song during their 1989 tour. Garth Brooks performed a version of it for the This is Garth Brooks television special. The Charlie Daniels Band covered the song on their Tailgate Party album. Billy Currington covered the song on the 2004 compilation Southern Rock Country Style. The Calling covered it on the soundtrack to the 2002 Reese Witherspoon film Sweet Home Alabama. The song has been a favorite of bar-bands for many years because of its simplicity and popularity.


  1. ^ "'Keep Your Hands to Yourself' sheet music". Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  2. ^ Hudak, Joseph (March 7, 2016). "How Georgia Satellites' 'Keep Your Hands to Yourself' Changed Country Music". RollingStone. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  3. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "The Georgia Satellites biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  4. ^ Mann, Brent (2003). 99 Red Balloons: And 100 All-Time One-Hit Wonders. Citadel Press. pp. 164–166.
  5. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 123. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  6. ^ "The Georgia Satellites Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  7. ^ "Georgia Satellites chart history". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  8. ^ "1987 The Year in Music & Video: Top Pop Singles". Billboard. 99 (52). December 26, 1987.
  9. ^ "Born to Boogie". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  10. ^ "Country 'Til I Die review". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 October 2013.