Song Lyric Sunday – You’re No Good

This week our prompts for Song Lyric Sunday, hosted as always by Jim Adams, are Best, Better, Good and Great. For my song I have chosen ‘You’re No Good’ by the fantastic Linda Ronstadt.

One of the most blatant and memorable songs in the “no-good man” milieu, “You’re No Good” was written by a guy: Clint Ballard, Jr., who also wrote songs for Connie Francis and The Hollies. The song is about a woman who comes to the conclusion that the guy she split from was trouble from the start.

This song had been around for a while before Linda Ronstadt took it to the top of the chart. It was originally recorded by Dee Dee Warwick in 1963. Her version was produced by the famous team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, but it stalled at #117. Betty Everett had more success with her version, which went to #51 in 1964. First released on her 1963 album of the same name, Everett recorded the song at Chess Records in Chicago, with Maurice White on drums (White, who later formed Earth, Wind & Fire, was a staff drummer at Chess early in his career). Everett was a former gospel singer who, like Ronstadt, had a very powerful voice. Her next single, “The Shoop Shoop Song (It’s In His Kiss),” became her biggest hit.

The song made one more chart appearance in 1964 when the British male band Swinging Blue Jeans switched the gender and took the song to #97 in the US and #3 in the UK, where it became the best-known rendition of the song.

A decade later, Ronstadt started performing the song and recorded it with her producer Peter Asher. Released as a single from her fifth album, the song was a huge breakthrough for Ronstadt, whose chart success to this point was sporadic (her biggest hit to then: “Long, Long Time” at #25). She became one of the biggest stars of the ’70s, known for her musical versatility and impressive vocal range. Most of her hits were cover songs, including the follow-up, “When Will I Be Loved,” originally recorded by the Everly Brothers.

This song makes it quite clear that the lowdown guy is no good, but in the second verse, Ronstadt turns it around, as she’s done some bad things herself and deserves some comeuppance

Heart Like A Wheel was the first album Peter Asher produced for Ronstadt, and the results were spectacular. With his duo Peter & Gordon, Asher had a #1 hit in 1964 with “A World Without Love,”and later became head of A&R at The Beatles’ Apple Records, where he began a longstanding relationship with James Taylor.

In a Songfacts interview with Asher, he explained that getting the most out of Ronstadt meant listening to her and honoring her ideas. “I may have listened to her with a bit more attentiveness than others had in the past,” he said. “There was, particularly back in that era, an element of, ‘Don’t you worry your pretty little head about that, I know what’s best.’ Linda knew a lot and was not given credit for it.

Courtesy of Songfacts


Lyrics

Feelin’ better now that we’re through
Feelin’ better, ’cause I’m over you
I learned my lesson, it left a scar
Now I see how you really are

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good
I’m gonna say it again
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good

I broke a heart that’s gentle and true
Well, I broke a heart over someone like you
I’ll beg his forgiveness on bended knee
I wouldn’t blame him if he said to me

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good
I’m gonna say it again
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good

I’m tellin’ you now, baby
And I’m going my way
Forget about you, baby
‘Cause I’m leavin’ to stay

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good
I’m gonna say it again
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good

Oh, oh, no
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Baby, you’re no good

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good, oh

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good, oh

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good, whoa

You’re no good
You’re no good
You’re no good
Maybe you’re good

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Ballard Clint You’re No Good lyrics © Memory Lane Music Ltd

  23 comments for “Song Lyric Sunday – You’re No Good

  1. July 4, 2020 at 11:20 pm

    This song brings back a lot of memories! Great choice for the prompt!

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 9:03 am

      Thanks Lisa. It is an old fave for sure! 🙂

  2. July 5, 2020 at 12:00 am

    Perfect! Way to go!! Christine!

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 9:02 am

      Thanks Jen ☺️

      • July 5, 2020 at 1:06 pm

        😊💜

  3. July 5, 2020 at 2:52 am

    I’ve always loved Linda’s voice! The woman can sing anything! 😀 Great choice, Christine! 🙂

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 9:02 am

      Thanks Felicia. It was like a female anthem ☺️ Especially after a break up! 🤣😂

      • July 5, 2020 at 1:29 pm

        I may have been guilty of bellowing it out a few times myself! 🤣🤣

      • Christine Bolton
        July 5, 2020 at 4:14 pm

        Lol 😂🤣👍 I think we all have

  4. July 5, 2020 at 4:30 am

    Great song loved this version but have to say I adored the swinging blue jeans version.. what a stupid name for a group 🤣💜

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 9:01 am

      Thank Willow. I did not know that The Swinging Blue Jeans did that song 🙂

  5. July 5, 2020 at 9:01 am

    I have always loved this song Christine and after learning so much from your post today, I like it even more.

  6. Christine Bolton
    July 5, 2020 at 9:17 am

    Thanks Jim. I particularly enjoyed the part about a Peter Asher. I always knew of his connection with the Beatles because his sister, actress Jane Asher, was engaged to Paul way back when, and he had a little success with Peter and Gordon, but I didn’t know of his involvement with Apple as a producer until The Beatles channel came to Sirius. He hosts it quite a lot. This write up showed his involvement with James Taylor and Linda Ronstadt too. Song Lyric Sunday is proving to be very educational!

  7. July 5, 2020 at 10:19 am

    My mom used to sing this while cleaning the house when I was a kid. Wondering if the conviction in the way she sang it made it about my dad. They divorced when I was 10. Excellent choice! 🙂

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 4:22 pm

      Ha, I think my mom would have done the same! Lol 🥰😂

  8. July 5, 2020 at 2:01 pm

    YOu took me right down Memory Lane. Great choice!

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 4:12 pm

      Oh good. This challenge does that to us every week 🥰

  9. July 5, 2020 at 3:06 pm

    Ahhh it’s been a long time since I heard this one. Love it! She sure can sing it! 🙂

    • Christine Bolton
      July 5, 2020 at 4:12 pm

      Yes she had some pipes! 🙂

  10. July 5, 2020 at 5:11 pm

    What a voice she had. Damn shame MS did what it did…

  11. July 7, 2020 at 6:28 pm

    Great choice. Love the info,

    • Christine Bolton
      July 7, 2020 at 9:57 pm

      Thank DQ. It’s always fun to find the backstory to a song isn’t it? ☺️

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: