Chuck Berry: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — February 19, 2022

361) Chuck Berry — “It’s My Own Business”

Who knew that Chuck Berry still wrote classic songs in 1965? Well, he did, and I think the greatest is “It’s My Own Business,” which Bruce Eder calls “a great teen rebellion number.” (https://www.allmusic.com/album/fresh-berrys-mw0000841212) Forget teen rebellion, it is a great FU number to all those people stickin’ their noses in your business, and a great mid-life crisis number too. Chuck’s lyrics just kill it:

“I am tired of you telling me what I ought to do, stickin’ your nose in my business and it don’t concern you. It’s my own business, it’s my own business. Seems like the ones that want to tell you they don’t ever know as much as you. If I go buy a Cadillac convertible coupe and all I got at home to eat is just onion soup, it’s my own business, it’s my own business if I would rather ride around in my own Cadillac convertible coupe. If I’m a dignitary on Capitol Hill and up and married me a waitress in a hot dog grill, it’s my own business, it’s my own business. Because I am not a juvenile and I can go out at my own free will. After workin’ on my job and then drawin’ my pay, if I want to go out and have a ball and throw it all away, it’s my own business, it’s my own business. ‘Cause I don’t wait until tomorrow to do something I could do today.”

The song is off Berry’s ’65 album (in the UK — ’66 in the U.S.) Fresh Berry’s, which was his final ’60’s album for Chess. As Bruce Eder says, it “was essentially an era-closing album . . . his last attempt at making a contemporary album with his established sound.”

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