You Better Move On

Album: The Ultimate Arthur Alexander (1961)
Charted: 24


  • Arthur Alexander was born in Florence, Alabama, which had the good fortune of being the original site of FAME Studios, home of the Muscle Shoals sound. In 1961, Alexander recorded this song in an abandoned warehouse on Wilson Dam Highway in Muscle Shoals, which FAME owner Rick Hall had rented. The song was distributed by Dot Records in Los Angeles, and became the first hit for the studio; it sold about 800,000 copies and funded a move to 603 East Avalon Avenue in Muscle Shoals, where the studio still operates. Recording on the track were local musicians who were members of the group Dan Penn and the Pallbearers. Over the next few years, a new group of musicians became the house band at FAME, backing up Tommy Roe, the Tams, Joe Tex and Jimmy Hughes. The changing of the guard came in 1965 when this group left for Nashville and the famous "Swampers" became the Muscle Shoals rhythm section, playing on many Soul classics and starting their own studio in the area in 1969.
  • A menacing song directed at a guy who has his eye on Arthur's lover, Alexander explained that it was based on personal experience, and everyone involved in the recording knew who he was singing about.
  • Arthur Alexander had a big role in bringing American soul music to England. The Rolling Stones and The Hollies recorded this song in 1964, and The Beatles recorded his song "Anna (Go to Him)" in 1963.
  • Alexander was the first black artist at FAME Studios. His backing band on this track was all-white.

Comments: 4

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyThe Rolling Stones covered "You Better Move On" in 1964, their version reached #94 on the Australian Kent Music chart...
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 14th 1962, Arthur Alexander performed "You Better Move On" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    At the time the song was at #49 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; and thirty-two days later on April 15th, 1962 it would peak at #24 for one week {See next post below}...
    He three other Top 100 records; "Where Have You Been (All My Life)" {#58 in 1962}, "Anna* (Go to Him)" {#68 in 1962}, and "Every Day I Have to Cry some" {#45 in 1975}...
    Arthur Alexander passed away on June 9th, 1993 at the young age of 53...
    May he R.I.P.
    * In 1963 "Anna" was covered by the Beatles in their debut album 'Please Please Me'.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 18th 1962, "you Better Move On" by Arthur Alexander entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #87; and on April 15th it peaked at #24 (for 1 week) and spent 12 weeks on the Top 100...
    The Rolling Stones covered it on their debut EP release, "The Rolling Stones", in 1964...
    R.I.P. Mr. Alexander (1940 - 1993).
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScI wrote about this in the comments to Anna (Go to Him), but I'll mention it here also. Alexander recorded another song which the Beatles covered. It's called "Soldier of Love." I'm interested to know if any of you know it.
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