"Feet don't fail me now" is an expression said to encourage oneself in a crucial moment. It was apt for Little Feat, who were on their last legs with the label, Warner Bros., and needed to sell some albums to stay afloat. It was so bad that after their third album, Dixie Chicken (1973), they split off to do session work to stay afloat. They were outstanding musicians, so this work came easily: group leader Lowell George played guitar on Robert Palmer's Sneakin' Sally Through the Alley album (1974); keyboard player Bill Payne toured with The Doobie Brothers; and Sam Clayton (percussion), Paul Barrère (guitar) and Kenny Gradney (bass) went to work for the reggae star Johnny Nash.
They reconvened after their manager found them a studio at a bargain-basement price: Blue Seas Recording Studio outside of Baltimore. They were pleasantly surprised by the studio quality and got the album done efficiently. "Feats Don't Fail Me Now" was chosen for the title, and it really did get them back on their feet when the album exceeded expectations.
This was written by band members Lowell George and Paul Barrère, along with their songwriting associate, Martin Kibbee. George sang lead.
Like many Little Feat songs, this one is about a traveler; a truck driver rolling on through the night. It's similar lyrically to their most famous song, "Willin'," which is also about a trucker.
In some places, the song title is listed as "Feets Don't Fail Me Now," including on the vinyl album.
Lowell George's daughter, Inara George, was born on July 4, 1974, not long after they recorded the album. Lowell enjoyed his time recording in Maryland so much that he made "Maryland" her middle name. Inara got her dad's musical genes and grew up to be a singer.
John Lennon's lead guitar work on Yoko Ono's "Walking On Thin Ice" proved to be his final creative act. It was upon their return home after completing laying down the track that Lennon was murdered by Mark David Chapman.