The Story Behind The Song: ”Why Not Me”

The Judds Wynonna Judd Naomi Judd
The Judds

A long and winding road finally led Wynonna and Naomi Judd to a signing with the RCA label and a huge success in the summer of 1984 with the Kenny O’Dell song “Mama He’s Crazy,” the duo’s first #1 hit. The song was the centerpiece of their first introductory album release, actually a “mini-LP” containing just six songs. After “Mama He’s Crazy” reached the summit on Billboard’s country singles chart, RCA set them to work on a full album. After assembling material, producer Brent Maher felt they still needed something with a strong, mid-tempo groove, and he turned to legendary songwriter Harlan Howard.


Harlan wanted to go fishing, but instead they decided to set up a Sunday writing session at Howard’s home. They didn’t have any strong ideas, and Harlan suggested they call Sonny Throckmorton, who had recently moved from Texas back to Nashville and lived just a few blocks away. Sonny protested (“Man, this is Sunday!”), but he came over as a favor to Harlan. He brought along the foundations of “Why Not Me.” Throckmorton had developed the melody months earlier, and had attempted to write it as “How ‘Bout Me” but never could get anything. He set it aside and forgot about it, until that day at Harlan Howard’s house.

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