Carl Perkins

Honey Don't

Composed by Carl Perkins

Song Review by

It was almost criminal of Sun Records boss Sam Phillips to tuck as savage a slab of prototypical rockabilly as Carl Perkins' seminal "Honey Don't" on the flip side of the guitarist's immortal "Blue Suede Shoes." Cut December 18, 1955, at Sun's famous studios at 706 Union in Memphis, the inordinately exciting "Honey Don't" actually outclasses its more celebrated platter-mate in some ways. The structure of the song's breaks was unorthodox in the extreme; instead of progressing from the I chord that the Tiptonville, TN, native hit underneath the first line of his breaks to the IV or V (standard procedure back then for country and blues fare), Perkins ventured up to a C chord -- thus breaking fresh rockabilly ground. The Rockin' Guitar Man, as Sun then billed him, blasts out some of his toughest boogie-imbued fretwork between knife-edged vocal stanzas, once again utilizing that newfangled E-to-C chord change over supple juke joint backing from his brothers, Jay Perkins on rhythm guitar and Clayton Perkins on upright bass, and drummer W.S. "Fluke" Holland. Perkins should have enjoyed two smashes instead of one from that classic single, but some hip folks picked up on "Honey Don't" anyway: Ronnie Hawkins waxed a vicious version for Roulette in 1960, and the Beatles paid loving tribute with a faithful 1964 cover that featured Ringo Starr's enthusiastic vocal (Perkins, in the midst of a British tour, attended the session).

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Dance Album 1957
The  Dance Album of Carl Perkins 1959 Hallmark / Hallmark Music & Entertainment / Hallmark Recordings / Pickwick 3:05
No Image 1969 2:51
No Image 1970 2:45
Rockin' Guitar Man 1975 Charly Records
No Image 1977 2:46
No Image 1981 Harmony
Diner 1982
Original Soundtrack
Elektra 2:47
No Image 1984
Various Artists
Pickwick
Porky's Revenge! 1985
Original Soundtrack
Varèse Sarabande 2:50
No Image 1986 Charly Records
Up Through the Years, 1954-1957 1986 Bear Family Records 2:52
The Sun Story [Rhino] 1987
Various Artists
Rhino / Rhino/Warner Bros. 2:49
Great Tomato Blues Package 1989
Various Artists
Rhino 2:50
The Classic 1990 Bear Family Records 2:26
No Image 1993 Charly Records
Hits of the 50's: 68 Hot Hits from the Fabulous Fifties, Vols. 1-4 1993
Various Artists
Fat Boy
The Sun Records Collection [Rhino] 1994
Various Artists
Rhino 2:49
Matchbox 1995 Pazzazz 2:48
Greatest Hits: Finest Performances 1995 Sun Record Company 2:51
Sun Rockabillies, Vol. 1 1995
Various Artists
Sun Record Company 2:52
The Man & The Legend 1996 Magnum America 2:43
Silver Eagle Cross Country Presents Live: Carl Perkins 1997 Silver Eagle Records 3:54
Legends of the Silver Eagle 1997
Various Artists
Silver Eagle Classics / Silver Eagle Records 3:52
Very Best of Sun Rockabilly 1997
Various Artists
Charly Records 2:51
Legends of Country Music: The Best of Austin City 1997
Various Artists
Legacy / Sony Music Distribution 2:54
The Greatest Rock & Roll Party Ever 1997
Various Artists
Disky 2:49
The King of Rockabilly: Greatest Hits 1998 Beacon Records 2:39
Great 1998 Goldies
Definitive Collection 1998 Charly Records 2:49
Ultimate Legends of Rock 'N' Roll 1998
Various Artists
The Ultimate Music Collection 2:41
Blue Suede Shoes: The Very Best of Carl Perkins 1999 Collectables 2:46
Live at Gilley's, Vol. 1-4 1999
Various Artists
Q Records 3:21
Loud, Fast & Out of Control: The Wild Sounds of the '50s [Box] 1999
Various Artists
Rhino 2:50
The Essential Sun Collection 1999 Recall (UK)
Sun Records: 25 All-Time Greatest Hits 1999
Various Artists
Varese 2:50
Blue Suede Shoes/Original Golden Hits 1999 Collectables 2:51
The Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Album of All Time 1999
Various Artists
Dressed To Kill 3:46
Rock 'N' Roll Hits 1999 Dressed To Kill 3:46
Liberty Heights [Original Soundtrack] 2000
Original Soundtrack
Rhino 2:51
Blue Suede Shoes [Delta] 2000 Delta Distribution 2:48
Jailhouse Rock 2000 Columbia River Entertainment Group 2:43
Sun Records: The Definitive Hits 2000
Various Artists
Collectables 2:49
Live 2000 EMI-Capitol Special Markets 3:54
The Complete Sun Singles 2000 Varèse Vintage / Varese 2:53
Back on Top 2000 Bear Family Records 2:51
The Sun Years, Vol. 1 [Original Sun Recordings] 2000 Original Sun Recordings (Italy) 2:49
Best of the Sun Sessions [Music Club International] 2000 Music Club International Records 2:35
Sun Records Rockabilly Legends 2000
Various Artists
Edeltone 2:52
Be-Bop-A-Lula 2000 Brentwood Records 2:42
The Story 2000 EMI / EMI Music Distribution 2:50
The Sun Records Story 2001
Various Artists
Sun Record Company 2:48
Sun Records: The Definitive Hits, Vol. 1 2001
Various Artists
Collectables 2:49
Hits You Remember: Live 2001 Madacy 3:54
The Legendary Sun Records Story, Vol. 2 2001
Various Artists
Castle Pulse 2:53
The  Memphis Box 2001
Various Artists
Icehouse Records
Sun Records 50th Anniversary Edition 2001 Direct Source 2:49
The Rock N' Roll Years 2001
Various Artists
Legacy 2:39
Rock 'N' Roll Teenagers Collection, Vol. 1 2001
Various Artists
Dressed To Kill 3:44
Memphis 2002 Park South Records / Town Sound 2:41
No Image 2002
Various Artists
Charly Records
The Legends Collection: Rock 'n' Roll Teenagers 2002
Various Artists
Dressed To Kill / Legends Collection 3:44
Blue Suede Shoes: Best of Carl Perkins [Prestige] 2002 Sony Music Distribution
American Roots of the British Invasion 2002
Various Artists
Varèse Vintage / Varese 2:51
Sun Records 50th Anniversary Box 2002
Various Artists
Varèse Sarabande 2:50
Blue Suede Shoes [Planet Media] 2003 Planet 2:46
Best of the 50's and 60's, Vol. 2 [United Audio] 2003
Various Artists
United Audio Entertainment 2:42
Rockabilly Riot [Sanctuary] 2003
Various Artists
Sanctuary 2:50
Best of the Sun Years 2003 Repertoire 2:50
Blue Suede Shoes: 50th Anniversary 2003 Magic
The Rock & Roll Years [Disc 3] 2003
Various Artists
Disky 2:29
The British Invasion Box 2004
Various Artists
Varèse Sarabande 2:51
The Core of Rockabilly 2004
Various Artists
Red X 2:52
Porky's Revenge! [Expanded] 2004
Original Soundtrack
Legacy / Columbia/Legacy/Sony 2:48
Orby Records Spotlights Carl Perkins 2004 Orbison Records 2:49
The Rock 'n' Roll Collection [Cadiz] 2004
Various Artists
Pazzazz / Cadiz 2:48
Early Hits of Rock and Roll 2004
Various Artists
Blue Moon
Ultimate Collection 2004 Prism Leisure 2:49
Bird Dog 2004 Mojo Music (Independent) 2:43
Sun Records Collection [Pazzazz] 2005
Various Artists
Pazzazz 2:48
Tennessee [Dynamic] 2005 Dynamic 2:48
Carl Rocks 2005 Bear Family Records 2:50
Honky Tonk Babe 2005 Rajon Entertainment Pty Ltd.
Blue Suede Shoes [Pazzazz] 2005 Pazzazz 2:48
Very Best of Rock N Roll 2005
Various Artists
Disky
Best of Sun Records, Vol. 1 2005
Various Artists
Pazzazz 2:48
The Essential Sun Records Collection 2006
Various Artists
Pazzazz 2:48
Instant Sun Rock N Roll 2006
Various Artists
Snapper
Blue Suede Shoes [Intenfrank] 2007 Intenfrank / The Intense Music 2:54
The Rock 'N' Roll Explosion: 120 Hits That Rocked the World 2007
Various Artists
Acrobat 2:49
The Rockabilly Legends: They Called it Rockabilly Long Before They Called it Rock and Roll 2007
Various Artists
Jerry Naylor
No Image 2008
Various Artists
World Picture Records / ZYX / ZYX Music 2:49
Yesterday's Gold: 60 Golden Oldies of the 50's 2008
Various Artists
Remember Records
Rockin' Memphis 2008
Various Artists
Proper Box 2:25
Drug Stores and Soda Pops: 75 Slabs of Teen 2008
Various Artists
Acrobat 2:50
No Image 2008
Various Artists
Uncut Music 2:51
The Fabulous Carl Perkins 2009 Primo Records
Rock 'N' Roll Juke Box, Vol. 2 2009
Various Artists
Intense / Membran 2:50
Greatest Ever! Rock 'N' Roll Legends: The Definitive Collection 2010
Various Artists
Greatest Ever 2:49
Rock & Roll Beginnings 2012
Various Artists
AAO Music / United Audio Entertainment 2:53
The Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame - Carl Perkins 2012 DLG Digital 2:48
Playlist: The Very Best of Carl Perkins Sun Sessions 2013 Legacy 2:51
Ultimate Legends of Rock 'N' Roll 2013
Various Artists
AAO Music / United Audio Entertainment 2:41
Sweeter Than Candy: The Rarities Collection 2013 Fuel 3:25
Without the Beatles: 50 Original Rock & Soul Classics 2014
Various Artists
Jasmine Records
No Image 2016 Jasmine Records
The Absolutely Essential Collection 2016 Big 3
No Image 2016 Charly / Snapper 2:45
101 Hits from the Rock 'N' Roll Hall of Fame
Various Artists
DLG Digital 2:48
A Tribute To the Million Dollar Quartet
Various Artists
Delta Leisure Group / Performance 2:51
American Heartbeat: The 50s
Various Artists
One Day Music 2:49
Blue Suede Shoes [K-Tel] K-Tel 3:46
No Image Prestige Elite 2:51
No Image Charly Records
No Image
Ding Dong Presents, Vol. 1: Rabbit Action & Rock-a-Billy Blues
Various Artists
Charly UK / Snapper / Snapper UK 2:48
Essential Rockabilly: The Sun Story
Various Artists
One Day Music / Traditions Alive
No Image
Various Artists
Time/Life Music
No Image Phantom
No Image Onyx Classics
No Image
Various Artists
K-Tel 3:46
Rock n Roll Hits of the 50's, Vol. 1 [Excalibur]
Various Artists
Excalibur 2:54
Rock-a-Billy Dynamite
Various Artists
Documents 2:51
No Image
Various Artists
Play 24-7 2:51
No Image
Various Artists
K-Tel 3:46
Rockabilly's Gravest Hits: 75 Hard Hitting Classics
Various Artists
Not Now Music 2:51
Rockin' & Rollin' 50's
Various Artists
Prestige 2:50
The  Beatles Beginnings, Vol. 2: Quarrymen - Rock 'N' Roll
Various Artists
Rhythm & Blues
The History Of Rhythm And Blues 1952-1957
Various Artists
Rhythm & Blues 2:52
The London American Label Year By Year: 1956
Various Artists
Ace 2:49
Twogether Rock N Roll
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
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