Nobody's Child (song)

"Nobody's Child" is a song written by Cy Coben and Mel Foree and first recorded by Hank Snow in 1949. Many other versions of this song exist.

"Nobody's Child"
Single by Hank Snow (The Singing Ranger) and his Rainbow Ranch Boys
B-side"The Only Rose"
Format7" single
LabelRCA Victor
Songwriter(s)Cy Coben, Mel Foree


It was first recorded by Hank Snow in 1949 and it became one of his standards, although it did not chart for him. The song has been covered a number of times in the UK; it was on Lonnie Donegan's first album in 1956 (which went to No. 2 in the UK Albums Chart),[1] and in 1969 Karen Young took the song to No. 6 on the UK Singles Chart[2] and used it as the title track on her album. In 1969, Hank Williams Jr. did a version of it that made it to No. 46 on the US Country chart. The Traveling Wilburys' 1990 version made it to No. 44 on the UK chart.[3]

The song lyrics are about an orphan whom no one wants to adopt because he is blind:

I'm nobody's child, I'm nobody's child
Just like a flower I'm growing wild
No mommy's kisses and no daddy's smile
Nobody wants me, I'm nobody's child

The Beatles with Tony SheridanEdit

"Nobody's Child"
The 1964 American single release of the song, backed with "Ain't She Sweet"
Single by Tony Sheridan and the Beatles
ReleasedJune 4, 1964
Format7" single
RecordedJune 22–23, 1961[4]
LabelAtco Records 6308
Songwriter(s)Cy Coben, Mel Foree
Producer(s)Bert Kaempfert
The Beatles US singles chronology
"Please Please Me" / "From Me to You"
"Sweet Georgia Brown" / "Nobody's Child"
"All My Loving" / "This Boy"

It was also covered by Tony Sheridan and recorded in June 1961 in Hamburg with The Beatles as his backing group.[4] This recording was released by Polydor in 1964 when the British group's popularity was cresting. On this recording, Sheridan sings "Mammy's," not "Mommy's." Sheridan returned in studio during that year to rerecord the lyrics of "Sweet Georgia Brown", another Beatle track from these early sessions, and, at the same session, put to tape a new solo acoustic version of "Nobody's Child"[5] which was only released in Germany.

Release detailsEdit



All these albums have the same tracklist.

CD reissue


Traveling WilburysEdit

"Nobody's Child"
Single by Traveling Wilburys
from the album Nobody's Child: Romanian Angel Appeal
ReleasedJune 18, 1990
Format7" single, 12" single, cassette single, CD single
GenreCountry rock
LabelWilbury Records
Songwriter(s)Cy Coben, Mel Foree
Producer(s)Traveling Wilburys
Traveling Wilburys singles chronology
"End of the Line"
"Nobody's Child"
"She's My Baby"

The Traveling Wilburys version of "Nobody's Child" was the first track on the benefit album Nobody's Child: Romanian Angel Appeal, released on July 24, 1990. Wilbury member George Harrison had also appeared on the 1961 Beatles/Tony Sheridan version. Other members of the Traveling Wilburys on this track were Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne, and Tom Petty.

Year-end charts

Chart (1990) Position
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[7] 43

Other cover versionsEdit


  1. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 164/5. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  2. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 615. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  3. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 564. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  4. ^ a b Russell, Jeff (1989) [1982]. The Beatles Album File and Complete Discography (Revised/second ed.). Blandford Press. pp. 4–10. ISBN 0-7137-2065-4.
  5. ^ John C. Winn, Way Beyond Compare: The Beatles' Recorded Legacy, Volume One, 1957-1965, 2017, Three Rivers Press. Page 110 ISBN 978-0307452382
  6. ^ "Sweet Georgia Brown / Nobody's Child, Polydor NH 52906". The Beatles Collection. February 4, 2012.
  7. ^ "End of Year Charts 1990". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved December 3, 2017.
  8. ^ "Scots entertainers awarded MBEs". BBC News. December 31, 2004.
  9. ^ "Search for "Nobody's Child"". AllMusic. January 10, 2020.

External linksEdit