Writer: Rudy Clark
Producers: Jeff Lynne and George Harrison
Recorded: Early spring 1987 at F.P.S.H.O.T. studios in England
Released: Fall 1987
|Players:||George Harrison–vocals, guitar
Jeff Lynne–guitar, bass, keyboards, vocals
|Album:||Cloud Nine (Dark Horse)|
Got My Mind Set On You” was ex-Beatle George Harrison's first hit single in five years, peaking at Number One on the Billboard Hot 100 in January 1988. It reached Number Two on the U.K. chart.
The song was written by a former mailman named Rudy Clark and first recorded in 1962 by American singer James Ray. Harrison bought the album that featured “Got My Mind Set On You” while on a 1963 visit to his sister, who was living in the U.S. The Beatles had previously played James Ray's “If You Gotta Make A Fool of Somebody” in their live shows.
Harrison's version of “Got My Mind Set On You” is different from the original, however. “I've updated it and changed the chords, because I preferred it the way I heard it in my head,” he explained at the time. “Clark and Ray's version of it was coming out of the old jazz/swing era, and it has these horrible screechy women's voices singing those backup parts.”
Harrison lit on the idea to do the song during sessions for his Cloud Nine album. “Jim Keltner got this drum pattern going one day that was a cross between swing and rock. Gary Wright turned around and said, 'Hey! Doesn't that remind you of that song 'Got My Mind Set On You?' I was so surprised that anybody else had ever heard that tune!”
The success of “Got My Mind Set On You” drove Cloud Nine, Harrison's first album release in five years, to Number Eight on the Billboard 200 and to sales of more than a million copies.
Cloud Nine hit Number 10 on the U.K. album chart.