Betty Wright’s Clean Up Woman

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Betty Wright’s Clean Up Woman

Betty Wright's Clean Up Woman

Sounds of Soul

This song about a woman who loses her man because she cheats on him was written and produced by Clarence Reed and Willie Clarke. It was first released as a single in 1971 backed with “I’ll Love You Forever.” It went to #6 on the U.S. Pop Singles chart and #3 on the U.S. Black Singles chart. It sold more than one million copies and earned an RIAA gold record. Willie “Little Beaver” Hale played the hot guitar lick. “Clean Up Woman” was also released on Betty Wright’s 1972 album I Love the Way You Love.

The song has been covered by Blowfly (Clarence Reed), Al Kooper, Maria Muldaur, and Leela James. It has also been sampled by 30+ other songs, including Afrika Bambaattaa, Mary J. Bilige, Sublime, and Chance the Rapper.

Betty Wright was born Bessie Regina Norris in Miami Florida. She recorded her signature song “Clean Up Woman” when she was only 17. She went on to have success in a number of genres, including R&B, soul, gospel, and disco.

Here are the lyrics to “Clean Up Woman” by Betty Wright:

A clean up woman
Is a woman who
Gets all the love we girls leave behind
The reason I know
So much about her
Is because she picked up a man of mine

Chumpin’ slick
Was my ruin
‘Cause I found out all I was doin’
Was makin’ it easy
For the clean up woman
To get my man’s love, oh, yeah

Just makin’ it easy
For the clean up woman
To get my baby’s love, huh-huh


I took this man’s love and put it on a shelf
And like a fool, I thought I had him all to myself
When he needed love, I was out havin’ fun
But I found out that all I had done
Was made it easy
For the clean up woman
To get my man’s love, uh-huh
Yeah, that’s what I did
I made it easy
For the clean up woman
To steal my baby’s love, oh, yeah

The clean up woman
Will wipe his blues away
She’ll give him plenyy lovin’
24 hours a day
The clean up woman
She’ll sweep him off his feet
She’s the one who take him in
When you dump him in the street
So take a tip
You better get hip
To the clean up woman
‘Cause she’s tough
I mean she really cleans up

For More 70s Tunes

The System has daily featured music from all sorts of genres of 1970s music. You’re welcome to listen to any of the 40+ selections in The System. Thank you for stopping by. Hope you enjoyed “Clean Up Woman” by Betty Wright.

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