If I Can’t Be First was the first Ike & Tina release, after Ike Turner formed his own record label „Sonja“ in 1963. Both songs are non album tracks, but the title track was included on the sampler The Soul of Ike & Tina Turner from 1966. A live version is available on the album Festival of Live Performances. The b-side track „I’m Going Back Home“ is only available on this single.

Released September 1963 from Sonja Records in America on 7“ vinyl, If I Can’t Be First didn’t charted.

Ike & Tina Turner - If I Can’t Be First - Single
Ike & Tina Turner - If I Can’t Be First - Single

A. If I Can’t Be First 2:14

Written by Ike Turner / Produced by Ike Turner

B. I’m going Back Home 1:43

Written by Ike Turner / Produced by Ike Turner

Billboard Magazine
November 09, 1963

R&B vocalist lke Turner has formed his own label, Sonja Records, and has already cut singles with his wife Tina, and the lkettes. The husband-wife team had been with Sue Records since 1959.

Already set as distributors are Superior, New York; Schwartz Brothers, Washington; California Records, Los Angeles; Concord, Cleveland, and All State in Chicago.

Turner said that in addition to the hard rock and roll tunes he has been associated with, he plans working with other artists and tunes in a more pop vein.

1963

Ike & Tina Turner - Don’t Play Me Cheap - Single

Don’t Play Me Cheap

1963

Ike & Tina Turner - If I Can’t Be First - Single

If I Can’t Be First

1963

Ike & Tina Turner - You Can’t Miss Nothing - Single

You Can’t Miss Nothing