Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love

Recorded as (“Plaisir d’Amour”) by Emilio De Gogorza (1902).
Also recorded (as “Plaisir d’Amour”) by Joan Baez (1961).
Hit versions (in English) by Elvis Presley (US #2/UK #1 1961), Andy Williams (UK #3 1970), The Softones (R&B #53 1973), The Stylistics (R&B #52/UK #4 1976), UB40 (US #1/UK #1/IRE #1/AUS #1 1993).
Also recorded (as “I Want to Live”) by Aphrodite’s Child (NETH #1 1969).

Note: Not Emilio De Gogorza. This recording is by French cabaret tenor Tino Rossi, recorded in 1955:

From the wiki: “‘(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love’ was written by Hugo Peretti, Luigi Creatore and George Weiss (‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight‘, ‘What a Wonderful World’) based on a popular romance melody by Jean Pierre Claris de Florian, ‘Plaisir d’Amour’, first performed in 1784 and first recorded in 1902 by Emilio De Gogorza. English-language lyrics were written by Weiss, who claimed that neither the movie producers nor Elvis’ associates liked the song demo. But, nonetheless, Elvis insisted on recording the song for the movie Blue Hawaii.

“‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’ would go on to become Elvis Presley’s most popular and most famous ‘love song’, although it failed to reach #1. The Blue Hawaii soundtrack album, however, hit #1 on the Billboard Album chart in the fall of 1961 and remained there for 20 consecutive weeks – a chart record that wasn’t broken until Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 landmark album, Rumours, topped the US album chart for 31 consecutive weeks.

“In 1961, almost as a counterpoint to the Elvis recording, Folk singer Joan Baez also recorded a version of the song – in the original French. A song based on the melody but lyrically different, titled ‘I Want to Live’, was a 1969 chart-topper in the Netherlands by the Greek rock band Aphrodite’s Child (Demis Roussos, and pre-‘Chariots of Fire’ Vangelis). In 1970, Andy Williams’ version of ‘(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love’ went to #3 in the UK. In 1976, the song again became a UK hit when The Stylistics version hit #4. UB40 topped both the US and UK charts in 1993 when their recording of ‘(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love’.”

Joan Baez, “Plaisir d’Amour” a 1965 BBC-TV live performance (1961):

http://youtu.be/3k3GdyISJKM?t=22s

Elvis Presley, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” (1961):

Aphrodite’s Child, “I Want to Live” (1969):

Andy Williams, “(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love” (1970):

The Softones, “(I Can’t Help) Falling in Love” (1973):

The Stylistics, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” (1976):

UB40, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” (1993):

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