Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Mariah Carey

Endless Love

First recorded (as a demo) by Lionel Richie (1981, released 2003).
First performed by Shea Chambers (1981).
Hit versions by Diana Ross & Lionel Richie (US #1/MOR #1/R&B #1/UK #7 1981), Mariah Carey & Luther Vandross (US #2/R&B #7/CAN #6/UK #3/IRE #4/AUS #2 1994).

From the wiki: “‘Endless Love’ was written by Lionel Richie, and was first recorded by him as a demo in 1981. It would not be released until 2003, as a bonus track on the remastered CD version of his debut solo album, Lionel Richie.

“‘Endless Love’ was performed in the 1981 movie Endless Love by Shea Chambers (an uncredited lip-sync performance) but whose vocal did not appear on the subsequent motion picture soundtrack album release. An arrangement recorded as a duet by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie was instead used, which was subsequently released as the promotional single for the album. (Released while Richie still officially was a member of The Commodores. The success of the duet encouraged Richie to branch out into a full-fledged, and very successful, solo career.)

“The Ross/Richie duet became a #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100, and nearly 30 years after its release it still remains the best-selling single of Ross’ career. The single stayed at #1 for no less than nine weeks from August 9 to October 10, 1981, making it the biggest-selling single of the year in the US. It also topped the Billboard R&B chart and the Adult Contemporary chart as well as becoming a Top ten hit single in the UK, peaking at #7.

Without You

Written and originally recorded by Badfinger (1970).
Hit versions by Nilsson (US#1/UK #1 1971) and Mariah Carey (US #3/UK #1 1994).

From the wiki: “Paul McCartney once described this ballad as ‘…the killer song of all time.’

“At the time of writing the members of Badfinger shared residence in Golders Green, London. One evening, in the midst of the parties, songwriting, touring, in Golders Green, Pete Ham and his girlfriend were about to go out for the evening. But, just as they were leaving, Tom Evans said he had an idea for a song – Ham said, ‘Not tonight, I’ve promised Bev.’ But she thought he would be wondering if he had done the right thing later, if he went out, – she told him – ‘Go into the studio, I’m fine about it..’ He said, ‘Your mouth is smiling, but your eyes are sad.’

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