Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

Help support this site! Consider clicking an ad from time to time. Thanks!

 
« Go Back to Previous Page «  

Tagged: Paul Williams

You and Me Against the World

Co-written and first recorded by Paul Williams (1974).
Hit version by Helen Reddy (US #9 1974).

From the wiki: “;You and Me Against the World’ was the first song written together by Kenny Ascher and Paul Williams and began as a gag song: Williams and Ascher, a member of Williams’s band, had a discussion about their favorite songwriters which led to the spontaneous composition of a song on the subject whose tune, Ascher then realized, had real hit potential. Williams himself debuted ‘You and Me Against the World’ on his 1974 album Here Comes Inspiration, singing it as a traditional love ballad.

We’ve Only Just Begun

First debuted by Paul Williams (TV commercial 1969).
Hit version by The Carpenters (US #2/UK #28/CAN #1 1970).
Also recorded by Smokey Roberds (1970), Curtis Mayfield (1971).

From the wiki: “‘We’ve Only Just Begun’ was written by Roger Nichols (music) and Paul Williams (lyrics). The song debuted in a wedding-themed TV commercial for Crocker National Bank in California with Williams on vocals. The first commercial single release was originally recorded by Smokey Roberds under the name ‘Freddie Allen’. Roberds had heard the commercial so phoned his friend Nichols, ascertained that he had indeed co-written it, and asked Nichols to create a full-length version. Nichols and Williams did so, with Roberds intending to produce it for a band he had just signed to White Whale Records. The band deal fell through; Roberds decided to record the song himself, but couldn’t do so under his stage name for contractual reasons. According to Roberds, his Country-Pop recording of ‘We’ve Only Just Begun’ did well in California but not nationally – which he attributed to promotion and distribution problems.

I Won’t Last a Day Without You

Written and first single release by Paul Williams (1973).
Hit versions by Maureen McGovern (US #84/MOR #19 1973), Diana Ross (B-side US #1 1973), The Carpenters (1972 |US #11/MOR #1/UK #9/CAN #7/JPN #40 1974).

From the wiki: “‘I Won’t Last a Day Without You’ was co-written by Paul Williams (‘We’ve Only Just Begun’) and Roger Nichols. He released his version as a single in 1973, but garnered only minor success. Maureen McGovern recorded the song and also released it as a single in 1973 (and included on her album The Morning After), with results similar to those of Williams. Diana Ross covered the song for her 1973 album Touch Me in the Morning, and it was released as the B-side of the title track single release, ‘Touch Me in the Morning’, which became a #1 hit.

“It was in 1972 when Richard Carpenter first learned of the new song from Williams and Nichols, who had already contributed ‘We’ve Only Just Begun’ and ‘Rainy Days and Mondays’ to the Carpenters. Carpenter produced the recording that was included it on the Carpenters’ 1972 album A Song for You, but it would not be released as a single until 1974 when it would go US Top-20 and Top-10 in the UK and Canada.

An Old Fashioned Love Song

Written and first recorded by Paul Williams (1971).
Hit version by Three Dog Night (US #4/MOR #1/CAN #2 1971).

From the wiki: “‘An Old Fashioned Love Song’ was written by the noted songwriter Paul Williams, who originally intended the song for The Carpenters, and it was first recorded by Williams for his album Just an Old Fashioned Love Song. Although this was the first song Williams had written specifically for the Carpenters, Richard Carpenter rejected it, and so Williams offered the song to Three Dog Night. The Carpenters never recorded the song, but did perform it live on television with Carol Burnett a few months later.”

Let Me Be the One

Originally recorded by Cathy Carlson (1970).
Also recorded by Petula Clark (1971).
Hit album version by The Carpenters (1971).

From the wiki: “A native of Ontario, Oregon, Cathy Carlson appeared on ‘The Tonight Show’ in the late 1960s and early ‘70s, and on the annual Jerry Lewis Telethon for Muscular Dystrophy as a regular performer for several years. Carlson and Lewis were good friends and he was her daughter’s godfather. ‘Let Me Be the One’ (co-written by Paul Williams) was recorded in December 1970 and released in 1971 as the B-side to ‘God Bless the Child’.”

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close