Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Reba McEntire

Only You (And You Alone)

First recorded by The Platters (1954).
Hit versions by The Hilltoppers (US#8/UK #3 1955), The Platters (US #5/R&B #1 1955 |UK #18 1957), Frank Pourcel (US #9/R&B #18/CAN #3 1959), Ringo Starr (US #6/MOR #1/UK #28 1975), Reba McEntire (C&W #13 1982).

From the wiki: “‘Only You (And You Alone)’ (often shortened to ‘Only You’) was composed by Buck Ram, originally intended for the vocal group The Ink Spots.

“Instead, The Platters, with whom Ram was then working as manager and vocal coach, would first record ‘Only You’ in 1954 but the results were disappointing and Federal Records decided to shelve the recording. The following year, in 1955, another attempt at the song was made by the vocal quintet – with astounding results. ‘Only You’ became the Platters’ first charting single, peaking at #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topping the R&B chart.

“Platters bass singer Herb Reed later recalled how the group hit upon its successful version: ‘We tried it so many times, and it was terrible. One time we were rehearsing in the car … and the car jerked. Tony went ‘O-oHHHH-nly you.’ We laughed at first, but when he sang that song – that was the sign we had hit on something.’

“‘Only You’ was the only Platter’s recording on which songwriter and Platter’s manager Ram played the piano. The Platters’ re-recording also beat out a rival cover version by The Hilltoppers (‘Marianne‘).

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