Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Sweet Inspirations

Time Is On My Side

First recorded by Kai Winding (1963).
Hit versions by Irma Thomas (US #52 1964), The Rolling Stones (US #6/AUS #4 1964).

From the wiki: “Kai Winding session arranger Garry Sherman contacted songwriter friend and colleague Jerry Ragovoy (‘Piece of My Heart‘) after Kai had expressed an interest in going in a more commercial and rhythmic direction. But Ragovoy had thought of no lyrics for the song other than ‘Time is on my side’. Produced by Creed Taylor and engineered by Phil Ramone, and including background vocals by Cissy Houston, Dionne Warwick and Dee Dee Warwick, ‘Time Is On My Side’ was released on the Verve Records label in October 1963.

Crying in the Rain

First recorded (as a demo) by Carole King (1962).
Hit versions by The Everly Brothers (US #6/UK #6 1962), The Sweet Inspirations (US #112/R&B #42 1969), Tammy Wynette (C&W #18 1981), a-ha (US #26/UK #13 1990).

From the wiki: “‘Crying in the Rain’ was written by Howard Greenfield and Carole King, the only collaboration between the successful songwriters. Both worked for Aldon Music at the time of the song’s composition. On a whim, two Aldon songwriting partnerships decided to switch partners for a day – Gerry Goffin (who normally worked with King) partnered with Greenfield’s frequent writing partner Jack Keller, leaving King and Greenfield to pair up for the day. Despite the commercial success of this collaboration, King and Greenfield never wrote another song together.

Let It Be Me

First recorded (in English) by Jill Corey (1957).
Hit versions by The Everly Brothers (US #7 1960), Betty Everett & Jerry Butler (US #5/R&B #1 1964), The Sweet Inspirations (R&B #13 1967), Glen Campbell & Bobbie Gentry (US #36/C&W #14/MOR #7 1969) and Willie Nelson (US #40/C&W #2/MOR #11 1982).

From the wiki: “[O]riginally published in 1955 as ‘Je t’appartiens,’ the score was written and first recorded in French by Gilbert B├ęcaud (‘September Morn’). The English-language version used lyrics by Mann Curtis and was first performed in 1957 by Jill Corey in the television series Climax!. Corey’s version, with orchestration by Jimmy Carroll, was released as a single and was moderately successful.

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