Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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I Will Follow Him

First recorded (as “Chariot”) by Franck Pourcel (1961).
First recorded (in French) as “Chariot” by Petula Clark (UK #39/FRA #1/BEL #8 1962).
Also recorded (in English) as “I Will Follow Him” by Petula Clark (DEN #4 1963).
Other hit version by Little Peggy March (US #1/R&B #1/AUS #1/NZ #1/JPN #1 1963).

From the wiki: “‘I Will Follow Him’ was first recorded as an instrumental titled ‘Chariot’ in 1961 by Franck Pourcel, who co-wrote the song with Paul Mauriat (‘Love is Blue‘). It was released on Pourcel’s European LP Amour, Danse, Et Violons. No.17.

“In 1962, Petula Clark recorded a French-language version (with lyrics by Jacques Plante), an arrangement that hit #1 in France and #8 in Belgium and earned Clark a gold record. Her English-language version, with lyrics by Norman Gimbel and Franck Pourcel, was released in early 1963 by Pye in the UK and by Laurie in the USA with no chart impact – but Clark’s English-language version did peak at #4 on the Danish music chart. Clark also recorded Italian and German versions of the song, with her Italian version, ‘Sul mio carro’, reaching #4 in Italy, and her German version, ‘Cheerio’, reaching #6 in Germany.

“Little Peggy March (born Margaret Annemarie Battavio) was discovered in 1961 singing at her cousin’s wedding where she was introduced to the record producers Hugo & Luigi. They gave her the nickname ‘Little Peggy March’ because she was only 4 ft 9 in tall and only 13 years old, and because her birthday was in March.

“On April 24, 1963, her single ‘I Will Follow Him’ soared to #1 on the U.S. charts. March became the youngest female artist with a #1 hit, at 15, in late April 1963, a record that still stands for the Billboard Hot 100. The recording also took the #1 spot in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Japan, and Scandinavia.”

Petula Clark, “Chariot” (1962):

Petula Clark, “I Will Follow Him” (1963):

Little Peggy March, “I Will Follow Him” (1963):

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