Suggest a Songfact / Artistfact
Album: Blue JeanReleased: 1964Charted:
This song about a man who gives in to temptation was one of Pitney's biggest hits; it was written by the team of composer Burt Bacharach and lyricist Hal David. In his biography of Bacharach, Maestro!
, Michael Brocken says it was "originally intended as a hit in the 'cowboy' vein as per 'Liberty Valance
,' but without a movie plot Hal David was required to come up with his own 'film noir.'" It is, he says, "a piece of American Gothic par excellence."
Released on United Artists, this song entered the Billboard Top 100 at #99 week ending October 19, 1963 and peaked at #17 on December 7.
This song has been included on at least 80 albums as of 2011, over 48 of which are Gene Pitney's version. It has also been covered by Dusty Springfield, Ian and Sylvia, and Chet Baker, among others.
Singer Gene Pitney was known for his songwriting talents as well as his singing, having penned the hit songs "He's a Rebel" for the Crystals and "Hello Mary Lou" for Ricky Nelson. In fact, his first hit as a singer was a self-penned tune called "(I Wanna) Love My Life Away." He not only wrote the song, but he produced it and played all the instruments on it, as well. It reached 39 on the U.S. Hot 100 in 1961.
Pitney's collaboration with songwriters Burt Bacharach and Hal David began in 1962 with "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance," which was a song written for the John Wayne vehicle of the same name, but was inexplicably never used in the movie. Their collaboration continued on through two more songs: "The Fool Killer" and "If I Never Get To Love You."