Browse by Title
A B C D E F G
H I J K L M N
O P Q R S T U
V W X Y Z #  




To Sir With Love

by

Lulu



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

This is the title song to the 1967 movie of the same name. Lulu was in the film with Sidney Poitier - she got the gig after director James Clavell saw her open a show for The Beach Boys. At first she had just a small role in the movie, but Clavell was so impressed with her that he expanded her role and had her sing the theme. The film stars Poitier as a high school teacher who has a big impact on his unruly students. Lulu plays one of his students, and sings this song to him at the end of the film as the students show their appreciation for the teacher.
Lulu is a charismatic Scottish singer known for her moving rendition of this song. She was born Marie McDonald McLaughlin Laurie (one source cites "Lawrie" as the spelling). She also sang the title song for the 1974 James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun. From 1969 to 1973, Lulu was married to pop star Maurice Gibb. (thanks, Mike - Mountlake Terrace, WA, for above 2)
This was Billboard's single of the year for 1967, having been #1 for five weeks in the USA. However in Lulu's native UK it was only ever a B-side to her #11 hit "Let's Pretend."
Don Black wrote the lyrics to this and Mark London the music. Black revealed to the Sunday Times August 10, 2008: "It's one of the very, very few songs that I've worked on where I've written the words first. Normally, I may give the composer a title or suggest a couple of lines, but I don't like to write the whole lyric first. If you write the lyric first, you tend to ramble. You want the structure there to work against it."
Lulu performed this song on The Ed Sullivan Show on October 22, 1967, which was the day after hit #1 in America.
The version used in the movie has three verses. For the single release, the third verse ("Those awkward years, have hurried by...") was edited out.
Lulu
More Lulu songs
More songs that are also the names of movies
More songs used in movies
More songs covered by the Glee cast
More songs performed on The Ed Sullivan Show
More songs about high school experiences
More songs with extra verses edited out

Comments (21):

This (and Barbra Streisand's "People") was my first favorite song, and I still love it. I actually won a contest by singing it on the radio. I love the movie as well; my daughter, who wants to be a teacher, watched it with me recently and loved it as well (although I had to translate a few things for her; she's only 9).
- Karen, Manchester, NH
I remember when the movie came out; it was about May '67 or so. I was in 4th grade, I believe. Loved the movie, bought the 45-rpm single. Had a General Electric stereo, I played the record til it wore-out. It was on Epic Records; had that yellow label with black lettering, and the Epic logo in an oval motif at the top
- Harry III, Honolulu, HI
Terrific song. I remember I borrowed the 45 from one of my older sister's girlfriends and played it to death. I believe Don Black also composed "Ben" for Michael Jackson; am I right?
- Paul, Washington DC, DC
Cool factoid: Lulu's early band was called "Lulu And The Luvvers", I believe. The bass player was James Dewar, who went on to be the singer/bassist with Robin Trower.
- John, Beltsville, MD
A common theme for Teacher's Day
- Adrian, Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Lulu`s first BIG BREAK, was in the LINDELA JAZZ CLUB Edinburgh(scotland)that was owned by a relation of mine `Sinclair`. The name LINDELA, is made up as follows,ELA was his wife, and his Daughter was LINDA,he took the `A`off LINDA, and joined the both names together, hence `LINDELA`, Lulu did not `play fair`to her Backing Group, she wanted to get on, so she DROPPED them, to make a Career for `HERSELF`(FACT).
- samuel, kilsyth, United Kingdom
My sloppy sentimental reaction. As the comment above....said.......so very touching. Esp now that I have daughter.
- mike, houston, TX
This was the first grown up movie I saw when I was about 10. It was great and stuck with me all these years. The song really sums up the movie.
- Barb, Meadow Vista, CA
oh how swiftly time travels.i saw his movie "to sir wih love" back in my high school days.i can remember exactly how i felt about this movie.very beautiful yet nostalgic.i really admired lulu singing the movie theme, ogether with the other song "it's getting better" by the mindbenders.i even learned to play the guitar chords of these 2 songs.t'was quite a worth-while memoir.
- samuel, PHILIPPINES, Other
This is one of my favorite songs, it's so touching...
- Matthew, Milford, MA
Listen to the cover by Chaka Khan. She sang it on the short-lived Tony Danza tv show. It's on YouTube and it's awesome.
- Leya Qwest, Anchorage, AK
I like this song because I use to sing it all the time and To Sir With Love the movie was so great that now i see it all the time.
- Kelsey, Southampton, PA
"To Sir With Love" was released in Hong Kong as a single, with the flip side B a lesser-known song "Let's Pretend". Her then husband Maurice Gibb also had a "MTV" song "Railroad" shown on a Hong Kong TV station named TVB. Barry and Maurice also had a boat-rowing MTV "Don't Forget to Remember" on the same TV station. Around that time (late 60's) there're lots of primitive MTV's on TVB, like CCR's version of "I Heard It Thru' the Grapevine" & "Looking Out my Backdoor", Carpenters' "Hurting Each Other", Glen Campbell's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", Kenny Roger's "Tell It ALl Brother", Beatles' "Lady Modonna"...etc.
- Ivan, Dallas, TX
This song sounds almost like a James Bond theme in its own right. Small wonder that the singer was eventually chosen to do an actual one.
- Joshua, Twin Cities, MN
the movie moves us from the unreal to the real."to sir with love"is really for ever.thank you.
- K.K.Chandran,film di, trivandrum, India
Great performance of a great song.
- Steve, Fenton, MO
The upbeat Neil Diamond composition "The Boat That I Row" on the "To Sir With Love" Epic single flip side had made the top 10 in England during the summer of 1967. In America, disc jockeys preferred the ballad "To Sir With Love", thus becoming a #1 hit for five weeks during the fall of 1967. Incredibly, "To Sir With Love" never became a hit in England. In San Juan, it was the #1 song of 1967 in the WHOA-AM survey.
- Rick, San Juan, United States
Lulu was briefly married to Maurice Gibb (late, of Bee Gees) in 1969 (FYI: at the time, her brother Billy Lawrie worked with Maurice on his solo LP, and single, "Railroad")
- Jo, Newcastle, Australia
Lulu was born Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie, on November 3rd, 1948, the eldest of a family of four, in Lennox Castle, Lennoxtown, Glasgow - the daughter of a local butcher. She started singing almost immediately.
- Mike, Mountlake Terrace, WA
Playing the part of Cheeky 'Barbara Pegg' - in 'To Sir With Love', alongside Sidney Poitier. She was great, too, and once again was acclaimed by the Press for her performance when the movie was released in April 1967, and later on went to break box-office records all over America. She completely justified the faith put into her by the film's writer, producer and director James Clavell, who said at the time: "This girl has a naturalness, a straightforward quality coupled with a really exciting personality, A very important movie quality indeed". He said it all.
- Mike, Mountlake Terrace, WA
That's not all. 'To Sir With Love' shot to the very top of the American Singles Chart to give Lulu a unique distinction in International showbusiness.

She was the only non- American female singer- ever to have topped the US Singles Chart for five weeks, and at that time only one of five British female singers to have topped the chart.

Lulu joined this elite band in 1967 when 'To Sir With Love' - the title song from her debut movie appearance - was released as a single ? and within weeks, it was sitting at the very pinnacle of the US Chart. The record stayed there for five weeks and by November 1967 had sold a million copies. In all, the record-making single went on to sell nearly 4,000,000 copies worldwide. It was a remarkable feat for the lovely green-eyed singing star: it was the first time in recording history that a US hit by a British artist was never given a domestic release, even though it was a No1, but then, Lulu has been breaking records and making International showbusiness history ever since.
- Mike, Mountlake Terrace, WA
You have to to post comments.
Brad Smith of Blind MelonBrad Smith of Blind Melon
The Blind Melon bassist/songwriter tells the story of "No Rain," which he wrote before the band was formed.
Songs About MoviesSongs About Movies
Iron Maiden, Adele, Toto, Eminem and Earth, Wind & Fire are just some of the artists with songs directly inspired by movies - and not always good ones.
Jesus Christ Superstar: Ted Neeley Tells the Inside StoryJesus Christ Superstar: Ted Neeley Tells the Inside Story
Expect to see protests even in today's society, as Jesus Christ Superstar, the film, marks its 40th anniversary with a worldwide theater tour. Here, we take a walk down film location lane with Ted Neeley, or "Christ," if you prefer.
Colbie CaillatColbie Caillat
Since emerging from MySpace with her hit "Bubbly," Colbie has become a top songwriter, even crafting a hit with Taylor Swift.