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And When I Die

by

Blood, Sweat & Tears



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

This was one of the first songs written by Laura Nyro, who was 17 when she wrote it. The song was first recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary in 1966. Nyro included it on her first album in 1967 - More Than A New Discovery. Blood, Sweat & Tears covered it in 1969, and their version was the hit. (thanks, Edward Pearce - Ashford, Kent, England)
Nyro never had success recording her own songs, but wrote several hits for other artists, including "Eli's Coming" for Three Dog Night and "Sweet Blindness" for The 5th Dimension. She died of cancer in 1997.
For a few weeks in the fall of 1969, this was one of 3 songs written by Nyro in the US Top 10. The others were "Eli's Coming" by Three Dog Night and "Wedding Bell Blues" by 5th Dimension. (thanks, Harry - Mobile, AL)
Blood, Sweat & Tears
More Blood, Sweat & Tears songs
More songs about death
More songs written by Laura Nyro

Comments (16):

The LP version is better due to the instrumental breaks between chorus 1/verse 2 then verse 2/chorus 2. All it needed was a chorus 3.
- Steve, Whittier, CA
How could a 17-year old write such enduring and profound lyrics? Laura was such a talented writer.
- Jeff, Beverly hills, MA
Oh, and I want to tip a hat and give a deep curtsy to the songwriter extraordinaire who is known as Miss Laura Nyro. Btw, the instrumentation in the background of this song really stands out when I play it on my ipod and listen to it with the earbuds.
- Camille, Toronto, OH
I've mentioned it with other songs, and will repeat here: 1969 was just a banner year for soo much music that was destined to become classic! This is just one of many examples. Blood, Sweat and Tears is a fabulous group with many great hits.
- Camille, Toronto, OH
BS&T's take form the fall of 1969 is a lot of fun. I'm listening to the long version on my mp3. The single contained two edit points between the refrains and 2nd and 3rd verses, the imaginative instrumentation.
- Steve, Whittier, CA
Could somebody please put Blood Sweat and Tears pictures on here instead of Elvis on the video screen?
- Joni, Louisville, KY
"Laura, I saw you open in L.A., there's somethin' I gotta say, Laura...." Cool info Anne!! I didn't know that and I thought I knew everything about Todd.
- Mike, Matawan, NJ
the song "baby, let's swing" by Todd Rundgren is about Laura ...he said after hearing her he started playing songs like her instead of the who
- anne, kerrville, Italy
I totally agree w/ Jay from Brooklyn
- anne, kerrville, Italy
I'm with Jay on this one. Every time I listen to this song it definitely has a spiritual sort of vibe to it. Obviously Laura Nyro was wise far beyond her years to write something with so much depth and meaning to it.
- Renee, Minneapolis, MN
As far as I know, the Temptations never recorded "And When I Die", but if they had, it would have been incredible. Imagine how this would sound with David Ruffin singing lead and the others doing background harmonies.
- Jay, Brooklyn, NY
I agree with Casey, but would like to add more. It's hard to belive that this song, which sounds like an African-American spiritual, was written by a 17 year-old Italian-Jewish girl from the Bronx. Whenever this is on the radio, I crank up the volume and shout it out.
- Jay, Brooklyn, NY
I've never heard this song. Laura Niro was a great songwriter though. I've heard "Wedding Bell Blues" and "Eli's Comming", just not her versions.
- Stefanie, Rock Hill, SC
It's hard to believe this song was written by a 17 year-old. It just rings with an aged wisdom of someone who has figured out what is really important in life.
- Casey, Pensacola, FL
why arent there more Blood Sweat and Tears songs on this site. I want to figure out what "House in the Country" is about
- daniel, Cincinnatti, OR
Kept off the top of the charts by the Beatles'
"Something / Come Together".
- Mike, Ames, IA
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