Manilow penned this song with Jack Feldman, Gerard Kenny, Drey Shepperd and Bruce Howard Sussman. It was the only hit in the US from Manilow's self-titled Barry album.
This song likens life to a storm. In the syndicated radio show I Write the Songs, songwriter Sheila Davis, the author of The Craft of Lyric Writing and the writer of Ed Ames' 1967 gold record hit "Who Will Answer?," discussed the use of metaphors and figurative language in songs. She cited this song as "a fine example of the classic metaphoric concepts "good times = fair weather" and "bad times = stormy weather." Davis explained: "Clearly, "rainy days" does not mean literal rainy days. This introduces an important guideline: Within a single lyric, don't shift between the figurative and literal use of a given image. For example, in this lyric, the terms "rain" and " clouds" consistently mean metaphoric troubled times. The lyric never inadvertently shifts between literal and figurative. A purposeful shift can produce a pun - but that's a whole other subject."
Manilow was the Master of Ceremonies at his friend Elizabeth Taylor's 60th birthday party at Disneyland, California in February 1992. The singer-songwriter sung this song to the much-married actress, who was accompanied by her eighth husband, Larry Fortensky.
This song enjoyed a revival in UK in 2009 when actor and TV host John Barrowman made the charts with a cover version taken from his album Music Music Music. The song's chart success was due to the BBC Radio One breakfast host Chris Moyles, who asked his listeners to download a copy of the single to give the actor a hit.