Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head

Album: Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid Soundtrack (1969)
Charted: 38 1
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Burt Bacharach and Hal David wrote this song for the film Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid, starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford. It was the first million-seller for the legendary songwriters.
  • Thomas was recording for Scepter Records, which was also home of Dionne Warwick, who recorded many Bacharach/David hits like "Don't Make Me Over" and "I Say A Little Prayer." She took a copy of Thomas' song "Hooked On A Feeling" to Bacharach, who was working on a score for the film. She convinced him to consider Thomas, and although he was reluctant at first, Burt asked Thomas to sing the main theme: "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head." What he didn't tell Thomas was that the song had already been turned down by Bob Dylan and Ray Stevens.
  • Thomas was getting over laryngitis when he recorded this. It gave the song a raspy quality that the producers of the movie liked. Eight weeks later, Thomas recorded another version that was released as a single in October 1969. This version, with the famous horn solo added to the end, made #1 in the US the first week of 1970 and stayed there for 4 weeks. Said Thomas, "I was in the right place at the right time, and probably got their best song ever."
  • Burt Bacharach (from Record Collector magazine): "'Raindrops' was done for the score. When you're scoring a motion picture you service the picture and there was that scene with the bicycle. I did keep hearing that title, I must say. That is my title, 'Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head.' Hal tried to change it and come up with another lyric but it never seemed to work as well. I watched the film so much when I was scoring it. It was a convenient way to get B.J. Thomas to sing it because he was in the stable of Scepter at the time. Our first choice was Ray Stevens. They flew Ray out to see the picture and hear the song but he didn't like the picture and he didn't like the song."
  • This won the Oscar for Best Song From A Motion Picture at the 1970 awards, where Thomas performed it. Bacharach also won for Best Score.
  • The single version of this song was edited together from three different studio takes of the song.
  • The "B.J." in B.J. Thomas stands for "Billy Joe." Thomas started singing with a church choir in Houston when he was 14. Some of his other hits include: "Everybody's Out of Town," "I Just Can't Help Believing," "Most of All" and "Rock And Roll Lullaby." He had some legal trouble with this and his other Scepter Records recordings, and had to sue for the royalties he was owed on these tracks. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • This song is played in Spider-Man 2, right after Peter Parker decides not to be Spider Man anymore. Thankfully, Parker changed his mind and became a valued superhero. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Dawson - Draper, UT
  • Something about this song goes well with animated comedies - it has been used in The Simpsons, Family Guy and Futurama. Movies that have used the song include Boys on the Side (1995), Spy Hard (1996), Clockwatchers (1997) and Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002).
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 28

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn April 25th 1970, B.J. Thomas performed "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    Exactly three months earlier on January 25th, 1970 he performed the same song on 'The Ed Sullivan Show'...
    (See the next post below).
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 25th 1970, B.J. Thomas performed "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head" on the CBS-TV program 'The Ed Sullivan Show'...
    On that very same day it dropped down to #3 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; the four previous weeks it was at #1...
    A month earlier on December 7th, 1969 it also reached #1 (for 7 weeks) on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Tracks chart...
    In Canada is also topped their Top Singles and Adult Contemporary charts...
    R.I.P. Mr. Sullivan (1901 - 1974) and Mr. Thomas, born Billy Joe Thomas, will celebrated his 72nd birthday this coming August 7th (2014).
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 18th 1970, "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" by B.J. Thomas was beginning its fourth week at #1 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart...
    And all top seven records on the Top 100 remained the same for the 2nd week in a row...
    #2. "Venus" by The Shocking Blue
    #3. "I Want You Back" by Jackson 5
    #4. "Someday We'll Be Together" by Diana Ross and the Supremes
    #5. "Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin
    #6. "Leaving On A Jet Plane" by Peter, Paul and Mary
    #7. "Don't Cry Daddy" by Elvis Presley.
  • Martin from Fresno, CaOne of the most uplifting songs ever.
  • Jorge from Ribeir?o Preto, BrazilI heard it before watching the movie. Actually, I didn't even know it was from a movie.
  • Thomas from Oklahoma City, OkIf memory serves, Mr. Thomas mentioned in his autobiography, "Home Where I Belong", that the commercial success of this song inspired a follow up collaboration between the two. It ended with an insulted Mr. Thomas--knife in hand--chasing Mr. Bacharach down the hall of the studio. Fortunately, B.J. later addressed his drug and temper problems, but the two would likely never work together again.
  • Shane from Chattanooga, TnI've always kind of liked this song but I always thought it was so out of place in the movie. Really disrupts the flow of the entire film.
  • Guy from Woodinville, WaAnother in a series of perfect minimally-produced masterpieces by Hal David & Burt Bacharach! Love the sublimely silly lyrics, Hal! Right up there with If by David Gates & Bread. If they were any lighter, they would just float away!
  • Emily from Around Chicago, IlGreat song!!! (And I'm only 13!) I've loved this song since I was eight, and even though I can't say much about melodies and stuff like that, I think It's a beautiful song with a great message.
  • Stormy from Kokomo, InBertrand from Paris, France wrote that "B.J." stands for Billy Joe which is correct. He went by B.J. because another singer who had success at the same time was Billy Joe Royal ("Down in the Boondocks"). Also I had always heard that Eddie Arnold fired his manager when he found out that Arnold's manager turned this song down before conferring with Eddie. I don't know, though, if that is factual.
  • Kim from Incheon, KoreaIt is pleasure to hear this kind of masterpiece and play with harmonica which is very good terms with this song.
  • Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, CaNice ukelele intro... instantly recognizable, just like A Hard Days Night or Close to You..love these "special intros"
  • Mike from Mountlake Terrace, WaThey tried to get Bob Dylan to sing Burt Bacharach's famous song for the movie. He declined.
  • Heather from San Jose, CaThis song is just so mellow and sweet, every time i hear it feel just... happy
  • Andrew from Bartlett, Tnit a beautiful masterpiece of a song. i love it, and it's a classic.
  • Musicmama from New York, NyTo Shanelle from Australia: This song is both sad and hopeful, which is, I believe, what the protagonists of the movie were feeling. That is a common sensation for one who spends life on the run, for whatever reasons. Listen to the instrumental "Never Going Home Again" and the vocal "South American Getaway" from the same soundtrack, and I think you'll get a better ideal of what I mean.
  • Dave from Oak Park, MiAww, this song has seen so many covers! The Andre Kostalentz singers made this one a real tear-jerker! John Davidson did a real neat version of it, too!

    My FAVORITE remake of it? ANDY WILLIAMS--Now who else could do such an AWESOME version of this like he does?! Superb!!!
  • Shanelle from Gold Coast, AustraliaDoes anybody else think this song is about being sad, or depressed? I think it is, but to this day, I can't see the connection between the lyrics and the movie, Butch Cassidy etc. Anybody want to fill me in?
  • Kevin from Southampton, Ontario, CanadaThis song is featured in "Clerks II". It plays during the go-kart sequence with Dante & Randal.
  • Frank from Morenci , AzI am an amateur musician. I play guitar and sing. I just considered doing this song as a cover. I praticed it a few times and remembered most of the lyrics. It still needs work, but someday I'm going to perform it.

    I have not thought of this song in many years. (along with "Jerimiah was a Bullfrog" (Joy to the world)

    Tonight May 3, 2006, I remembered this song out of the blue, with the help of a few shots of tequila and the "four two 0hhhhhhh?". I was in first grade when it was a hit. I made my big sister go out and buy the "45" record. Even My Mom (God rest her soul) liked it.

    Its just a damn good nice song.
  • David from Fort Worth , TxBest song ever! Wow, They did a remarkable job here!!!! YAHH!
  • Fyodor from Denver, Co#1 of 1970 on WABC, New York's survey. The Beatles' Let It Be was #2.
  • Carla from Waco, TxWonderful melody. Still charming audiences in Bullard Texas in 2006.
  • Miles from Vancouver, CanadaJust wonderful
  • Sean from Toronto, CanadaThis song is also played in the final scene and over the closing credits of "The Simpsons" episode "Duffless".
  • Vincent from St. Davids, EnglandLove this song. Brilliant ballad
  • Craig from Dunedin, New Zealand"Masterpiece!!!"
  • Scott from Chicago, Ilpossibly one of the happiest top 40 hits of all
    time....
see more comments

Todd RundgrenSongwriter Interviews

Todd Rundgren explains why he avoids "Hello It's Me," and what it was like producing Meat Loaf's Bat Out of Hell album.

90s MetalFact or Fiction

Test your metal - Priest, Maiden, and Beavis and Butt-head show up in this one.

Amanda PalmerSongwriter Interviews

Call us crazy, but we like it when an artist comes around who doesn't mesh with the status quo.

Charles FoxSongwriter Interviews

After studying in Paris with a famous composition teacher, Charles became the most successful writer of TV theme songs.

Eric ClaptonFact or Fiction

Did Eric Clapton really write "Cocaine" while on cocaine? This question and more in the Clapton edition of Fact or Fiction.

Dave Pirner of Soul AsylumSongwriter Interviews

Dave explains how the video appropriated the meaning of "Runaway Train," and what he thought of getting parodied by Weird Al.