Blame It On The Bossa Nova

Album: Blame It On The Bossa Nova (1963)
Charted: 32 7
  • This was written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, a husband-and-wife songwriting team. They also wrote "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'." Bossa nova, a Brazilian style of music and dance, was the hot fad in pop music of the early '60s. While "Blame It On The Bossa Nova" held the #7 spot on the Hot 100, Elvis Presley's "Bossa Nova Baby" peaked at #8.

    Eydie is blaming the seductive "dance of love" for a whirlwind courtship that started out with "just one little dance, but then it ended up a big romance."
  • After she graduated from high school, Eydie worked as a Spanish interpreter by day, attended night classes at City College in New York City, and sang from time to time for a local band. She became a solo singer in 1952 after singing for Tommy Tucker's and Tex Beneke's big bands. In 1953, she became a regular performer on Steve Allen's Tonight Show, where she met her husband-to-be, singer Steve Lawrence. They married December 29, 1957, the week her hit "Love Me Forever" reached the Top 40.
  • In 1958, Steve and Eydie had their own summer replacement TV show: Steve Allen Presents The Steve Lawrence-Eydie Gorme Show. Eydie had another Top 40 hit that year with "You Need Hands."
  • After Lawrence was drafted in the fall of 1958 and Jack Paar replaced Steve Allen as host of The Tonight Show, Eydie stepped out of the spotlight for almost two years (Lawrence was not so "hidden" during his army days - he had the #9 hit "Pretty Blue Eyes" and #7 "Footsteps" released by ABC-Paramount as he was the official vocalist of the United States Army Band). After Lawrence left the army in 1960, he and Eydie became a popular nightclub act. Eventually the two of them signed with Columbia Records.
  • Eydie finally reached the Top 10 in 1963 with this. It was her last Top 40 solo hit.
  • The first single Eydie released on Columbia Records. For both Steve and Eydie, their first Columbia singles were their biggest hits... and their last Top 10 records. Before the end of 1962, Steve hit #1 with "Go Away Little Girl," a Gerry Goffin/Carole King song that Donny Osmond would take to #1 again a decade later.
  • Steve and Eydie finally scored on the charts as a duo with "I Want to Stay Here" and "I Can't Stop Talking About You," but only after Lawrence's last Top 40 Hits (in 1963), "Don't Be Afraid, Little Darlin'," "Poor Little Rich Girl," and "Walking Proud." Although the British Invasion cost them success in the recording industry, Steve and Eydie have remained a popular nightclub act for four decades.
  • In 1979, Steve and Eydie recorded as Parker and Penny. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Brad Wind - Miami, FL, for all above
  • Annette Funicello covered this for her 1964 album Annette At Bikini Beach. Her version was featured on Season 2 of The West Wing when Ainsley (Emily Procter) is caught dancing to it in her bathrobe.
  • Sean Hayes sang this on the 1998 Will & Grace episode "A New Lease On Life."
  • This was used in several movies, including The Big Picture (1989), starring Kevin Bacon, Mermaids (1990), starring Cher, and Doubt (2008), starring Meryl Streep.
  • This is referenced in the 1993 film adaptation of Stephen King's Needful Things, where the villain brushes off his evil doings by saying, "Hey, don't blame it on me. Blame it on the bossa nova."
  • Former San Francisco 49ers head coach George Seifert sang this for a Visa commercial in the '90s.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 6

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 24th 1963, "Blame It On The Bossa Nova" by Eydie Gorme peaked at #7 (for 1 week) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it entered the chart on January 13th at position #82 and spent 15 weeks on the Top 100...
    It was one of four songs on the Top 100 in 1963 with 'Bossa Nova' in its title; the others were "Bossa Nova U.S.A." by The Dave Brubeck Quartet (#69), "Fly Me To The Moon – Bossa Nova" by Joe Harnell and His Orchestra (#14), and "Bossa Nova Baby" by Elvis Presley (#8)...
    The above mentioned "You Need Hands" by Eydie Gorme reached #11 on the Top 100 in 1958 and also spent 11 weeks on the chart...
    R.I.P. Mr. Gorme, born Edith Gormezano, (1928 - 2013).
  • Randy from Fayettevile, ArBack in '63, I bought the single by Eydie Gourmet. Back then I was unaware she was married to Steve Lawrence & they were into adult pop. The Bossa Nova was a mildly big dance craze, but it was a Latin adult dance. However, the biggest dance crazes at that time were the Limbo and the Bird which took over from the Mashed Potato & the Twist. I always thought it strange that Eydie Gourmet recorded a dance craze hit. Closely listening to the record you can hear her voice really off-key a few times. My Grandma says she recalled seeing Eydie Gourmet sing on TV in '63 and she sounded off-key then too. Thankfully, the production on this record balances out any vocal impeerfections. haaaa
  • Ken from Newport Beach, CaThe drink that Ainsley Hayes had in her hand when she met the President was not champagne, it was a Pink Squirrel "(with) a dash of creme de cacao my friend"
  • Rudy from Long Beach, CaShe also recorded the song in Spanish. It is called, "Cúlpale a la bossa nova."
  • Glenn from Washington, DcThe song also made an appearance on an episode of "The West Wing," where a tipsy Ainsley Hayes (blonde, leggy Republican lawyer hired by Democratic president), wiggles and sings along with a recording of the song in her White House basement office in a bathrobe with a glass of champagne in hand. President walks in on her to introduce himself and she flips out, flinging the glass over her shoulder. Funny WW moment.
  • Horace from Western, MdThis was used in a hiliarous commercial in the late '90's, featuring the San Francisco 49ers and Denver Broncos. They were advetised to meet to play in Japan - it turned out the game they were playing was karaoke, much to the audience's dismay.
see more comments

Billy Gould of Faith No MoreSongwriter Interviews

Faith No More's bassist, Billy Gould, chats to us about his two new experimental projects, The Talking Book and House of Hayduk, and also shares some stories from the FNM days.

Ian Anderson of Jethro TullSongwriter Interviews

The flautist frontman talks about touring with Led Zeppelin, his contribution to "Hotel California", and how he may have done the first MTV Unplugged.

Dave MasonSongwriter Interviews

Dave reveals the inspiration for "Feelin' Alright" and explains how the first song he ever wrote became the biggest hit for his band Traffic.

Christmas SongsFact or Fiction

Rudolf, Bob Dylan and the Singing Dogs all show up in this Fact or Fiction for seasonal favorites.

Director Mark Pellington ("Jeremy," "Best Of You")Song Writing

Director Mark Pellington on Pearl Jam's "Jeremy," and music videos he made for U2, Jon Bon Jovi and Imagine Dragons.

Rosanne CashSongwriter Interviews

Rosanne talks about the journey that inspired her songs on her album The River & the Thread, including a stop at the Tallahatchie Bridge.