The First Cut Is The Deepest

Album: Night On The Town (1976)
Charted: 1 21


  • This was written by Cat Stevens. It was a hit for P.P. Arnold in Britain in 1967, reaching #18 in the charts. Stevens, who included it on his debut album New Masters later in 1967, never released his version as a single, as he felt Arnold's rendition was definitive.

    P.P. Arnold is a female singer from America who got her start as one of Ike & Tina Turner's backup performers (an Ikette). After two years with Ike & Tina, she moved to London and got a record deal with Immediate Records. Cat Stevens was also part of the London music scene at the time, and his song found it's way to Arnold, who recorded it for her first album.

    Arnold, who was in an abusive marriage as a teenager, felt it was a perfect song for her. "It encapsulated everything that I was at the time," she said. "Having the courage to get out of that [abusive relationship] and create a life for me and my kids. What a blessing."

    In 1968, Arnold scored another UK hit when her cover of "Angel of the Morning" went to #29.
  • This is about a guy who has met a girl he wants to start a relationship with. In the song, he is explaining the hurt he feels because of his first love, and how it is keeping him from diving into this potential new relationship.
  • In America, the first version to chart was by Keith Hampshire, who took it to #70 in 1973. Rod Stewart covered it in 1976, taking it to #21 US and #1 UK; Sheryl Crow released her version in 2003, which made #14 in the US and #37 in the UK.

Comments: 25

  • G from Somewhere Inn, CanadaThe only version of this song worth hearing is the recording by Keith Hampshire. No one else has even come close, especially NOT Sheryl Crow or Rod Stewart.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 6th 1977, "The First Cut is the Deepest" by Rod Stewart entered Billboard’s Hot Top 100 chart at position #77; and nine weeks later on April 10th, 1977 it peaked at #21 {for 2 weeks} and spent 12 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on May 21st, 1977 it reached #1 {for 4 weeks} on the United Kingdom's Singles chart {it also peaked at #1 in Germany and the Netherlands}
    Sadly, Roderick David Stewart turned 70 years old last month on January 10th {2015}; and the reason I say sadly, is because I reached 70 on January 15 {2015}!
  • Nicole from Plymouth, Ma" I would have given you all of my heart. But there's someone who's torn it apart. And she's taken just all that I had. But if you want I'll try to love again. Baby I'll try to love again but I know". I think that anyone who has been through hell and back with a relationship can relate. But we all must learn to forgive and forget. The first cut might be the deepest but we can all use it as a learning experience and grow from it :)
  • Shirley from Kelso, United Kingdomdoes anyone remember pp arnold?? class
  • Dan from , NjJill...This song is in 'The Heartbreak Kid'
  • Kayleigh from Sitka, Aki always thought this song was corny, until my first love broke my heart and i was able to relate. when a new boy stepped into the picture, it took me so long to trust him, and now that i did i am so happy with him. good ending :]
  • Tim from Boston, MaFor me, the best version of First Cut was unfortunately never recorded. It was done live on a Cat Stevens TV special in the mid 70's by Linda Ronstadt.
  • P.a. from Paris, FranceAt least give more credit to Rod Steward than to Sheryl Crow: he brought a different version, with pretty good guitar parts and mandolin.
    She just kept everything from his cover, and could have used the same tracks if it wasn't for the sound quality (26 years between the two versions).
  • Prashant from Ktm, Otherhow pathetic that this makes me cry, funny realy it came on the radio the other day when i was at my girlfriends place and i had to hide under the covers cuz i started crying my eyes out cuz it reminds me of my " x "
  • Rick from Hamilton, CanadaKeith Hampshires version is hands-down the absolute best version - in addition to his powerful voice - the trumpets in this version send shivers down my spine - absolutely awsome!! If you haven't heard it - you owe it to your self to give it a listen!!
  • Jill from Australia, AustraliaCan anyone tell me which movie this song is from? Thanks
  • Aj from Greenville, NcI like the Cat Stevens, Keith Hampshire, and James Morrison versions. The other two sing fine but eave out or change important parts of the chorus from Cat Stevens' original song. It also is funny how worse became worst in different versions. Listen to all five versions and see if you can catch it.
  • Angelwynton from Valkenswaard, NetherlandsKeith one time you Help me out and I will never forget that!! The songs I still have.
    Hope to hear from you..

    Greetings Angel Wynton
  • Chris from Boston, Ma Hampshire's version is very good although I'm partial to Cat Stevens's version maybe because it's the origianl. Rod's Stewart's and Sheryl Crow's renditions are insipid; both of which cut out the third line of the chorus ("when it comes to being loved she's first)which in my opinion the song loses something. I haven't heard the other versions.
  • Caitlin from Upper Township, Nji like Sheryl Crow's version. Besides, Sheryl Crow went through a breast cancer scare AND a broken off engagement to Lance Armstrong
  • Markus from Stockholm, SwedenI still believe Cat Stevens earns by far most credit for this song... He has really proved he's an outstanding songwriter, also through Wild World
  • Olive from Spring Branch, TxAllison Krause does a respectable version.
    Olive, String Branch Texas
  • Brian from Melfort, Sask, CanadaHey Pete and Dana are both right so lets stop the bickering. Keith Hampshire is the best version
  • Dana from Edmonton, Canadabtw, agree that Hampshire's is the best version.
  • Dana from Edmonton, CanadaKeith Hampshire is a Canadian, not an Englishman.
  • Pete from Nowra, AustraliaEnglishman Keith Hampshire also sang this song in the 70's by far the best , really belts it out
  • Aiedail from Carnation, WaI agree
  • Sam from Dublin, Irelandit's hard trying to commit to a new relationship after being hurt by a first love...
  • Dave from Cardiff, WalesYes, Tom, but wasn't it already at No.1 the week before the Sex Pistols controversy?
  • Tom from Trowbridge, EnglandThis wasn't really no.1! The Sex Pistols 'God Save the Queen' sold more copies but the record companies wouldn't let it be no.1 because of its controversy!
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