Let It Be Me

Album: The Very Best Of The Everly Brothers (1959)
Charted: 13 7

Songfacts®:

  • This is a reworking of a French song recorded in 1955 by Gilbert Becaud called "Je T'Appartiens."
  • The first English version of this song was released in 1957 by an actress named Jill Corey, who recorded it with Jimmy Carroll and his orchestra. This version went to #57 in 1957, two years before The Everly Brothers version.

    Don Everly heard an instrumental rendition on the 1959 album Chet Atkins In Hollywood and fell in love with the melody. When he found out there were lyrics, he brought the song to producer Archie Bleyer. Wesley Rose, owner of the publishing company Acuff-Rose that signed the Everly Brothers as songwriters and connected them with Bleyer's Cadence label, sparred with Bleyer over the tune but lost. Don recalled: "I went to Archie and told him I wanted to do it with strings. Wesley just sat there pouting through the whole session like a kid."
  • This was one of the first pop songs to use a string section - eight violins and a cello were used. It was also the first Everly Brothers song to use strings.
  • Just before this became a hit, The Everly Brothers left their original label, Cadence Records, and signed with Warner Brothers for a $100,000 bonus, which was huge at the time.
  • This was the first Everly Brothers song they did not record in Nashville. It was done in New York.
  • In America, six other versions of this song charted in the '60s:

    Betty Everett & Jerry Butler (#5, 1964)
    Arthur Prysock (#124, 1966)
    Nino Tempo & April Stevens (#127, 1968)
    Glen Campbell & Bobbie Gentry (#36, 1969)

    Willie Nelson returned the song to the charts in 1982 when he took it to #40.
  • Bob Dylan recorded this on his 1970 album Self Portrait. We asked Ron Cornelius, who played guitar on the album, why Dylan recorded it. He replied: "No one would be being truthful with you to tell you what was ever in Bob Dylan's mind. No Way."

Comments: 22

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn this day in 1982 {October 17th} Willie Nelson's covered version of "Let It Be Me"* peaked at #2 {for 2 weeks} on Billboard's Hot Country Singles chart, the first week it was at #2, the #1 record for that week was "He Got You" by Ronnie Milsap, and for its second week at #2, "Close Enough To Perfect" by Alabama was in the top spot...
    It reached #40 {for 3 weeks} on Billboard's Top 100 chart...
    And from the 'For What It's Worth' department, the remainder of the Hot Country Top 10 on October 17th, 1982:
    At #3. "Close Enough To Perfect" by Alabama
    #4. "Mistakes" by Don Williams
    #5. "You're So Good When You're Bad" by Charley Pride
    #6. "Break It To Me Gently" by Juice Newton
    #7. "She's Lying" by Lee Greenwood
    #8. "War Is Hell (On The Homefront Too)" by T.G. Sheppard
    #9. "Heartbroke" by Ricky Skaggs
    #10. "Soul Searchin'" by Leon Everette
    Willie Hugh Nelson will celebrate his 88th birthday in six months on April 29th, 2021...
    * "Let It Be Me" first charted by Jill Corey in 1957, her version reached #57 on the Top 100, three years later in 1960 the Everly Brothers' version reached #7, and in 1964 the duo of Jerry Butler and Betty Everett's version peaked at #5 on the Top 100...
    On Billboard's Hot R&B singles chart, the Sweet Inspirations took their version to #13 in 1967...
    And in Australia, Johnny Young and Kompany's version peaked at #4 {for 4 weeks} in 1966 on the Kent Music Report chart...
  • Nicole from Oregon My favorite version of this song is by Sam & Dave. It’s on the album “Soul Man.” Fantastic!
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 23rd 1960, the Everly Brothers performed "Let It Be Me" on the ABC-TV program 'Dick Clark's Saturday Night Beechnut Show'...
    At the time the song was at #61 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; a little over four weeks later on February 22nd it would peak at #7 {for 1 week} and it stayed on the chart for 15 weeks...
    It was second in a string of three straight Top 10 records by the brothers; was preceded by "('Til) I Kissed You"* which peaked at #4 and succeeded by "Cathy's Clown", it was #1 for 5 weeks on the Top 100...
    * On the same 'Beechnut' they also performed "('Til) I Kissed You".
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn April 2nd 1960, the Everly Brothers appeared in their first concert in the United Kingdom, it was at the New Victoria Theater in London, their opening act were the post Holly era Crickets...
    While back in the U.S.A. their "Let It Be Me" was at #27 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; two months earlier on February 22nd, 1960 it had peaked at #7 {for 1 week}...
    And fifteen days later on February 18th, 1960 their next release*, "Cathy's Clown", would enter the Top 100 and eventually it peaked at #1...
    * It was also their first release on the Warner Brothers record label.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 19th 1969, Bobbi Gentry & Glen Campbell performed "Let It Be Me" on the CBS-TV program 'The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour'...
    At the time the record was in its last week on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it had entered the chart on January 19th, 1969 at #90; and on March 2nd, 1969 it peaked at #36 {for 1 week} and spent 8 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on May 26th, 1969 it reached #1 {for 1 week} on the Canadian RPM Top Country Singles chart; the song it replaced at the top spot was Glen Campbell's "Galveston"...
    The duo had two other records make the Top 100 chart; "Mornin' Glory" {peaked at #74} and "All I Have to Do Is Dream" {reached #27}...
    May God bless and watch over Mr. Campbell.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn October 14th 1964, the Everly Brothers performed "Let It Be Me" on the ABC-TV program 'Shindig!' {See the 2nd post below}...
    And on the same 'Shindig!' show the brothers performed "Gone, Gone, Gone"; at the time it was at #98 on Billboard’s Hot Top 100 chart and it had entered the chart only three days earlier on October 11th, 1964, eight weeks later on December 6th, 1964 it peaked at #31 {for 1 week} and spent a total of 10 weeks on the Top 100...
    R.I.P. Jimmy O'Neill {Shindig's host, 1940 -2013}.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn August 30th 1964, "Let It Be Me" by Jerry Butler & Betty Everett entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #72; and on November 1st, 1964 it peaked at #5 {for 1 weeks} and spent 13 weeks on the Top 100...
    In 1967 the Sweet Inspirations covered the song; their version stayed on the Top 100 for 2 weeks, peaking at #94 {the Sweet Inspirations were a studio vocal group led by Cissy Houston}...
    Jerry Butler & Betty Everett had one other Top 100 record, "Smile", it reached #42 and stayed on the chart for 7 weeks.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 5th 1960 "Let It Be Me" by the Everly Brothers entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; and on February 22nd it peaked at #7 (for 1 week) and spent 15 weeks on the Top 100...
    It reached #8 in Canada...
    During the calendar year of 1960 the brothers charted with eight records on Billboard's Top 100, with half of them making the Top 10 and "Cathy's Clown" peaking at #1 for five weeks (in fact, between August 9th to August 29th was the only period in 1960 that they did not have a record on the Top 100)...
    R.I.P.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyPhil Everly passed away yesterday (January 3rd, 2014) at the age of 74. His brother Don will celebrate his 77th birthday next month on February 1st.
  • :-) from Colorado, CoGeorge Harrison did this song - it's in the documentary on him -
    Living in the Material World. I love the Everly Brothers ! ! !
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyJerry Butler & Betty Everett's version charted the highest with this record; they peaked at #5 in 1964. The Everly Bros. reached #7!!! {This was the brothers last charted record on the Cadence label, they signed with Warner Bros. and their 1st record was "Cathy's Clown", which stayed at #1 for five weeks}
  • Mixermatt from Bloomington, Mnwe can't for get about Glen Campbell and Bobbie Gentry who also did a cover on this song
  • Dave from Des Moines, IaAnd don't forget Jerry Butler & Betty Everett's popular version.
  • Dave from Des Moines, IaAlso the Fifth Demension did a great version of this featuring Billy Davis Jr. doing nearly all the vocals. It is on the "Aquarius" album. Also, country-pop duo Gene & Debbe (of Playboy fame) recorded this. I believe it was only issued as a single and is very good as well.
  • J from Toronto, CanadaRumor has it that the tune was originally recorded in the fifties in North America by Floyd Robinson of "Makin' Love" fame
  • Steve from Minnetonka, MnI recently heard Houston Person, the great sax player, play this song in person at a performance and it was fantastic. He told me that he has recorded it on one of his own CDs. I also found that Janis Siegel (formerly of Manhattan Transfer) has recorded it, backed up by Houston. Haven't heard that version yet.
  • Paul from Flagstaff, AzThis is a pretty damn good song.
  • Steve from Sydney, AustraliaWilly DeVille does a stunning version on his 2003 album Acoustic Trio Live in Berlin, after which one of the musos says "That's amazing" and Willy swathily mumbles "Ah, think I'll have a cigarette now."
  • Jan from Hamburg, GermanyElvis Presley recorded this song on one of his best live LPs "On Stage" in 1970.
  • Ron from Curitiba, BrazilOthers to record this beautiful song: The Righteous Brothers, Nancy Sinatra, Glenn Campbell and Tom Jones.
  • Mauro Boscarol from Bolzano, ItalyNina Simone recorded this song three times, in 1971, 1980 and 1984.
  • Deana from Indianapolis, InWillie Nelson did a heart tugging rendition of this song
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