Friday, February 6, 2015

Today in Music (1965): The Righteous Brothers hit #1 with “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’”

You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’

The Righteous Brothers

Writer(s): Phil Spector/Barry Mann/Cynthia Weil (see lyrics here)

First Charted: December 11, 1964

Peak: 12 US, 13 CB, 12 GP, 13 HR, 3 RB, 12 UK, 11 CN, 1 DF (Click for codes to singles charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, 0.2 UK

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 10.0 radio, 27.86 video, 72.07 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

From the first notes of “Lovin’ Feelin’,” it is clear something powerful is affot. The song builds to an explosion between the interplay of Bill Medley baritone and Bobby Hatfield’s tenor, both seemingly wrenching the word “baby” straight from their souls. This is “classic pop at its most sublime.” LW It is the kind of pop song that makes others wonder why they even try. Radio listeners support that sentiment – performing rights organization BMI says this is the all-time most-played song on the radio with more than 10 million airplays. SHOF

Legendary producer Phil Spector signed the duo after seeing them on the bill of a Ronettes show. RS500 He asked the songwriting team of Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil SHOF to develop a ballad that fit his signature Wall of Sound. KL Using the Four Tops’ “Baby I Need Your Lovin’” as inspiration, FB the husband and wife team found themselves forging the new genre of blue-eyed soul, which bridged “the gap between white and black musical styles.” TB

The words “You’ve lost that lovin’ feelin’” were initially dummy lyrics. FB Weil recalls telling Spector that they would get something better, to which Phil responded, “No, that’s the title.” KL

Phil also threw them off with Medley’s impossibly deep intro. Mann and Weill were both concerned about “the range of the two male voices, with Medley’s bass being chased by Hatfield’s falsetto.” LW Mann remembers Phil playing it for him over the phone. Mann told him, “Phil, you have it on the wrong speed!” RS500 Hatfield was at a loss, but his concern regarded what he should do while Medley sang the entire first verse. Spector told him, “You can go directly to the bank.’” RS500


  • FB Fred Bronson (2003). The Billboard Book of Number One Hits (5th edition). Billboard Books: New York, NY.
  • KL Jon Kutner and Spencer Leigh (2005). 1000 UK Number One Hits: The Stories Behind Every Number One Single Since 1952. London, Great Britain: Omnibus Press. Page 106.
  • LW Alan Lewens (2001). Popular Song – Soundtrack of the Century. Billboard Books: New York, NY. Pages 124-5.
  • RS500 (2011). “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
  • SHOFSongwriters Hall of Fame
  • TB Thunder Bay Press. (2006). Singles: Six Decades of Hot Hits & Classic Cuts. Outline Press Ltd.: San Diego, CA. Page 71.

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First posted 7/13/2014; last updated 11/22/2022.

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