Writer(s): Jacques Revaux (music), Giles Thibaut and Claude François (original French lyrics), Paul Anka (English lyrics) (see lyrics here)
First Charted: March 21, 1969
Peak: 27 US, 29 CB, 17 GR, 28 HR, 2 AC, 5 UK, 28 CN, 1 DF (Click for codes to singles charts.)
Sales (in millions): -- US, 1.05 UK
Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 3.0 radio, 286.8 video, 314.67 streaming
Click on award for more details.
About the Song:
“My Way” originated as a song composed by Jacques Revaux in 1967. It originally was called “For Me” and had English lyrics about a couple falling out of love. Revaux shopped the demo around to Petula Clark, Claude François, and others. François worked with Giles Thibaut to give the song new French lyrics. The song was retitled “Comme d’habitude” (“As Usual”). It was released in November 1967 and reached the top of the French pop chart. WK
Paul Anka heard the song on the radio while on holiday in France. He liked it so much that he bought adaptation, recording, and publishing rights for one dollar, under the condition that the composers of the melody retained royalty rights. After Anka had dinner with Frank Sinatra in Florida and Sinatra announced that he was quitting the business, Anka re-wrote the original song with Sinatra in mind. He said as he wrote it he thought, “If Frank were writing this, what would he say?” WK
Sinatra recorded the song on December 30, 1968. It was released as a single in early 1969 and while it only reached #27 on the Billboard Hot 100, it became his signature song. It peaked at #5 in the UK, but set a record for spending 108 weeks in the top 40 WK and became the most popular song to play at funerals in the UK. LW According to Sinatra’s daughter Tina, he came to hate the song, thinking it was self-serving and self-indulgent. WK
Other artists who have charted with the song include Brook Benton (#25 RB, 1970), Dorothy Squires (#10 UK, 1970), Elvis Presley (#22 US, 6 AC, 2 CW, 9 UK, 1973), Sid Vicious (#7 UK, 1978), and Shane MacGowan (#29 UK, 1996). David Bowie, Aretha Franklin, Pearl Jam, the Platters, and Nina Simone are among the other artists to record the song.
First posted 11/25/2022.