Song of the Day: Aretha Franklin, “I Say A Little Prayer”

A happy heavenly birthday to the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, born on this day in 1942. "I Say A Little Prayer" was a song written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David for Dionne Warwick, who took the song to #4 on the Hot 100 and in Canada and #8 on the R&B chart in late 1967 and early 1968. Later in 1968, during the recording of her album Aretha Now, she and her backup vocalists The Sweet Inspirations started singing it in the studio just for fun and realized its potential as a hit. It was released in July 1968 as the second single from the album and reached #10 on the Hot 100, #3 on the R&B chart, and was a Top 10 hit in Australia, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, and the UK.

15 thoughts on “Song of the Day: Aretha Franklin, “I Say A Little Prayer”

  1. I am so behind. I just watched “Respect” starring Jennifer Hudson who did a really good job representing Aretha. By the way, so did the young girl who played Aretha when she was 11. I love this song and it’s so cool to hear the different ways each artist sang this.

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    1. Dionne Warwick was Bacharach and David’s go-to girl, and a lot of their songs were written with her in mind, but Cilla Black had just about as much luck with them, and Dionne and Cilla were quite different. Then, it’s not the singer, it’s the song. Aretha’s version was particularly good.

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  2. This is the version I like best. I was never a big Warwick fan…nothing against her but hey…it’s Aretha!

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    1. Bacharach and David wrote a lot of their songs with Dionne in mind, often with her in the room with them. I like both versions of the song, Aretha’s maybe a bit better.

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    1. I like Aretha’s a little better, but Dionne was Bacharach and David’s “go-to girl” and, as I was telling Max, wrote a lot of their songs with her voice in mind.

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