Leaving on a Jet Plane
|"Leaving on a Jet Plane"|
|Single by Peter Paul and Mary|
|from the album Album 1700|
|B-side||"The House Song"|
|Label||Warner Bros.-Seven Arts 7340|
|Peter Paul and Mary singles chronology|
"Leaving on a Jet Plane" is a song written by John Denver in 1966 and most famously recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary. The original title of the song was "Babe, I Hate to Go" but Denver's then producer Milt Okun convinced him to change the title.
The song was initially recorded in 1966 by John Denver with the title "Babe, I Hate to Go." That same year, Denver chose this song along with fifteen others and, with his own money, had 250 copies pressed onto vinyl. He distributed the copies to friends and family. Peter, Paul and Mary were so impressed with the song that they chose to record it themselves and released it on their 1967 Album 1700. Notably, it didn't become a hit for them until they released it as a single in 1969.
The song was also recorded in 1967 by the Chad Mitchell Trio and then later that same year by Spanky and Our Gang. It was performed for the very first time live at The Cellar Door in Washington, D.C. in 1966 by the Chad Mitchell Trio, with John Denver substituting for Chad Mitchell.
It turned out to be Peter, Paul & Mary's biggest (and final) hit, becoming their only #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. It was the penultimate #1 single of the 1960s. The song also spent three weeks atop the easy listening chart and was used in commercials for United Airlines in the late 1970s.
Cover versions 
||This section needs additional citations for verification. (March 2013)|
- 1970: Oliver released a version on his album Again.
- 1970: The Kendalls released a version of the song which went to #52 on the U.S. country singles chart.
- 1970: Bobby Vinton released a version on his album My Elusive Dreams.
- 1971: Frank Sinatra was on Sinatra & Company and also the soundtrack of the 1996 film The Rock.
- 1979: The Swingers released a version of the song as the a-side of their first and only single, on the Rumble Records label.
- 1989: Sloppy Seconds released a version of the song on as the b-side of their 45, Come Back, Traci.
- 1997: Me First and the Gimme Gimmes released a version of the song on their first album Have a Ball.
- 1997: Drivin N Cryin released a version of the song on the album "Drivin' 'N' Cryin'".
- 1998: Justin Kawika Young released a version of this song on his album My Eyes Adore You.
- 1998: Chantal Kreviazuk recorded a version that was used in the film Armageddon. During the movie, A. J. Frost (Ben Affleck) sings part of the song to Grace as the astronauts are leaving to board the shuttles.
- 2000: Eve 6 released a version of the song for their album Horrorscope. The song was a bonus track on the album.
- 2003: Slightly Stoopid released a version of the song on their album Everything You Need.
- 2013: My Morning Jacket released a version on the tribute album The Music Is You: A Tribute to John Denver.
- The song prompted litigation involving the British group New Order. The band's single "Run 2" (1989) was the subject of a lawsuit brought by John Denver, who argued that its wordless guitar break was based on his "Leaving on a Jet Plane". An out-of-court settlement ensured that the song would never be re-released in its original form.
- An interpolation of the song can be heard in the song "Tell Me That You Wait" by Eurodance group Culture Beat, during the chorus.
- Monkey Majik sampled a small part of the song (namely the lines "You know I'm leaving on a jet plane, I don't know when I'll be back again") in the song "Angel" from their album Westview.
In popular culture 
- In the 1998 disaster film Armageddon, Ben Affleck's character, with other characters singing backup, sings an impromptu version of the song to his love interest, played by Liv Tyler.
- The fictional cover band Jeffster! covered the song in the Chuck season 3 episode "Chuck Versus the Honeymooners".
- In the extended version of the Glee pilot episode, the song was covered by Will Schuester, the Music teacher played by Matthew Morrison.
- British singer Sophie Barker's cover of the song was featured in a 2006 British Airways UK television campaign.
- A shortened sing-along version of the song was covered by British adventurer Bear Grylls, at the conclusion of each of his three live shows in the Bear Grylls Live Australia Tour, in September 2011.
- Daniel Johnston referenced a line ("our bags are packed, we're ready to go") from the song in his song Rocket Ship.
- Peter, Paul and Mary charting singles Retrieved March 14, 2012.
- Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 192.
- Oliver, Oliver Again Retrieved March 14, 2012.
- The Kendalls charting singles Retrieved March 14, 2012.
- "Official Justin Kawika Young Site". Retrieved 27 March 2012.
- New Order:Singles:Run 2
"Try a Little Kindness" by Glen Campbell
|Billboard Easy Listening Singles number-one single (Peter, Paul & Mary version)
November 22, 1969 (3 weeks)
"Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head" by B.J. Thomas
"Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" by Steam
|Billboard Hot 100 number one single (Peter Paul and Mary version)
December 20, 1969 (one week)
"Someday We'll Be Together" by Diana Ross & the Supremes