That's the Way of the World (Earth, Wind & Fire song)

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"That's the Way of the World"
Single by Earth, Wind & Fire
from the album That's the Way of the World
B-side "Africano"
Released June 18, 1975
Format 7", 45 RPM
Recorded Autumn 1974
Genre Funk, Blues
Length 3:12 (single version)
5:44 (album version)
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Maurice White, Charles Stepney, Verdine White
Producer(s) Maurice White
Earth, Wind & Fire singles chronology
"Sun Goddess"
"That's the Way of the World"
"Sing a Song"

"That's the Way of the World" is a 1975 song by the R&B band Earth, Wind & Fire and is also the title track of their album That's the Way of the World. Written by Maurice White, Charles Stepney and Verdine White for Columbia Records, "That's the Way of the World" was released as a single in many countries and reached number 12 and number 5 on the US Pop and Black Singles charts respectively.[1] It ranks #329 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.


The song has been sampled by Frost on the song "Heaven & Hell" included on his album When Hell.A. Freezes Over, on the Do Ya Thing (Remix) by Cam'ron and on the West Coast remix of "Where Are They Now?" by Nas.[2]

Uses in other media[edit]

"That's the Way of the World" was used as the closing theme song for the sitcom Hearts Afire. It was also featured in the Cold Case episode "Fireflies".

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1975)[1] Peak
U.S. Billboard Pop Singles 12
U.S. Billboard Black Singles 5


The information regarding accolades attributed to "That's the Way of the World" is adapted from[3]

Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
Rolling Stone U.S. The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time 2005 329
Bruce Pollock U.S. The 7,500 Most Important Songs of 1944-2000 2005 *

(*) designates lists that are unordered.


In 1978, doomed Peoples Temple member Deanna Wilkinson performed the song as part of a live performance for Congressman Leo Ryan during an honorary reception the day before the tragic Jonestown Massacre.[video]

In 1988, Contemporary musician Najee covered the song that was released from his 1988 album, Day by Day

In 1992, pianist Richard Tee covered the song on his album "Real Time".

In 2001, Filipino singer Gary Valenciano covered this song from his album "Revive".

In 2005, saxophonist Nelson Rangell covered the song from his release "My American Songbook, Vol. 1."[4][5]

In 2009, another saxophonist Art Sherrod, Jr. released his Seasons album which contained a cover of the EWF song.[6][7]


External links[edit]