The Last Waltz (song)

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"The Last Waltz"
Single by Engelbert Humperdinck
B-side "That Promise"
Released 1967
Recorded 1967
Length 2:57
Label Decca Records (F 12655)[1]
Writer(s) Barry Mason and Les Reed[1]
Producer(s) Peter Sullivan[1]

"The Last Waltz" is a song written by Barry Mason and Les Reed.[1][2] It was one of Engelbert Humperdinck's biggest hits, spending five weeks at #1 on the UK Singles Chart, from September 1967 to October 1967, and has since sold over 1.17 million copies in the United Kingdom.[3][4]

In the United States, "The Last Waltz" reached number 25 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and made the top ten of the easy listening chart.

The song is associated with the English football clubs, Peterborough United F.C. and Gillingham F.C.[5][6]

Background[edit]

The title of the song is something of a double entendre as it refers to both the narrator's first and last dances with the woman he loves: the first dance was the "last waltz" played at the party where the two met, and the final dance signified the end of their relationship after their romance had cooled.

Versions[edit]

French-language versions, titled "La Derniere Valse", were released by Mireille Mathieu and Petula Clark in 1967. Mireille Mathieu's version spent three weeks at number one in the French pop charts, and also was a hit in Britain, reaching #26. Petula Clark's version entered the French charts in February 1968 and reached number two[7] but did not chart in the UK. It is also included on her album, The Other Man's Grass Is Always Greener (1968). In 1968 Québec singer Stéphane released a French cover on his album Stéphane and in 1969 Ginette Reno also released a French version. Total sales of the different versions combined are over eight million copies.[8]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1967) Peak
position
Irish Singles Chart 1
UK Singles Chart[9] 1
Australian Singles Chart 1
New Zealand Singles Chart 1
Austrian Top 40 3
Norwegian Singles Chart 3
Dutch Singles Chart 6
US Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks 6
Swiss Singles Chart 9
German Singles Chart 14
US Billboard Hot 100 25

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 7. ISBN 0-85112-250-7. 
  2. ^ "International Songwriters Association (ISA) Songs And Songwriting • Sonnny Curtis". Songwriter.co.uk. Retrieved 2014-04-06. 
  3. ^ "Official Singles Chart UK Top 100 - 12th April 2014 | The UK Charts | Top 40". Theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 2014-04-06. 
  4. ^ Ami Sedghi (4 November 2012). "UK's million-selling singles: the full list". Guardian. Retrieved 4 November 2012. 
  5. ^ Kenrick, Matthew (5 January 2009). "Gillingham 1 Aston Villa 2 - Birmingham Post analysis". The Birmingham Post. Retrieved 18 September 2009. 
  6. ^ "Gillingham". The Football Supporters' Federation. Retrieved 18 September 2009. [dead link]
  7. ^ "French Record Charts". Petula Clark.net. Retrieved 2014-04-06. 
  8. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs. Barrie & Jenkins. Retrieved 2012-08-22. 
  9. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. pp. 210–1. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)"
by Scott McKenzie
UK Singles Chart number-one single
(Engelbert Humperdinck version)

6 September 1967 (5 weeks)
Succeeded by
"Massachusetts"
by The Bee Gees