The Twelfth of Never

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"The Twelfth of Never"
Single by Johnny Mathis
from the album Johnny Mathis
Released 1957
Genre Pop
Length 2:25
Label Columbia Records 40993
Writer(s) Jerry Livingston, Paul Francis Webster
Johnny Mathis singles chronology
"Chances Are"
(1957)
"The Twelfth of Never"
(1957)
"No Love (But Your Love)"
(1957)
"The Twelfth of Never"
Single by Cliff Richard
B-side "I'm Afraid to Go Home"
Released October 1964
Genre Pop
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Jerry Livingston, Paul Francis Webster
Producer(s) Norrie Paramor
Cliff Richard singles chronology
"On the Beach"
(1964)
"The Twelfth of Never"
(1964)
"I Could Easily Fall (in Love with You)"
(1964)
"The Twelfth of Never"
Single by Donny Osmond
from the album Alone Together
B-side "Life Is Just What You Make It"
Released 1973
Genre Pop
Length 2:40
Label MGM Records 14503
Writer(s) Jerry Livingston, Paul Francis Webster
Donny Osmond singles chronology
"Why"
(1972)
"The Twelfth of Never"
(1973)
"Young Love"
(1973)

"The Twelfth of Never" is a popular song recorded by Johnny Mathis and later by other artists, including Cliff Richard and Donny Osmond. The song's title comes from the popular expression "the 12th of Never", which is used as the date of a future occurrence that will never come to pass. In the case of the song, the 12th of Never is given as the date on which the singer will stop loving his beloved, thus indicating that he will always love her. The song draws a similar link between the cessation of love and a number of other events expected never to happen.

Mathis initially disliked the song, which was released as the flip side to "Chances Are".[1]

The song was written by Jerry Livingston and Paul Francis Webster, the tune (except for the bridge) being adapted from "The Riddle Song" (also known as "I Gave My Love a Cherry"), an old English folk song. Mathis's original version reached number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the USA in 1957.[2] A version by Cliff Richard was released in 1964 and reached number 8 in the UK.[3] Donny Osmond's version, produced by Mike Curb and Don Costa, was his second number 1 single in the UK, spending a single week at the top of the UK Singles Chart in March 1973.[4] In the U.S. it peaked at number 8.[5]

Chart performance[edit]

Johnny Mathis original

Chart (1957/58) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[6] 9
Australia (Sydney, Australia)[7] 2

Cliff Richard version

Chart (1964/65) Peak
position
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[8] 8
Australia (Kent Music Report)[9] 6
Hong Kong[10] 5
Ireland (IRMA)[11][12] 9
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[13] 13
Malaysia[14] 3
Norway (VG-lista)[15] 9

Donny Osmond version

Chart (1973) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[16] 8
Australia (Kent Music Report)[9][17] 2
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[18] 14
Denmark (Tracklisten)[19] 15
Germany (Media Control)[20] 29
Malaysia[21] 8
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[22] 12
Singapore[23] 2
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[24] 1

Cover versions[edit]

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 23 - Smack Dab in the Middle on Route 66. [Part 2]" (audio). Pop Chronicles. Digital.library.unt.edu. 
  2. ^ Johnny Mathis chart positions at AllMusic. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  3. ^ "Cliff Richard's UK positions". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2 June 2014. 
  4. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 284. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  5. ^ Donny Osmond chart positions at AllMusic. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  6. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Johnny Mathis Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-04-17. 
  7. ^ Barnes, Jim; Dyer, Fred; Scanes, Stephen (1986). The Book Top 40 Research 1986-1987 Second Edition-Update (doc). Top 40 Research Services, Seven Hills, N.S.W. 
  8. ^ "Cliff Richard: Artist Chart History" UK Singles Chart.
  9. ^ a b Kent, David (2005). Australian Chart Book 1940–1969 (doc). Australian Chart Book Pty Ltd, Turramurra, N.S.W. ISBN 0-646-44439-5. 
  10. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (21 November 1964). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 38. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  11. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (28 November 1964). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 16. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  12. ^ The Official Charts in Ireland began on October 4, 1962. Chart positions before that are taken from the Evening Herald Chart which was a Top Ten single chart published by the Irish daily newspaper Evening Herald between February 1959 and December 1962. "Ireland singles charts". Irishcharts.ie. Retrieved 2014-04-26. 
  13. ^ (nl) van Slooten, Johan (2005). Top 40 Hitdossier 1965-2005 (inclusief alle 'prehistorische' hits van 1956 to 1965) (in Dutch) (9th ed.). Haarlem: J.H. Gottmer / H.J.W. Becht BV. ISBN 90-230-1144-9. 
  14. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (6 March 1965). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 22. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  15. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Cliff Richard – The Twelfth of Never". VG-lista.
  16. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Donny Osmond Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-04-17. 
  17. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (30 June 1973). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 57. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  18. ^ "Ultratop.be – Donny Osmond – The Twelfth of Never" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  19. ^ "Denmark singles chart - The Twelfth of Never". danskehitlister.dk. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  20. ^ "Donny Osmond German singles at charts.de". Media Control. Charts.de. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  21. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (2 June 1973). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 69. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  22. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Donny Osmond – The Twelfth of Never" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  23. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (16 June 1973). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 83. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  24. ^ "Donny Osmond: Artist Chart History" UK Singles Chart.
  25. ^ Oliver, Oliver Again Retrieved March 14, 2012.
Sources

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Cum on Feel the Noize" by Slade
UK Singles Chart number one single (Donny Osmond version)
March 31, 1973 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Get Down" by Gilbert O'Sullivan