Cupid (Sam Cooke song)
|Single by Sam Cooke|
|B-side||"Farewell My Darling"|
|Released||May 16, 1961|
|Recorded||April 14, 1961
RCA Hollywood Studio 1
|Genre||Rhythm and blues|
|Sam Cooke singles chronology|
"Cupid" is a song by American recording artist Sam Cooke, released on May 16, 1961. It charted at number 17 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 20 on the Hot R&B Sides chart; the track performed best in the United Kingdom, peaking at number seven on the UK Singles Chart. Cooke's producers had asked him to write a song for a girl they had seen on a Perry Como TV show — but once they heard her sing, they kept "Cupid" for Cooke himself. It was Cooke's idea to drop in the sound of an arrow being fired "straight to my lover's heart." Personnel on the recording included Cooke's session regulars Clifton White and Rene Hall on guitar, Clifford Hills on bass, Earl Palmer on drums and Joseph Gibbons on guitar and banjo.
"Cupid" was ranked #452 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time". AllMusic critic Bill Janovitz described the track as a "perfect pop song" which combines "Latin, R&B, jazz, and mainstream pop elements".
- In 1961, Roy Tierney covered the song in the UK
- In 1964, Johnny Rivers covered the song on his live album In Action
- In 1965, The Supremes covered the song on their tribute album "We Remember Sam Cooke"
- In 1970, Johnny Nash's rocksteady/reggae version, released in late 1969, peaked at #39 on the Hot 100 on January 24. In the UK, this version peaked at number 6 in May 1969.
- In 1970, Czech lyrics were written by Jiří Grossmann, and the song (Úsvit) performed on Czechoslovak Television by Pavel Bobek in 1970
- In 1975, Gary Glitter covered the song on his album G.G.
- In 1976, Tony Orlando and Dawn's cover peaked at #22 on the Hot 100 on March 20-27
- In 1980, the song was covered, in a medley with Michael Zager's "I've Loved You For a Long Time", by The Spinners. This version went to number four on the Hot 100, thus becoming the highest charting version on the Hot 100, and number five on the R&B chart
- In 1988, the song was covered by Graham Parker on his album The Mona Lisa's Sister
- Otis Redding was also known for covering a number of Sam Cooke's songs including "Cupid". His cover was included on the 1993 box set Otis! The Definitive Otis Redding
- In 1996, Bernadette Peters recorded a version of the song for her covers album, I'll Be Your Baby Tonight.
- In May 2002, Chris Walla of Death Cab for Cutie recorded a cover of the song at Tiny Telephone Recording in San Francisco, California. The recording was later mixed to tape in October 2002 at Walla's Hall of Justice studio in Portland, Oregon
- In 2007, British soul singer Amy Winehouse included a cover of Johnny Nash's version of the song for the deluxe edition of her album Back to Black
- In 2008, Colin Meloy covered this and several other Sam Cooke songs for his EP Colin Meloy Sings Sam Cooke
- In 2009, Boyz II Men included a cover of this song on their Love album
- In 2010, Canadian Soul/R&B singer Melanie Fiona covered the song for her debut album The Bridge
- In 2010, Grand Archives covered the song for the Starbucks compilation Sweethearts
- In 2012, the chorus was sampled in a Carly Rae Jepsen song called "Tiny Little Bows", which is featured as the album opener track on her second album Kiss
- This song was also featured in the 1987 movie Innerspace starring Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid
- A reference to this song is found in the chorus of the song "Sleepwalker" by The Wallflowers: Cupid, don't draw back your bow / Sam Cooke didn't know what I know
Charts and certifications
|UK Singles Chart||7|
|US Billboard Hot 100||17|
|US Hot R&B Sides (Billboard)||20|
|Chart (1976 – Tony Orlando and Dawn)||Peak
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||22|
|Chart (1980 – The Spinners)||Peak
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||4|
|U.S. Billboard Hot Soul Singles||5|
|UK Singles Chart||4|
|Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)||49|
- "500 Greatest Songs of All Time: Sam Cooke, 'Cupid'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
- Janovitz, Bill. "Cupid - Sam Cooke". AllMusic. Retrieved September 5, 2014.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 333. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
- Čtyřicet Hitů od A do Z, Pavel Bobek, liner notes, 2006.
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 545.
- "HOJ Songs". Hallofjusticerecording.com. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
- "Sam Cooke - Artist - Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
- "Sam Cooke – Awards". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 28, 2014.