Don't Make Promises

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"Don't Make Promises"
Song by Tim Hardin
from the album Tim Hardin 1
Released 1966
Label Verve
Songwriter(s) Tim Hardin
Producer(s) Erik Jacobsen

"Don’t Make Promises" was the first track on Tim Hardin's debut album Tim Hardin 1, released in 1966. The song, along with "Reason to Believe," was one of the two major songwriting hits from the album,[1] with more than a dozen cover versions having been recorded following its release.[2] British radio presenter and writer Charlie Gillett noted the song's ability to achieve "the elusive balance between personal miseries and universal sufferings,"[3] while author Mark Brend praised the song's "fragile pop sensibilities" and how it contrasted with the "swaggering" R&B of album track "Ain't Gonna Do Without."[4]

The Beau Brummels version[edit]

"Don't Make Promises"
Single by The Beau Brummels
A-side "Two Days 'Til Tomorrow"
Released March 1967
Format 7" single
Genre Folk rock
Length 2:30
Label Warner Bros. 7014
Songwriter(s) Tim Hardin
Producer(s) Lenny Waronker
The Beau Brummels singles chronology
"Here We Are Again"
"Don't Make Promises"
"Lower Level" / "Magic Hollow"

"Here We Are Again"
"Don't Make Promises"
"Lower Level"/"Magic Hollow"

The Beau Brummels released a cover version of "Don't Make Promises" as a single in 1967. The song later appeared on the band's 1987 compilation album The Best of The Beau Brummels 1964–1968. The single's B-side, "Two Days 'Til Tomorrow," was a favorite of lead vocalist Sal Valentino, who called it the band's "greatest" song.[5] It was included on the 2007 compilation album Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965–1970,[6] and was called a "sublime bit of pop drama" by Pitchfork Media music critic Joe Tangari.[7]

Track listing[edit]

7" Vinyl
1."Don't Make Promises"Hardin2:30
2."Two Days 'Til Tomorrow"Elliott, Durand3:50

Other versions[edit]

Bobby Darin included "Don't Make Promises," as well as four other Tim Hardin songs, on Darin's 1966 If I Were a Carpenter album.[8] In 1967, the song was covered by Marianne Faithfull, Scott McKenzie, Rick Nelson, and Gary Lewis & the Playboys.[9] Later versions were performed by Gary Puckett & The Union Gap as the B-side to "Woman, Woman" (1968), Three Dog Night (1968), Circus (1969), Z. Z. Hill (1969), Helen Reddy (1971), Joan Baez (1995), Chris Smither (1999), Cliff Richard (2002), Paul Weller (2004), and The Kingston Trio, whose version was recorded in 1967 but remained unreleased until it appeared on the 2007 compilation album, The Lost 1967 Album: Rarities, Vol. 1.[10] Dave Alvin recorded the song for his 2009 release "Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women". He has also performed the song live as recently as July 15, 2010 Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women 07/15/10


  1. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Tim Hardin 1 - Review". Allmusic (Macrovision Corporation). Retrieved 2009-10-24. 
  2. ^ Bogdanov, Vladimir; Woodstra, Chris; Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (2002). All Music Guide to Rock: The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop, and Soul (3rd ed.). San Francisco: Backbeat Books. p. 503. ISBN 978-0-87930-653-3. 
  3. ^ Gillett, Charlie (1996). The Sound Of The City: The Rise Of Rock And Roll (2nd ed.). New York: Da Capo Press. p. 308. ISBN 978-0-306-80683-4. 
  4. ^ Brend, Mark (2001). American Troubadours: Groundbreaking Singer-Songwriters of the 60s (1st ed.). San Francisco: Backbeat Books. p. 82. ISBN 978-0-87930-641-0. 
  5. ^ Farrar, Justin F. (2006-03-01). "Oh, Pioneers". SF Weekly (New Times Media). Retrieved 2009-10-24. 
  6. ^ "Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965–1970 - Overview". Allmusic (Macrovision Corporation). Retrieved 2009-10-24. 
  7. ^ Tangari, Joe (2007-09-21). "Album Reviews - Various Artists - Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965-1970 Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965–1970". Pitchfork Media). Retrieved 2009-10-24. 
  8. ^ "If I Were a Carpenter - Overview". Allmusic (Macrovision Corporation). Retrieved 2009-10-24. 
  9. ^ Gary Lewis & the Playboys, Listen! Retrieved October 1, 2011
  10. ^ "The Lost 1967 Album: Rarities, Vol. 1 - Overview". Allmusic (Macrovision Corporation). Retrieved 2009-10-24.