Don't Play That Song (You Lied)

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"Don't Play That Song (You Lied)"
Single by Ben E. King
from the album Don't Play That Song!
Released 1962
Genre Soul
Length 2:47
Label Atco
Writer(s) Ahmet Ertegün, Betty Nelson
Ben E. King singles chronology
"Don't Play That Song (You Lied)"
"Too Bad"

"Don't Play That Song (You Lied)" is a song written by Ahmet Ertegün and by the wife of Ben E. King, Betty Nelson. It was first recorded by soul singer Ben E. King. The title track on King's third album Don't Play That Song!, it reached #2 on the U.S. R&B singles chart and #11 on the pop chart when released as a single on Atco Records in 1962 (see 1962 in music).

Aretha Franklin covered the song for her twenty-first album, Spirit in the Dark, released on Atlantic Records. Her version, performed with the Dixie Flyers, was released as a single in 1970 (see 1970 in music) and peaked at #1 for five weeks on the R&B singles chart and #11 on the pop chart.[1] Franklin's version was certified gold with sales over a million copies. In the United Kingdom it reached #13. This was the first of two covers Franklin did of songs made popular by King. The other was her cover of "Spanish Harlem" in 1971.

Other acts to have recorded or performed the song include Keith Locke and The Quests, Peppino di Capri, Adriano Celentano in 1977 and Mariah Carey. It was also performed to great acclaim on the first season of American Idol by Kelly Clarkson, the eventual winner. More recently Sam Moore duetted the song with Bekka Bramlett on his 2006 album Overnight Sensational. British soul singer Beverley Knight included a cover of the song on her 2016 album Soulsville (Beverley Knight album)


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 215. 

Tina Charles recorded this version in 1969.

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Preceded by
"Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours" by Stevie Wonder
Billboard Soul Singles number-one single (Aretha Franklin version)
September 12, 1970 - September 26, 1970
Succeeded by
"Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Diana Ross