Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime

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"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime"
Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime single.jpg
Single by The Korgis
from the album Dumb Waiters
B-side "Perfect Hostess"
Released 15 June 1980
Format 7", 12"
Recorded 1980
Genre Pop, new wave, synthpop
Length 4:24
Songwriter(s) James Warren
The Korgis singles chronology
"String Module Error: Match not found"
"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime"
"If It's Alright With You Baby" / "Love Ain't Too Far Away"
"I Just Can't Help It" (Remix)
"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime"
"If It's Alright With You Baby" / "Love Ain't Too Far Away"

"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" is a hit ballad single written by James Warren and first performed by the pop band The Korgis, of which Warren was lead singer. He has said it took only 10 or 15 minutes to write, literally singing the first thing to come into his mind, as he played both the chords and melodies on the piano. Warren has also said producer David Lord added the big arrangement and strings.[1]

The unique sounding instrument played after each chorus is the 18 string Chinese zither known as a guzheng.

The song was released in 1980 from the group's second album, Dumb Waiters. The single reached #5 on the UK Singles Chart[2] and #18 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart.[3] The song topped the singles charts at #1 in France[4] and #1 in Spain,[5] and charted at #5 in Ireland,[6] #6 in Switzerland,[7] #11 in The Netherlands,[8] #11 in Australia,[9] #12 in New Zealand,[10] and #14 in Belgium.[11] This represented the peak of The Korgis' music chart success.

The original 1980 version of "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" appears on the following compilation albums and CDs:

In 1990, Warren and Davis reformed The Korgis to re-record "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" for a charity album in support of the International Hostage Release Foundation.[12] This version of the song appears on the compilation CD and DVD Kollection (2005).

The Korgis also recorded a live, acoustic version of "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" in the summer of 2005, which was intended for release on Kollection, but which eventually made its appearance in 2006 on the Unplugged CD.

An alternate version of "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" (with a different second verse) was included as a bonus track on the 1999 CD re-issue of 1980 album Dumb Waiters. This alternate version also appears on the compilations Klassics – The Best of The Korgis (2001) and Don't Look Back – The Very Best of The Korgis (CD2) (2 CD) (2003) which also includes an uptempo 3m 51s version of the song as its closing track, taking the total variants of the song on this double CD compilation to three.[13]

When Warren and Davis reformed their first band, Stackridge, in 2007, they incorporated "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" into their set, Warren introducing it as a song he wrote for The Korgis. A live version by Stackridge was included in both the CD and DVD versions of The Forbidden City, recorded at one of the 2007 shows in Bath, England. Keyboardist Glenn Tommey and drummer Andy Marsden, both one-time backing musicians for The Korgis, were part of that incarnation of Stackridge.[14]

Cover versions[edit]

"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" has been covered many times over the years, including several versions that reached the UK Single Charts, most notably those by The Dream Academy (1987), Brian Davis (1991), Yazz (1994), Baby D (1995), Army of Lovers (2001) and German electro-trance duo Marc et Claude (2000). NRG covered the song in their 1992 release "I Need Your Love". In 1997, a cappella group The King's Singers recorded the track with lead vocals by James Warren. In 2003, Erasure recorded the song on their cover album Other People's Songs.

In September 2004, Zucchero and Vanessa Carlton entered the French charts with their version of the song.[15] That same year, Beck also covered the song for the Michel Gondry film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.[16] This cover was also used at the end of episode 12 of the TV series Dollhouse and in episode 4 of Luther.

In May 2005, Zucchero and Lara Fabian performed and recorded a live version of the song with full orchestra for the Symphonic Show on French television. In December of the same year, the Cantamus Girls Choir entered the UK Singles Chart with their cover, but with the slightly different titled "Everybody's Gotta Learn Sometime".[17] In 2006, French singer Laurent Voulzy also covered the song on his cover album La Septième Vague.

In the 2007 British film Sparkle, it is sung by the protagonist's mother (played by Lesley Manville) on a backing track. The backing track was produced by Lol Hammond and Murray Clark.

Another version of "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" has been recorded by the Dutch band Krezip and a version translated into a Drents dialect entitled "Iederiene moet 't ooit leern" was recorded by Dutch singer-songwriter Daniël Lohues. In 2008, Dutch electro house producer Laidback Luke released a bootleg remix of the song. Also in 2008, the Glasgow based band Glasvegas covered the song as the B-side to their single, "Geraldine". A cover appears on the 2009 album Yesterday and Today by Swedish minimal techno artist The Field. Real Life covered "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" on their 2009 album Send Me an Angel: '80s Synth Essentials. A cover done by C.V. Jørgensen appears on the 2009 soundtrack album Songs For A Soundtrack for the film Simon & Malou. Another version has been recorded by French artist Fred Lafage on the album La musique de Paris Dernière 7. In 2010, Irish singer–songwriter Sharon Corr covered the song for her debut solo album Dream of You.

In 2008, Australian pop singer Robyn Loau recorded a version of the track with producer Robert Conley (Darren Hayes, Bryan McFadden) that was said to be showcased within the award winning radio, TV and cinema ad campaign for the 2008 Australian series of The Biggest Loser. The track also appears on Loau's 2010/2011 album Only Human.

In 2008, British drum and bass producer Dr Meaker sampled the song on his debut album "A Lesson From The Speaker" in the track "Need Love".

Richard Thompson covered the song as part of his 1000 Minutes of Popular Music tour in 2009, describing it on stage as the only good song to have been released in the 1980s.

The Russian poem "The Leaves have Flown from Poplars" (Улетели листья с тополей), written by Nikolay Rubtsov has been adapted into several different songs. One of these songs, attributed to Alexander Morozov, has a similar instrumentation to "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime". This song has been recorded by singers including the Russian band Forum, Sofia Rotaru, and Vitas.

A remixed version of the song by Shave, retitled "Change Your Heart", has featured heavily on TV commercials for Fox8's Australian teen drama, SLiDE.

In the same year, singer Nicola Roberts covered the song for her solo album Cinderella's Eyes.

Dubstep artist Cookie Monsta sampled the song in his song "Change Your Heart".

Jean Phillipe Verdin covered the song for the 2008 comedy LOL (Laughing Out Loud). The cover also appeared in the 2012 remake, LOL, starring Miley Cyrus and Demi Moore.

English band Everything Everything covered the song on 17 October 2012, on BBC's Radio 1 with Zane Lowe.

American dream pop band Beach House covered the song at Pitchfork Music Festival in 2016.

Composer Tomer Biran and singer Anat Ben Hamo (both Israeli) covered the song for the Huawei "Be Present" campaign in 2016.

In 2015, Blixa Bargeld, leader singer of the German industrial group Einstürzende Neubauten and former lead guitarist with Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds covered the song on the album Marcher sur la tête with Swiss musicians KiKu.

Chart performance[edit]


Charts (1994) Peak Position
UK Singles [2] 56

Cantamus Girls Choir

Charts (2005) Peak Position
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company)[17] 73

Zucchero & Vanessa Carlton

Charts (2004) Peak Position
France (SNEP) [15] 39


  1. ^ "How I wrote… 'Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime' by The Korgis". Song writing magazine. UK. Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c "Full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 25 September 2015. 
  3. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (2003). Joel Whitburn's top pop singles 1955–2002. ISBN 0-89820-155-1.  392 pp.
  4. ^ "TOP 40 TMP France". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  5. ^ "Los Quarenta Principales". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  6. ^ "The Irish Charts". Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  7. ^ "SCHWEIZER HITPARADE - SINGLES TOP 100". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  8. ^ "DUTCH SINGLE TOP 100". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  9. ^ "ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts - 1980". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  10. ^ "Single Top 40". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  11. ^ "Ultratop 50 Singles". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  12. ^ "Colin Woore & The IHR Project". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  13. ^ "Don't Look Back - The Very Best of the Korgis". Retrieved 9 November 2016. 
  14. ^ "History of Stackridge". Retrieved 11 October 2016. 
  15. ^ a b "lescharts.com - Zucchero & Vanessa Carlton - Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime". Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  16. ^ "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - Jon Brion | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-09-25. 
  17. ^ a b "CANTAMUS GIRLS CHOIR". Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  18. ^ "Offizielle Deutsche Charts". Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  19. ^ "The Korgis - Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime - dutchcharts.nl". Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  20. ^ "The Korgis - Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime - swisscharts.com". Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  21. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Top 100 Singles 1980". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 20 February 2017. 
  22. ^ "Top 100 1980 - UK Music Charts". Uk-charts.top-source.info. Retrieved 2015-12-19. 
  23. ^ "1980 Year End". Bullfrogspond.com. Retrieved 2015-12-19. 

External links[edit]