Everything I Own

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"Everything I Own"
Everything I Own - Bread.jpg
Single by Bread
from the album Baby I'm-A Want You
B-side"I Don't Love You"
ReleasedJanuary 29, 1972
GenreSoft rock
Songwriter(s)David Gates
Producer(s)David Gates
Bread singles chronology
"Baby I'm-a Want You"
"Everything I Own"

"Everything I Own" is a song written by David Gates. It was originally recorded by Gates's rock band Bread for their 1972 album Baby I'm-a Want You.

Although initial listeners may have interpreted it as a song about a broken relationship, Gates would later reveal that it was about the death of his father. According to the book 1000 UK #1 Hits by Jon Kutner and Spencer Leigh, at his father's funeral, a friend took David Gates aside and said, "Your dad was so proud of what you were doing." David agreed, "My success would have been so special to him as he was my greatest influence. So I decided to write and record 'Everything I Own' about him. If you listen to the words, 'You sheltered me from harm, kept me warm, you gave my life to me, set me free', it says it all.”[1]

The original hit #5 on the American Billboard Hot 100. Billboard ranked it as the #52 song for 1972.[2] "Everything I Own" also reached #5 in Canada.

Chart performance[edit]

Ken Boothe version[edit]

"Everything I Own"
Ken Boothe - Everything I Own.jpg
Single by Ken Boothe
from the album Everything I Own
B-side"Drum Song"
LabelWild Flower/Federal (Jamaica)
Trojan (UK)
Songwriter(s)David Gates
Producer(s)Lloyd Charmers

Jamaican artist Ken Boothe's reggae version of the song "Everything I Own" in 1974 was featured on his Trojan Records album release of the same name, entitled Everything I Own (album). It reached #1 in the UK Singles charts on October 26, 1974, and stayed at the top of the charts for three weeks.[9]


Boy George version[edit]

"Everything I Own"
Single by Boy George
from the album Sold
B-side"Use Me"
Released1987, 1993 (USA)
Format7", 12", cassette , CD
Recorded1986 in Montserrat
LabelVirgin Records
Songwriter(s)David Gates
Producer(s)Stewart Levine
Boy George singles chronology
"Everything I Own"
"Keep Me in Mind"

The version by Boy George reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in March 1987, becoming his first hit and only UK #1 as a solo artist.[11] It was also his first solo single after a departure from his band, Culture Club. Owing more to the Ken Boothe version, the sweet reggae style was reminiscent of his earlier debut hit with Culture Club, "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me?". Coming at the time of his arrest for possession of heroin, it provided a major boost to his career. Other than the UK, it was a #1 in many countries (including Canada, Ireland, Italy, Norway and South Africa) and top 10 in many markets too. The track was recorded during the "Sold" sessions at Air Studios Montserrat and produced by Stewart Levine. The musicians were Ian Maidman (later aka Jennifer Maidman) bass and guitar, Vic Martin keyboards, Glen Nightingale guitar, Richie Stevens drums, and Paul 'Wix' Wickens keyboards .

Boy George played this song many times in his live shows. He re-recorded the track in an acoustic style (named the Hippy Trippy Mix) and it was released on the American CD single of "Everything I Own", a re-release from 1993. It was also remixed in a dub version for the Culture Club 2002 box set.

Chart performance[edit]

Other cover versions[edit]

The single has been recorded by Shirley Bassey, The Connells, Jack Jones, Zdravko Čolić, Ken Boothe, Olivia Newton-John, Georgie Fame, Boy George, William Tarmey, *NSYNC, Jude, Rod Stewart, Crystal Gayle, Nicole Scherzinger, Chrissie Hynde, Greg London, Edison Lighthouse, Hernaldo Zuniga, Aiza Seguerra, Vanessa Hudgens and Boyzone. Although the song is frequently interpreted as a romantic love song, Gates actually wrote the song as a tribute to his late father.[16]

Andy Williams released a version in 1972 on his album, Love Theme from "The Godfather".

Cilla Black released a version in 1974 on the album, In My Life.

Joe Stampley released this song twice. First on his 1972 album, If You Touch Me (You've Got to Love Me), and then again in 1976 on his All These Things album. He released it as a single in 1976 and it peaked at #12 on the Country charts.

Brazilian singer Diana recorded a Portuguese version of the song with the title "Tudo Que Eu Tenho". The version by Ken Boothe reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in October 1974.[17] The version by Boy George also reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart, in 1987.

A cover version of this song was recorded by The Remingtons, a band which comprised former Bread member Jimmy Griffin, on their 1993 album Aim for the Heart.

In 1994, Malaysian band Lost Souls did a Hard Rock cover of the song for their debut album "Believe in Yourself". The song stayed at #1 on all English radio charts for several weeks, making them the first ever Malaysian band to sell 70,000 copies for an English album. In 1995, they had the opportunity to be the opening act for Bon Jovi's first concert in Malaysia, playing to an audience of 55,000 people.

In 1995, Brazilian/Venezuelan singer Elisa Rego released two separate versions of the song, both of which had a distinct pop-reggae sound. One version had the original English lyrics, while the other was translated into Spanish. Both songs were released as part of her third studio album "De amor y deseo" ("Of Love and Desire").

In 1998, 'N Sync also covered the song on their debut album *NSYNC.

In 2006, Chrissie Hynde covered the song for the soundtrack to the film Happy Feet. This recording was produced by John Powell and Gavin Greenaway. On the soundtrack album Happy Feet: Music from the Motion Picture, the song is mashed up with "The Joker", recorded by Jason Mraz.

In November 2007, Tesla released a cover album A Peace of Time, which included a cover of this song. This was a studio recording with an electric guitar solo.

The song (in a new ska arrangement) is also included in the 2009 film Bandslam. It is performed by Vanessa Hudgens, and is present on the soundtrack as well.

On November 19, 2009, Greg London and "Everything I Own" won the award for Best Adult Contemporary Song for the highest charting new artist release and release on an independent label on all three AC Radio airplay charts at the Hollywood Music in Media Awards HMMA.[18][19]

In 2009 Susanna Hoffs and Matthew Sweet covered the song on their collaborative Under The Covers Volume 2.

In 2013, Irish group Boyzone released the song as part of their anniversary album BZ20. They later performed the song at Sport Relief 2014.


  1. ^ "Everything I Own by Bread Songfacts". Songfacts.com. 1972-02-27. Retrieved 2014-05-01.
  2. ^ Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1972
  3. ^ Flavour of New Zealand, 15 May 1972
  4. ^ "Bread Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  5. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/adult-contemporary/1972-03-18
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-12-20. Retrieved 2016-12-10.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Musicoutfitters.com". Archived from the original on 2017-04-27. Retrieved 2016-12-10.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2018-09-28. Retrieved 2016-12-10.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ Ken Boothe, Full Official Chart History. officialcharts.com. Web. Retrieved 24 Oct. 2016. http://www.officialcharts.com/artist/15130/ken-boothe/
  10. ^ Ken Boothe (1974) Everything I Own. Roots Archives. Web. Retrieved 15 October 2016. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-10-18. Retrieved 2016-10-24.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  11. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. pp. 472–3. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  12. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts – 1980s". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 25 September 2016.
  13. ^ http://nztop40.co.nz/chart/singles?chart=3248
  14. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts – 1980s". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 25 September 2016.
  15. ^ http://nztop40.co.nz/chart/?chart=3876
  16. ^ "David Gates & Billy Dean "Everything I Own" 1994". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-27.
  17. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 306. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  18. ^ [1] Archived September 26, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ "MarketWatch.com". MarketWatch.com. 2009-09-01. Retrieved 2014-03-27.

External links[edit]