I'll Be There for You (The Rembrandts song)
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|"I'll Be There for You"|
|Single by The Rembrandts|
|from the album L.P.|
|Released||May 1, 1995|
|Format||7", CD single|
|Label||East West, Atlantic|
|The Rembrandts singles chronology|
"I'll Be There for You" is a song recorded by the American duo The Rembrandts. It is best known as the theme song to the American sitcom Friends, which premiered in September 1994 and ended in May 2004. The song was also released as the first single from the group's third studio album LP.
"I'll Be There for You" was co-written by Friends producers David Crane and Marta Kauffman, Kauffman's husband, composer Michael Skloff, and songwriter Allee Willis, along with Phil Sōlem and Danny Wilde, both of the Rembrandts. It is strongly influenced by The Beatles, especially reminiscent of the "I Feel Fine" guitar riff, and is also highly reminiscent of The Monkees' "Pleasant Valley Sunday."
The original theme, which is under one minute long, was later re-recorded as a three-minute pop song. After Nashville program director Charlie Quinn, along with radio announcer and music director Tom Peace, looped the original short version into a full-length track and broadcast it on radio station WYHY, it became so popular that they had to re-record it. "Our record label said we had to finish the song and record it. There was no way to get out of it," lead singer Phil Sōlem said.
The video features the band performing in a studio whilst the cast members of Friends join in.
- European CD maxi-single
- "I'll Be There for You" – 3:09
- "Fixin' to Blow" – 5:03
- "Just the Way It Is, Baby" – 4:06
- "Snippets Medley" – 6:46
In the United States, the song topped the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart for eight weeks. When the single was released 1995, it peaked at #3 on the UK Singles Chart in the United Kingdom and at #17 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States as the flipside to "This House Is Not a Home". It also peaked at #1 on the U.S. Top 40 Mainstream and Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks charts.
The song was the most successful in Canada where it peaked at number 1 for 5 consecutive weeks.
"I'll Be There for You" has been included on the following compilation albums:
- Friends: Music From The TV Series (1994) – for the American series Friends' opening song;
- Serial TV: Les Plus Grands Hits Des Séries TV
- Happy Songs
- Billboard Top Hits: 1995 – for Billboard's 1995 CD.
- American pop rock band The Goo Goo Dolls recorded their own version of this song which contained slightly altered lyrics, and a more upbeat tempo, rockier sound, as well as a glockenspiel in the rhythm track.
- Yakko, Wakko, and Dot of Animaniacs parodied the theme song as "We Won't Ever Leave" during a 1997 episode entitled "Acquaintances" (which is itself a spoof of Friends).
- American punk rock band Pink Lincolns covered this song under the title "Friends" for a 1997 compilation album titled Show & Tell.
- Fictional American band Alvin and the Chipmunks covered this song for their 2007 video game Alvin and the Chipmunks.
- "Weird Al" Yankovic had planned to record a parody for his Bad Hair Day album called "Theme for Home Improvement or I'll Repair For You". Although the Rembrandts were fine with the parody idea, the producers of Friends were not, fearing that the show's theme would be overexposed. "Theme for Home Improvement" is nevertheless a concert favorite.
In popular culture
- The 2013 comedy film We're the Millers, which stars Jennifer Aniston, features a blooper during the credits where Jason Sudeikis flips through radio stations and ends up on "I'll Be There for You". Sudeikis, Emma Roberts, and Will Poulter begin singing the song as Aniston covers her face laughing.
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