I Only Have Eyes for You

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"I Only Have Eyes for You" is a romantic love song by composer Harry Warren and lyricist Al Dubin, written for the film Dames (1934) where it was introduced by Dick Powell and Ruby Keeler. The song is a jazz standard, and has been covered by numerous musicians. Successful recordings of the song have been made by Ben Selvin (in 1934), Peggy Lee (in 1947, The Lettermen (in 1966), Art Garfunkel (in 1975), and Rod Stewart (in 2003), among others. Perhaps the best known and most acclaimed version is the "otherworldly" 1959 recording by doo-wop artists The Flamingos, which was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2003, and listed as #157 in Rolling Stone magazine's "500 Greatest Songs of All Time (2004)."

Notable recordings[edit]

Charting versions[edit]

The song was a #2 hit for Ben Selvin in 1934.[1] The orchestras of Eddie Duchin and Anson Weeks also figured in the song's 1934 popularity.

The vocal group The Lettermen released a version in 1966 that charted in the United States and Canada, and reached #4 on the US Billboard Easy Listening chart.

The Flamingos version[edit]

"I Only Have Eyes for You"
Single by The Flamingos
from the album Flamingo Serenade
Format7" single
Songwriter(s)Harry Warren, Al Dubin

This song was included on The Flamingos' debut album Flamingo Serenade. The version by the Flamingos features a prominent reverb effect, creating a dreamy ambience. This version peaked at number 11 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart[2] and number 3 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.[3] It ranked as the 73rd biggest hit of 1959 by Billboard.[4] Rolling Stone magazine ranked the Flamingos' version as number 157 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[5]

Art Garfunkel version[edit]

"I Only Have Eyes for You"
I Only Have Eyes for You - Art Garfunkel.jpg
Single by Art Garfunkel
from the album Breakaway
B-side"Looking for the Right One"
ReleasedAugust 1975
GenreSoft rock
Songwriter(s)Harry Warren, Al Dubin
Producer(s)Richard Perry
Art Garfunkel singles chronology
"Second Avenue"
"I Only Have Eyes for You"
"Break Away"
"Second Avenue"
"I Only Have Eyes for You"
"Break Away"

A recording of the song by Art Garfunkel was a number one hit on the UK Singles Chart in October 1975 for two weeks.[6] The song was his first hit as a solo artist in the UK. In the US, the song reached number 18 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100[7] and #1 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.[8] The B-side of the single release was "Looking for the Right One," a song written and later recorded by Stephen Bishop. Garfunkel performed "I Only Have Eyes for You" on the second episode of Saturday Night Live.[9]


Other versions[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

The song was sung in the 1935 film The Woman in Red, produced by Warner Bros., starring Barbara Stanwyck and Gene Raymond. It was also used in the 1950 film Tea for Two, sung by Gordon MacRae.

The Flamingos' version was also used in the 1991 movie "Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead."

The Flamingos' version was included on the soundtracks for the 1972 version of Kenneth Anger's Rabbit's Moon, 1973 film American Graffiti, 1983 films The Right Stuff and Heart Like a Wheel, the 1991 film My Girl, the 1993 Robert De Niro film A Bronx Tale and the 2003 movie Something's Gotta Give starring Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton. Grace (Nicole Kidman) also sings a portion of the song to Charles (Christopher Eccleston) in the 2001 film The Others. The trailer of The Grudge 2 also briefly features the song. In the 2001 sci-fi movie A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Gigolo Joe, a lover robot, has this song built into him, and he can play it by a tilt of his head. He plays it to seduce women.

On television, it was used as a recurring theme in a Tex Avery-directed Warner Bros. Merrie Melodies cartoon of the same title, in a scene in the 1989 episode of The Wonder Years, "How I'm Spending My Summer Vacation", and in a 1998 episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer involving two ghosts from the 1950s borrowing its title from the song and features excerpts of it in several scenes. In scenes from the September 25, 1989 episode of Designing Women, "One Night with You." Disney also featured a music video of the song in the special DTV Doggone Valentine set to clips from Lady and the Tramp. Most recently, the song has been used in episodes of the supernatural drama TV series 666 Park Avenue and in 2013 was featured in the series Glee. It was also featured in the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Lifesigns".[11] In 2014 this song appeared in the horror movie Annabelle followed by the alternate history thriller, The Man in the High Castle, in 2016. It was also recently used in the newest season of Ray Donovan covered by Tashaki Miyaki. The version by The Flamingos was featured in Season 2, Episode 4 of Netflix's The Crown in 2017.



  1. ^ Billboard magazine
  2. ^ "Music: Top 100 - Billboard Hot 100 Chart", Billboard
  3. ^ "R&B/Hip Hop Songs - Billboard", Billboard
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ "500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. April 7, 2011. Retrieved October 6, 2018.
  6. ^ "i+only+have+eyes+for+you | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". Officialcharts.com. Retrieved 2016-08-29.
  7. ^ "Music: Top 100 - Billboard Hot 100 Chart", Billboard
  8. ^ "Adult Contemporary Chart - Billboard", Billboard
  9. ^ O'Connor, John J. (October 20, 1975). "TV: Simon and Garfunkel Reunion on NBC's 'Saturday Night'". The New York Times. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Gioia, Ted (2012). The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire. New York City: Oxford University Press. pp. 176–177. ISBN 978-0-19-993739-4.
  11. ^ Star Trek: Voyager Season 2: Ep.19


  • The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 6th Edition, 1996

External links[edit]