If (Bread song)

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If (Bread song).jpg
Single by Bread
from the album Manna
B-side"Take Comfort"
ReleasedMarch 21, 1971 (1971-03-21)
Format7-inch single
GenreSoft rock
Songwriter(s)David Gates
Producer(s)David Gates
Bread singles chronology
"Let Your Love Go"
"Mother Freedom"

"If" is a song written by American singer-songwriter David Gates in 1971. Originally popularized by his group Bread, the song charted at number four on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 when released as a single in 1971 and number six in Canada. The song also spent three weeks at number one on the U.S. Easy Listening chart,[1] and one week at the top of the Canadian AC chart.[2]

In the U.S., Bread's version was the shortest song title to become a top ten hit until 1993, when Prince hit No. 7 with "7", later matched by Britney Spears' No. 1 hit "3" in 2009.

"If" has been a perennial favorite at weddings (for example, as a first-dance song) ever since it was released.[3]

Chart performance[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

It has been covered by other singers and musicians, including Petula Clark, Sergio Franchi, Eddie Kendricks, Cleo Laine, Perry Como, Frank Sinatra, Tom Jones, Jack Jones, Shirley Bassey, Dorothy Squires, Mirusia Louwerse, Herbie Mann, Julio Iglesias, Joe Pass, Ryoko Moriyama, Westlife, Olivia Newton-John, Dolly Parton, Dana, Scott Walker, Andy Williams, Frankmusik, Sarah Geronimo (From Sarah G. Live! statement song), Deni Hines, George Millard, Damien Leith, Rogier van Otterloo and an instrumental cover by Violinist Vov Dylan[11]

Telly Savalas recorded a mostly-spoken version which reached number one on the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in March 1975,[12] and has the shortest title of any song to reach number one in the UK.[13] This version also charted at #12 on the US Billboard Easy Listening chart in late 1974.[14] A parody version of the Savalas version, recorded by voiceover artists Chris Sanford and Bill Mitchell performing as Yin and Yan,[15] reached number 25 in the UK.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 39.
  2. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 2016-10-03.
  3. ^ "First Dance Songs for Weddings". Weddings.about.com. Retrieved 2014-03-27.
  4. ^ Canada, Library and Archives (17 July 2013). "Image : RPM Weekly". Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  5. ^ Canada, Library and Archives (17 July 2013). "Image : RPM Weekly". Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  6. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  7. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 5/15/71". tropicalglen.com. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". www.collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  9. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1971/Top 100 Songs of 1971". www.musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Cash Box YE Pop Singles - 1971". tropicalglen.com. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  11. ^ "So In Love (feat. The Palace Orchestra) by Vov Dylan on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved 2017-01-27.
  12. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 311. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  13. ^ Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 166. ISBN 0-85112-250-7.
  14. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary 1961-1993. Record Research. p. 212.
  15. ^ "About | Chris Sandford - Actor. Presenter. Angler. Writer. Flytyer". Chris Sandford. Retrieved 2014-03-27.

External links[edit]