It's Only Make Believe

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"It's Only Make Believe"
Single by Conway Twitty
from the album Sings
B-side "I'll Try"
Released July 14, 1958
Format 7" single
Recorded May 7, 1958
Bradley Film & Recording Studios, Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
Genre Country, rockabilly, pop
Length 2:10
Label MGM
Songwriter(s) Jack Nance, Conway Twitty
Producer(s) Jim Vienneau
Conway Twitty singles chronology
"I Need Your Lovin'"
"It's Only Make Believe"
"The Story of My Love"

"I Need Your Lovin'"
"It's Only Make Believe"
"The Story of My Love"

"It's Only Make Believe" is a song written by Jack Nance and American country music artist Conway Twitty, and produced by MGM Records' Jim Vienneau, released by Twitty as a single in July 1958. The single topped both U.S.[1] and the UK Singles Chart,[2] and was Twitty's only number-one single on the pop charts of either country. On a segment of Pop Goes The Country, Twitty states the single was a hit in 22 different countries and sold over 8 million copies.[3] It is believed that Twitty wrote his part of the song while sitting on a fire escape outside his hotel room, to escape the summer heat, in Hamilton, Ontario. Twitty had come to Canada at the request of another American singer, Rompin' Ronnie Hawkins, due to Hawkins saying to Twitty that Canada was the 'promised land' for music.[citation needed]

Twitty recorded many subsequent versions of "It's Only Make Believe", including a 1970 duet with Loretta Lynn on their very first collaborative album, We Only Make Believe. Twitty joins in on the last verse in a 1988 uptempo cover by Ronnie McDowell, which was a #8 hit on the country music charts. Additionally, Twitty contributed to an alternative cover by McDowell.


The song's lyrics describe the thoughts and feelings of a man who is in a one-way relationship: He has a girlfriend, but she does not love him and only stays in the relationship for appearances, a fact of which he is painfully aware. He hopes and prays that, at some point in the future, the woman whom he is in love with will return his love, but laments that, at present, "it's only make believe."

Chart performance[edit]

Conway Twitty version[edit]

Chart (1958–1959) Peak
Australian Singles Chart 5
Canadian Singles Chart 1
Italian Singles Chart 9
Norwegian Singles Chart 2
UK Singles Chart[2] 1
US Billboard Hot 100 1

Cover versions[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Glen Campbell version[edit]

Chart (1970) Peak
Australian KMR[7] 1
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 4
Canadian RPM Top Singles 5
Euro Hit 50 10
Irish Singles Chart 3
New Zealand Singles Chart 2
U.K. Singles Chart 4
US Billboard Hot 100[8] 10
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[9] 3
U.S. Billboard Easy Listening 2

Year-end chart[edit]

Chart (1970) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 99
Canadian RPM Top Singles 76
U.S. Cashbox Top 100 66

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits: Eighth Edition. Record Research. p. 647. 
  2. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. pp. 92–3. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  3. ^ "Conway Twitty on Pop Goes The Country". YouTube. 2007-08-10. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  4. ^ "Robert Gordon (2) - It's Only Make Believe". Discogs. 
  5. ^ "RPM Country Tracks". RPM. February 23, 1991. Retrieved September 8, 2013. 
  6. ^ "A Portrait Of A Man And His Woman - Screamin' Jay Hawkins — Listen and discover music at". Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  7. ^ "Go-Set Australian charts - 26 December 1970". 1970-12-26. Retrieved 2013-02-14. 
  8. ^ "Glen Campbell Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  9. ^ "Glen Campbell Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.

External links[edit]