Goffin and King were inspired by the title of the aria Un bel di vedremo from the Puccini opera Madama Butterfly. Intended for Little Eva, "One Fine Day" was prepped as a demo by Goffin and King with King providing a guide vocal but - despite a propulsive piano riff courtesy of King - Goffin and King were unable to construct a viable arrangement and eventually gave up, passing the song to the Tokens who had recently produced the #1 hit "He's So Fine" by the Chiffons for whom it was thought another "fine" song had hit potential. The piano work by King (whose vocal was erased) was retained for the Chiffons' recording and King attended the session at which the Chiffons recorded their vocals. However the Tokens radically re-worked the Goffin/King demo of "One Fine Day" for the Chiffons' version; Gerry Goffin commented that the Tokens "really earned their production credit". The personnel on the original recording included Carl Lynch on guitar, Dick Romoff on bass, Artie Kaplan, Sid Jekowsky, and Joe Grimaldi on sax, and Gary Chester and Buddy Saltzman on drums.
King's version of "One Fine Day" reached number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the summer of 1980. Her cover of "One Fine Day", was ranked at number 73 on Billboard's list of the top 100 hits of 1980, it was to be her final Hot 100 appearance. Despite the single's success, it has curiously not been included on King's "best of" compilations.
The French-language rendering of "One Fine Day": "Un beau jour" was a 1963 single release for Jacky Moulière (fr) becoming his most successful single with a peak of #20 on the hit parade for France: the track was also included on Moulière's 1964 self-titled album release.
The Mindbenders cut a version of "One Fine Day" which served as the B-side of their #28 UK hit "Can't Live With You (Can't Live Without You)" (1966).
In 1967 Ken Sparkes, then a dee jay at 3AK Radio in Melbourne, recorded a version of "One Fine Day" which that March reached the Melbourne hit parade at #49, ranking at #86 on the chart for Australia.
The first remake of "One Fine Day" to chart in the US was that by veteran cabaret singer Julie Budd whose disco version - credited to Julie - reached #93 in 1976; Budd's only charting track, "One Fine Day" was produced by top '60s producer Herb Bernstein. The version of "One Fine Day" by Julie Budd is featured in the film The Driver (1978).