What a Diff'rence a Day Makes

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"What a Diff'rence a Day Makes"
Single by Dinah Washington
from the album What a Diff'rence a Day Makes!
B-side"Come On Home"
GenrePop, vocal jazz
LabelMercury Records
Songwriter(s)María Grever, Stanley Adams (English lyrics)[1]
Dinah Washington singles chronology
"Make Me a Present of You"
"What a Diff'rence a Day Makes"
"What a Diff'rence a Day Makes"
Single by Esther Phillips
B-side"Come On Home"
ReleasedJuly 1975
Songwriter(s)María Grever, Stanley Adams (English lyrics)[2]

"What a Diff'rence a Day Made", also recorded as "What a Difference a Day Makes", is a popular song originally written in Spanish by María Grever, a Mexican songwriter, in 1934 with the title "Cuando vuelva a tu lado" ("When I Return to Your Side") and first recorded by Orquesta Pedro Vía that same year. A popular version in Spanish was later recorded by trio Los Panchos with Eydie Gormé in 1964.[3]

The song is also known in English as "What a Diff'rence a Day Makes", as popularized by Dinah Washington in 1959.[4]

English adaptation[edit]

The English lyrics were written by Stanley Adams, and was played by Harry Roy & his Orchestra. It was published in late 1934. The most successful early recording, in 1934, was by the Dorsey Brothers, although it was first recorded in English by Cleveland crooner Jimmy Ague.[5]

Dinah Washington version[edit]

Dinah Washington won a Grammy Award in 1959 for Best Rhythm and Blues Performance with this song. Her version was also inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998.[6] It also earned her first top ten pop hit, reaching number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100.[7]


Chart (1959) Peak
US Billboard Hot 100 8
US Billboard Hot R&B Sides 1

Esther Phillips version[edit]

In 1975, Esther Phillips recorded her version of the song. Her comeback record had a disco feel to it. The Esther Phillips version reached number two on the disco charts.[8] Her version also did well on the US soul and Top 40 charts. Phillips performed the song on Saturday Night Live, during its first season.


Chart (1975) Peak
Australia (Kent Music Report)[9] 38
US Hot 100 20
US Billboard Hot Soul Singles 10
U.S. Billboard Dance Club Songs 2
U.S. Billboard Easy Listening Chart 33

Other versions[edit]

Sarah Vaughan,
Renee Olstead,
Aretha Franklin on her 1964 album, Unforgettable: A Tribute to Dinah Washington,
Eydie Gormé on the 1964 album Eydie Gormé canta en Español con Los Panchos,
Freddy Fender recorded a version for his 1976 LP If You're Ever in Texas,
Bobby Lewis (released on the single “Ace of Hearts 7622” in 1977),
Cher performs the song in The Cher Show,
Luis Miguel on his 1991 album Romance,
Laura Fygi on The Latin Touch (2000),
Jamie Cullum on his 2003 album, Twentysomething,
Brazilian band Eldissa in their 2005 album "What A Difference...",
Gloria Estefan on her 2013 album, The Standards.

In popular culture[edit]


  1. ^ Ascap entry for song ASCAP, accessed January 9, 2011.
  2. ^ Ascap entry for song ASCAP, accessed January 9, 2011.
  3. ^ "Cuando vuelva a tu lado by Eydie Gormé & The Trio Los Panchos (1964)". Secondhandsongs.
  4. ^ Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 17 - The Soul Reformation: More on the evolution of rhythm and blues. [Part 3]" (audio). Pop Chronicles. University of North Texas Libraries.
  5. ^ "What a Difference a Day Makes", Songs With Earlier Histories, August 5, 2014.
  6. ^ Grammy Hall of Fame
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 611.
  8. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 202.
  9. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 233. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  10. ^ "What a Difference a Day Made". BobbyDarin.com. Retrieved 2014-09-09.
  11. ^ Victoria Cordova & Alfredo Antonini Orchestra perform "What a Difference a Day Made" for Muzak in The Library of Congress Online Catalog at catalog.loc.gov
  12. ^ "Little Anthony And The Imperials* – Goin' Out Of My Head" at Discogs.
  13. ^ "What a Difference a Day Made". BobbyDarin.com. 1960-02-02. Retrieved 2012-01-08.
  14. ^ IRIS CHACÓN - "What a difference a day makes
  15. ^ Yanow, Scott. "Jacky Terrasson - Jacky Terrasson | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 26 August 2020.
  16. ^ "Artist: China Moses & Raphael Lemonnier". Second Hand Songs. 2009-03-04. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  17. ^ "The official SHELLS music website".
  18. ^ "The official Robin Pearkes music website".