About The Song

In 1954, Alex North composed the score for the prison film “Unchained.” North was asked to write a song based on the movie, and he asked his friend Hy Zaret to write the lyrics. Zaret declined the opportunity, reportedly saying he was busy painting his house at the time. North’s persuasion prevailed, and together they produced a masterpiece. The response to the movie “Unchained,” starring football star Elroy “Crazylegs” Hirsch, was modest. However, the song caught on rapidly.

A year later, Bandleader Les Baxter released an instrumental arrangement, and Al Hibbler and Roy Hamilton each recorded vocal versions. All three recordings reached the Billboard Top 10 in the U.S., an extraordinary occurrence. The song’s publisher reports over 1500 recordings by more than 670 artists.

“Unchained Melody” was nominated for an Academy Award in 1956 and was sung at the Oscars by Harry Belafonte. Despite its popularity, it lost the Academy Award to “Love Is a Many Splendored Thing.”

In the movie, a short segment of the song is sung by Todd Duncan in the role of one of a group of convicts. He was an American baritone opera singer, one of the first African Americans to sing with a major opera company. He had previously played Porgy in the premier production of the Gershwins’ “Porgy and Bess” and appeared in the stage role 1800 times.

See also  The Righteous Brothers - You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'

Of the many varied recordings, the Righteous Brothers’ version, released in July, 1965, became the popular standard. That recording is actually a Bobby Hatfield solo with production credit variously claimed by Phil Spector and Righteous Brother Bill Medley. The Righteous Brothers’ recording enjoyed a second wave of popularity in 1990 when it was featured in the Patrick Swayze/Demi Moore film “Ghost.”

Video

Lyric

🎵 Let’s sing along with the lyrics! 🎤
Woah, my love, my darlingI’ve hungered for your touchA long, lonely timeAnd time goes by so slowlyAnd time can do so muchAre you still mine?I need your loveI need your loveGod speed your love to me
Lonely rivers flowTo the sea, to the seaTo the open arms of the sea, yeahLonely rivers sigh“Wait for me, wait for me”I’ll be coming home, wait for me
Woah, my love, my darlingI’ve hungered, hungered for your touchA long, lonely timeAnd time goes by so slowlyAnd time can do so muchAre you still mine?I need your loveI need your loveGod speed your love to me
11 thoughts on “The Righteous Brothers – Unchained Melody”
      1. Love it.Even when I was Pre-teen I would sing it the car with my mother and sing along with The Righteous Brothers! Lucky girl if someone felt this way about them. This song is the best even in my old age!

  1. I had this as the 1st song, our dance, at our wedding years ago. It meant so much then and means so much more now! The perfect song for two people who love each other so very much.

  2. 31 1/2 yrs ago I walked down the aisle to this song. It wascapproxiate for us. We had lived in two different towns for about a yr. I love this song.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *