Tonight You Belong to Me

For the unrelated Paul Stanley song of the same title, see Paul Stanley (album).
For the similarly titled song by The Duprees, see You Belong to Me (1952 song).
"Tonight You Belong to Me"
Single by Irving Kaufman
Released 1926
Format single
Label Banner
Writer(s) Billy Rose, Lee David

"Tonight You Belong to Me" is a popular American song, written in 1926 by lyricist Billy Rose and composer Lee David. The first ever recording was made by Irving Kaufman in 1926 on Banner Records.[1] In 1927 Gene Austin recorded it and the song became a major hit. Another popular recording during this time was by Roger Wolfe Kahn and his Orchestra.

The song was revived by Frankie Laine in 1952, and subsequently recorded again in 1956 by Patience and Prudence, who reached #4 on the Billboard charts with their 1956 version and then re-recorded it in 1964,[2] and also by Lawrence Welk with The Lennon Sisters and the duo of Karen Chandler and Jimmy Wakely, and Ann Shelton. In 1964 "Tonight You Belong to Me" was recorded by George Maharis in a sweet swing style on the Epic label.

Other renditions

Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song for their 1965 album The Chipmunks Sing with Children.

The Honeys released this song as a single (backed with "Goodnight My Love") produced by Brian Wilson in 1969.

Gavin Castleton and Lex Land covered the song for a 2013 Valentine's Day single.

It was also recorded by country music singer Dottie West in 1977, and was released as a single to the Country charts that year, reaching #30 on the Hot Country Songs list in 1977. It was put on her 1977 album When It's Just You and Me.

It was also performed by Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters in the 1979 movie The Jerk. Jazz ukulele player Lyle Ritz actually played the ukulele accompaniment for the scene. On the 26th Anniversary DVD re-release there is a tutorial by Ukulele Gal on how to play "Tonight You Belong to Me" on the ukulele.

NRBQ covered the song on their 1983 disc "Grooves In Orbit".

The expanded version of The Trash Can Sinatras' 1990 album Cake includes a cover of the song as a bonus track.

The 2005 Fiona Apple album Extraordinary Machine includes a DVD featuring Apple, Jon Brion and others performing "You Belong to Me" live at Cafe Largo in Los Angeles, California.

At Sleater-Kinney’s last show on August 12, 2006, guest opener Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam sang the song as a duet with Janet Weiss of Sleater-Kinney. On his 2011 album Ukulele Songs, Vedder performs this song as a duet with Cat Power.

The Bird and the Bee covered the song on their 2008 EP One Too Many Hearts.

A cover of the song appeared on the album Raw Romance by garage punk musician Nobunny.

Tim Wheeler and Charlotte Hatherley of Ash cover the track in the Envy single, released in 2002.

Pebaluna performs a rendition of the song on their Acoustic Sessions EP in 2009.

Danielle Ate the Sandwich released a cover of the song as a digital single in 2014.

Commercial usage

The version sung by Patience and Prudence is currently used by eBay as a commercial theme. It was featured in a 2012 TV commercial for Scandinavian Airlines. This version was also featured in the ending credits of the 2004 film Birth.

In 2011, the Patience and Prudence rendition was featured in two episodes of American Horror Story. The first was in the Pilot episode, as the twins, Troy and Byron, begin trashing the house with baseball bats. The second was during the season finale, "Afterbirth", as the new homeowners run screaming from the home.

The Bird and the Bee released their rendition of the track on their digital EP One Too Many Hearts which is available for purchase online.

In the episode 10 "Thanksgiving" season five of Boston Legal, was sung as a duet between the two characters Edwin Poole and Attorney Melvin Palmer at a piano.[3]

A live version of Viva Voce performing this song can be found on their 2007 compilation album "Lovers, Lead the Way!/The Heat Can Melt Your Brain" as track 33.[4]

The song was featured in a 2009 TV commercial for U.S. Cellular.

The song was covered by John Hodgman and Jonathan Coulton on the audiobook edition of Hodgman's book More Information Than You Require.

The song was covered by Eddie Vedder and Chan Marshall (of Cat Power) on Vedder's second solo album, Ukulele Songs (2011).

Actress Zooey Deschanel and comedian Ben Schwartz posted a YouTube clip of themselves performing the song.[5]

The song was featured in a 2013 episode (S01,E14) of the TV series Bunheads, performed as a duet by the lead character Michelle (Sutton Foster) and her brother Scotty (Hunter Foster).

The song is featured in a 2013 TV commercial and internet for Milka named "Le dernier carré" [6]

In 2015, the song was featured in the episode "The Last Supper" of Bates Motel.[7]


  1. Don Tyler. "Hit Songs 1900-1955: American Popular Music of the Pre-Rock Era". ISBN 9780786429462. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  2. Patience and Prudence: A Sister Act Remembered
  3. "Boston Legal (2004–2008)". Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  4. "Lovers, Lead the Way!/The Heat Can Melt Your Brain - Viva Voce | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. 2007-10-09. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  5. Video on YouTube
  6. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-08-29. Retrieved 2013-08-31.
  7. Walden, Davis (April 21, 2015). "'Bates Motel' S3E7: The Last Supper". SideReel. All Media Network. Retrieved April 21, 2015.
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