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When a Man Loves a Woman (song)

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Title: When a Man Loves a Woman (song)  
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Subject: American Idol (season 1), True Love Travels on a Gravel Road, The Best of Bette (1981 album), Kiss My Brass, Farfisa
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When a Man Loves a Woman (song)

"When a Man Loves a Woman"
Single by Percy Sledge
from the album When a Man Loves a Woman
B-side Love Me Like You Mean It
Released April 16, 1966
Format 7" vinyl "45"
Recorded February 17, 1966 in Sheffield, Alabama
Genre Doo Wop, R&B, soul,[1] blues, traditional pop
Length 2:51
Label Atlantic
Writer(s) Calvin Lewis, Andrew Wright
Producer(s) Marlin Greene, Quin Ivy
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Percy Sledge singles chronology
"Warm And Tender Love"
"When a Man Loves a Woman"
"Baby, Help Me"

"When a Man Loves a Woman" is a song written by Calvin Lewis and Andrew Wright which was recorded by Roger Hawkins, drums. The music is built around a commonly used descending bass line chord progression as in Pachelbel's canon, or Bach's Air on the G string.

It was later covered by Michael Bolton in 1991, whose version also reached number one on the U.S. pop and adult contemporary singles charts (Bolton received a Grammy Award for this song). The Michael Bolton version has the distinction of being the last number one song to chart on the old Billboard Hot 100 charting system which relied on sales and airplay reports before switching over to Soundscan.

Barbara Mandrell recorded a country version of the song that same year. The song has also been recorded by Jerry Butler, Art Garfunkel, Luba, and Karen Dalton.

Sledge's version was also a top ten hit in the UK peaking at number four on its initial release and peaking at number two in 1987 after it was featured in a Levi's Jeans commercial.


End of year chart (1992) Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[3] 54


A German version was recorded by the singer Manuela as "Wenn es Nacht wird in Harlem".


  1. ^ a b   Track 3.
  2. ^  
  3. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1992". Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  4. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. p. 367.  
  5. ^ Whitburn, p. 168
  6. ^ Whitburn, p. 143
Michael Bolton 2005

External links

  • Percy Sledge article on The Standard Report
  • "When a Man Loves a Woman" in Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs
  • Full lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics
Preceded by
"Monday, Monday" by The Mamas & the Papas
Billboard Hot 100 number one single (Percy Sledge version)
May 28, 1966
(two weeks)
Succeeded by
"Paint It, Black" by The Rolling Stones
Preceded by
"Get Ready" by The Temptations
Billboard Hot R&B Singles number-one single
May 7, 1966 – May 28, 1966 (four weeks)
Succeeded by
"It's a Man's Man's Man's World" by James Brown and the Famous Flames
Preceded by
"Too Many Walls" by Cathy Dennis
Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one single (Michael Bolton version)
November 2, - November 23, 1991
Succeeded by
"That's What Love Is For" by Amy Grant
Preceded by
"Cream" by Prince and The New Power Generation
Billboard Hot 100 number one single (Michael Bolton version)
November 23, 1991
(one week)
Succeeded by
"Set Adrift on Memory Bliss" by P.M. Dawn
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