You Belong to Me
[You Belong to Me] is credited to three writers: Pee Wee King, Chilton Price, and Redd Stewart. Miss Price, a songwriting librarian at WAVE Radio Louisville, had written the song in its virtual entirety as “Hurry Home to Me” envisioning the song as an American woman’s plea to a sweetheart serving overseas in World War II. Afforded songwriting credit on the song mostly in exchange for their work in promoting it, King and Stewart did slightly adjust Price’s composition musically and lyrically, shifting the focus from a wartime background “into a kind of universal song about separated lovers” and changing the title to “You Belong to Me”. Price had previously had success with another hit which she had written, “Slow Poke“, under a similar arrangement with the two men. 
The original version of the song was recorded by Sue Thompson on Mercury’s country label. It was soon covered by Patti Page, whose version was issued by Mercury as catalog number 5899, with “I Went to Your Wedding” (a bigger Patti Page hit, reaching #1) on the flip side. It entered the Billboard chart on August 22, 1952, and lasted 12 weeks on the chart, peaking at #4.
A cover version by Jo Stafford became the most popular version. Issued by Columbia Records as catalog number 39811, it was Stafford’s greatest hit, topping the charts in both the United States and the United Kingdom (the first song by a female singer to top the UK chart). It first entered the US chart on August 1, 1952 and remained there for 24 weeks. In the UK, it appeared in the first ever UK chart of November 14, 1952 (then a top 12) and reached number 1 on January 16, 1953, being only the second record to top such chart, remaining in the chart for a total of 19 weeks.
Sue Thompson - 1952
When Patti Page appeared on Ed Sullivan’s Toast of the Town TV show on 24 August 1952 she was in the midst of a string of nearly 50 top 40 hits running from 1948′s Confess to “Mama From the Train” in 1956. She’d had two #1 hits in 1950, All My Love (Bolero), and Tennessee Waltz. The latter spent 13 weeks at #1 on Billboard’s Best-Sellers List in 1950. Wikipedia says it was one of the biggest selling singles of the century.
Page somehow rapidly grew svelte and more glamorous, and while she continued to produce hits until the mid-1960s her popularity evidently peaked during the years 1951-1954, a period during which she had 33 top 40 hits. Wikipedia lists 59 charting singles during the 1950s.
A clip from a 1952 performance on Scott Music Hall Presents Patti Page, a summer replacement series on NBC, followed by a very brief clip from 1998.
(below) Page’s hit single, 1952
Jo Stafford – 1952
The Orioles – dated (released?) November 1952 by secondhandsongs.com. Though I was happy to find that the Orioles had recorded this song, I remain perplexed as to why more vocal harmony groups active in the 1950s evidently did not.
Chiemi Eri - 1953 recording by a Japanese vocalist and actress
Redd Stewart – date unknown
Bing Crosby – The Bing Crosby Show for General Electric Company, radio show broadcast. Recording date uncertain as Crosby recorded (transcribed* onto discs for radio broadcast) the song several times for this show in 1952 and ’53, with The Rhythmaires and John Scott Trotter and his Orchestra, as follows (adapted from bingmagazine.co.uk):
- broadcast: 16 October 1952, transcribed: 3 September 1953, Hollywood, CA
- broadcast: 13 November 1952, transcribed: 9 November 1952, Hollywood, CA
- broadcast: 27 November 1952, transcribed: 17 November 1952, Hollywood, CA
- broadcast: 1 January 1953, transcribed: 30th November 1953, Hollywood, CA
Paul Anka – 1958
John Coltrane and Paul Quinichette - from Cattin’ with Coltrane and Quinichette, 1957
Santo & Johnny – 1960
The Duprees – 1962
Yoshiko Shinkura – The credits at the beginning of the video indicate that the photographs are from 1953 while the recording was made in 1975.
*Radio transcription discs (from the Wikipedia article on “LP Record”):
From the mid-1920s until the adoption of magnetic tape recordings in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the radio industry used 16-inch and 12-inch discs, revolving usually at 33⅓ rpm, to transcribe radio broadcasts, either for archival purposes or to distribute copies to individual radio stations. These records were either aluminum core with lacquer, glass with lacquer (when there were aluminum shortages during World War II), or later, vinyl.
Comment by doc: The implication of the above description seems to be that normally transcription discs were used to record broadcasts for archival or distribution purposes. But the discrepancies between the dates of transcription and broadcast dates given at bingmagazine.co.uk suggest that, in this case, the discs were also used to allow variable delay between the recording and the original broadcast. There seem to be few cases in which the dates of transcription and broadcast are the same, transcription being usually prior. I presume that when no transcription date is given, the broadcast and transcription were simultaneous, though this might also mean the date of transcription is unknown.