Je t’appartiens / Let It Be Me
Let It Be Me is a popular song originally published in 1955 as Je t’appartiens. The score was written and first recorded by Gilbert Bécaud. The lyrics were penned in French by Pierre Delanoë. The English language version used lyrics by Mann Curtis and was performed in 1957 by Jill Corey in the television series Climax!. Corey’s version, with orchestration by Jimmy Carroll, was released as a single and was moderately successful. The most popular version of “Let It Be Me” was released in 1960 by The Everly Brothers. It reached 7th position on the Billboard Hot 100. The harmony arrangement of this version was often emulated in subsequent remakes.
Bécaud was a French singer, composer and actor, known as “Monsieur 100,000 Volts” for his energetic performances. His best-known hits are “Nathalie” and “Et Maintenant”, a 1961 release that became an English language hit as “What Now My Love.
Studio recording; date unknown
From the Bécaud obituary in the NY Times, by Alan Riding, published December 19, 2001:
In 1954, during the opening of the famed Olympia theater in Paris, Mr. Bécaud’s energetic and physical performing style so excited the audience that fans tore up the theater’s seats. Mr. Bécaud, who always appeared onstage in a navy blue suit, white shirt and polka-dot tie (he owned more than 200 of such ties), went on to perform more than 40 times at the Olympia, including in 1997, when the theater was reopened after extensive refurbishment.
c.1966-67 — I’m estimating the date based on the hairstyles, sideburns, and dress of the band.
c. mid to late 1960s — The arrangement is similar to that in the performance immediately above, and probably from about the same time.
Bécaud et Florent Pagny — live, 1993
view at mytaratata.com
some French interpretations
Esther Ofarim – live 1968 performance on French TV
Eddy Mitchell – from the album Grand Écran, 2009
Let It Be Me
In early 1957, in an episode of the American TV series Climax!, Jill Corey introduced an English-language version of “Je t’appartiens,” titled “Let It Be Me,” with the lyric by Mann Curtis. Corey also recorded and released a single, with an arrangement by Jimmy Carroll. Her recording of “Let It Be Me” was issued on 11 March 1957 on the single Columbia 4-40878, b/w “Make Like a Bunny, Honey.”
The Everly Brothers
Issued in November 1959 on Cadence 1376, b/w “Since You Broke My Heart” (Don Everly)
On Shindig! (I think) 1964
Two instrumental covers:
Chet Atkins – on his 1959 album Chet Atkins In Hollywood
Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass – from their 1962 LP The Lonely Bull
Additional covers with the Mann Curtis lyrics:
The Shadows – 1965
Andy Williams and Claudine Longet – on The Andy Williams Show, TV – 1969
Anne Murray and Vince Gill – 2002
Roch Voisine (English and French) from his 2008 album Americana