Rags To Riches

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PROFILE
Composer Richard Adler
Lyricist Jerry Ross
Year Written 1953
About Rags To Riches
When Tony Bennett first heard “Rags to Riches,” he hated the song and was forced by Mitch Miller to record it. With a very nice arrangement by Percy Faith, the recording was huge hit for Bennett and earned him a gold record. Thankfully, Bennett grew to enjoy singing the song. Martin Scorcese used the 1953 recording in the opening of Goodfellas, which helped find a new audience for this song.

Lyrics

I know I’d go from rags to riches
If you would only say you care
And though my pocket may be empty
I’d be a millionaire

My clothes may still be torn and tattered
But in my heart I’d be a king
Your love is all that ever mattered
It’s everything

So open your arms and you’ll open the door
To every treasure that I’m hoping for
Hold me and kiss me and tell me you’re mine evermore

Must I forever be a begger
Whose golden dreams will not come true
Or will I go from rags to riches
My fate is up to you

Session / Album Information

1953

“Rags to Riches” was recorded on March 17, 1953; it was released as a single the same year. It was arranged by Percy Faith.

This recording released on:

  • 1953: Columbia 78: 40048
  • 1953: Columbia 45: 4-40048
  • 1955: Columbia LP 12″: CL 688 — Music for Baby-Sitters
  • 1958: Columbia LP 12″: CS 8652 — Tony’s Greatest Hits
  • 1958: Columbia LP 12″ (Mono): CL 1229 — Greatest Hits
  • 1966: CBS LP 12″: DP 66010 — A String Of Tony’s Hits (UK)
  • 1970: Columbia LP 12″: C 30240 — Sings His All-Time Hall Of Fame Hits
  • 1972: CBS LP 12″: CBS 68200 — All-Time Greatest Hits [UK]
  • 1972: Columbia LP 12″: KG 31494 — All-Time Greatest Hits
  • 1986: Columbia CD: — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 1986: CBS/Sony CD: 32DP-558 — 16 Most Requested Songs [Japan]
  • 1989: BMG CD: TCD-120 — Your Hit Parade – 1953
  • 1990: Columbia/Legacy CD: CK-40215 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 1990: Columbia/Legacy CD: 40215 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 1990: Columbia CD: 40215 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 1991: Columbia CD: C4K 46843 — Forty Years – The Artistry Of Tony Bennett
  • 1992: Sony Mid-Price CD: 4724182 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 1993: CBS/Sony CD: SRCS-6641 — Forty Years: The Artistry Of Tony Bennett
  • 1997: Columbia CD: CK 65405 — Sings His All-Time Hall of Fame Hits
  • 1997: Columbia CD: CK 65316 — All-Time Greatest Hits
  • 1999: Sony International CD: 91207 — The Essential Tony Bennett: A Retrospective
  • 1999: Columbia/Legacy CD: CK 63570 — The Ultimate Tony Bennett
  • 2000: Columbia/Legacy CD: CK 63570 — The Ultimate Tony Bennett
  • 2000: Blue Jackel CD: 8427328030137 — Blue Velvet and Other Early Hits
  • 2000: Sony Music CD: 63570 — The Ultimate Tony Bennett
  • 2001: Blue Moon CD: BMCD 8001 — Blue Velvet and Other Early Hits [Spain]
  • 2001: Sony Music CD: SRCS-9093 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 2002: Columbia/Legacy CD: 86634 — The Essential Tony Bennett
  • 2004: Solo CD: 1214 — Blue Velvet And Other Early Hits
  • 2004: Columbia/Legacy CD: C5K 92784 — Fifty Years: The Artistry of Tony Bennett
  • 2004: Blue Moon CD: BMCD 3013 — Blue Velvet And Other Early Hits [Spain]
  • 2005: Sony Music CD: 4721952 — 16 Most Requested Songs
  • 2005: ASV/Living Era CD: 5512 — Take My Hand…
  • 2006: RPM/Columbia/Legacy CD: 84786 — Tony Bennett’s Greatest Hits Of The ’50s
  • 2006: Naxos Nostalgia CD: 8120803 — While We’re Young: Original Recordings 1950-1955
  • 2008: Impact CD: 11105 — Purely
  • 2008: Columbia/RPM/Legacy CD: 731397 — The Essential Tony Bennett [Limited Edition 3.0]
  • 2011: Disc #4 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK4) The Columbia Singles, Volume 2

1962-1

“Rags to Riches” was recorded live at Tony Bennett’s concert at Carnegie Hall on June 9, 1962 and was initially released in 1962 on the album Tony Bennett at Carnegie Hall. Ralph Sharon arranged the song.

This recording released on:

  • 1962: CBS LP 12″: BPG62116 — At Carnegie Hall – Part 2 (UK)
  • 1962: Columbia LP 12″: C2L 23 — Tony Bennett At Carnegie Hall
  • 1962: Columbia LP 12″: C2S 823 — Tony Bennett At Carnegie Hall
  • 1993: Sony Music Special Products CD: 15056 — Tony Bennett Sings for You
  • 1995: Sony Music CD: WK 75012 — Tony Bennett At Carnegie Hall
  • 1997: Columbia CD: C2K 64609 — At Carnegie Hall June 9, 1962: Complete Concert
  • 2011: Disc #25 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK24) Tony Bennett at Carnegie Hall

1962-2

“Rags to Riches” was recorded on August 28, 1962 and released in 2013 on the album Bennett/Brubeck: The White House Sessions Live 1962.

This recording released on:

  • 2013: Bennett/Brubeck: The White House Sessions Live 1962 (88883718042)

1964

“Rags To Riches” was recorded on April 8, 1964 and released in 2011 on Tony Bennett Live at the Sahara: From This Moment On, as part of the 2011 Complete Collection. This is a parody version by Ralph Sharon.

This recording released on:

  • 2011: Disc #74 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK72) Tony Bennett Live at the Sahara: From This Moment On

1994

“Rags To Riches” was recorded and televised live on April 12, 1994 on MTV. The MTV Unplugged album was released in June of that year. The songs from the televised concert were arranged by Tony Bennett and the Ralph Sharon Trio.

This recording released on:

  • 1993: Columbia CD: CK 66214 — MTV Unplugged
  • 2011: Discs #60/61 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK59) MTV Unplugged

2006

“Rags to Riches” was recorded was recorded on February 9, 2006 with Elton John and was released that same year on Duets: An American Classic. It was arranged by Jorge Calandrelli.

This recording released on:

  • 2006: RPM Records/Columbia CD: 82876809792 — Duets: An American Classic
  • 2006: RPM Records/Columbia CD: 82876887352 — Duets: An American Classic [Target Stores]
  • 2006: Sony BMG CD: 828768858721 — Duets: An American Classic [Australia]
  • 2006: Sony BMG CD: 82876885862 — Duets: An American Classic [UK, Singapore]
  • 2011: Disc #70 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK68) Duets: An American Classic

2012

“Rags to Riches” was recorded in 2012 with Romeo Santos and released on Viva Duets.

This recording released on:

  • 2012: RPM Records/Columbia CD: 88725473102 – Viva Duets
  • 2012: RPM Records/Columbia CD: 88765400972 – Viva Duets (Target Release)
  • 2012: RPM Records/Columbia CD: 88765402412 – Viva Duets (Deluxe edition)

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