Maybe you get chills when you hear the Righteous Brothers sing “Unchained Melody” on the radio. Or maybe you get goosebumps when you hear it playing when you watch the Ghost movie for the zillionth time. Either way, I think most people love this song.
History and Success of “Unchained Melody”
“Unchained Melody” was written in 1955 by Alex North with lyrics by Hy Zaret. North actually wrote the music for a theme for the obscure movie Unchained, and a singer named Todd Duncan sang the vocals for the soundtracks.
One of the most beautiful songs ever recorded (in my opinion, but not just mine), “Unchained Melody” was one of the most recorded songs of the 20th century. According to the publishing administrator, more than 1,500 recordings of this song have been recorded by approximately 670 artists, and in more languages than just English.
“Unchained Melody” enjoyed a popular resurgence when the movie Ghost was released in 1990. Starring Demi Moore, Patrick Swayze, Tony Goldwyn, Whoopi Goldberg, and Rick Aviles, the Ghost movie was the 93rd highest-grossing film of all time as of 2015.
After people flocked to movie theaters to watch the Ghost movie, the Righteous Brothers’ version of the song appeared again in the Billboard charts. The Righteous Brothers re-recorded it and released it as a CD single and a cassette single.
Surprisingly, the new version sold incredibly well and was certified Platinum by the RIAA in January 1991. It also received a Grammy Award nomination.
The Righteous Brothers Singing “Unchained Melody” Live
The most popular version of was the version performed and recorded by The Righteous Brothers. Although it’s been covered extensively by other artists, most critics agree that their recording is the definitive version of the song. Watch them sing it live below.
Is “Unchained Melody” one of your favorite songs?