"Save the Last Dance for Me" is the title of a popular song written by Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman, first recorded in 1960 by Ben E. King and The Drifters.


 [hide*1 The Drifters' version

The Drifters' version[edit]Edit

The Drifters' version of the song spent three non-consecutive weeks at #1 on the U.S. pop chart, in addition to logging one week atop the U.S. R&B chart.[1] In the UK, the Drifters' recording reached #2 in December 1960.[2] This single was produced by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, two noted American music producers who at the time had an apprentice relationship with a then-unknown Phil Spector. Although he was working with Leiber and Stoller at the time, it is unknown whether Spector assisted with the production of this record; however, many Spector fans have noticed similarities between this record and other music he would eventually produce on his own.[3] Damita Jo had a hit with one of the answer songs of this era called "I'll Save The Last Dance For You".

In the song, the narrator tells his lover she is free to mingle and socialize throughout the evening, but to make sure to save him the dance at the end of the night.[4] During an interview on Elvis Costello's show Spectacle, Lou Reed, who worked with Pomus, said the song was written on the day of Pomus' wedding while the wheelchair-bound groom watched his bride dancing with their guests. Pomus had polio and at times used crutches to get around.[5] His wife, Willi Burke, however, was a Broadway actress and dancer. The song gives his perspective of telling his wife to have fun dancing, but reminds her who will be taking her home and "in whose arms you're gonna be."[6] The personnel for the Drifters' recording were: Bucky Pizzarelli, Allen Hanlon (guitar), Lloyd Trotman (bass), Gary Chester (drums).

Dolly Parton version[edit]Edit

"Save the Last Dance for Me"
Single by Dolly Parton
from the album The Great Pretender
B-side "Elusive Butterfly"
Released December 1983
Recorded November 1983
Genre Country
Label RCA Nashville
Producer(s) Val Garay
Dolly Parton singles chronology
"Islands in the Stream"


"Save the Last Dance for Me"




In late 1983, Dolly Parton recorded "Save the Last Dance for Me", releasing it as a single in late December; the song subsequently appeared on Parton's album of 1950s and 60s covers The Great Pretender, released in January 1984. Reaching the top ten on the country singles chart in late February, the single also crossed over, reaching #45 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States.

Chart positions[edit]Edit

Chart (1984) Peak


U.S. BillboardHot Country Singles 3
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 45
U.S. BillboardHot Adult Contemporary Tracks 12
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 2

Michael Bublé version[edit]Edit

"Save the Last Dance for Me"
Single by Michael Bublé
from the album It's Time
Released April 4, 2006
Format CD singleDVD singleDigital download
Recorded 2005
Genre Pop
Length 3:38
Label 143Reprise
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Michael Bublé singles chronology


"Save the Last Dance for Me"


"Just in Time"


"Save The Last Dance For Me" was later covered by Canadian crooner Michael Bublé, and released as the third and final single from his second major-label studio album, It's Time. The song was heavily remixed for its release as a single.


For its release as a single, the song was heavily remixed, with mixes from producers including Ralphi Rosario and Eddie Baez. All of the chart positions for the single are for each of the remixed versions of the song respectively. The single first peaked at #22 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play Chart in September 2005.[7] After Bublé performed the album version of the song during the closing credits of the film The Wedding Date,[8] this version was released to radio, peaking at #5 on the Billboard adult contemporary chart, as well as reaching #99 on the Billboard Hot 100.[9] The music video for the track was once again directed by Noble Jones, who directed the videos for both of the album's previous singles - Home and Feeling Good. The music video was choreographed by Raymondo Chan, a Latin dance coach and performer. It was shot in Vancouver, Canada.


  • CD / DVD single[10]
  1. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Album Version) - 3:38
  2. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Starcity Remix) - 3:20
  3. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Live Version - Video) - 4:14
  4. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Music Video) - 3:42
  • Digital download[11]
  1. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Album Version) - 3:38
  2. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Ralphi's Anthomic Vocal) - 9:36
  3. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Eddie's Anthem Mix) - 9:53
  4. "Save The Last Dance For Me" (Ralphi's Hydrolic Dub) - 8:29

Chart positions[edit]Edit

Chart (2006) Peak



Hot 100


Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks


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