There was a time when the most popular American songs came straight from the Great White Way. The songs we’ve selected are not just known by Broadway buffs. They’ve seeped into the mainstream. Check out our our top ten Broadway pop hits.
10. I Don’t Know How to Love Him, from Jesus Christ Superstar
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “I Don’t Know How to Love Him” was first performed and recorded by Yvonne Elliman, however it was Helen Reddy who largely popularized the song. In 1971, the song had two concurrent recordings reach the Top 40 of Billboard’s Hot 100; Elliman’s reached number 28, while Reddy’s hit number 13.
9. Some Enchanted Evening, from South Pacific
“Some Enchanted Evening” is said to be Rodgers and Hammerstein’s greatest hit song. Pulled from their 1949 musical, South Pacific, which won all ten of the Tony Awards for which it was nominated in addition to the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, “Some Enchanted Evening” was later recorded by Jay and the Americans. The song reached number 13 on the Billboard charts. Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Al Jolson, Barbra Streisand, The Temptations and Harry Connick, Jr have also recorded the song and it was featured in the film American Graffiti and the popular television program Ally McBeal.
8. Day by Day, from Godspell
Godspell, the Stephen Schwartz, John-Michawl Teblak musical, originally opened on Broadway in 1971; two years later, a film version was released. “Day by Day,” with lead vocals by Robin Lamont, was the musical’s only top twenty Billboard song. It spent 14 weeks on the charts, besting at number 13. You can also check out this Times Square flashmob staged to “Day by Day” for the Broadway revival.