|"If You Asked Me To"|
UK vinyl single
|Single by Patti LaBelle|
|from the album Be Yourself and Licence to Kill|
|Released||12 June 1989|
|Patti LaBelle singles chronology|
"If You Asked Me To" is a song written by American songwriter Diane Warren. It was originally recorded by American singer Patti LaBelle for her ninth album Be Yourself (1989), and also for the soundtrack of the James Bond film Licence to Kill. The lyrics are from the point of view of a woman who pleads to her significant other:
Three years later, Canadian singer Celine Dion covered "If You Asked Me To" for her 1992 self-titled second album. Released as the album's second single, her version topped the Canadian charts and peaked at number four on the US Billboard Hot 100.
"If You Asked Me To" was first featured on the soundtrack of the 1989 James Bond movie, Licence to Kill. The song's title refers to dialogue from the film. LaBelle's version peaked at number 79 on the US Billboard Hot 100, at number 10 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, and at number 11 on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks.
This version of the song appeared on the daytime soap opera General Hospital in 1989.
The music video was filmed the day after the funeral of LaBelle's sister Jacqueline "Jackie" Padgett who died of lung cancer at age 43. (She was the third of LaBelle's sisters to die; all three of Patti's sisters died before age 44.) As such, the context of the song changed dramatically, as a mourning LaBelle, dressed in black, sings the song in a church (with candles and mourning lilies), intercut with shots of her in tears.
Despite being a Top 10 hit on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts, the song did not crossover to the pop charts until Celine Dion covered it three years later. Regarding the subject, LaBelle once explained during an interview used for the liner notes of her 1999 Greatest Hits album what she believed to be the reason for this fact: "I knew the song was a hit when I recorded it, and I was happy that Celine did it and did so well with it. But the arrangements are so close and we both have pretty powerful voices...so who knows why my version didn't take off. Maybe it was timing..."
|US Billboard Hot 100||79|
|US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)||11|
|US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)||10|
|"If You Asked Me To"|
American CD single
|Single by Celine Dion|
|from the album Celine Dion|
|B-side||"Love You Blind"|
|Released||13 April 1992|
|Celine Dion singles chronology|
Celine Dion's version of "If You Asked Me To" was released as the second single from her 1992 eponymous album. It was produced by Guy Roche and was released in April 1992 in Canada and the United States, and later the same year in the rest of the world. "If You Asked Me To" was included on the North American versions of Dion's greatest hits All the Way… A Decade of Song in 1999 and My Love: Essential Collection in 2008.
Dave Sholin from the Gavin Report wrote about the song: "Celine deserves all the accolades she's gotten the past few years, and surely her rendition of this touching Diane Warren ballad (previously recorded by Patti LaBelle), takes her to a new level." AllMusic senior editor Stephen Thomas Erlewine picked it as one of standout songs together with "Beauty and the Beast" and "Love Can Move Mountains".
The single was a hit in the United States and Canada. "If You Asked Me To" reached number four on the US Billboard Hot 100, and did even better on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, spending three weeks at number one. Also in Canada, it reached number one. The single had moderate success elsewhere. "If You Asked Me To" was released twice in the United Kingdom: first, in June 1992, when it peaked at number 60, and the second time in December 1992, when it reached number 57.
The music video for the song was directed by Dominic Orlando and filmed in Chatsworth and Hollywood, Los Angeles. It was released in April 1992 and included later on Dion's 2001 DVD video collection All the Way… A Decade of Song & Video.
In 1993, "If You Asked Me To" won an ASCAP Pop Award for most performed song in the United States. It was also nominated for the Billboard Music Award for Hot Adult Contemporary Single of the Year and Juno Award for Single of the Year (the latter was won by Dion's "Beauty and the Beast").
US CD single
Worldwide CD single
Australian/European CD maxi single
UK CD maxi single
|United States||28 April 1992||
|United Kingdom||22 June 1992|
In 1998, American Balladeer Crooner Johnny Mathis covered his version from his album Because You Loved Me. In 2006, Filipino band MYMP covered this song for their live album MYMP Live at the Music Museum and released it as single. In 2012, Filipino singers Erik Santos and Angeline Quinto recorded their version of the song for the film Unofficially Yours.
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