Top 10 Songs by Dionne Warwick

Dionne Warwick has lived several lives in popular culture. The 82-year-old New Jersey-born star rose to fame in the mid-1950s with hit songs that helped to earn her the title of the second-most charted female vocalist from 1955-1999, otherwise known as “the rock era.”

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Working with songwriters like Hal David and Burt Bacharach, Warwick became a star thanks to songs like “I Say a Little Prayer” and “Walk on By.” Today, Warwick is one of the most beloved people in popular culture thanks to her presence on the social media platform Twitter. American Songwriter caught up with Warwick to talk about all these things. Our interview with the legendary artist is HERE.

While she didn’t write her hits, she certainly performed them with enough grace, beauty, and soul to become an indelible artist. Here are Warwick’s top 10 songs of all time.

1. “I Say a Little Prayer”

Written by the dynamite songwriting duo David and Bacharach, this song hit No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967. The track, as Warwick told American Songwriter, was about the “babies” off at war in Vietnam. The song was the prayer expressed by the artist for these young people dying in a pointless battle.

2. “Walk on By”

Also written by David and Bacharach, this song hit No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the summer of 1964. It was nominated for a Grammy for Best R&B Recording. Later, singer Isaac Hayes recorded his own version in 1969.

3. “That’s What Friends Are For”

Written by Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager, this song was first recorded by Rod Stewart in 1982 but it was made famous three years later by Warwick. That recording also included performances from Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder, billed as “Dionne Warwick & Friends.” It was released by that group as a charity single for AIDS research and prevention. The song hit No. 1 in 1986 and won the Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Song of the Year. In total, the track raised some $3 million.

4. “Don’t Make Me Over”

This song was written by Bacharach and David and was originally recorded by Warwick in the summer of 1962. It was released a few months later as the first single from Warwick’s debut LP, Presenting Dionne Warwick. The song hit No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100.

5. “You’ll Never Get to Heaven (If You Break My Heart)”

Written by David and Bacharach, the song was recorded originally by Warwick in 1964. It hit No. 34 on the Billboard Hot 100. A love song and a heartbreak song, Warwick made this hers in a matter of moments.

6. “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again”

Written by Bacharach and David, the song was written for the 1968 musical Promises. Warwick released her version in the winter of 1969 and it hit No. 6 on the Hot 100. That summer, country star Bobbie Gentry also released her version. Gentry’s rendition topped the U.K. chart, as well as charts in Australia and Ireland.

7. “Alfie”

Written by Bacharach and David for the 1966 movie, Alfie, this song was a hit for two artists in two different countries. Warwick made it famous in the U.S. and Cilla Black made it famous in the U.K. Despite not wanting to initially write the song for the film, Bacharach said it’s his favorite song he’s written.

8. “Heartbreaker”

Written by the brothers’ Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees for Warwick’s 1982 album of the same name, “Heartbreaker” even features Barry Gibb on backing vocals on the chorus.

9. “Déjà Vu”

One of Warwick’s most successful songs, this track was originally written by Hayes and Adrienne Anderson. The song was recorded by Warwick for her self-titled album, Dionne, which was produced by Barry Manilow. The song earned Warwick a Grammy for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.

10. “Do You Know the Way to San Jose?”

Released in 1968, this song was recorded by Warwick and written, yes, by Bacharach and David. The song was a huge hit for the three, selling millions of copies and garnering Warwick her first Grammy. It’s about not being able to achieve your dreams and having to return home. It was released on Warwick’s 1968 LP, Dionne Warwick in Valley of the Dolls. The song has sold more than 3 million copies worldwide.

Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Stan Ponte

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