I Left My Heart in San Francisco (Tony Bennett)

14 JANUARY 1966


Tony Bennett’s landmark hit ‘I Left My Heart in San Francisco’ was at its peak UK chart position of #25. It was a bit of a slow burner, having been released six months earlier in the UK. If Tony ever dies - and I’m not convinced that he will - you can bet that this song will feature prominently in the news bulletins.

This song had been written back in 1953 (by Cory and Cross in Brooklyn, New York) but it was not recorded and released until 1962 (by Bennett), when it reached #7 in the US charts. This 'Contemporary Adult' track was a nice enough bit of tinkly-piano crooning from Bennett, but sounded like it could easily have been released in 1956.

This is just one of dozens of songs about the city (the name does roll nicely off the tongue), with quite a few being hits emerging in the late 1960s as San Francisco famously became the centre of the hippy movement.

B-side: 'I Left My Heart in San Francisco'
Recorded: 23 January 1962
Released: 2 February 1962
Highest chart position: #25 (UK, 1966), #7 (US, 1962)
Length: 2:52
Label: Columbia
Writers: George Cory, Douglass Cross
Producer: Ernie Altschuler

I Left My Heart in San Francisco (Tony Bennett)

'The loveliness of Paris seems somehow sadly gray
The glory that was Rome is of another day
I've been terribly alone and forgotten in Manhattan
I'm going home to my city by the Bay

I left my heart in San Francisco
High on a hill, it calls to me
To be where little cable cars climb halfway to the stars
The morning fog may chill the air, I don't care

My love waits there in San Francisco
Above the blue and windy sea
When I come home to you, San Francisco
Your golden sun will shine for me'