"Buttons and Bows"
Single by Dinah Shore and her Happy Valley Boys
PublishedFebruary 25, 1948 (1948-02-25) by Famous Music Corp., New York[2]
ReleasedAugust 16, 1948 (1948-08-16)
RecordedNovember 30, 1947 (1947-11-30)[1]
GenrePopular music, Pop standard
LabelColumbia 38284
Songwriter(s)Jay Livingston and Ray Evans

"Buttons and Bows" is a popular song with music written by Jay Livingston and lyrics by Ray Evans.[3][4] The song was published on February 25, 1948 (1948-02-25) by Famous Music Corp., New York.[2] The song was written for and appeared in the Bob Hope and Jane Russell film The Paleface and won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.[3] It was originally written with an Indian theme, but was changed when the director said that would not work in the movie.[5] It was a vocal selection on many radio programs in late 1948. It was reprised in the sequel, Son of Paleface, by Roy Rogers, Jane Russell and Bob Hope. In 2004 it finished #87 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs survey of the top tunes in American cinema.

Though they began writing together in 1937, Livingston and Evans did not hit the top until 1946, when they set the music publishing business on fire with "To Each His Own," which reached number one on the Billboard charts for three different artists,[6] and occupied the top five positions on the "Most Played On the Air" chart for four different weeks. "Buttons and Bows" (1947) was their next multi-million seller, with four artists reaching the top ten in 1948, and won the Academy Award for Best Song. They finished off the decade with 1949's "Mona Lisa", which was a chart hit for seven popular and two country artists in 1950, sold a million for Nat King Cole, and won the pair another Best Song Oscar.[7][8]

The most popular version of the song was recorded by Dinah Shore on November 30, 1947,[5] but wasn't released until the following year. It reached the number one spot in November 1948, which it held for ten weeks, into January 1949. It beat out Peggy Lee's "Manana" (number one for nine weeks) for the number one record of 1948.[7] Charting versions of the song were also recorded by The Dinning Sisters, Betty Rhodes, Evelyn Knight, and Betty Garrett the same year. Gene Autry recorded his version for Columbia in December 1947,[9] reaching #6 on both the Best Selling Retail Folk Records and the Most Played Juke Box Folk Records charts,[10] and #17 on the Pop chart.[7]

Recording and chart history

In other media

See also


  1. ^ a b "COLUMBIA 78rpm numerical listing discography: 38000 - 38500". www.78discography.com. Retrieved 2022-04-23.
  2. ^ a b Library of Congress. Copyright Office. (1948). Catalog of Copyright Entries 1948 Published Music Jan-Dec 3D Ser Vol 2 Pt 5A. United States Copyright Office. U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
  3. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 134. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  4. ^ "Buttons and Bows – Bob Hope song lyrics". Best Clean Funny Jokes. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 17 September 2015.
  5. ^ a b Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854. Tape 4, side B.
  6. ^ "Ten tunes in forthcoming films". Long Beach Press Telegram Newspaper Archives. April 24, 1948. p. 22. Retrieved Jan 13, 2023.
  7. ^ a b c d Whitburn, Joel (1986). Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954. Wisconsin, USA: Record Research Inc. p. 551. ISBN 0-89820-083-0.
  8. ^ "The Ray & Wyn Ritchie Evans Foundation | The official website of Ray Evans, American songwriter, Livingston and Evans, Music, Archives, Films". www.rayevans.org. Retrieved 2023-01-13.
  9. ^ "COLUMBIA 78rpm numerical listing discography: Country/Western series 20000 - 20500". www.78discography.com. Retrieved 2022-04-26.
  10. ^ Whitburn, The Billboard Book of Top 40 Country Hits, p. 33: "Gene Autry".
  11. ^ a b c d e Whitburn, Joel (1973). Top Pop Records 1940-1955. Record Research.
  12. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2009). Top Pop Singles, 12th Edition. Record Research.
  13. ^ "ƣ森 - ĸ寸相思一寸淚 Photo by macaenese5354 - Photobucket". Photobucket. Retrieved 17 September 2015.
  14. ^ "I'm Walkin' Here, by Rab Noakes". Rab Noakes. 16 October 2015. Retrieved 14 April 2023.