Kris Kristofferson

Help Me Make It Through the Night

Composed by Fred Foster / Kris Kristofferson

Song Review by

A huge hit for Sammi Smith in early 1971, "Help Me Make It Through the Night" has become something of a modern-day country standard and has been recorded by dozens of other artists; and it is also one of Kris Kristofferson's most popular songs. A slightly bluesy, country melody surrounds the chord changes, creating a great, easy backdrop for the lyrics. A deeply heartfelt narrative and account of a romantic encounter, the song has a great, almost Charlie Rich or Don Williams feel. Kristofferson's original is excellent, as is the hit version by Sammi Smith; however, there is another artist who was planing to cover it first. Following the demise of the Mamas & the Papas, Michelle Phillips wanted to cover this song after meeting Kristofferson in early 1970, well before Smith heard it. After a less than enthusiastic response from Lou Adler and John Phillips, she unfortunately abandoned the whole idea.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Kristofferson 1970 BMG / Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment
Me and Bobby McGee 1971 Monument Records 2:23
Songs of Kristofferson 1977 Monument Records / Custom 2:23
No Image 1984 Pair
No Image 1990
Various Artists
Sony Music Distribution 2:18
Singer/Songwriter 1991 Monument Records 2:20
The Best of Kris Kristofferson 1993 JDC Records / Sony Music Distribution 2:24
The Very Best of Kris Kristofferson 1994 Sony Music Distribution 2:22
The Legendary Years 1995 2:19
No Image 1995
Various Artists
Risky Business
Sexy Country [K-Tel] 1998
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 2:18
Super Hits 1999 Sbme Special Mkts. / Sony Music 2:17
The Austin Sessions 1999 Atlantic / Rhino 4:11
The Very Best of Kris Kristofferson [Monument] 1999 Monument Records 2:23
Number One Motown 2000
Various Artists
Universal Distribution
Rolling Stone Presents: Male Singer-Songwriters 2001
Various Artists
Rhino 2:17
All Time Greatest Hits 2001 Varèse Sarabande / Varese 2:24
Elite: Country 2002
Various Artists
Rajon Entertainment Pty Ltd.
Always on My Mind: A Tribute to Elvis Presley 2002
Various Artists
Sony Music Distribution
Rockin' Country [Sony Box Set] 2002
Various Artists
Immediate / Sony Music Distribution 2:21
Country Ballads [EMI] 2002
Various Artists
Phantom Import Distribution
Singers and Songwriters: The Originals 2002
Various Artists
Time/Life Music
The Definitive Country Collection [Eastwest] 2004
Various Artists
Eastwest 2:22
All American Country 2005 BMG Special Products 2:24
Live From Austin, TX 2006 New West 2:08
16 Biggest Hits 2007 Legacy 2:23
Up Country: 36 Great Stompin' Cowboy Classics 2007
Various Artists
EMI 2:22
Collections 2008 Sony BMG 2:17
Country Ballads [Sony BMG] 2008
Various Artists
Sony BMG 2:19
No Image 2009
Various Artists
Sony BMG 2:21
The Best of Kris Kristofferson 2009 Sony BMG 2:23
The Collection: The Hits of 1971 2009
Various Artists
Sony Music Distribution / Sony Music Entertainment 2:17
Original Album Classics 2009 Sony BMG / Columbia 2:24
Playlist: The Very Best of Kris Kristofferson 2011 Sony BMG / Sony Music
The Old Grey Whistle Test Live 2012
Various Artists
Rhino 2:30
Let the Music Play 2013 All Access / Chrome Dreams 3:10
Troubadours: Folk and the Roots Of American Music, Pt. 4 2014
Various Artists
Bear Family Records 2:23
An Evening with Kris Kristofferson: The Pilgrim; Ch 77 2014 KK Records 1:57
The Country Album [Universal] 2015
Various Artists
Universal Music TV 2:19
The Complete Monument & Columbia Album Collection 2016 Legacy / Sony Music 2:27
The Cedar Creek Sessions 2016 R/R Records / RR 2:00
100 Essential Tracks: Love Songs
Various Artists
Sony Music
Country Hits [USM Media]
Various Artists
USM Media 2:18
Help Me Make It Through the Night Delta No. 1 2:18
No Image New West
The Perfect Country Collection
Various Artists
Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment
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