Roberta Flack

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

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Song Review by Ed Hogan

Roberta Flack's "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" was originally an album track on her 1970 Atlantic debut album, First Take. But it actually didn't become a hit until two years later when it was used as the musical backdrop of a tender lovemaking scene in the movie Play Misty for Me directed by and starring Clint Eastwood. After a minute was edited out of the track to trim it down to a radio-friendly four minutes, the Ewan MacColl song was issued as a single. "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" had a six-week run at number one on both the pop and adult contemporary charts while peaking at number four R&B in the spring of 1972. Its success spurred the two-year-old First Take to gold status. The song won Grammy for Record of the Year and Song of the Year.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
First Take 1969 Atlantic 5:22
No Image 1973
Various Artists
Warner Bros.
No Image 1975 Atlantic 5:22
The Best of Roberta Flack 1980 Rhino 4:18
The Golden Age of Black Music: 1970-1975 1988
Various Artists
Atlantic 4:20
Atlantic Rhythm & Blues 1947-1974 [Box] 1991
Various Artists
Atlantic 4:18
Softly with These Songs: The Best of Roberta Flack 1993 Rhino 5:22
Singers & Songwriters: 1972-1973 2000
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 0:00
Artist's Choice: Johnny Cash 2003 Legacy / Sony Music Distribution 4:21
Rhino Hi-Five: Roberta Flack 2005 Atlantic / Rhino 5:22
Pair of Fives: Roberta Flack/Dionne Warwick 2005 Atlantic / Rhino 5:22
The Very Best of Roberta Flack 2006 Rhino 5:21
Singers & Songwriters [Time-Life Box Set] 2011
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 5:23
X-Men: Days of Future Past [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] 2014 Sony Classical 5:19
No Image 2015
Various Artists
100 Greatest Love Songs
Various Artists
No Image
Various Artists
Atlantic 4:20
The Greatest Love Songs of the '70s
Various Artists
Time Life 5:22