The Ink Spots

To Each His Own

Song Review by

With such classics as "Mona Lisa" and "Silver Bells" in its catalog, the team of lyricist Ray Evans and composer Jay Livingston is considered by some to be the last of the great songwriting partnerships from Hollywood's golden era. During the duo's still struggling years at Paramount Pictures, a film came along named after a little-known John Donne poem. After the scoring composer, Victor Young, balked at writing a title song that included the phrase -- which was not yet a commonly used phrase, never mind the well-worn cliché it is now -- Livingston & Evans jumped at the chance. As he is quoted on a fan website for the pair, www.quesera-sera.com, Livingston quipped, "We were so eager that we would have written COME TO US JESUS IN E-FLAT if they had asked us to." The song was a number one smash hit in 1946. Over the course of a particular three-week period, five of the Top Ten slots were, amazingly, recordings of "To Each His Own," by Eddy Howard, Tony Martin, Freddy Martin, the Modernaires, and the Ink Spots.

The Ink Spots were at the top of their game in 1946. After struggling for most of the 1930s, the group hit it big with a recording of "If I Didn't Care." That arrangement proved to be a winning formula from which the legendary quartet never strayed, and of course "To Each His Own" is no exception. After a gentle guitar arpeggio, lead singer Bill Kenny enters with his smooth phrasing, studied enunciation, and lilting tenor. We also have the requisite Hoppy Jones spoken word break, seamless harmonies, and the elegantly dramatic falsetto ending. The song is a classic ballad in form, with two verses, a bridge, and a final verse. It is a simple but romantically poetic lyric: "A rose must remain/With the sun and the rain/Or its lovely promise won't come true/To each his own, to each his own/For me there's you/Two lips must insist/On two more to be kissed/Or they'll never know what love can do."

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Golden Greats 1985 Disky 3:13
No Image 1986 Hallmark Recordings
The Greatest Hits [MCA] 1989 MCA 3:10
Your Hit Parade: 1946 1989
Various Artists
Time / Life Music
I'll Never Smile Again 1991 Orfeon 2:50
Music to Remember [Box] 1993
Various Artists
Dominion 3:05
Music to Remember, Vol. 3 1993
Various Artists
Dominion 3:09
You'd Be So Nice to Come Home To 1995
Various Artists
Smithsonian Folkways Recordings 3:16
Back to the 50's: 18 Golden Memories 1995
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 3:08
No Image 1996 Intercontinental Records
Hits of '46 1997
Various Artists
ASV / Living Era 3:10
No Image 1997 MCA
We Four: The Best of the Ink Spots 1998 Jasmine Records 3:13
#1 Hits: The 50's Decade 1998
Various Artists
St. Clair / Number 1 Hits 3:08
Classics 1998 Empress Music 3:11
The Anthology 1998 MCA 3:12
The Ultimate Collection 1998 Prism Leisure Corporation (UK) / Prism Platinum 3:16
20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of The Ink Spots 1999 MCA 3:10
Favorites 1999 Universal Special Products 3:11
Their Greatest Hits 2000 Memoir Classics / Memoir 3:14
Forever Gold: 50's Decade 2000
Various Artists
Boxsets 3:08
Forever Gold: 50's Decade [2 CD] 2000
Various Artists
St. Clair 3:08
No Image 2001 ASV / Living Era 3:14
Wolfman Jack's: Hall of Fame 2001
Various Artists
St. Clair 3:08
Cocktail Hour 2001 Columbia River Entertainment Group 3:13
Mum & Dad's Anniversay Collection 2001
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 3:08
No Image 2001
Various Artists
Tim 3:10
No Image 2001
Various Artists
Tim 3:10
Number 1 Hits 50's 60's & 70's 2002
Various Artists
St. Clair 3:08
Wolfman Jack's: Graffiti R&R Instrumentals 2002
Various Artists
St. Clair 3:08
The Dawn of Doo-Wop 2002
Various Artists
Proper Box 3:13
Songs for Mother 2002
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 3:08
The Golden Age of the Ink Spots: The Best of Everything 2002 Jasmine Records 3:11
Dawn of Doo-Wop: Vol. 1: Digging the Roots 2002
Various Artists
Proper Sales & Dist. 3:13
Jukebox Memories 2003 Columbia River Entertainment Group 3:10
World War II Songs: As Time Goes By 2004
Various Artists
Dynamic Nostalgia / Dynamic 3:11
Songs for Mum & Dad: A Wonderful Journey Down Memory Lane 2005
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 3:08
How High the Moon History 3:10
The Best Years of Our Lives: 1946
Various Artists
Sounds of Yesteryear 3:11