The 10 Best Wayne Newton Songs of All-Time (2024)

The 10 Best Wayne Newton Songs of All-Time (1)

In 1958, a Las Vegas booking agent spotted Wayne Newton (who was still in his junior year at high school at the time) and his brothers performing on a local TV show. He signed them up to perform in Vegas for two weeks. The two weeks turned into decades, Newton ended up becoming a breakaway star, and today, “The Midnight Idol” is considered one of the best-known entertainers in Las Vegas history. Here, we look back on some of his finest moments with our pick of the 10 best Wayne Newton songs of all time.

10. I Guess the Lord Must Be In New York City

Kicking off our list of the 10 best Wayne Newton songs of all time is I Guess the Lord Must Be In New York City. The song was written and originally recorded by Harry Nilsson for his fourth studio album, Harry. Shortly after Nilsson hit number 34 on the pop charts with the original, Newton reached number 28 on the US Easy Listening chart with his version.

9. Games That Lovers Play

Games That Lovers Play was composed by legendary composer James Last. In late 1966, a flurry of artists including Eddie Fisher, Mantovani, and Wayne Newton all released their versions of the song simultaneously. Fisher’s did the best commercially, reaching number 2 on the US Easy Listening chart. Newton’s version also proved popular, reaching number 22 on the Easy Listening chart and number 86 on the Billboard 100. Since then, it’s been covered over 100 times by everyone from Connie Francis to Donald Peers.

8. Summer Wind

Summer Wind was originally titled Der Sommerwind and written in German by Heinz Meier and Hans Bradtke. After Johnny Mercer re-wrote it in English, scores of artists covered it, starting with Wayne Newton in 1965. Released as a single from the album of the same name, it reached number 78 on the Billboard Hot 100. A year later, Frank Sinatra came along and took it to number 1 on the Easy Listening chart. Since then, it’s been covered by a veritable army of artists, including Michael Buble, Fun Lovin’ Criminals, Barry Manilow, and Willie Nelson.

7. Remember When (We Made These Memories)

Remember When (We Made These Memories) was written by Bert Kaempfert, Charles Singleton and Eddie Snyder and originally recorded by Newton in 1965. Released as a single from his album Wayne Newton…Now!, it climbed to number 69 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 15 on the U.S. adult contemporary chart. After Newton popularized the song, several other artists released covers, including Bert Kaempfert and His Orchestra, Max Bygraves, The King Brothers, and Johnny Mathis.

6. The Little White Cloud that Cried

The Little White Cloud that Cried was written by Johnnie Ray and first released by Ray and The Four Lads in 1951, becoming one of the group’s biggest ever hits when it reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100. Ten years later, Newton and his brothers bought it back to the charts with their version, which hit number 99 in 1961. Other artists who’ve enjoyed success with the song include Vera Lynne, Doris Day, and Chris Issac.

5. The Letter

During an interview with Nashville Now, Newton explained that his inspiration for The Letter came from a discarded note written by Elvis Presley that Newton had purchased at a Sotheby’s auction. According to Wikipedia, Newton received so many requests from Presley’s fans to know what was in the letter, he ended up including a word for word reading of it in the song. On its release, The Letter hit number one on both the Cashbox Pop and Country charts but failed to make it to Billboard’s Hot 100 chart, Adult Contemporary chart, or “Bubbling Under” chart, becoming the first time in history a Cashbox number one failed to make it to the Billboard Hot 100.

4. Years

Years was written by Kye Fleming and Dennis Morgan and first recorded by country singer Barbara Mandrell, who earned her third number one on the country charts with it in December 1979. The following year, Newton covered the song and released it as a standalone single. It reached number 35 on the Billboard Hot 100, simultaneously becoming one of the biggest hits of his career and his last ever entry on the top 40.

3. Red Roses for a Blue Lady

Red Roses for a Blue Lady was written in 1948 by Sid Tepper and Roy C. Bennett and first recorded by John Laurenz, whose version climbed to number 2 in the charts in the spring of 1949. The song, which is sung from the perspective of a man pleading for the forgiveness of his lover after an argument had made her blue, was recorded by numerous artists in the years after, with Newton releasing his version in 1965. As luck would have it, both Vic Dana and Bert Kaempfert also released versions at the same time. Dana’s version proved the biggest hit, coming in at number 10 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. Newton’s version, meanwhile, took him to number 23 on the Hot 100 and number 4 on the Easy Listening chart.

2. Daddy, Don’t You Walk So Fast

According to Songfacts, Newton took a liking to Daddy, Don’t You Walk So Fast as he felt its emotional theme, which deals with the breakdown of a marriage from a child’s perspective, would resonate with audiences in Las Vegas. As it turned out, it resonated with more than just Vegas audiences – released in April 1972, it became his biggest ever hit, reaching number one on the Cashbox chart, number 3 on the U.S. adult contemporary chart, and number 4 on the Hot 100. It’s since sold over 1 million copies and earned gold certification in the US.

1. Danke Schoen

Danke Schoen was originally intended for Bobby Darin, but after Darin saw the then 21-year-old Newton perform at the Copacabana nightclub, he handed it over to him instead. Released in June 1963, it took Newton to number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and quickly became known as his signature song. In 1986, it enjoyed a fresh wave of attention when it was used in the film, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. It’s since featured in a host of other TV shows and movies, including Meet the Parents, Matchstick Men, Vegas Vacation, and Fools Rush In.

The 10 Best Wayne Newton Songs of All-Time (2024)


The 10 Best Wayne Newton Songs of All-Time? ›

German phrase

dan·​ke schoen ˈdäŋ-kə-ˈshœn. : thank you very much.

What are the top 10 most famous songs? ›

The Top 50 most iconic songs of all time
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit – Nirvana.
  • Imagine – John Lennon.
  • One – U2.
  • Billie Jean – Michael Jackson.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen.
  • Hey Jude – The Beatles.
  • Like A Rolling Stone – Bob Dylan.
  • I Can't Get No Satisfaction – Rolling Stones.

What is considered the greatest song of all time? ›

Here's the list's top 10:
  1. 1: Aretha Franklin — “Respect”
  2. 2: Public Enemy — “Fight The Power”
  3. 3: Sam Cooke — “A Change is Gonna Come”
  4. 4: Bob Dylan — “Like A Rolling Stone”
  5. 5: Nirvana — “Smells Like Teen Spirit”
  6. 6: Marvin Gaye — “What's Going On”
  7. 7: The Beatles — “Strawberry Fields Forever”
Sep 16, 2021

What was Wayne Newton's first song? ›

Danke Schoen

What does "danke schoen" mean in the song? ›

German phrase

dan·​ke schoen ˈdäŋ-kə-ˈshœn. : thank you very much.

What is the 1 song of all time? ›

Blinding Lights

What is the most played song ever? ›

It was never a hit single and got almost no play on Top 40 radio. There's even a dispute over the exact title. Yet “It's a Small World,” also known as “It's a Small, Small World” and “It's a Small World (After All),” is very likely the most played song in music history — nearly 50 million times.

What was the biggest selling song of all time? ›

The Guinness World Records named the holiday single "White Christmas" (1942) by Bing Crosby as the best-selling single worldwide. According to Guinness, "White Christmas" sold over 50 million copies. The single is known as the "best-selling single of all time".

Who has the longest number 1 song ever? ›

"Old Town Road" holds the record for the longest stretch at No. 1 with 19 weeks. It also became the fastest song in history to be certified diamond.

Who made the best song ever? ›

"Best Song Ever" is a song recorded by English-Irish boy band One Direction.

What made Wayne Newton famous? ›

His well known songs include 1972's "Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast", "Years", and his vocal version of "Red Roses for a Blue Lady". He is best known for his signature song, "Danke Schoen". Newton was born Carson Wayne Newton' in Norfolk, Virginia to Evelyn Marie "Smith" and Patrick Newton, who was an auto mechanic.

Did Wayne Newton sing with his brother? ›

Jerry Newton was the older brother of Wayne Newton. He and Wayne performed as the Rascals in Rhythm in Las Vegas as children, as well as later on The Jackie Gleason Show and Ozark Jubilee.

Is Wayne Newton still performing? ›

Wayne Newton is currently touring across 1 country and has 49 upcoming concerts.

What is the meaning of Danke schon? ›

1. Danke schön (“Thank you very much”) A slightly more formal version of “danke,” the phrase “danke schön” means “thank you very much.” You can use “danke schön” as a response when someone does something nice for you, or when you simply want to be polite.

How old was Wayne Newton in 1963? ›

The “Mack the Knife” crooner passed “Danke Schoen” to his protégé, giving Newton his signature song and his first hit in 1963 at age 21. That November, he was booked at the Flamingo for his first headlining gig.

What is Danke slang for? ›

Danke is a word of Germanic (and Swedish, too) origin, meaning thanks or thank you. Commonly used in chatrooms and forums, almost singularly as a single-word response, and almost never sarcastically.

What is the most recognized song in the world? ›

The most recognizable songs of all-time
  • Michael Jackson – Billie Jean: 2.97 seconds.
  • Culture Club – Karma Chameleon: 2.99 seconds.
  • Britney Spears – Baby One More Time: 2.99 seconds.
  • Elvis Presley – Devil in Disguise: 3.01 seconds.
  • Boney M – Rivers of Babylon: 3.03 seconds.
  • Elton John – Candle in the Wind: 3.04 seconds.
Mar 1, 2023

What is the number one recorded song of all time? ›

Although the good people at Guinness World Records recognize “Summertime” as the most recorded song in history, they also note that “Amazing Grace” has been recorded thousands of times, appearing on at least 11,000 albums.

Who has the most #1 hit songs of all time? ›

The Beatles have 20 No. 1 hits, the most in history. The Beatles still reign supreme with the most No. 1 songs ever on the Billboard Hot 100, earning 20 in the span of just eight years.

What is the most listened to song in the history of music? ›

There's no one correct answer to this question. It's hard to know what's the most heard song. But the most played on all media is widely considered to be “ it's a Small World”.

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