An album is a collection of audio recordings issued as a collection on compact disc, audio tape, or another medium. Albums of recorded music were developed in the early 20th century as individual 78-rpm records collected in a bound book resembling a photograph album. Vinyl LPs are still issued, though album sales in the 21st-century have focused on CD and MP3 formats; the audio cassette was a format used alongside vinyl from the 1970s into the first decade of the 2000s. An album may be recorded in a recording studio, in a concert venue, at home, in the field, or a mix of places; the time frame for recording an album varies between a few hours to several years. This process requires several takes with different parts recorded separately, brought or "mixed" together. Recordings that are done in one take without overdubbing are termed "live" when done in a studio. Studios are built to absorb sound, eliminating reverberation, so as to assist in mixing different takes. Recordings, including live, may contain sound effects, voice adjustments, etc..
With modern recording technology, musicians can be recorded in separate rooms or at separate times while listening to the other parts using headphones. Album covers and liner notes are used, sometimes additional information is provided, such as analysis of the recording, lyrics or librettos; the term "album" was applied to a collection of various items housed in a book format. In musical usage the word was used for collections of short pieces of printed music from the early nineteenth century. Collections of related 78rpm records were bundled in book-like albums; when long-playing records were introduced, a collection of pieces on a single record was called an album. An album, in ancient Rome, was a board chalked or painted white, on which decrees and other public notices were inscribed in black, it was from this that in medieval and modern times album came to denote a book of blank pages in which verses, sketches and the like are collected. Which in turn led to the modern meaning of an album as a collection of audio recordings issued as a single item.
In the early nineteenth century "album" was used in the titles of some classical music sets, such as Schumann's Album for the Young Opus 68, a set of 43 short pieces. When 78rpm records came out, the popular 10-inch disc could only hold about three minutes of sound per side, so all popular recordings were limited to around three minutes in length. Classical-music and spoken-word items were released on the longer 12-inch 78s, about 4–5 minutes per side. For example, in 1924, George Gershwin recorded a drastically shortened version of the seventeen-minute Rhapsody in Blue with Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra, it ran for 8m 59s. Deutsche Grammophon had produced an album for its complete recording of the opera Carmen in 1908. German record company Odeon released the Nutcracker Suite by Tchaikovsky in 1909 on 4 double-sided discs in a specially designed package; this practice of issuing albums does not seem to have been taken up by other record companies for many years. By about 1910, bound collections of empty sleeves with a paperboard or leather cover, similar to a photograph album, were sold as record albums that customers could use to store their records.
These albums came in both 12-inch sizes. The covers of these bound books were wider and taller than the records inside, allowing the record album to be placed on a shelf upright, like a book, suspending the fragile records above the shelf and protecting them. In the 1930s, record companies began issuing collections of 78 rpm records by one performer or of one type of music in specially assembled albums with artwork on the front cover and liner notes on the back or inside cover. Most albums included three or four records, with two sides each, making six or eight compositions per album; the 12-inch LP record, or 33 1⁄3 rpm microgroove vinyl record, is a gramophone record format introduced by Columbia Records in 1948. A single LP record had the same or similar number of tunes as a typical album of 78s, it was adopted by the record industry as a standard format for the "album". Apart from minor refinements and the important addition of stereophonic sound capability, it has remained the standard format for vinyl albums.
The term "album" was extended to other recording media such as Compact audio cassette, compact disc, MiniDisc, digital albums, as they were introduced. As part of a trend of shifting sales in the music industry, some observers feel that the early 21st century experienced the death of the album. While an album may contain as many or as few tracks as required, in the United States, The Recording Academy's rules for Grammy Awards state that an album must comprise a minimum total playing time of 15 minutes with at least five distinct tracks or a minimum total playing time of 30 minutes with no minimum track requirement. In the United Kingdom, the criteria for the UK Albums Chart is that a recording counts as an "album" i
Music recording certification
Music recording certification is a system of certifying that a music recording has shipped, sold, or streamed a certain number of units. The threshold quantity varies by nation or territory. All countries follow variations of the RIAA certification categories, which are named after precious materials; the threshold required for these awards depends upon the population of the territory where the recording is released. They are awarded only to international releases and are awarded individually for each country where the album is sold. Different sales levels, some 10 times lower than others, may exist for different music media; the original gold and silver record awards were presented to artists by their own record companies to publicize their sales achievements. The first silver disc was awarded by Regal Zonophone to George Formby in December 1937 for sales of 100,000 copies of "The Window Cleaner"; the first gold disc was awarded by RCA Victor to Glenn Miller and His Orchestra in February 1942, celebrating the sale of 1.2 million copies of single "Chattanooga Choo Choo".
Another example of a company award is the gold record awarded to Elvis Presley in 1956 for one million units sold of his single "Don't Be Cruel". The first gold record for an LP was awarded by RCA Victor to Harry Belafonte in 1957 for the album Calypso, the first album to sell over 1,000,000 copies in RCA's reckoning. At the industry level, in 1958 the Recording Industry Association of America introduced its gold record award program for records of any kind, albums or singles, which achieved one million dollars in retail sales; these sales were restricted to U. S.-based record companies and did not include exports to other countries. For albums in 1968, this would mean shipping 250,000 units; the platinum certification was introduced in 1976 for the sale of one million units for albums and two million for singles, with the gold certification redefined to mean sales of 500,000 units for albums and one million for singles. No album was certified platinum prior to this year. For instance, the recording by Van Cliburn of the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto from 1958 would be awarded a platinum citation, but this would not happen until two decades after its release.
In 1999, the diamond certification was introduced for sales of ten million units. In the late 1980s, the certification thresholds for singles were dropped to match that of albums; the first official designation of a "gold record" by the Recording Industry Association of America was established for singles in 1958, the RIAA trademarked the term "gold record" in the United States. On 14 March 1958, the RIAA certified its first gold record, Perry Como's hit single "Catch a Falling Star"; the Oklahoma! Soundtrack was certified as the first gold album four months later. In 1976, RIAA introduced the platinum certification, first awarded to the Eagles compilation album Their Greatest Hits on 24 February 1976, to Johnnie Taylor's single "Disco Lady" on 22 April 1976; as music sales increased with the introduction of compact discs, the RIAA created the Multi-Platinum award in 1984. Diamond awards, honoring those artists whose sales of singles or albums reached 10,000,000 copies, were introduced in 1999.
In the 20th century, for a part of the first decade of the 21st, it was common for distributors to claim certifications based on their shipments – wholesale to retail outlets – which led to many certifications which outstripped the actual final retail sales figures. This became much less common once the majority of retail sales became paid digital downloads and digital streaming. In most countries certifications no longer apply to physical media but now include sales awards recognizing digital downloads. In June 2006, the RIAA certified the ringtone downloads of songs. Streaming from on-demand services such as Apple Music, Spotify and Napster has been included into existing digital certification in the U. S since 2013 and the U. K. and Germany since 2014. In the U. S. and Germany video streaming services like YouTube, VEVO, Yahoo! Music began to be counted towards the certification, in both cases using the formula of 100 streams being equivalent to one download. Other countries, such as Denmark and Spain, maintain separate awards for digital download singles and streaming.
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry was founded in 1996, grants the IFPI Platinum Europe Award for album sales over one million within Europe and the Middle East. Multi-platinum Europe Awards are presented for sales in subsequent multiples of one million. Eligibility is unaffected by time, is not restricted to European-based artists; the Independent Music Companies Association was founded in 2000 to grow the independent music sector and promote independent music in the interests of artistic and cultural diversity. IMPALA sales awards were launched in 2005 as the first sales awards recognising that success on a pan-European basis begins well before sales reach one million; the award levels are Silver, Double Silver, Double Gold, Diamond and Double Platinum. Below are certification thresholds for the United States, United Kingdom and France; the numbers in the tables are in terms of "units", where a unit represents one sale or one shipment of a given medium. Certific
Barbara Joan "Barbra" Streisand is an American singer and filmmaker. In a career spanning six decades, she has achieved success in multiple fields of entertainment and has been recognized with two Academy Awards, ten Grammy Awards including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and the Grammy Legend Award, five Emmy Awards including one Daytime Emmy, a Special Tony Award, an American Film Institute award, a Kennedy Center Honors prize, four Peabody Awards, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, nine Golden Globes, she is among a small group of entertainers who have been honored with an Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award – though only three were competitive awards – and is one of only two artists in that group who have won a Peabody. After beginning a successful recording career in the 1960s, Streisand ventured into film by the end of that decade, she starred in the critically acclaimed Funny Girl, for which she won the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award for Best Actress. Her other films include The Owl and the Pussycat, The Way We Were, A Star Is Born, for which she received her second Academy Award, composing music for the love theme "Evergreen", the first woman to be honored as a composer.
With the release of Yentl in 1983, Streisand became the first woman to write, produce and star in a major studio film. The film won an Oscar for a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Musical. Streisand is one of the best-selling recording artists of all time, with more than 68.5 million albums in the U. S. and with a total of 150 million albums and singles sold worldwide making her the best-selling female artist among top-selling artists recognized by the Recording Industry Association of America. The RIAA and Billboard recognize Streisand as holding the record for the most top 10 albums of any female recording artist: a total of 34 since 1963. According to Billboard, Streisand holds the record for the female with the most number one albums. Billboard recognizes Streisand as the greatest female of all time on its Billboard 200 chart and one of the greatest artists of all time on its Hot 100 chart. Streisand is the only recording artist to have a number-one album in each of the last six decades, having released 53 gold albums, 31 platinum albums, 14 multi-platinum albums in the United States.
Streisand was born on April 24, 1942, in Brooklyn, New York, the daughter of Diana and Emanuel Streisand. Her mother had been a soprano singer in her youth and considered a career in music, but became a school secretary, her father was a high school teacher at the same school. Streisand's family was Jewish, her father earned a master's degree from City College of New York in 1928 and was considered athletic and handsome. As a student, he spent his summers outdoors, once working as a lifeguard and another hitchhiking through Canada. "He'd try anything," his sister Molly said. "He wasn't afraid of anything." He married Ida in 1930, two years after graduating, became a respected educator with a focus on helping underprivileged and delinquent youth. In August 1943, a few months after Streisand's first birthday, her father died at age 34 from complications from an epileptic seizure the result of a head injury years earlier; the family fell with her mother working as a low-paid bookkeeper. As an adult, Streisand remembered those early years as always feeling like an "outcast," explaining, "Everybody else's father came home from work at the end of the day.
Mine didn't." Her mother tried to pay their bills but could not give her daughter the attention she craved: "When I wanted love from my mother, she gave me food," Streisand says. Streisand recalls that her mother had a "great voice" and sang semi-professionally on occasion, in her operatic soprano voice. During a visit to the Catskills when Streisand was 13, she told Rosie O'Donnell and her mother recorded some songs on tape; that session was the first time Streisand asserted herself as an artist, which became her "first moment of inspiration" as an artist. She has an older brother, a half-sister, the singer Roslyn Kind, from her mother's remarriage to Louis Kind in 1949. Roslyn is nine years younger than Streisand. Streisand began her education at the Jewish Orthodox Yeshiva of Brooklyn. There, she was considered to be bright and inquisitive about everything, she next entered Public School 89 in Brooklyn, during those early school years began watching television and going to movies. Watching the glamorous stars on the screen, she was soon entranced by acting and now hoped someday to become an actress as a means of escape: "I always wanted to be somebody, to be famous...
You know, get out of Brooklyn."Streisand became known by others in the neighborhood for her voice. With the other kids she remembers sitting on the stoop in front of their apartment building and singing: "I was considered the girl on the block with the good voice." That talent became a way for her to gain attention. She would practice her singing in the hallway of her apartment building which gave her voice an echoing quality, she made her singing debut at a PTA assembly, where she became a hit to everyone but her mother, critical of her daughter. Young Streisand was invited to sing at weddings and summer camp, along with having an unsuccessful audition at MGM records when she was nine. By the
Pierre Delanoë, born Pierre Charles Marcel Napoleon Leroyer in Paris, was a French lyricist who wrote thousands of songs for dozens of singers such as Dalida, Edith Piaf, Charles Aznavour, Petula Clark, Johnny Hallyday, Mireille Mathieu. Delanoë was his grandmothers maiden name. After he obtained a law degree, Delanoë started a career as a tax collector and a tax inspector. After World War II he began working as a lyricist, he sang with Bécaud in clubs in the beginning, but this did not last long. He wrote some of France's most beloved songs with Bécaud, including "Et maintenant", translated into English as "What Now My Love", covered by artists including Agnetha Fältskog, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, The Supremes, Sonny & Cher, Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, The Temptations. "Je t'appartiens" was covered by The Everly Brothers, Tom Jones, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Nina Simone and Nofx. "Crois-moi ça durera" was covered. In addition to Bécaud, he wrote for Édith Piaf, Tino Rossi, Hugues Aufray, Michel Fugain, Nana Mouskouri, Michel Polnareff, Gérard Lenorman, Joe Dassin, Nicole Rieu and Michel Sardou.
He wrote a passionate song about Joan of Arc in "La demoiselle d'Orléans" for Mireille Mathieu. The final lyric: "When I think of all I have given France... and she has forgotten me" was how the singer felt as she was made a caricature by the Communists in power. His song "Dors, mon amour", performed by André Claveau, won the Eurovision Song Contest 1958. In 1955, Delanoë helped to launch Europe 1 as Director of Programs, the first French radio station to program popular music in a modern way. Pierre Delanoë served as President of SACEM in 1984 and 1986 from 1988 to 1990, 1992 to 1994, he was awarded the Poets Grand Prize in 1997 by the institution. On 31 March 2004 he was given France's highest culture award, Commandeur of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, he created some controversy in July 2006 after expressing his dislike for rap music, saying that it is "a form of expression for people incapable of making music" and "not music but vociferations, eructations". Delanoë died of cardiac arrest in the early morning of 27 December 2006 in Poissy near Paris.
He is buried in the Cimetière de Fourqueux, just southeast of Poissy. His wife Micheline Leroyer died 16 January 2015 at age 97, is buried beside him, they had three children: Pierre-Denis and Caroline. Pierre Delanoë, La vie en chantant, éditions René Julliard, 1980 Pierre Delanoë, Le surnuméraire, éditions René Julliard, 1982 Pierre Delanoë, Le 19è trou, éditions Robert Laffont, 1984 Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec A. J. Lafaurie et Philippe Letellier, Golfantasmes, éditions Albin Michel, 1986 Pierre Delanoë, La retraite aux flambeaux, éditions Robert Laffont, 1986 Pierre Delanoë, Poésies et chansons, éditions Seghers, 1986 Pierre Delanoë, Et à part ça qu'est-ce que vous faites?, éditions Michel Lafon, 1987 Pierre Delanoë, Comment écrire une chanson, éditions Paul Beuscher, 1987 Pierre Delanoë, avant-propos de Jean-Marc Natel, Paroles à lire, poèmes à chanter, éditions Le Cherche Midi, 1990 Pierre Delanoë, entretiens avec Alain-Gilles Minella, La chanson en colère, éditions Mame, 1993 Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, Les comptines de Titine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1995 Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, Les comptines d'Eglantine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1995 Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean-Marc Natel, voix de Charles Aznavour à Jean-Claude Brialy en passant par Renaud, Anthologie de la poésie française de Charles d'Orléans à Charles Trenet, éditions du Layeur, 1997 Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec Alain Poulanges, préface de Gilbert Bécaud, La vie en rose, éditions Plume, 1997 Pierre Delanoë, illustrations de Barberousse, musique Gérard Calvi, interprètes Jacques Haurogné, Fabienne Guyon, Pierre Delanoë, Xavier Lacouture et Catherine Estourelle, La comptine à Titine, éditions Hemma Éditions, 1998 Pierre Delanoë, préface de Michel Tournier de l'Académie Goncourt, Des paroles qui chantent, éditions Christian Pirot, 1999 Pierre Delanoë, préface de Gilbert Bécaud, Le témoin était aveugle, éditions Les vents contraires, 2000 Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean-Marc Natel, narration de Brigitte Lahaie, musique de Guy Boyer, La poésie dans le boudoir, éditions du Layeur, 2000 Pierre Delanoë, préface de Jean Orizet, D'humeur et dhumour, éditions Mélis éditions, 2002 Pierre Delanoë, Tous des putes, éditions Mélis éditions, 2002 Pierre Delanoë, en collaboration avec Jean Beaulne, Pierre Delanoë…Et maintenant, éditions City Éditions, 2004 Official website Pierre Delanoë at Find a Grave
Julio José Iglesias de la Cueva is a Spanish singer and former professional footballer. In 1983, he was celebrated as having recorded songs in the most languages in the world, in 2013 for being the Latin artist with the most records sold in history. Iglesias is recognized as the most commercially successful Continental European singer in the world and one of the top ten record sellers in music history, having sold more than 250 million records worldwide in 14 languages, it is estimated that during his career he has offered more than 5000 concerts, having performed for over 60 million people on five continents. In April 2013 he was awarded in Beijing as the most popular international artist in China. In Brazil, Romania and others, Iglesias is the most successful foreign record seller, while in his home country, Spain, he has sold the most records in history, with 23 million records. During his career, Iglesias has won many awards in the music industry, including the Grammy, Latin Grammy, World Music Award, Billboard Music Award, American Music Award and Lo Nuestro Award.
He has been awarded the Gold Medal for Merit in the Fine Arts of Spain and the Legion of Honour of France. UNICEF named him Special Ambassador for the Performing Arts in 1989, he has been a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame since 1985. In April 2013, Iglesias was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Latin Composers. Iglesias was born in Madrid to Julio Iglesias Sr. a medical doctor from Ourense who became one of the youngest gynecologists in the country, María del Rosario de la Cueva y Perignat. Iglesias's paternal ancestry comes from Galicia, his paternal grandparents were named Manuela Puga Noguerol and Ulpiano Iglesias Sarria, his maternal grandparents were José de la Cueva y Orejuela, Dolores de Perignat y Ruiz de Benavides, a native of Guayama, Puerto Rico. The name "Iglesias" translates as "churches, he alternated playing professional football with studying law at the CEU San Pablo University in Madrid. In the earliest years of his young adulthood, he was a goalkeeper for Real Madrid Castilla in the Segunda División.
His professional football career was ruined when he was involved in a serious automobile accident, due to which he was unable to walk for two years. Afterwards, he said of those years, "I had more courage and attitude than talent." These were sorely tested when he was involved in that car crash—it smashed his lower spine. During his hospitalization after the accident, a nurse named Eladio Magdaleno gave him a guitar so that he could recover the dexterity of his hands. In learning to play, he discovered his musical talent. After his rehabilitation, Iglesias studied for three months at Bell Educational Trust's Language School in Cambridge, UK. After that, he went back to obtain his law degree at Complutense University of Madrid. In 1968, he won the Benidorm International Song Festival, a songwriter's event in Spain, with the song "La vida sigue igual", used in the film La vida sigue igual, about his own life. After this event he signed a deal with Discos Columbia, the Spanish branch of the Columbia Records company, released his first studio album, titled Yo Canto, or I Sing.
The album spent 15 weeks in the Spanish charts, peaked at #3. He represented Spain in the 1970 Eurovision Song Contest, finishing in fourth place behind Ireland's winning entry, performed by Dana, his entry was the song "Gwendolyne." Shortly after, he had a number one hit in many European countries with "Un Canto A Galicia," sung in Galician, in honour of his father, who hailed from Galicia. That single sold 1 million copies in Germany. In 1975, he found success in the Italian market by recording a song in Italian, called "Se mi lasci non vale," or "If You Leave Me, It Can't Be." Notable albums from this decade are A flor de piel, El amor, Soy. He sang in French. In 1979, he moved to Miami, Florida, in the United States, signed a deal with CBS International, started singing in different languages such as English, Portuguese and other languages to his music. Two years in 1981, he released the album De niña a mujer, which he dedicated to his daughter. From it came the first English-language hit of his career, a Spanish cover of "Begin the Beguine" which became number 1 in the United Kingdom.
In 1984, he released 1100 Bel Air Place, the hit album which established him as a star in the English-speaking entertainment industry. It sold over three million albums in the United States alone; the first single, "To All the Girls I've Loved Before," a duet with Willie Nelson, hit #1 on the Country charts and went Top Five in the Billboard Hot 100. It featured "All of You," in vocal duet with Diana Ross, a Top Twenty Pop hit, that climbed to #2 on the Adult Contemporary Chart with the help of a popular video. In 1984, he had recorded and released the mentioned duets with Diana Ross and Willie Nelson. Iglesias won a Grammy Award for Best Latin Pop Album in the 1988 Grammy Awards for the album Un hombre solo, he recorded a duet with Stevie Wonder, "My Love", in his Non Stop album, a crossover success in 1988. In the 1990s, Iglesias returned to h
The Lady Is a Tramp
"The Lady Is a Tramp" is a show tune from the 1937 Rodgers and Hart musical Babes in Arms, in which it was introduced by former child star Mitzi Green. This song is its strict etiquette and phony social pretensions, it has become a popular music standard. The song appears in the film version of Babes in Arms in an instrumental version only. Early recordings from 1937 include one by Tommy Dorsey and His Orchestra, Midge Williams and Her Jazz Jesters, Sophie Tucker, Bernie Cummins on the Vocalion records label. Lena Horne recorded the song with the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studio Orchestra on March 30, 1948, her performance appeared in the film "Words and Music, a fictionalized biography of the partnership of Rodgers and Hart. The song was used in the film version of Pal Joey starring Frank Sinatra, Rita Hayworth and Kim Novak. Joey Evans sings the song to Vera Simpson as he tries to entice the wealthy widow Simpson into financing Evans's dream of owning his own night club, it was recorded by Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Buddy Greco, Bing Crosby and Pat Suzuki in the 1950s and Shirley Bassey in the 1960s, becoming a signature song for Sinatra.
Sinatra sang the song with new lyrics as "The Gentleman Is a Champ" at tribute events for Spiro Agnew and Orson Welles. Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga recorded a version of this song for his 2011 album Duets II. Bennett praised Gaga's performance in the song, saying that she is a real "jazz lady", they performed the song live on ABC's Thanksgiving special dedicated to, directed and hosted by Gaga, entitled A Very Gaga Thanksgiving. They were the opening number. Bennett said, "I see in Lady Gaga a touch of theatrical genius, she is creative and productive, I think as time goes on she might be America's Picasso. I think she's going to become as big as Elvis Presley." The song though not released, got to enter the Japan Hot 100 chart, where it managed to reach the top 40. It entered the top 200 extension to the UK Singles Chart. Following the single, Bennett drew a sketch of Gaga naked for the January 2012 issue of Vanity Fair, auctioned for $30,000; the money Born This Way Foundation. The song as well as its music video received critical acclaim for both Bennett and Gaga's vocals as well as for the simplicity of the video, which departed from Gaga's previous efforts.
The song received praise from both E! and MTV. Other critics expressed hopes that Gaga would release her own jazz music after this successful effort; the duo filmed a music video for the track. The video shows Bennett and Gaga singing "The Lady Is a Tramp" together in a studio in front of music stands; the video received positive critical reception. Lady and the Tramp, a animated, feature film targeted for children Babes in Arms songs
Gilbert Bécaud was a French singer, composer and actor, known as "Monsieur 100,000 Volts" for his energetic performances. His best-known hits are "Nathalie" and "Et maintenant", a 1961 release that became an English language hit as "What Now My Love", he remained a popular artist for nearly fifty years, identifiable in his dark blue suits, with a white shirt and "lucky tie". When asked to explain his gift he said, "A flower doesn't understand botany." His favourite venue was the Paris Olympia under the management of Bruno Coquatrix. He debuted there in 1954 and headlined in 1955, attracting 6,000 on his first night, three times the capacity. On 13 November 1997 Bécaud was present for the re-opening of the venue after its reconstruction. Born François Gilbert Léopold Silly in Toulon, Bécaud learned to play the piano at a young age, went to the Conservatoire de Nice. In 1942, he left school to join the French Resistance during World War II, he began songwriting in 1948, after meeting Maurice Vidalin, who inspired him to write his early compositions.
He began writing for Marie Bizet. While touring with Jacques Pills as a pianist, Bécaud met Édith Piaf, the wife of Jacques Pills at the time, he began singing at her suggestion in 1953, with "Mes Mains" and "Les Croix". His first performance came the year after, his hits in the part of the decade included "La Corrida", "Le Jour où la Pluie Viendra", "C'est Merveilleux L'amour". His first hit in the English-speaking world was Jane Morgan's cover version of "Le Jour où la Pluie Viendra" in 1958, he began acting in the same period, starting with "Le Pays D'où Je Viens". In 1960, he composed "L'enfant à L'étoile," a Christmas cantata; that same year, "Let It Be Me", an English version of his "Je t'appartiens", became a hit for the Everly Brothers, over the years, by Bob Dylan, Nina Simone, Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, Jerry Butler, Sam & Dave and James Brown. In 1961, Bécaud wrote and recorded "Et Maintenant", one of the biggest selling singles in French history. Translated as "What Now My Love", the song became a hit by Shirley Bassey, Sonny & Cher, Elvis Presley, Judy Garland, Andy Williams, Herb Alpert and Frank Sinatra.
In 1962, he completed his largest composition, the 2-act opera L'Opéra d'Aran, premiered at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées on 25 October 1962. The plot of the opera takes place on the Aran Islands, off the west coast of Ireland, although Bécaud up to that point had never been to Ireland. After the opera's performances, Bécaud toured Europe and continued recording a string of pop music hits, including "Crois-moi ça durera" and "Tu le regretteras", he co-wrote "Love on the Rocks" with Neil Diamond, featured on the soundtrack of The Jazz Singer and was an international hit. In addition, he co-wrote "September Morn" with Diamond. Marlene Dietrich performed it in her stage shows, he wrote the song "Nathalie" to the text by Pierre Delanoë about a Moscow female guide in 1964. Bécaud visited Moscow in 1965 invited by students; the Czech writer Bohumil Doležal commented the song describing the guide as a KGB officer. A Russian blogger believes; the song has been used to soften the image of the Soviet Union if Pierre Delanoë was anti-Soviet.
His song "Seul sur son étoile" became "It Must Be Him", a hit in 1967 for the American singer Vikki Carr, the following year another Bécaud song, "L'important c'est la rose" was given an English lyric and became a hit for the British singer Vince Hill under the title "Importance of Your Love". On 19 June 1968, the American Broadcasting Company aired a half-hour color special starring Bécaud, taped in Saarbrücken. Bécaud performed "Nathalie", "Mademoiselle Lise" and "The Day the Rains Came" and sang a duet with Inge Brück, "Sand and Sea"; the programme featured performances by João Gilberto, Lill Lindfors and Hans Koller. Bécaud turned his focus more toward touring than recording in the 1970s. An example was his live performance at the festival The Golden Orpheus in June 1971 in Communist Bulgaria, he followed this with some acting work and at last took time off in 1973, citing exhaustion. In 1974, he was named Chevalier in the Légion d'honneur; the following year, he scored his one and only entry on the UK Singles Chart with "A Little Love and Understanding" which reached number 10 in the spring.
In the century, he began writing with Pierre Grosz and Neil Diamond penning the Broadway musical Roza with Julian More. In 1982, he recorded the duet "L'Amour est mort" with Québécoise singer Martine St. Clair at the start of her career; the 1980s and 1990s saw a slowdown of Bécaud's activity. He toured occasionally. On 18 December 2001 he died from cancer, aged 74, on his houseboat on the Seine and was interred in Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris. Bécaud's song catalogue, running to around 450 songs, is published by BMG Music Publishing. Bécaud's song "L'Orange" was the featured track in one of the trailers of the movie Léon by Luc Besson. 1953: Gilbert Bécaud et ses chansons 1954: Young Man of Paris in Moods of Love 1955: Récital N° 1 – Mes grands succès 1956: Alors raconte 1958: Salut les copains 1959: Pilou... Pilou... hé 1961: Tête de bois 1962: Le Bateau blanc 1964: Le Pianiste de Varsovie 1969: L'Un d'entre eux inventa la mor