In 1960, Ben E. King was inspired to update the early 20th-century gospel hymn “Stand by Me” by Charles Albert Tindley, which was based around the psalm, “will not we fear, though the Earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.”
According to the documentary History of Rock ‘n’ Roll, King had no intention of recording the song himself. King had written it for the Drifters, who passed on recording it. After the “Spanish Harlem” recording session in 1960, King had some studio time left over. The session’s producers, Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, asked if he had any more songs. King played it on the piano for them. They liked it and called the studio musicians back in to record it.
Stoller recalls it differently:
I remember arriving at our office as Jerry and Ben were working on lyrics for a new song. King had the beginnings of a melody that he was singing a cappella. I went to the piano and worked up the harmonies, developing a bass pattern that became the signature of the song. Ben and Jerry quickly finished the lyrics … .
The song is so well revered snd loved that it has be themed in many prominent films and covered by various musical pop artists. Please enjoy the jazzy version of Stand by Me