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"If You Asked Me To" is a song written by American songwriter Diane Warren. It was originally recorded by American singer Patti LaBelle for her ninth studio album Be Yourself (1989), and also for the soundtrack to the James Bond film, Licence to Kill. The lyrics are from the point of view of a woman who pleads to her significant other: "If you asked me to, I just might change my mind, and let you in my life forever". Three years later, Canadian singer Celine Dion covered "If You Asked Me To" for her 1992 self-titled second English-language studio album. Released as the album's second single, Dion's version topped the Canadian charts and peaked at number four on the US Billboard Hot 100.

"If You Asked Me To"
If You Asked Me To by Patti LaBelle US cassette.png
Standard artwork (US cassette single pictured)
Single by Patti LaBelle
from the album Be Yourself and Licence to Kill
Released12 June 1989 (1989-06-12)
Songwriter(s)Diane Warren
Patti LaBelle singles chronology
"Kiss Away the Pain"
"If You Asked Me To"
"Yo Mister"
Music video
"If You Asked Me To" on YouTube



"If You Asked Me To" was first featured on the soundtrack of the 1989 James Bond movie, Licence to Kill. The song's title refers to dialogue from the film. LaBelle's version peaked at number 79 on the US Billboard Hot 100, at number 10 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs,[1] and at number 11 on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks. The song appeared on the daytime soap opera General Hospital in 1989.

Music videoEdit

The music video was filmed the day after the funeral of LaBelle's sister Jacqueline "Jackie" Padgett who died of lung cancer at age 43. (She was the third of LaBelle's sisters to die; all three of Patti's sisters died before age 44.) As such, the context of the song changed dramatically, as a mourning LaBelle, dressed in black, sings the song in a church (with candles and mourning lilies), intercut with shots of her in tears.


Chart performanceEdit

Despite being a Top 10 hit on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts,[2] the song did not crossover to the pop charts until Celine Dion covered it three years later. Regarding the subject, LaBelle once explained during an interview used for the liner notes of her 1999 Greatest Hits album what she believed to be the reason for this fact: "I knew the song was a hit when I recorded it, and I was happy that Celine did it and did so well with it. But the arrangements are so close and we both have pretty powerful who knows why my version didn't take off. Maybe it was timing..".[3]


Chart (1989) Peak
US Billboard Hot 100[4] 79
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[5] 11
US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)[6] 10

Celine Dion versionEdit

"If You Asked Me To"
US CD single
Single by Celine Dion
from the album Celine Dion
B-side"Love You Blind"
Released13 April 1992 (1992-04-13)
StudioCriterion Studios
Village Recorders
Music Grinder
Oceanway Studios
Songwriter(s)Diane Warren
Producer(s)Guy Roche
Celine Dion singles chronology
"Je danse dans ma tête"
"If You Asked Me To"
"Nothing Broken but My Heart"
Music video
"If You Asked Me To" on YouTube

Celine Dion's cover version of "If You Asked Me To" was released as the second single from her 1992 self-titled studio album. It was produced by Guy Roche and released in Canada and the United States in April 1992, and later the same year in the rest of the world.[7] The single includes a non-album B-side, "Love You Blind", written by Jay Oliver and Sheryl Crow, and produced by Walter Afanasieff. Later, "If You Asked Me To" was included on the North American versions of Dion's greatest hits albums, All the Way… A Decade of Song (1999) and My Love: Essential Collection (2008).

Critical receptionEdit

Dave Sholin from the Gavin Report wrote about the song: "Celine deserves all the accolades she's gotten the past few years, and surely her rendition of this touching Diane Warren ballad (previously recorded by Patti LaBelle), takes her to a new level".[8] AllMusic senior editor Stephen Thomas Erlewine picked it as one of standout songs together with "Beauty and the Beast" and "Love Can Move Mountains".[9]

Commercial performanceEdit

The single was a hit in the United States and Canada. "If You Asked Me To" reached number four on the US Billboard Hot 100, and did even better on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, spending three weeks at number one. Also in Canada, it reached number one. The single had moderate success elsewhere. "If You Asked Me To" was released twice in the United Kingdom: first, in June 1992, when it peaked at number 60, and the second time in December 1992, when it reached number 57.

Music videoEdit

The music video for the song was directed by Dominic Orlando and filmed in Chatsworth and Hollywood, Los Angeles. It was released in April 1992 and included later on Dion's 2001 DVD video collection All the Way… A Decade of Song & Video.



In 1993, "If You Asked Me To" won an ASCAP Pop Award for most performed song in the United States.[10] It was also nominated for the Billboard Music Award for Hot Adult Contemporary Single of the Year and Juno Award for Single of the Year (the latter was won by Dion's "Beauty and the Beast").[11]

Track listings and formatsEdit

CD single

  1. "If You Asked Me To" – 3:54
  2. "Love You Blind" – 4:35

US CD single

  1. "If You Asked Me To" – 3:54
  2. "Where Does My Heart Beat Now" – 4:32

Australian/European CD maxi-single

  1. "If You Asked Me To" – 3:54
  2. "Love You Blind" – 4:35
  3. "Halfway to Heaven" – 5:05

UK CD maxi-single

  1. "If You Asked Me To" – 3:54
  2. "Where Does My Heart Beat Now" – 4:32
  3. "Love You Blind" – 4:35


Release historyEdit

Country Date Format
United States[28] 28 April 1992
  • 7"
  • CD
  • cassette
United Kingdom[28] 22 June 1992

Other cover versionsEdit

In 1998, American Balladeer Crooner Johnny Mathis covered his version from his album Because You Loved Me. In 2006, Filipino band MYMP covered this song for their live album MYMP Live at the Music Museum and released it as single. In 2012, Filipino singers Erik Santos and Angeline Quinto recorded their version of the song for the film Unofficially Yours.[29]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 337.
  2. ^ Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs
  3. ^ Patti LaBelle Biography
  4. ^ "Patti LaBelle Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
  5. ^ "Patti LaBelle Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
  6. ^ "Patti LaBelle Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
  7. ^ Glatzer, Jenna (2005). Céline Dion: For Keeps. Andrews McMeel Publishing. ISBN 0-7407-5559-5.
  8. ^ Sholin, Dave (3 April 1992). "Gavin Picks > Singles" (PDF). Gavin Report. No. 1899. p. 52. Retrieved 16 April 2018.
  9. ^ Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
  10. ^ "ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards: 1993". IMDb. Retrieved 15 February 2014.
  11. ^ "Awards: Artist Summary". CARAS. Archived from the original on 8 January 2014. Retrieved 8 January 2014.
  12. ^ Gavin Ryan (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988-2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing.
  13. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 2151." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  14. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 2166." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  15. ^ "Hits of the World" (PDF). Billboard. 27 June 1992. p. 40. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  16. ^ Nanda Lwin (1999). Top 40 Hits: The Essential Chart Guide. Music Data Canada. ISBN 1-896594-13-1.
  17. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 36, 1992" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40 Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  18. ^ " – Céline Dion – If You Asked Me To" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 26 September 2014.
  19. ^ " – Céline Dion – If You Asked Me To". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 26 September 2014.
  20. ^ "Palmarès de la chanson anglophone et allophone au Québec" (in French). BAnQ. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
  21. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  22. ^ "Celine Dion Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 9 September 2014.
  23. ^ "Celine Dion Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved 9 September 2014.
  24. ^ "The RPM Top 100 Hit Tracks of 1992" (PDF). RPM. Vol. 56 no. 25. 19 December 1992. p. 8. Retrieved 1 April 2019.
  25. ^ "The RPM Top 100 Adult Contemporary Tracks of 1992". RPM. 19 December 1992. Retrieved 9 September 2014.
  26. ^ "Jaarlijsten 1992" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 29 September 2014.
  27. ^ a b "The Year in Music: 1992" (PDF). Billboard. 26 December 1992. Retrieved 16 May 2015.
  28. ^ a b "Celine Dion – If You Asked Me To". Discogs. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  29. ^ "If You Asked Me To" music video UnOfficially Yours Theme Song on YouTube via Star Cinema's YouTube

External linksEdit