Wishing on a Star

"Wishing on a Star" is a 1978 hit single by Rose Royce for Whitfield Records, subsequently covered by numerous other artists.

Rose Royce versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by Rose Royce
from the album In Full Bloom
B-side"Love, More Love"
Format[citation needed]
  • 4:52 (album version)
  • 3:57 (single version)
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
Producer(s)Norman Whitfield
Rose Royce singles chronology
"Ooh Boy"
"Wishing on a Star"
"It Makes You Feel Like Dancin'"

Included on their second album, In Full Bloom, "Wishing on a Star" is a slow ballad written by former Undisputed Truth member Billie Rae Calvin and produced by Norman Whitfield. It was sung by Gwen Dickey under her stage name. The lyrics concern a woman longing for the return of an ex-lover so that they can resume their relationship. The original version of "Wishing on a Star" peaked at number 52 on the Billboard R&B singles chart. Despite this, the song was played every Saturday at noon on Boston's Kiss 108 radio for over two decades, ceasing around 2004.


Chart (1978) Peak
Belgian VRT Top 30 14
Dutch Top 40 15
UK Singles Chart 3
US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles 1
US Hot Soul Singles[1] 52

Fresh 4 versionEdit

British DJ and production group, Fresh 4, released their recording in September 1989. It was produced by Smith & Mighty and featured Lizz E, and became the group's only notable UK hit, peaking at number 10 on the UK Singles Chart.[2]


Chart (1989) Peak
Irish Singles Chart 22
UK Singles Chart 10

The Cover Girls versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by The Cover Girls
from the album Here It Is
ReleasedMay 1992
FormatCD single, 7", 12", cassette
Length4:05 (single edit), 4:44 (album version)
LabelEpic Records
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
Producer(s)Tony Moran, Andy Marvel
The Cover Girls singles chronology
"Funk Boutique"
"Wishing on a Star"
"Thank You'"

The Cover Girls recorded a cover of the song in 1992 for their third album Here It Is. It was the first single featuring new lead singer Michelle Valentine. The group's version peaked at number nine on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and became the 49th biggest single of 1992 in America.[3] While the group had had success in America up to that point, the single was their first single to become a hit when it was released in Europe, peaking at number 6 in the Netherlands and number 38 in the UK.[4]

The Cover Girls also recorded a Spanish version of the song. The original version of the song featured Michelle Valentine on lead vocals but the Spanish version featured both Valentine and Evelyn Escalera sharing lead vocals.


Chart (1992) Peak
Belgium Ultratop 50 Flanders 26
Dutch Top 40 6
German Singles Chart 76
UK Singles Chart 38
US Billboard Hot 100 9
US Hot Dance Club Play 7
US Hot R&B Singles 19

Year-end chartsEdit

Chart (1992) Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 49

Formats and track listingsEdit


  1. "Wishing On A Star (Radio Edit)"
  2. "Wishing On A Star (Spanish Version)"


  1. "Wishing On A Star (7" Version)"
  2. "Wishing On A Star (12" Mix)"
  3. "Wishing On A Star (Magic Sessions Dub 1)"
  4. "Wishing On A Star (Magic Sessions Vocal Dub)"
  5. "Wishing On A Star (Jeep 12")"



  1. "Wishing On A Star (12" Mix)"
  2. "Wishing On A Star (Jeep 12")"
  3. "Wishing On A Star (Magic Sessions Dub 1)"


  1. "Wishing On A Star (TNT Dub)"
  2. "Wishing On A Star (Amigo Dub)"
  3. "Wishing On A Star (Acapella)"

Randy Crawford versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by Randy Crawford
from the album Every Kind of Mood: Raandy, Randi, Randee
ReleasedSeptember 1998
FormatCD single
GenreHouse, soul
Length3:59 (single edit), 4:50 (album version)
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
Producer(s)Mousse T.
Randy Crawford singles chronology
"Wishing on a Star"
"The Captain of Her Heart"

American artist Randy Crawford recorded a cover of the song for her 1998 album Every Kind of Mood: Randy, Randi, Randee. The song, produced by Mousse T. like most of the album, was given an uptempo house makeover. Released as the third single off the album in September 1998, it proved to be the most successful, achieving minor chart placings in Europe and becoming a top 20 dance hit in the USA.


Chart (1998) Peak
Germany Official German Charts 83
UK Singles Chart (Official Charts Company) 90
UK R&B (Official Charts Company)[5] 21
US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play 14

Jay-Z versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by Jay-Z featuring Gwen Dickey
from the album In My Lifetime, Vol. 1 (UK Edition)
ReleasedMarch 11, 1998
Jay-Z singles chronology
"Be Alone No More"
"Wishing on a Star"
"It's Alright"
Gwen Dickey singles chronology
"One Too Many Heartaches"
"Wishing on a Star"

"Wishing on a Star" was covered by rapper Jay-Z featuring Gwen Dickey of Rose Royce in 1998. It can be found on the United Kingdom release of In My Lifetime, Vol. 1 and Greatest Hits and the D'Influence remix can be found on Chapter One: Greatest Hits and Bring It On: The Best of Jay Z. The track is produced by the Trackmasters, who also produced a remix of this track.

A music video for the song was also released, showing a child actor portraying Jay-Z growing up in Marcy Houses. Jay-Z himself does not appear in the video.[6] Jay-Z role played by Celebrity Choreographer and Rapper David Sincere Aiken

Track listingsEdit


  1. "Wishing on a Star (Radio Edit)"
  2. "Wishing on a Star (Trackmasters Remix)"
  3. "Wishing on a Star (D Influence Remix)"
  4. "Brooklyn's Finest"
  5. "Wishing on a Star (Trackmasters Acappella)"


  1. "Wishing on a Star (D Influence Remix)"
  2. "Wishing on a Star (Radio Edit)"
  1. "Wishing on a Star (Trackmasters Remix)"
  2. "Imaginary Players"
  3. "Wishing on a Star (Trackmasters Acappella)"


Chart (1998) Position
Europe (Eurochart Hot 100)[7] 48
Germany (Media Control Charts)[8] 56
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ) 29
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[9] 55
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan) 50
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[4] 13
UK R&B (Official Charts Company)[10] 5

Beyoncé versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
2010 digital release cover
Single by Beyoncé
from the album Roll Bounce
ReleasedSeptember 2005
FormatDigital download
LabelMusic World Music Inc.
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
Beyoncé singles chronology
"The Closer I Get to You"
"Wishing on a Star"
"Check on It"

"Wishing on a Star" was covered by American singer Beyoncé in 2004, for the CD of her live album Live at Wembley.[11] It was also used to promote the fragrance True Star endorsed by American fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger in 2004.[12] An a cappella version of the song was recorded by Beyoncé for a television campaign.[12] An extended play (EP) album was also released in 2004 to promote the fragrance composed of two songs – "Wishing on a Star" and "Naïve". Produced by Beyoncé and Tommy Hilfiger, it was solely available with limited edition purchases of True Star.[13] In 2005, the song was included on the soundtrack of the film Roll Bounce.[14] It was later released for radio airplay as one of three singles from the soundtrack,[15] becoming the second most-added single at urban adult contemporary radio following its release[16] and later peaking at number 28 on the Billboard Adult R&B Airplay chart.[15]

A writer of the website AllMusic described Beyoncé's cover version of "Wishing on a Star" as "sexy".[11] For the 48th Annual Grammy Awards, Beyoncé's version was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.[17] Beyoncé released the song as a digital single on August 17, 2010.

Formats and track listingsEdit

  • True Star – A Private Performance
  1. "Wishing on a Star" – 4:07
  2. "Naïve" – 3:45
  • Digital download
  1. "Wishing on a Star" – 4:08


Chart (2005) Peak
US Billboard Adult R&B Airplay[15] 28
US Billboard Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Singles[18] 1

Seal versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by Seal
from the album Soul 2
ReleasedNovember 8, 2011
FormatDigital download
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
Producer(s)Trevor Horn
Seal singles chronology
"Let's Stay Together"
"Wishing on a Star"

In 2011, "Wishing on a Star" was covered by Nigerian-British singer Seal. It was released as the first UK single taken from his album Soul 2 on November 20, 2011. This interpretation of "Wishing on a Star" was produced by previous collaborator, Trevor Horn.

Seal's version of the song was premiered on Ken Bruce's BBC Radio 2 show on October 13, 2011.[19] The single later peaked on the Radio 2 B-list.[20]

Critical receptionEdit

In her review for Soul 2, Caroline Sullivan of The Guardian expressed, "His voice and interpretive skills are such, though, that most tracks fit him like a glove, to the point where, on Rose Royce's Wishing on a Star, his oak-aged vocal seems a better fit for the remorseful lyric than original singer Gwen Dickey's. He grew up with these 1970s hits, and evidently reveres them, but isn't cowed by them".[21] In his review, Mike Diver of the BBC expressed that "Seal has a voice that can melt icecaps has never been doubted by his detractors – the problems with his material post-Seal (II) went deeper, to a basic songwriting level. Here, freed of the weight of his own emotions, he soars on a sublime Wishing on a Star (which manages to borrow its smoky backing from Sade's Smooth Operator).[22]

Live performancesEdit

Seal performed "Wishing on a Star" on Daybreak on November 25, 2011.[23]

Formats and track listingsEdit

Digital download[24]
  1. "Wishing on a Star" – 4:13

The X Factor UK 2011 finalists versionEdit

"Wishing on a Star"
Single by The X Factor Finalists 2011 featuring JLS and One Direction[25]
ReleasedNovember 27, 2011
Songwriter(s)Billie Rae Calvin
The X Factor finalists singles chronology
"Wishing on a Star"
JLS singles chronology
"Take a Chance on Me"
"Wishing on a Star"
"Do You Feel What I Feel?"
One Direction singles chronology
"Gotta Be You"
"Wishing on a Star"
"One Thing"

The song was covered by the finalists of the eighth series of The X Factor, also featuring previous contestants JLS and One Direction. Their version was released on November 27, 2011 via digital download, and released as a physical single the following day. All proceeds from the single went to the children's charity organization Together for Short Lives.[26] Finalist Frankie Cocozza does not appear on the radio edit of the song or in the music video, after he was removed from The X Factor prior to the sixth live show. Cocozza's vocals were recorded prior to his exit and only appeared on the single version.[citation needed] The song debuted at number one on the UK Singles Chart with first-week sales of 98,932 copies.[27]

Track listingEdit

  1. "Wishing on a Star" – 3:23
  2. "Wishing on a Star (Instrumental)" – 3:23


Chart (2011) Peak
Ireland (IRMA)[28] 1
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[29] 1
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[30] 1

Year-end chartsEdit

Chart (2011) Position
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[31] 132

Release historyEdit

Region Date Format Label
United Kingdom November 27, 2011[32] Digital download
November 28, 2011[33] CD single

Other cover versionsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 501.
  2. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 215. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  3. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1992". Archived from the original on January 17, 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-30.
  4. ^ a b UK Top 40 Chart Archive, British Singles & Album Charts Archived July 18, 2007, at WebCite. everyHit.com (March 16, 2000).
  5. ^ "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". officialcharts.com.
  6. ^ Jay-Z Jay Z Wishing on a star on YouTube.
  7. ^ "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved June 19, 2018.
  8. ^ "Nach, "Jay-Z"". Archive.is. Retrieved January 20, 2019.
  9. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 10, 2018.
  10. ^ "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". officialcharts.com.
  11. ^ a b "Live at Wembley". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved November 3, 2011.
  12. ^ a b "Hilfiger believes Beyoncé is a True Star". Cosmetics Design. Retrieved November 3, 2011.
  13. ^ "True Star: A Private Performance: Beyoncé: Music". Retrieved June 27, 2013.
  14. ^ "Roll Bounce – Original Soundtrack". AllMusic. Retrieved November 3, 2011.
  15. ^ a b c George, Raphael (November 12, 2005). Soundtrack Has Radio 'Bounce'. Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. Retrieved November 3, 2011.
  16. ^ "Most Added" (PDF). Radio & Records: 40. September 9, 2005. Retrieved March 22, 2014.[permanent dead link]
  17. ^ "Complete list of Grammy Award nominations". USA Today. February 8, 2006. Retrieved October 18, 2011.
  18. ^ "Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs: Week Ending July 17, 2004". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. March 17, 2011. Retrieved March 11, 2012.
  19. ^ "BBC – Radio 2 – Playlist – Record of the Week". BBC Radio 2. Archived from the original on November 19, 2011.
  20. ^ "BBC – Radio 2 – Playlist". BBC Radio 2. Archived from the original on November 2, 2011.
  21. ^ Sullivan, Caroline (November 19, 2011). "Seal: Soul 2 – review". The Guardian. London.
  22. ^ "BBC – Music – Review of Seal – Soul 2". BBC. November 16, 2011.
  23. ^ "Daybreak". Radio Times. November 25, 2011. Archived from the original on November 19, 2011.
  24. ^ "Wishing on a Star: Seal: Amazon.co.uk: MP3 Downloads". Amazon.co.uk. November 19, 2011.
  25. ^ "One Direction, JLS join 'X Factor' charity single". Digital Spy (November 5, 2011).
  26. ^ X Factor hopefuls Wishing on a Star for charity. Evening Standard (October 12, 2011).
  27. ^ Jones, Alan (December 5, 2011). "Official Singles Chart analysis: X-Factor Finalists sell just shy of 100k". Music Week. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
  28. ^ "Chart Track: Week 48, 2011". Irish Singles Chart.
  29. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  30. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  31. ^ "End Of Year Chart 2011" (PDF). Official Charts Company. Retrieved May 15, 2020.
  32. ^ Wishing On A Star: The X Factor Finalists 2011 feat. JLS & One Direction: Amazon.co.uk: MP3 Downloads. Amazon.co.uk.
  33. ^ Wishing on a Star: Amazon.co.uk: Music. Amazon.co.uk.
  34. ^ "wishing on a star". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  35. ^ "Cover to Cover overview". AllMusic.com.
  36. ^ "Hangtime overview". AllMusic.com.
  37. ^ "Jazz – Jaared". AllMusic.com. Archived from the original on July 13, 2011.
  38. ^ "Player's Club overview". AllMusic.com.
  39. ^ "How I Want to Die: the Catman Chronicles 1". AllMusic.
  40. ^ "Wishing On A Star (Radio 1 Session, 5 Dec 2017)". Bbc.co.uk.

External linksEdit