Note #179 Roberta Flack “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” (1969)


We left Los Angeles and moved back to New York in the Summer of 1969.  We stayed with my Grandparents in Jamaica Estates which is in the borough of Queens.  It was a gated community.  I remember laying across my bed looking up at the chandelier that hung in the center of the ceiling reminiscing about the Monterey Jazz Festival and  looking forward to going to the Newport Jazz Festival in Rhodes Island coming up that fall.  I was also starting my first year of high school.  Ironically it was the same high school my mom went to.  I had mixed feelings because even Jazz took on a new personality in New York City.

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” is a 1957 folk song written by Ewan MacColl for his wife Peggy Seeger. It was popularized by Roberta Flack and became a breakout hit for the singer after it appeared in the 1971 Clint Eastward film Play Misty for Me. Though the song first appeared on Flack’s 1969 album First Take, it topped the Billboard Hot 100 and won the Grammy Award for Song of the Year three years later