I Can't Let Go

"I Can't Let Go" is a song co-written by Al Gorgoni and Chip Taylor, who also wrote "Wild Thing". "I Can't Let Go" was originally recorded by blue-eyed soul singer Evie Sands' on George Goldner's Blue Cat label, which was popular in New York City in 1965.[2] The song became popular in 1966 for the group The Hollies, who charted at number two in the UK Singles Chart with their version. Linda Ronstadt covered the song in 1980 and had a number 31 hit on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart.

"I Can't Let Go"
Single by The Hollies
  • UK: "Running Through the Night" (Ransford)
  • US: "I've Got A Way Of My Own"
Released18 February 1966
Format7" single
Recorded13 & 18 January 1966[1]
Abbey Road Studios
GenrePop, beat
LabelUK: Parlophone R5409
US: Imperial 66158
Songwriter(s)Chip Taylor, Al Gorgoni
Producer(s)Ron Richards
The Hollies singles chronology
"If I Needed Someone"
"I Can't Let Go"
"Bus Stop"

The Hollies version


"I Can't Let Go" is The Hollies' first 1966 single, and their last with original bassist Eric Haydock. It peaked at number two in the UK and number 42 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US. It is ranked as the 37th biggest British hit of 1966.[3] The Hollies' version was praised by Paul McCartney, who thought Graham Nash's soaring tenor in the chorus was a trumpet. After "I Can't Let Go" was recorded Haydock was replaced by Bernie Calvert, who played on the band's next single ("Bus Stop").[4]

Chart performance

Chart (1966) Peak
West Germany (Official German Charts)[5] 30
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[6] 20
Ireland (IRMA)[7] 6
New Zealand (Listener)[8] 9
Norway (VG-lista)[9] 2
South Africa (Springbok)[10] 14
Sweden 10
United Kingdom (Record Retailer)[11] 2
United Kingdom (NME)[12] 1
United States (Billboard Hot 100)[13] 44
Canada (RPM)[14] 44

Linda Ronstadt version

"I Can't Let Go"
Single by Linda Ronstadt
from the album Mad Love
B-side"Look Out For My Love"
ReleasedJune 10, 1980
GenreRock, new wave
Songwriter(s)Chip Taylor; Al Gorgoni
Producer(s)Peter Asher
Linda Ronstadt singles chronology
"Hurt So Bad"
"I Can't Let Go"
"Get Closer"


Linda Ronstadt released the most successful American version in 1980 from her platinum-certified album, Mad Love. Released as the disc's third single, it was produced by Peter Asher and was issued on Asylum Records. Ronstadt's cover of "I Can't Let Go" reached number 27 on the Cash Box Top 100 and number 31 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the summer of 1980.

Chart performance

Chart (1980) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 [15] 31
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks [16] 48
U.S. Cashbox Top 100 27
Canada RPM Top Singles 30

Other versions

  • The Dickies included this song (under the name "Can't Let Go") on their 1998 all-covers album, Dogs from the Hare That Bit Us.
  • Les Fradkin covered the song on his 2006 album, Goin' Back.


  1. http://hollies.co.uk/music-archive/session-listing.html
  2. Muscarella, Tom (11 November 2017). "Song of the Week – I Can't Let Go, Evie Sands; The Hollies; Linda Ronstadt". Rock 'n' Roll Remnants. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
  3. "Top 100 1966 - UK Music Charts". Uk-charts.top-source.info. Retrieved 2016-09-29.
  4. The 30th Anniversary Collection (CD). The Hollies. EMI Records. 1993. D 202205.CS1 maint: others (link)
  5. "Offiziellecharts.de – Hollies, The – I Can't Let Go". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  6. "Dutchcharts.nl – The Hollies – I Can't Let Go" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  7. "The Irish Charts – Search Results – I Can't Let Go". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved July 11, 2017.
  8. Flavour of New Zealand, 20 May 1966
  9. "Norwegiancharts.com – The Hollies – I Can't Let Go". VG-lista.
  10. "SA Charts 1965–March 1989". Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  11. "Artist Chart History Details: Hollies". The Official Charts Company. Archived from the original on 17 February 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2010.
  12. Rees, Dafydd; Lazell, Barry; Osborne, Roger (1995). Forty Years of "NME" Charts (2nd ed.). Pan Macmillan. p. 165. ISBN 0-7522-0829-2.
  13. "allmusic ((( The Hollies > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". Allmusic. Retrieved 4 August 2010.
  14. "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 2016-09-29.
  15. "Hot 100: Linda Ronstadt". Billboard. 2019. Retrieved 9 May 2019.
  16. "Adult Contemporary: Linda Ronstadt". Billboard. 2019. Retrieved 9 May 2019.

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