Wonder, Warren Credited With Century's Most Popular Love Songs

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (better known by its acronym, ASCAP) has just released a list of the most-performed love songs of the 20th century, including songs from Stevie Wonder, Billy Joel, Smokey Robinson, Lionel Richie, and Burt Bacharach.

According to ASCAP, songwriter Diane Warren dominated the 1990s, as she penned three of the decade's five most-performed love songs, "How Do I Live," "Because You Loved Me," and "Un-Break My Heart" (popularized by LeAnn Rimes, Celine Dion, and Toni Braxton, respectively).

The other two '90s love songs making the ASCAP list were "I Swear," written by Gary Baker and Frank Myers (and performed by the likes of All-4-One and John Michael Montgomery), and "Baby, Baby," penned by singer Amy Grant with Brian Keith Thomas.

For the '80s -- the other MTV decade -- singer Lionel Richie snared two of the five slots with "Lady," a song country music's Kenny

Rogers rode to number one in 1980, and "Endless Love," a duet between Richie and Diana Ross.

A pair of soundtrack songs cracked the '80s list, as "Up Where We Belong" from the film "An Officer And A Gentleman" and Stevie Wonder's "I Just Called To Say I Love You" from "The Lady In Red" flick were both honored by ASCAP. Rounding out the decade is "Hard To Say I'm Sorry," written by Peter Cetera and David Foster for Cetera's former group, Chicago.

Wonder is one of the few songwriters to have two of his songs honored in two different decades. Aside from "I Just Called To Say I Love You," Wonder wrote "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life," which appears in ASCAP's '70s list. Wonder was also one of the many musicians to record a version of "For Once In My Life," written by Ronald Miller and Orlando Murden, which appears on ASCAP's list for the '60s.

ASCAP was established back in 1914 to insure that royalties are paid to its members for the public performances of their works.

The organization compiled the list by determining the five most performed songs of each decade, some of which have been recorded by hundreds of artists over the years.

The complete list of the Most-Performed Love Songs of the 20th Century:

  • "I Swear" - Gary Baker, Frank Myers
  • "How Do I Live" - Diane Warren
  • "Because You Loved Me" - Diane Warren
  • "Baby, Baby" - Amy Grant, Brian Keith Thomas
  • "Un-Break My Heart" - Diane Warren
  • "Up Where We Belong" - Jack Nitzsche, Buffy Sainte Marie, Will Jennings
  • "Lady" - Lionel Richie
  • "Endless Love" - Lionel Richie
  • "I Just Called to Say I Love You" - Stevie Wonder
  • "Hard To Say I'm Sorry" - Peter Cetera, David Foster
  • "The Way We Were" - Alan & Marilyn Bergman, Marvin Hamlisch
  • "Feelings" - Morris Albert, Louis Gaste
  • "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" - Stevie Wonder
  • "Just The Way You Are" - Billy Joel
  • "You Are So Beautiful"

    - Bruce Fisher, Billy Preston

  • "The Look Of Love" Burt Bacharach, Hal David
  • "For Once In My Life" Ronald Miller, Orlando Murden
  • "Love Theme From The Sandpiper (The Shadow Of Your Smile)" - Johnny Mandel, Paul Francis Webster
  • "My Girl" - Smokey Robinson, Ronnie White
  • "(They Long to Be) Close To You" - Burt Bacharach, Hal David
  • "Unchained Melody" - Alex North, Hy Zaret
  • "Misty" - Johnny Burke, Erroll Garner
  • "I Left My Heart In San Francisco" - George C. Cory Jr., Douglass Cross
  • "Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing" - Sammy Fain, Paul Francis Webster
  • "Fly Me To The Moon" Bart Howard
  • "That Old Black Magic" - Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer
  • "Blueberry Hill" - Al Lewis, Vincent Rose, Larry Stock
  • "Mona Lisa" - Raymond Evans, Jay Livingston
  • "The More I See You" - Mack Gordon, Harry Warren
  • "Since I Fell For You" - Buddy Johnson
  • "As Time Goes By" -

    Herman Hupfeld

  • "I Got Rhythm" - George & Ira Gershwin
  • "Blue Moon" - Lorenz Hart, Richard Rodgers
  • "Night and Day" - Cole Porter
  • "I Only Have Eyes For You" - Al Dubin, Harry Warren
  • "Tea For Two" - Irving Caesar, Vincent Youmans
  • "It Had To Be You" - Isham Jones, Gus Kahn
  • "Stardust" - Hoagy Carmichael, Mitchell Parish
  • "Someone To Watch Over Me" - George & Ira Gershwin
  • "Baby Face" - Harry Akst, Benny Davis
  • "You Made Me Love You (I Didn't Want to Do It)" - Joseph McCarthy, James Monaco
  • "Oh, You Beautiful Doll" - Nat Ayer, A. Seymour Brown
  • "Moonlight Bay" - Edward Madden, Percy Wenrich
  • "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" - Leo Friedman, Beth Slater Whitson
  • "Peg O' My Heart" - Alfred Bryan, Fred Fisher