“The Greatest Love of All” is a song written by Michael Masser, who composed the music, and Linda Creed, who wrote the lyrics. It was originally recorded in 1977 by George Benson, who made the song a substantial hit, peaking at number two on the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart that year, the first R&B chart top-ten hit for Arista Records. The song was written and recorded to be the main theme of the 1977 film The Greatest, a biopic of the boxer Muhammad Ali. Eight years after Benson’s original recording, the song became even more well known for a version by Whitney Houston, whose 1985 cover (with the slightly amended title “Greatest Love of All”) eventually topped the charts, peaking at number one in the United States, Australia, Canada and on the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs in early 1986.
The original recording by Benson was released in 1977 in the United States, Japan, France, Germany, New Zealand, Australia, Italy, Brazil, Netherlands, United Kingdom and in Thailand, on an extended play (EP). He officially recorded the song four times; in addition to the studio single, Benson also recorded three live versions, the last time in a duet with Luciano Pavarotti in 2001.
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