George David Weiss Memorial Mixtape: 10 Takes on “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”


It’s likely you don’t know the name “George David Weiss,” but we guarantee you’ve enjoyed his work at some point in your life. The songwriter, who penned Elvis’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World,” died Monday at 89 years old. “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” an adaptation of an African Zulu song co-written by Hugo Peretti and Luigi Creatore and originally recorded by The Tokens, is perhaps his most enduring pop hit. To honor Weiss’s memory, we present 10 covers of the track, recorded by everyone from The Nylons and They Might Be Giants to ‘NSYNC (really) and the original Broadway cast of The Lion King. Our favorite version? Brian Eno’s, by a long shot.