The song, with music by the award-winning Elmer Bernstein and lyrics by Ernie Sheldon, was a big hit for legendary folksinger Glenn Yarbrough, reaching No. 12 on Billboard's Hot 100 and No. 2 on the Easy Listening charts.
To me, the song is about being true to oneself. The movie is about a man trying to turn his life around after serving time in prison.
The song opens with words about a person's calling:
"Some men climb a mountain,
Some men swim the sea,
Some men fly about the sky
They are what they must be"
And then the narrator sings:
"But baby the rain must fall,
Baby, the the wind must blow
Wherever my heart leads me
Baby, I must go"
Then lyrics about not selling your soul:
"I do not love for silver
I do not love for gold
My heart is mine to give away
It never will will be sold"
And then the refrain:
"But baby the rain must fall..."
And the final verse about the uncertainty of life:
"I am not rich or famous
But who can ever tell?
I don't know what waits for me
Maybe heaven, maybe hell"
And the refrain that closes with the lines:
"Wherever my hearts leads me
Baby I must go, baby I must go"
Yarbrough, a tenor and guitarist, was a founding member of the The Limeliters in 1959, then went on to a solo career in 1963. He's 83 now and still records and performs.
Sheldon was also an early member of The Limeliters, joining the group after Yarbrough departed. The group disbanded in 1965 but reunited in the '70s, and has been around in various lineups since then.
"Baby The Rain Must Fall" lyrics