"At Last" is a 1941 song written by Mack Gordon and Harry Warren for the musical film Orchestra Wives, starring George Montgomery and Ann Rutherford. It was first performed in the film and on record by Glenn Miller and his orchestra, vocal by Ray Eberle and Pat Friday. The song was a major hit for Miller, reaching number 14 on the Billboard pop charts in 1942, and it soon became a standard. Nat King Cole recorded it in 1957 on his number one album Love Is the Thing. In 1960, it was covered by blues singer Etta James in a performance that improvised on Warren's melody. James' version was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.
The song was a favorite of Warren's and he would occasionally draw the melody of the first two bars of the song when signing an autograph.
The song became James's signature song and was the third in a string of successful songs from her Chess Records debut album At Last!. Upon the song's release in April 1961, it became her second number 2 R&B hit and crossed over to pop radio, reaching number 47 on the Billboard Hot 100. Despite its rather low pop chart standing, the song is well-known and is still played regularly on oldies radio stations.
In the decades since its release it has been covered by a number of artists, including Doris Day, Ella Fitzgerald, Jason Mraz, Phoebe Snow, Miles Davis, Martina McBride, Céline Dion, Lou Rawls, The Philosopher Kings, Eva Cassidy, Christina Aguilera, Joni Mitchell, Stevie Nicks, Norah Jones, The Temptations, Stevie Wonder, Jimmy Scott, The Manhattan Rhythm Kings, Cyndi Lauper, Aubrey O'Day, Beyonce Knowles, and Nikki Yanofsky. The Etta James version is perhaps the most famous, and is known to be performed at weddings and wedding receptions because of its romantic lyrics and sweeping orchestration. It was used in the trailer for the movie Wall-E.
On January 20, 2009, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama danced to various renditions of the song at each of the 10 official balls honoring his inauguration.