- Southern Nights (song)
Name = Southern Nights
from Album = Southern Nights
A-side = "Southern Nights"
B-side = "
William Tell Overture"
Released = January 1977 (U.S.)
Format = 7"
Recorded = 1976
Genre = Country
Length = 3:00
Producer = Gary Klein
Certification = Gold (RIAA)
Chart position =
"Southern Nights" is a song written by
Allen Toussaintand most famously recorded by country-pop singer Glen Campbell. The song enjoyed immense popularity with both country and pop audiences when Campbell covered it in 1977.
Campbell had been a leader in crossover music during the 1960s and 1970s, and continued that trend when he recorded Toussaint's "Southern Nights." Toussaint recalled his memories of visiting relatives in the Louisiana backwoods when writing the song; often, while listening to stories from his elderly relatives, the young Toussaint would look up in the clear nighttime, star-filled sky. [ [http://wm06.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=33:gnfexqejldje] Hogan, Ed, "Southern NIghts" on
Campbell listened to Toussaint's recording of the song and identified with its lyrics, as it reminded him of his days as an Arkansas farm youth. "My dad told me when I was a kid, 'You're having the best time of your life, and you don't even known it.' Sure enough, he was right." [Gilbert, Bob and Gary Theroux, "The Top Ten: 1956-Present," Pop Record Research, Fireside Books, Simon & Schuster, New York. 1982 (ISBN 0-671-43215-X)]
After some modifications to the lyrics, Campbell recorded the song. [Hogan.]
Released in January 1977, "Southern Nights" immediately caught on with both country and pop audiences. The song spent the late winter and early spring climbling both the "
Billboard magazine" Hot Country Singles and Billboard Hot 100charts.
Toward the end of March, the song spent two weeks at No. 1 on the country chart, and at the end of April, one week at No. 1 on the Hot 100. On both charts, it was Campbell's final #1 song, his fifth on the country chart, and second on the pop chart. In addition, the song rose to #1 on the adult contemporary chart, where it remained for four weeks; this was Campbell's seventh #1 on this chart. ["The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits", 6th Edition, 1996]
"Southern Nights" was Campbell's final Top 10 hit on the "Billboard" Hot 100. However, he would continue to enjoy success on the country chart, scoring Top 10 hits through the end of 1989.
"Southern Nights" was certified gold for sales of 1 million units by the
Recording Industry Association of America. [http://www.riaa.com/gp/database/search_results.asp]
The song was nominated for Song of the Year in 1977 by the
Country Music Association, but did not win. [ [http://www.cmaawards.com/2006/database/ByYear.aspx?year=1977] Country Music AssociationAwards database - 1977 nominees and winners.]
*Whitburn, Joel, "Top Country Songs 1944-2005 - 6th Edition." 2006.
*Whitburn, Joel, "Top Pop Singles: 1955-2006," 2007.
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