Night Fever

"Night Fever" is a song written and performed by the Bee Gees. It first appeared on the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever on RSO Records. Producer Robert Stigwood wanted to call the film Saturday Night, but singer Robin Gibb expressed hesitation at the title. Stigwood liked the title Night Fever but was wary of marketing a movie with that name. The song bounded up the Billboard charts while The Bee Gees two previous hits from Saturday Night Fever soundtrack ("How Deep is Your Love" and "Stayin' Alive") were still in the top ten. The record debuted on the Billboard Magazine Hot 100 Chart at #76, then leaped up 44 positions to #32. It then went moved: 32-17-8-5-2-1. It remained at #1 for eight weeks (the most for any single that year), and ultimately spent 13 weeks in the top 10.[2] For the first five weeks that "Night Fever" was at #1, "Stayin' Alive" was at #2. Also, for one week in March, Bee Gees related songs held five of the top positions on the Hot 100 chart, and more impressively, four of the top five position, with "Night Fever" at the top of the list.[3] The B-side of "Night Fever" was a live version of "Down the Road" taken from The Bee Gees 1977 album, Here at Last... Bee Gees... Live.[4]

"Night Fever"
Night fever uk single bee gees
UK 7" single
Single by Bee Gees
from the album Saturday Night Fever: The Original Movie Sound Track
B-side "Down the Road" (live)
Released 7 February 1978
Format 7" single
Recorded c. April 1977, Château d'Hérouville, France and
September 1977, Criteria Studios, Miami, Florida, United States[1]
Genre Disco
Length 3:32
Label RSO
Bee Gees singles chronology
"Stayin' Alive"
"Night Fever"
"Too Much Heaven"
"Stayin' Alive"
"Night Fever"
"Too Much Heaven"
Audio sample
  • file
  • help
Music video
"Night Fever" on YouTube
Saturday Night Fever track listing
17 tracks
Side one
  1. "Stayin' Alive"
  2. "How Deep Is Your Love"
  3. "Night Fever"
  4. "More Than a Woman"
  5. "If I Can't Have You"
Side two
  1. "A Fifth of Beethoven"
  2. "More Than a Woman"
  3. "Manhattan Skyline"
  4. "Calypso Breakdown"
Side three
  1. "Night on Disco Mountain"
  2. "Open Sesame"
  3. "Jive Talkin'"
  4. "You Should Be Dancing"
  5. "Boogie Shoes"
Side four
  1. "Salsation"
  2. "K-Jee"
  3. "Disco Inferno"

Inspiration and writing

When Bee Gees manager Robert Stigwood was producing a movie about a New York disco scene, the working title for the film at that time was Saturday Night. Stigwood asked the group to write a song using that name as a title, but the Bee Gees disliked it. They had already written a song called "Night Fever", so the group convinced Stigwood to use that and change the film to Saturday Night Fever.[5]

The string intro of "Night Fever" was inspired by "Theme from A Summer Place" by Percy Faith, according to keyboardist Blue Weaver when he was performing it one morning at the sessions and Barry Gibb walked in and heard the new idea for this song.[5] As Weaver explains the history behind this song:

...'Night Fever' started off because Barry walked in one morning when I was trying to work out something. I always wanted to do a disco version of Theme from A Summer Place by The Percy Faith Orchestra or something - it was a big hit in the Sixties. I was playing that, and Barry said, 'What was that?' and I said, 'Theme from A Summer Place', and Barry said, 'No, it wasn't'. It was new. Barry heard the idea - I was playing it on a string synthesizer and sang the riff over it.[6]

— Blue Weaver

Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb and Maurice Gibb completed the lyrics for "Night Fever" sitting on a staircase (reminiscent of their first international hit "New York Mining Disaster 1941", which was written also in a staircase back in 1967).[6]


The Bee Gees began recording this song by April 1977 in France and finishing it in September the same year. A demo of "Night Fever" with some instrumental and vocals heard on it exists and was now available to download on Rhino Records' website.[1]

...For 'Night Fever' the group had the hook-line and rhythm - they usually pat their legs to set up a song's rhythm when they first sing it - and parts of the verses. They had the emotion, same as on the record. We put down battery first, so the feel was locked in. The electric piano part was put on before the bass, then the heavy guitar parts. We had the sound, but we needed something there to shake it so we used the thunder sound.[6]


It also replaced Andy Gibb's "Love Is Thicker Than Water" at number one and was in turn replaced by Yvonne Elliman's "If I Can't Have You"—all of which were written and produced by the Gibb brothers. It would be the third of six consecutive US #1s for the band, tying The Beatles for the record for most consecutive #1 singles. Billboard ranked it as the No. 2 song for 1978, behind Andy Gibb's "Shadow Dancing."[7]

"Night Fever" topped the UK Singles Chart for two weeks, their third UK number-one, and in the US it remained the number-one Billboard Hot 100 single for over two months in 1978. In addition to Saturday Night Fever, the song has also appeared in the movie and on the soundtrack for Mystery Men. The song is listed at number 38 on Billboard's All Time Top 100.[8] It is also featured in other films including Luna, Mr. Saturday Night, I.D., Whatever Happened to Harold Smith?, and Avenue Montaigne.

It appears in a 2017 TV commercial for Walmart.

Music video

A music video was made for the song in 1978, but not shown to the public until 2004. It features the brothers singing the song in a darkened studio, layered over background video filmed while driving along "Motel Row" on Collins Avenue, a three-mile motel strip in what is now Sunny Isles Beach, Florida.[9] Most of these motels are now closed or demolished, including several whose names are reminiscent of Las Vegas resorts (Castaways, Desert Inn, Sahara, Golden Nugget).


Charts and certifications

Weekly charts

Chart (1978) Peak
Australia (Kent Music Report)[10] 7
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[11] 4
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[12] 3
Brazil[13] 1
Canadian RPM Adult Contemporary[14] 1
Canadian RPM Top 30 Playlist[15] 13
Canadian RPM Top Singles[16] 1
China[13] 3
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[13] 6
Germany (Official German Charts)[17] 2
Irish Singles Chart[18] 1
Italy 5
Japan (Oricon)[19] 3
Mexico (Mexican Airplay)[20] 2
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[21] 3
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[22] 3
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[23] 2
Norway (VG-lista)[24] 2
South African Chart[25] 2
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[26] 1
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[27] 5
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[28] 3
UK (Official Charts Company)[29] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[30] 1
US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play[30] 3
US Billboard Hot R&B Singles[30] 8
US Billboard Adult Contemporary[31] 19
US Cash Box[32] 1
Chart (2007) Peak
Italy (FIMI)[33] 69
Chart (2012) Peak
France (SNEP)[34] 108

Year-end charts

Chart (1978) Rank
Australia[35] 53
Canada RPM Top Singles[36] 1
New Zealand[37] 9
Switzerland[38] 15
UK[39] 7
US Cash Box[40] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[41] 2

All-time charts

Chart Rank
US Billboard Hot 100[8] 38

Sales and certifications

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Canada (Music Canada)[42] Platinum 150,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[43] Gold 500,000^
United States (RIAA)[44] Platinum 2,500,000[45]

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone



  1. ^ a b Brennan, Joe. "Gibb Songs : 1977". Columbia University. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
  2. ^ "Song-Database "Night Fever"". 2018-07-02. Retrieved 2018-07-02. External link in |website= (help)
  3. ^ "Gibb Songs : 1978". Retrieved 2018-07-04.
  4. ^ "Here at Last...Bee Gees...Live - Bee Gees | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2018-07-04.
  5. ^ a b "Night Fever by Bee Gees". Retrieved 12 February 2015.
  6. ^ a b c Melinda Bilyeu; Hector Cook; Andrew Môn Hughes. The Bee Gees. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  7. ^ Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1978
  8. ^ a b Bronson, Fred (2 August 2012). "Hot 100 55th Anniversary: The All-Time Top 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
  9. ^ "Bee Gees - Night Fever (Video)" on YouTube. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
  10. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (doc). Australian Chart Book, St Ives, N.S.W. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  11. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  12. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  13. ^ a b c "Songs Written by the Gibb Family on the International Charts - Part 3" (PDF). Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  14. ^ "Night fever in Canadian Adult Contemporary Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  15. ^ "Bee Gees cuts from Saturday Night Fever in Canadian Top 30 Playlist". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  16. ^ "Night fever in Canadian Top Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  17. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  18. ^ "Night fever in Irish Chart". IRMA. Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 10 July 2013. 2nd result when searching "Night fever"
  19. ^ Danyel Smith, ed. (1978). Billboard 2 september 1978. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  20. ^ Danyel Smith, ed. (1978). Billboard 12 august 1978. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 10 July 2013.(mistakenly called "Saturday Night fever")
  21. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Bee Gees" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.
  22. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  23. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever". Top 40 Singles.
  24. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever". VG-lista.
  25. ^ John Samson. "Night fever in South African Chart". Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  26. ^ Danyel Smith, ed. (1978). Billboard 8 july 1978. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  27. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever". Singles Top 100.
  28. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever". Swiss Singles Chart.
  29. ^ "1978 Top 40 Official UK Singles Archive - 29th April 1978". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  30. ^ a b c "Saturday Night Fever [Original Movie Soundtrack] awards on Allmusic". Allmusic. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  31. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–1993. Record Research. p. 26.
  32. ^ "Cashbox Top 100". Cashbox Archives. 18 March 1978. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  33. ^ "Indice per Interprete: B". HitParadeItalia (it). Archived from the original on 21 July 2013. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  34. ^ " – Bee Gees – Night Fever" (in French). Les classement single.
  35. ^ "Forum - 1970 (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Archived from the original on 2016-06-02. Retrieved 2017-05-07.
  36. ^
  37. ^ "End of Year Charts 1978". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  38. ^ Swiss Year-End Charts, 1978
  39. ^ Scaping, Peter, ed. (1979). "Top 200 Singles in 1978". BPI Year Book 1979 (4th ed.). London, England: The British Phonographic Industry Ltd. pp. 186–89. ISBN 0-906154-02-2.
  40. ^ "The CASH BOX Year-End Charts: 1978". Cashbox Archives. 31 December 1978.
  41. ^
  42. ^ "Canadian certifications – Bee Gees – Night Fever". Music Canada. Retrieved 29 March 2012.
  43. ^ "British single certifications – Bee Gees – Night Fever". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 29 March 2012. Select singles in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Enter Night Fever in the search field and then press Enter.
  44. ^ "American single certifications – Bee Gees – Night Fever". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 29 March 2012. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  45. ^ Grein, Paul (26 August 1978). "Billboard Vol. 90, No. 34". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 8 June 2012.

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