|Single by Glen Campbell|
|from the album Southern Nights|
|"William Tell Overture"|
|Released||January 17, 1977|
|Recorded||October 2, 1976|
Los Angeles, California
|Glen Campbell singles chronology|
"Southern Nights" is a song written and recorded by Allen Toussaint, from his 1975 album Southern Nights, and later recorded by American country music singer Glen Campbell. It was the first single released from Campbell's 1977 album Southern Nights and reached No. 1 on three separate US charts. It was covered by the Chicago band Whitney in 2015.
The lyrics of "Southern Nights" were inspired by childhood memories Allen Toussaint had of visiting relatives in the Louisiana backwoods, which often entailed storytelling under star-filled nighttime skies. When Campbell heard Toussaint's version, he immediately identified with the lyrics which reminded him of his own youth growing up on an Arkansas farm. In October 1976, Campbell recorded the song with slightly modified lyrics.
Released as a single by Campbell in January 1977, "Southern Nights" immediately caught on with both country and pop audiences. The song featured a unique guitar lick that Campbell had learned from friend Jerry Reed. In late March, "Southern Nights" spent two weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard magazine Hot Country Singles chart marking it Campbell's fifth and final No. 1 country hit.
In late April, the track reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart marking Campbell's second and last No. 1 pop hit.
"Southern Nights" was certified gold in the United States for sales of 1 million units by the Recording Industry Association of America. In 1977, the song was nominated for Song of the Year by the Country Music Association.