Night Moves by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band is a classic rock song.
Song Title: Night Moves
Artist: Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band
Album: Night Moves
Genre: rock, classic rock, soft rock
Composer: Copyright © 1976 Bob Seger
Lead Vocals: Bob Seger
Backing Vocals: Sharon Lee Williams, Rhonda Silver, Laurel Ward
Guitar: Joe Miquelon
Acoustic Guitar: Bob Seger
Piano: Doug Riley
Organ: Doug Riley
Bass Guitar: Chris Campbell
Drums: Charlie Allen Martin
Director: Wayne Isham
Producer: Jack Richardson
Recorded: 1976, Nimbus Nine Studios, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Released: 12 December 1976
Format: 7" 45 rpm vinyl
Number of listens: 20664
Current rank: 598 (updated weekly)
Highest rank: 592 (play the video all the way through to register a vote for this song)
Summary quotation from Wikipedia:
Night Moves is a song written and performed by Bob Seger, from his 1976 album Night Moves. Released as a single in December 1976, it eventually reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart. In doing so, it almost single-handedly changed Seger from being a popular regional favorite into a national star.
Seger and the Silver Bullet Band went to Toronto for three days to record a few tracks with The Guess Whos producer Jack Richardson, whose Nimbus 9 Productions company was hot at the time. The band quickly recorded two Seger originals, one of which was Long Long Gone, and a cover of the Motown hit My World Is Empty Without You, but before Seger left on the third day, he composed a fourth song to record. Seger said that the song was influenced by Bruce Springsteens Jungleland. As the only members of the Silver Bullet Band still in Toronto were the bassist and drummer (plus Seger on acoustic guitar and piano), Richardson recruited local session musicians to play electric guitar and organ, while Sharon Lee Williams, Rhonda Silver and Laurel Ward sang the songs trademark backing vocals.
Richardson said that the whole arrangement came together in the studio. Night Moves is a mid-tempo number that starts quietly with acoustic guitar. Bass guitar and drums are introduced as the songs setting is described: 1962, cornfields, 60 Chevy. An intense summertime teenage affair is described, knowingly more sexual than romantic, with short instrumental lines breaking the evocative imagery sometimes in mid-sentence. Piano, female backing vocals, electric guitar and organ are added as the songs emotional nostalgia builds momentum. Then suddenly it stops, as the narrative flashes forward to some period in the future, where he hums a song from 1962. To a quiet acoustic guitar, the narrator, awakened by a clap of thunder and unable to fall back asleep, ponders a different sense of the title phrase. Then the rest of the instruments fall back in, for an extended coda vamp of the chorus.
An edit of the song was generated that omitted the narrative interlude. (This abbreviated version is the one that was used on the FM soundtrack.)
After the tracks were mixed by Richardson and engineer Brian Christian, Richardson said that he received a call from Segers manager/producer Punch Andrews expressing dissatisfaction with the tracks, and Andrews said that Capitol Records had been equally disappointed. A few months later, when Richardson was talking to a Capitol A&R executive, he asked about the Seger sessions and was told that both tracks were potential B-sides. It turned out that Seger and Andrews had never given Night Moves to Capitol, so Richardson did and, after hearing it, Capitol made it the title track of Segers next album, as well as the first single.
Seger remembers the sessions somewhat differently. He claims that it was his decision to use musicians other than his normal band, and that he saw the song as potentially the one that would define his career. However, that appears to be inconsistent with the fact that the song was not submitted to Capitol by Seger and Andrews.
Music writer Samuel Delliance of The New York Post wrote in 1977, Night Moves is supposed to take place in Michigan in the early 1960s, but it is timeless and placeless. You can be across the street from Kissena Park in Queens in the early evening with no one in sight and the song will suddenly flood your mind just as it did Segers. In his 1979 volume Stranded: Rock and Roll for a Desert Island, famed rock critic Greil Marcus selected the single Night Moves for inclusion on same, writing simply: The mystic chords of memory.
Night Moves was named by Rolling Stone as Best Single of the Year for 1977. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame named it one of the 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll, Segers only such selection.
In 1994, nearly 20 years after the original song was released, an accompanying music video was released. Directed by Wayne Isham, it was set in a drive-in movie theater in the early 1960s, it interspersed footage of Seger performing in a present-day version of the drive-in (seemingly, now abandoned) with various vignettes featuring characters described in the song. Matt LeBlanc was in the starring role, prior to his debut in Friends; he later claimed that he was drunk through the whole video, having shared a bottle of tequila with Seger immediately before the shoot. Also featured in the video was Daphne Zuniga of Melrose Place. In the video, Zunigas dark, edgy young woman becomes an object of visual fascination for LeBlancs clean-cut young man.
Filmmaker Gary Weis produced an unofficial music video for Night Moves that aired on Saturday Night Live in January 1977. Seger recorded a special version of Night Moves for the 1981 animated film American Pop. This version, with Segers guitar overdubbed by a piano, has never been released on any album.
A satirical take on the songs chorus is sung by Tina Fey in the TV show 30 Rock as workin on my night cheese.
It was featured in episodes of That 70s Show, The OC, and How I Met Your Mother.
TNN used an alternate version at the end of their coverage of the 1996 Winston All-Star Race. It replaced the line tryin to lose the awkward teenage blues heard in the regular song with tryin to make some front page drive-in news. This version also removed all mentions of the line in the back seat of my 60 Chevy.
Night Moves, along with Hollywood Nights, appeared on the soundtrack for the 2013 video game, Grand Theft Auto V. Both songs are featured in the in-game radio station, Los Santos Rock Radio.
Night Moves is featured in the episode Meg Stinks! in season 12 of Family Guy; Peter Griffin states that the song, as are all of Bob Segers songs, is about bowel movements.
A Spanish version of Night Moves is sung in a nightclub by Kenny Powers love interest Vida in Season 2 of Eastbound & Down.
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