ONE NIGHT (song)

One Night (song) 1957

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A-side “I Got Stung”
Released October 21, 1958
Format 45 rpm, 78 rpm single
Recorded February 23, 1957, Radio Recorders, Los Angeles, California
Genre Rhythm and blues, rock and roll
Length 2:32
Label RCA
Writer(s) Dave Bartholomew, Pearl King, Anita Steinman

“One Night” is a song written by Dave Bartholomew, Pearl King, and Anita Steinman. It was an R&B hit for Smiley Lewis in 1956, before being recorded with greater commercial success by Elvis Presley in 1959.

The original recording of the song by Smiley Lewis, for Imperial Records, is sometimes titled “One Night of Sin”, in line with the original lyrics. The single reached No.11 on the Billboard R&B chart in early 1956.

Presley recorded a version of the song with its original lyrics on January 18, 1957, but this version would not be released until 1983. Both Elvis’ manager and record company had reservations about the suggestive lyrics. Elvis did not give up on the song. He continued to play with it during his spare time on the set of Loving You, finally rewriting the lyrics that he felt were holding the song captive, changing “One night of sin is what I’m now paying for” into “One night with you is what I’m now praying for.” Presley’s recording credited Anita Steinman as an additional co-writer, with Bartholomew and King.

On February 23, 1957, at Radio Recorders in Los Angeles, he showed up with his new lyrics, feeling sure they would meet his label’s approval. It was issued as a single in October 1958 and peaked at No. 4 on Billboard’s singles chart. The song was published by Elvis Presley Music.

Presley’s recording was issued as a double A-side with “I Got Stung”, and reached number one twice on the UK Singles Chart. In the U.S., “One Night”, reached number four on the pop singles chart and number ten on the R&B chart. The song became the UK’s 1000th number-one single upon its second release in January 2005. It was also his last single to be issued on 78 RPM records in the United States. On 12 February 1959, it became the first song to reach No. 1 on the Irish Music Charts Top 10, when they were being printed in the Evening Herald. It spent one week at the top spot.

Rock critic Pete Johnson observed that the song contains a triple negative with the lyrics “I ain’t never did no wrong”.

Other versions

1975: English glam rock band Mud on their album Mud Rock Volume 2 (reached #32 in the UK charts)
1989: Joe Cocker titled his remake “One Night of Sin” on his album of the same name
1961: Fats Domino on his album Let the Four Winds Blow
2006: Billy Ray Cyrus recorded this song during the sessions for his album Wanna Be Your Joe
2007: Corinne Bailey Rae performed the song on Goin’ Home: A Tribute to Fats Domino