March 5, 2024

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Song of the day for December 17, 2023

2 min read

Today’s song is the 1994 remixed release of December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night) by the Four Seasons.

In 1994 A remixed version of The Four Seasons’ “December, 1963 (Oh, What A Night)” re-entered the US Hot 100, where it stayed for another 27 weeks, just as it did when it first charted in 1976. The combined run will establish a record for the longest total chart appearance in US chart history.

According to the co-writer and longtime group member Bob Gaudio, the song’s lyrics were originally set in 1933 with the title “December 5th, 1933,” and celebrated the repeal of Prohibition, but the lyrics were changed at the urgings of Frankie Valli and lyricist Parker to reposition the song as a nostalgic remembrance of a young man’s first affair with a woman, and, more specifically, Gaudio’s courtship with his wife, Judy Parker.

The single was released in December 1975 and hit number one on the UK Singles Chart on February 21, 1976. It repeated the feat on the US Billboard Hot 100 on March 13, 1976, remaining in the top spot for three weeks and one week on Cash Box. Billboard ranked it as the No. 4 song for 1976. On April 10 the same year, it topped the RPM National Top Singles Chart in Canada. It was the final Four Seasons’ song to reach number one, although Valli would have one final chart-topper as a solo act in 1978 with the theme song to the film Grease.

In 1988, Dutch DJ and producer Ben Liebrand remixed the song and re-released it as a single. In 1994 Curb Records, who released the original version of the song, picked up the 1988 remix and released it to the U.S. market. The 1994 re-release spent 27 weeks on the Hot 100 (matching the chart life of the original 1975 single). The peak position of the remix version was #14. Adding together the two 27-week chart runs for the 1975 original single and the remixed version (for a combined total of 54 weeks, two more weeks than a full year) gave the song the longest tenure ever on the Billboard Hot 100 music chart up to that time. This remixed version has a duration of five minutes. It also became the Four Seasons’ sole charting song on the Mainstream Top 40 chart, hitting a peak of #6.

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