EVERY UK NUMBER ONE SONG: ‘Such A Night’ Johnnie Ray

What was the number one song in the UK on 30th April 1954?

By Hayley Beasley Dye

American singer and pianist Johnnie Ray got Such a Night to number one for a week.

This song is SO 1950s rock ‘n’ roll. Johnnie was considered a pioneer in that music genre and I can see why when listening to this song. I also listened to the Drifters’ version who recorded it originally, and I definitely preferred Johnnie’s version. Pretty impressive considering Johnnie was also partially deaf.


“Such a Night” is a popular song from 1953, written by Lincoln Chase and first recorded by The Drifters.

The Drifters, featuring Clyde McPhatter, recorded the song in November 1953, and Atlantic Records released it in January 1954 as the intended B-side of the McPhatter-penned “Lucille”, which was recorded by an early version of the group. Despite being banned by some radio stations as too “racy”, it reached number 2 on the American R&B chart in 1954.

The song also became a hit single for Johnnie Ray, whose cover version reached No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart in 1954. Ray’s version entered the US Cash Box chart on 27 March 1954, peaking at No. 18 two weeks later on 10 April.

Elvis Presley also recorded the song and released it on his 1960 album Elvis Is Back. Presley’s version made number 13 in the UK and number 16 in the US, when released as a single in 1964.


“Such a night.
It was a night, oo what a night it was, it really was, such a night
The moon was bright oo how bright it was, it really was, such a night
The night was alive with stars above
And when she kissed me i had to fall in love
It was a kiss mmmm what a kiss it was, it really was, such a kiss
How she could kiss oo what a kiss it was, it really was, such a kiss
Just part of her lips that sets me on fire
I reminisce and i feel desire
I’d give my heart to her in sweet surrender
How well i remember, i’ll always remember
Oo that night, oo what a night it was, it really was, such a night
Came the dawn and my heart and my love and the night was gone
But i’ll never forget that kiss in the moonlight
Oo such a kiss, oo such a night
Now she’s gone, gone gone
Yes she’s gone, gone gone
Came the dawn, dawn dawn
And the night was gone
And my heart was gone
And her love was gone
But before the dawn oo oo oo oo such a night.”

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Every UK Number One Song

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