The Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack Celebrates 40 Years

When conjuring up a list of some of the hottest movie soundtracks of all time, the Saturday Night Fever joint has to be near the very top alongside the likes of Purple Rain, Superfly, The Harder They Come, and a few select others.

The movie was based off of a New York Magazine article, “Tribal Rites Of The New Saturday Night“, which was actually the original working title of the film. It placed the real-life disco subculture in Brooklyn under a microscopic lens. 

The title of the film and the soundtrack was eventually shortened to “Saturday Night,” but the Bee Gees, who were asked to contribute to the album, suggested it would be hotter if it was extended by one word to include the title of their new song “Night Fever.”

Bee Gees – How Deep Is Your Love (1977)

Join Bee Gees on Facebook & Twitter HOW DEEP IS YOUR LOVE I know your eyes in the morning sun I feel you touch me in the pouring rain And the moment that you wander far from me I wanna feel you in my arms again And you

Few soundtracks actually captured the essence a genre. This one came very close. Released in 1977, Saturday Night Fever blasted off just as the disco movement was reaching its apex. A culturally significant collection of music that proved to be a muscular international sensation, the album was certified Platinum 15 times, hovered atop the album charts for 24 straight weeks, occupied a spot on Billboard’s album charts for 120 weeks, and across the pond in the the UK, it jammed for 18 consecutive weeks at No. 1. 

Bee Gees – Night Fever (1977)

Join Bee Gees on Facebook & Twitter NIGHT FEVER Listen to the ground, there is movement all around There is something going down and I can feel it On the waves of the air, there is dancing out there If it’s something we can share, we can steal

The project won a Grammy for Album of the Year, something that no other Disco album had ever accomplished. It remains one of only three movie soundtracks to accomplish that prestigious feat.

The majority of the tracks were written, produced and performed by the Bee Gee’s, which is fascinating considering that they didn’t become involved in the project until the film was in post-production. 

Saturday Night Fever – More Than A Woman (Bee Gees)

La elegancia del baile y del vestir de los participantes, la msica de los Bee Gees y la participacin de John Travolta como excelente bailarn, hicieron de este video todo un clsico.

“The Bee Gees weren’t even involved in the movie in the beginning … I was dancing to Stevie Wonder and Boz Scaggs,” the film’s breakout star John Travolta once said.

In addition to the Bee Gee’s contributions, other classic cuts on the album include Kool & the Gang’s Open Sesame,  Walter Murphy’s A Fifth of Beethoven, The Trammps’ Disco Inferno, MFSB’s K-Jee, KC & The Sunshine Band’s Boogie Shoes and Yvonne Elliman’s If I Can’t Have You, among others.

Yvonne Elliman – If I Can’t Have You (Disco Version)

1977 RSO Records #PRO 033 (promo 12″ EP) Side 1- Stayin’ Alive 6:55 Night Fever 4:50 Side 2- More Than A Woman 4:43 If I Can’t Have You 4:00 You Should Be Dancing 4:47

As Chris Crisafulli wrote this summer on, “The fever hit hard. Toward the end of 1977 and through the following year, a single album inspired millions of listeners to put on formfitting polyester and hustle their way to the nearest dance floor. This of course was the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever a box-office smash that made John Travolta a movie star and effectively mainstreamed the sounds of disco. The film was a hit, but the soundtrack became a true pop culture phenomenon…”

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