"Dancing in the Moonlight" is a song by the French-American rock group King Harvest that was released as a single in 1972 and reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100. The band released other singles, but they were never able to match the success of "Dancing in the Moonlight". The track was unique for using a Wurlitzer electric piano throughout. Decades after its original release, a cover by Toploader became a minor hit.
The song was written in 1968 by Sherman Kelly, whose brother, Wells Kelly – King Harvest's drummer in the early 1970s – introduced the song to the band. It was originally recorded in 1969 by the American band Boffalongo, which included Sherman Kelly (who sang lead on this original recording of his own composition) and future King Harvest frontman Doc Robinson. Wells Kelly later became the original drummer for Orleans. Meanwhile, King Harvest recorded and released "Dancing in the Moonlight" as a single with "Lady, Come On Home" on the B-side while the band was based in Paris. Steve Cutler, a jazz drummer from New York City (standing on the base of the pole in the cover picture), played drums on the tracks and toured with the band in France and the UK. The group disbanded after six months and the single languished for a year, until it was bought and released worldwide by Perception Records.
A cover version was released in the UK in 1973 by the singing and dancing act Young Generation, but despite airplay, it failed to chart. The song finally charted in the UK in March 2000, after being covered in 1999 by Toploader, which used the first part of the first verse instead of the second part of the first verse. In 1994, the song was released as a single by the group Baha Men, but failed to chart. Their version was later used in the Fat Albert movie.
In 2000, English alternative rock band Toploader released a cover of "Dancing in the Moonlight". It was originally released in February 2000 as the third single from their debut studio album Onka's Big Moka (1999) and peaked at #19 on the UK Singles Chart. It was re-released in November of the same year and then reached #7. The song has been certified Platinum by the British Phonographic Industry for sales of over 600,000 copies.
In the early 90's, the original version was used in an ad for Hanes Her Way underwear, featuring a young woman performing gymnastics on a trampoline under the full moon wearing a Hanes Her Way bra & panty set under an open blouse.
The original version of "Dancing in the Moonlight" was licensed by Wal-Mart for their 2008 television commercial season in the United States.
The song was also featured in the 2011 British-American comedy film Paul.
The original version was featured in a 2016 2nd-season episode of Better Call Saul; the song played in the background during a flashback scene where the lead character Jimmy McGill recalls a poignant moment in his childhood.
Also used in the TV series, Scorpion (TV series) (Season 2/ Episode 4) in the closing minutes of the episode.
The original version was also used in "The Middle (TV series)" episode "Not Mother's Day" (season 7, episode 22), where Mike was dancing with his mom-in-law Pat at the gas station.