Some Nights (song)
|Single by Fun|
|from the album Some Nights|
|Released||June 4, 2012|
|Length||4:37 (album version)
3:58 (radio edit) [promo only]
|Label||Fueled by Ramen/Atlantic|
|Writer(s)||Jeff Bhasker, Nate Ruess, Andrew Dost and Jack Antonoff|
|Fun singles chronology|
"Some Nights" is a song by American indie rock band Fun. It was released on June 4, 2012, as the second single and the title track from their second studio album of the same name. The song was written by Jeff Bhasker, Nate Ruess, Andrew Dost, and Jack Antonoff. Musically "Some Nights" is an indie pop song with elements of power pop and afrobeat while the lyrics depict the protagonist having an existential crisis.
In the United States, "Some Nights" was a sleeper hit, spending approximately seven months on the Billboard Hot 100 before reaching a peak of number three for six non-consecutive weeks beginning the week of September 29, 2012. The song became Fun's second single to enter the chart's top ten, as well as their second song to be certified platinum in the US, after their previous single, "We Are Young". "Some Nights" was also successful in countries around the world.
Composition and lyrical interpretation
Musically, "Some Nights" is an indie pop song with strong, festive elements of power pop and afrobeat and influences from folk rock. It is written in the key of C major at a tempo of 108 beats per minute. A line in their lyrics, "this is it boys, this is war", recalls the English version of Nena's 1983 hit "99 Luftballons". Lyrically, the song expresses the existential angst of a young protagonist who is a long way from home. Lead singer Nate Ruess explained to Mesfin Fekadu of the Associated Press: "I'm always thinking about, 'Who am I and why did I do something like that?' And I think then it harkens back to my family, and I have such a strong tie to them and it's always therapeutic to sing about them." Ruess came up with the song and album title while on tour in Scotland; he wrote the song based on the title. Lyrically, the song is about "just being someone different on any given night."
There has been some confusion with the fans as the lyric "Some terrible nights" was mistaken for "...lies". Members of Fun. confirmed on November 18, 2012 on their Twitter and Facebook accounts that "it's NIGHTS not LIES." Many critics have noted significant similarities between "Some Nights" and Simon and Garfunkel's "Cecilia." Ruess commented that Simon's Graceland (1986) was an influence on the song in an interview with Billboard.
The song received acclaim from music critics. The Re-View calls "Some Nights" a "bolder, catchier and more striking track than its predecessor "We Are Young", upping the stakes when it comes to both style and substance." In closing, he cited the track as one that would "cement [Fun] as one of the most intriguing and exciting new bands to emerge from the States in recent years." The Guardian writer Dave Simpson compared Ruess's vocals in the song to those of Freddie Mercury and called the lyrics "sincere and oddly moving".
Ray Rahman of Entertainment Weekly, while reviewing the whole album, criticized its second half as inferior to the first and also called "Some Nights" the best track on the album, alongside "We Are Young".
"Some Nights" has reached number one in Australia, New Zealand, and Israel. The song has also reached the top ten in the United States, Canada, Ireland, Austria, Italy, Belgium, and the United Kingdom, and has so far made the top 30 in the Netherlands, Sweden, and Switzerland; it has also charted in Japan.
In the United States, "Some Nights" debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 the same week their album Some Nights debuted at number 3 on the Billboard 200. The song remained in the lower region of the chart for approximately four months due to low-level sales and consistent high-level streaming, before finally entering the top 40 in its 18th week. In its 23rd week, it switched places with "We Are Young" at number 11 on the chart, where it stayed the week after. In the song's 25th week on the chart, it entered the top ten by jumping to number 8. In its sixth week in the top ten, it reached number 3, which has been its peak position. As of March 2014, the song has sold over 5 million copies in the United States.
The music video for "Some Nights" was released on MTV.com on June 4, 2012. The video was produced by Poonam Sehrawat and directed by Anthony Mandler. The video shows a fictional battle taking place during the American Civil War and shows the band singing from afar as war breaks out with lead singer Nate appearing as the commander of the Union force. The story also follows two particular soldiers, one from each side of the conflict. From the Confederacy, the song follows a middle-aged farmer clearly in love with his life, land and animals, while from the Union side the story follows two young lovers torn apart as the young man heads off to the fight. The broken loves, of beauty and of nature, eventually clash in the battle with consequences for both the loser and winner, showing that the personal costs of war will continue far beyond the battleground.
Credits and personnel
- Lead vocals – Nate Ruess
- Piano, bass guitar, keyboards, background vocals - Andrew Dost
- Guitar, drums, background vocals - Jack Antonoff
- Keyboards, programming, background vocals - Jeff Bhasker
- Additional programming - Pat Reynolds
- Additional guest vocals - Joi Starr
- Producers – Jeff Bhasker
- Lyrics – Jeff Bhasker, Nate Ruess, Andrew Dost, Jack Antonoff
- Label: Fueled by Ramen
Usage in media
"Some Nights" appeared in the series finale of Harry's Law, and has been used in television spots for the American Broadcasting Company program Secret Millionaire. The song was also used in promos for the 2012 MTV Movie Awards and the 2013 BCS National Championship Game. Fun performed the song on The Colbert Report, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Sunrise, and The Jonathan Ross Show.
It was used in a trailer for the film Wreck-It Ralph involving the dramatic scenes of the film.
Charts and certifications
On Air With Ryan Seacrest reviews a collaborative video version of Some Nights performed by nine, "YouTube stars". Produced by Jake Coco and W. G. Snuffy Walden, vocalists include Jake Coco, Corey Gray, Caitlin Hart, Madilyn Bailey, Savannah Outen, Jess Moskaluke, Sara Niemietz, Eppic, and Black Prez. Released on Jake Coco's YouTube channel on August 11, 2012, by October 13, 2012 this cover version received 4,532,233 views in 64 days. In August 2012 Some Nights was covered by Canadian band Walk Off The Earth for their YouTube channel. Ohio based metalcore band Like Moths To Flames covered the song on the compilation album Punk Goes Pop 5.
South African singer Bobby van Jaarsveld performed a version live on Jacaranda FM in April 2013.
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- "Italian single certifications – Fun. – Some Nights" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved October 19, 2012. Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Fun. in the field Filtra. The certification will load automatically
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- Vulpo, Michael (13 August 2012). "YouTube Stars Collaborate for Cover of Fun's 'Some Night'’ [VIDEO]". Some Nights. Los Angeles, California: Ryan Seacrest Productions. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
On Air with Ryan Seacrest
- Coco, Jake. "Some Nights - Fun - Official YouTuber Music Video - Jake Coco & Friends". Some Nights. Jake Coco: Official YouTube Channel. Archived from the original (Video) on 13 October 2012. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
- on YouTube (uploaded April 25, 2013)
- Victoria Justice Covers fun.'s 'Some Nights' (VIDEO) - The Huffington Post (released April 26, 2013)
- Collar, Matt. "Under the Influence - Straight No Chaser". Allmusic. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
- Video on YouTube
- http://cms.jacarandafm.com/post/video-bobby-van-jaarsveld-covers-some-nights/?content_type=gallery Retrieved 4 February 2014