Picture sleeve for the US 7-inch single, whose artwork would be later used for the parent article Risqué
|Single by Chic|
|from the album Risqué|
|B-side||"A Warm Summer Night"|
|Released||June 4, 1979|
|Length||8:08 (LP version)|
3:42 (7" edit)
|Chic singles chronology|
Side-A label for the US 12-inch single
"Good Times" is a song by American R&B band Chic from their third album Risqué (1979). The disco song, ranked No. 229 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, has become one of the most sampled tunes in music history, most notably in hip hop music.
Lyrics and inspiration
The lyrics include a reference to Milton Ager's "Happy Days Are Here Again". It also contains lines based on lyrics featured in "About a Quarter to Nine" made famous by Al Jolson. Nile Rodgers has stated that these Great Depression-era lyrics were used as a hidden way to comment on the then-current economic conditions in the United States.
The song hit number-one on August 18, 1979 before being ousted by The Knack's smash hit "My Sharona" the following week. Along with the songs "My Forbidden Lover" and "My Feet Keep Dancing", "Good Times" reached #3 on the disco chart. It reportedly sold more than 5 million copies, making it, at the time, the best-selling 45 rpm single in the history of Atlantic Records. Billboard magazine named "Good Times" the number one soul single of 1979.
Track listing and formats
7" vinyl single
- A. "Good Times" – 3:42
- B. "A Warm Summer Night" – 6:08
12" vinyl single
- A. "Good Times" – 8:10
- B. "A Warm Summer Night" – 6:08
Promo 12" vinyl single
- A. "Good Times" – 8:08
- B. "Good Times" – 3:42
Vocals: Alfa Anderson Keyboards: Andy Schwartz Bass Guitar: Bernard Edwards Producer, Vocals: Bernard Edwards Engineer: Bob Clearmountain Strings: Cheryl Hong Masterer: Dennis King Vocals: Fonzi Thornton Strings: Karen Karlsrud Strings: Karen Milne Vocals: Luci Martin Vocals: Michele Cobbs Guitar, Producer: Nile Rodgers Keyboards: Raymond Jones Keyboards: Robert Sabino Percussion: Sammy Figueroa Drums: Tony Thompson Vocals: Ullanda McCullough Strings: Valerie Haywood Writer: Bernard Edwards Writer: Nile Rodgers
|United Kingdom (BPI)||Silver||200,000|
|United States (RIAA)||Gold||1,000,000^|
^shipments figures based on certification alone
Disco Montego version
|Single by Disco Montego featuring Selwyn, Katie Underwood, Peta Morris and Jeremy Gregory|
|Released||4 November 2002|
|Disco Montego singles chronology|
|Selwyn singles chronology|
|Katie Underwood singles chronology|
|Peta Morris singles chronology|
|Jeremy Gregory singles chronology|
"Good Times" was covered by Australian musicians Disco Montego, Selwyn, Katie Underwood, Peta Morris and Jeremy Gregory and released in November 2002. It was released as part of Australia's largest pop music festival Rumba which took place in November and December 2002, across Australia.
The song peaked at number 52 on the ARIA Singles Chart in December 2002 in its sixth week.
- "Good Times"
- "Good Times" (Karaoke version)
- "Disco Montego Megamix"
- "Good Times" (Extended Mix)
Sampling and motifs
The backing track of "Good Times" was notably recreated in the Sugarhill Gang's 1979 single "Rapper's Delight", a key track in the development of hip hop. Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards threatened legal action over copyright, which resulted in a settlement and them being credited as co-writers. Rodgers admitted that he was originally upset with the song, but would later declare it to be "one of his favorite songs of all time" and his favorite of all the tracks that sampled Chic (the song used samples of the strings, and an interpolation of the bass line). He also stated that "as innovative and important as 'Good Times' was, 'Rapper's Delight' was just as much, if not more so." Traditionally, Chic's live performances of "Good Times" incorporate a portion of "Rapper's Delight" including audience participation call-and-response. The song was also covered for the game Rayman Raving Rabbids.
- EMP Museum, "Happy Days Are Here Again" Archived 2007-09-29 at the Wayback Machine, EMP Oral History Videos, Category: Black History Month. Nile Rodgers interviewed June 25, 2002, Seattle, Washington.
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 116.
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 56.
- George, Nelson (1988). The Death of Rhythm & Blues. New York, NY: Pantheon Books. p. 157. ISBN 0142004081. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
- "Nederlandse Top 40 – Chic" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.
- "Charts.nz – Chic – Good Times". Top 40 Singles.
- "Billboard Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved 2019-10-31.
- "Offiziellecharts.de – Chic – Good Times". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- "Top 100 Singles (1979)". RPM. Retrieved 2017-07-29.
- "Cash Box Year-End Charts: Top 100 Pop Singles, December 29, 1979". Archived from the original on July 13, 2014. Retrieved October 15, 2017.
- "British single certifications – Chic – Good Times/I Want Your Love". British Phonographic Industry.
- "American single certifications – Chic – Good Times". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH.
- "Rumba kicks off in Australia". Sydney Morning Herald. 4 December 2002. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "RUMBA 2002 - RUMBA 2002". Frontier Touring. 2002. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "The ARIA Report issue 668" (PDF). The ARIA Report. 17 January 2003. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
- "The Story of Rapper's Delight by Nile Rodgers". RapProject.tv. Retrieved October 12, 2008.
- "Nile Rodgers interviewed by Peter Paphides". Twentyfirstcenturymusic.blogspot.com. November 10, 2011. Retrieved November 13, 2011.
-  Archived October 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine