About the song
If you are a fan of soul and R&B music, you might have heard of the song “This Magic Moment” by The Drifters, featuring Ben E. King as the lead singer. This song is one of the best-known songs composed by lyricist Doc Pomus and pianist Mort Shuman, who also wrote hits for Elvis Presley, Dion and the Belmonts, and Ray Charles.
The song was recorded by The Drifters at Bell Sound Studios in New York City on December 23, 1959, and released as a single on January 28, 1960. The song describes the feeling of falling in love at first kiss, with lyrics like “This magic moment, so different and so new / Was like any other until I kissed you”. The song has a smooth and romantic sound, with King’s soulful voice backed by the harmonies of the other Drifters and a string section.
The song was a success on the charts, reaching No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 4 on the Billboard R&B chart in 1960. It also reached No. 20 on the Canadian CHUM Charts Hit Parade in the same year. The song has been covered by many artists over the years, including Jay and the Americans, Lou Reed, The Misfits, and Lake Street Dive.
One of the most popular covers of the song was by Jay and the Americans, who released their version in 1968 as a double A-side single with “Since I Don’t Have You”. Their version had a more upbeat and energetic sound, with a prominent organ and guitar riff. Their version spent 14 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, reaching No. 6 in 1969. It also reached No. 1 on Canada’s RPM Top Singles chart and No. 11 on Billboard’s Easy Listening chart.
The song has also been used in various movies and TV shows, such as The Sandlot, The Sopranos, Lost Highway, and Saturday Night Live. The song is considered a classic of the soul and R&B genre, and has been praised for its timeless appeal and emotional impact.