Every No. 1 Country Single of the Eighties: Eddie Rabbitt, “I Love a Rainy Night”

“I Love a Rainy Night”

Eddie Rabbitt

Written by David Molloy, Eddie Rabbitt, and Even Stevens


#1 (1 week)

January 17, 1981

Eddie Rabbitt followed “Drivin’ My Life Away” with an even bigger crossover hit, one that interrupted Dolly Parton’s run at the top of the Hot 100 with “9 to 5.”

“I Love a Rainy Night” was a lucky find on Rabbitt’s part.  He discovered fragments of it among his old songwriting tapes and resurrected the idea with collaborators David Molloy and Even Stevens.

The song is brilliant in its simplicity.  Crossover hits of this time have a reputation for being syrupy and overproduced, but “I Love a Rainy Night” could’ve been released thirty years earlier, driven by finger snaps and acoustic guitars.  It has a Rockabilly feel that makes it fit comfortably among the current hits of the day on pop and country radio.  Rabbitt’s performance is light and airy, giving the song an additional layer of charm.

Parton and Rabbitt remain the only country artists to replace each other at No. 1 on the Hot 100, with Parton returning to No. 1 after Rabbitt displaced her for a week with “I Love a Rainy Night.”  With such massive success, you can understand why so many artists chased the crossover sound for the next couple of years. Few of them did it with such spectacular results as Parton and Rabbitt in early 1981.

Rabbitt’s next single will also top the charts, and we’ll cover it very soon.

“I Love a Rainy Night” gets an A.

Every No. 1 Single of the Eighties

Previous: Dolly Parton, “9 to 5” |

Next: T.G. Sheppard, “I Feel Like Loving You Again”



  1. Excellent effort – too bad he died so young as it would been interesting to hear him re-record some of his bigger pop hits either acoustically or with more solidly country arrangements

  2. As a kid, I remember my mom mocking this song for it’s repetitive simplicity. I also remember the parents of me best friend who lived across the alley from me in St. Paul loving this song. What’s interesting is neither my parents, nor my friend’s parents, were contemporary country music fans, but as of this song they suddenly had an opinion of country music.

    I think that’s the wonder and appeal of cross-over success, more people become part of the conversation and enter a room full of music they may otherwise never have heard.

    Is it the best song ever about rain?

    • I Love a Rainy Night is good for sure… best rain song for me is Brook Benton’s “Rainy Night in Georgia”. Outside of country music though it would be Blind Melon’s “No Rain”. Just thought I’d share all that. :-)

      • Let me echo Blind Melon’s “No Rain” and add some of my favorites:

        Eurythmics, “Here Comes the Rain Again”
        Willie Nelson, “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain”
        Wynonna, “Come Some Rainy Day”
        Madonna, “Rain”
        Trisha Yearwood, “Come Back When it Ain’t Rainin’”
        Adele, “Set Fire to the Rain”
        Gary Allan, “Every Storm Runs Out of Rain”
        Everly Brothers, “Crying in the Rain”
        Keith Urban, “Raining On Sunday”
        CCR, “Have You Ever Seen the Rain”

        Dang, there are a lot of great songs about rain!

  3. Rainy Days And Mondays by Carpenters for me as best rain song.

    I Love A Rainy Night is as catchy as a song could get. But radio has played it to death still to this day. But great song regardless.

  4. I love Gary Allan’s “Songs About Rain,” Mandy Barnnet’s “Rainy Days,” and Waylon Jennings “Rainy Day Woman.”

    Now that my mental sump-pump is primed I also recall Trisha Yearwood’s “Georgia Rain” and Bruce Hornsby’s “Mandolin Rain.”

    I don’t think we have even come close to touching all the great songs about rain!

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  1. ≫ Eddie Rabbitt, “Me encanta una noche lluviosa” – Country Universe

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