Monday, July 2, 2012

Dexy's Midnight Runners--Come On Eileen (1983)

     I've talked to a lot of people over the years who either really like this song, or really hate it. Either way, it is one of the most distinctive hits to come out of the 80's. The hybrid of soul and Irish music was an interesting combination that was unlike anything being played at that time.
     The "Runners" actually came from a straight up northern soul sound. Their previous album, "Searching For The Young Soul Rebels", had sparked a rebirth of the genre in the UK. Lead singer Kevin Rowland was/is a pretty idiosyncratic kind of guys, and his rules that he put on the band basically led most of them to quit on him.
      Rather than continuing on in the vein of their hit album, he put together a new band with a much more Celtic folk sound to them. The result was "Too-Rye-Ay", where they took on the roles of Irish vagabonds (Rowland like to do this kind of their previous incarnation, they dressed up like dockworkers, inspired by DiNero's "Mean Streets").
     The result was a number one song in the UK and here in the states. Interesting to note in the video that the drummer was sacked even before the video shoot was over. At the end of the clip, notice that the guy beating on his drum at the beginning was now gone. This was a pretty good microcosm of the group's history. 


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