Song Lyric Sunday. Siblings.

Today is Sunday, time for Song Lyric Sunday. Our host Jim Adam’s prompt this week September 27, 2020 – Brother/Sibling/Sister.

I have chosen Come Dancing by the Kinks.

Come Dancing” is a 1982 song written by Ray Davies and performed by British rock group the Kinks on their 1983 album State of Confusion. The song was inspired by Davies’ memories of his older sister, Rene, who died of a heart attack while dancing at a dance hall. The lyrics, sung from the perspective of an “East Endbarrow boy,” are about the boy’s sister going on dates at a local Palais dance hall. When first released as a single in United Kingdom in November 1982, “Come Dancing” failed to chart. Although Arista Records founder Clive Davis had reservations about releasing the single in the United States due to the English subject matter of dance halls, the track saw an American single release in April 1983. “Come Dancing” reached number six on the Hot 100, becoming the band’s highest US charting single in over a decade and tying with “Tired of Waiting for You” as the band’s highest charting single ever. This success was achieved largely with the help of a promotional music video directed by Julien Temple that saw frequent airing on MTV. As a result of its American success, the single was re-released in Britain. Unlike its first release, the single became a top 20 British hit, reaching number 12.

“Come Dancing” is a tribute to the Davies brothers’ older sister Rene. Living in Canada with her reportedly abusive husband, the 31-year-old Rene was visiting her parental home in Fortis Green at the time of Ray Davies’ thirteenth birthday—21 June 1957—on which she surprised him with a gift of the Spanish guitar he had tried to persuade his parents to buy him. That evening, Rene, who had a weak heart as a result of a childhood bout of rheumatic fever, suffered a fatal heart attack while dancing at the Lyceum ballroom.

Ray Davis said “Rene had died dancing in a ballroom in London in the arms of a stranger. … Coming back from Canada where she’d emigrated [from the U.K.] to die, really, and again, being a source of inspiration. … She gave me my first guitar, which was quite a great parting gift.”

Lyrics

They put a parking lot on a piece of land
When the supermarket used to stand
Before that they put up a bowling alley
On the site that used to be the local pally
That’s where the big bands used to come and play
My sister went there on a Saturday
Come dancing
All her boyfriends used to come and call
Why not come dancing, it’s only natural
Another Saturday, another date
She would be ready but she’s always make him wait
In the hallway, in anticipation
He didn’t know the night would end up in frustration
He’d end up blowing all his wages for the week
All for a cuddle and a peck on the cheek
Come dancing
That’s how they did it when I was just a kid
And when they said come dancing
My sister always did
My sister should have come in a midnight
And my mom would always sit up and wait
It always ended up in a big row
When my sister used to get home late
Out of my window I can see them in the moonlight
Two silhouettes saying goodnight by the garden gate
The day they knocked down the pally
My sister stood and cried
The day they knocked down the pally
Part of my childhood died, just died
Now I’m grown up and playing in a band
And there’s a car park where the pally used to stand
My sister’s married and she lives on an estate
Her daughters go out, now it’s her turn to wait
She knows they get away with things she never could
But if I asked her I wonder if she would
Come dancing
Come on sister, have yourself a ball
Don’t be afraid to come dancing
It’s only natural
Come dancing
Just like the pally on a Saturday
And all her friends will come dancing
Where the big bands used to play

Lyrics from lyric find.com

Songwriters: Ray Davies Come Dancing lyrics © BMG Rights Management

In late 1982 I heard this song by the Kinks, I was expecting our youngest son, he was born 1983. I have always loved the Kinks. I remember thinking at the time I would love to go dancing… Anyway small piece of information when our youngest graduated Ray Davis, of the Kinks was a guest speaker at the ceremony. How’s that for a coincidence?

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34 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ritu
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 06:18:31

    Love your choice, Sis 💜💜💜

    Reply

  2. TheHiddenEdge
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 07:30:11

    What a sad story, behind what is a great song. We went to see Sunny Afternoon a couple of years ago, Come Dancing didn’t feature, in the playlist. Guess you can’t fit every song into a musical and still tell a story. 😊

    Reply

  3. Jenna Kirkpatrick
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 09:34:08

    Cool song! Very cool that RD was the graduation speaker for your son.

    Reply

  4. CARAMEL
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 10:34:31

    I lived in Muswell Hill for five years – I heard so much about The Kinks during that time.

    Reply

  5. newepicauthor
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 14:28:08

    Great choice Willow.

    Reply

  6. Maggie
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 14:54:31

    Wow, I always loved this song but never knew the backstory. Such a sad story.

    Reply

  7. Paula Light
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 15:34:46

    Always liked this song but didn’t know the sad story 😢🎶

    Reply

  8. John Holton
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 17:15:10

    That’s really a sweet story, and this is a great song.

    Reply

  9. Robert Matthew Goldstein
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 19:29:08

    THat’s a lovely story and an excellent choice, Willow!

    Reply

  10. Christine Bolton, Poetry for Healing
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 20:09:16

    I remember this song so well Willow but didn’t know the story around it. What a tragedy! A wonderful share today 🥰

    Reply

  11. J-Dub
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 21:52:32

    I have always enjoyed this song but I never knew the story behind the song until today. Makes it that much more sentimental. Great choice!

    Reply

  12. Mr. Ohh's Sideways View
    Sep 27, 2020 @ 22:07:36

    Great choice this week I never knew the story behind it. I’m impressed at your knowledge

    Remember to laugh

    Reply

  13. Lisa Coleman
    Sep 28, 2020 @ 00:58:22

    Love it! I wouldn’t have even thought to do this. I remember when this came out! Good one! 🙂

    Reply

  14. freefallin14
    Oct 03, 2020 @ 10:01:42

    Great choice!

    Reply

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