379 to 50: #46 “There, There My Dear” by Dexys Midnight Runners

Dexys There

A trip back to 1980 for the 379 to 50 series, with “There, There My Dear” from Dexys Midnight Runners‘ joyous first album “Searching For The Young Soul Rebels”.  Also reached number 7 in the UK singles chart.

Ah, Dexys – it’s exceedingly difficult to pick out just one specific track from such an exciting, vibrant band led by the eccentric genius of Kevin Rowland, who constantly reinvent themselves album to album but always winningly.  In the end, I’ve plumped for “There, There My Dear” as my favourite song from my favourite Dexys album.  But it was close, more on that below.  The follow up to number one single “Geno”, “There, There My Dear” only scraped the UK top 10, but has all you want and expect from a prime Dexys song: passion, horns, hats, moustaches, questioning lyrics and a final imploring call to arms to “welcome the new soul vision”.   It’s just such an exuberant song and also brings back fun personal memories of flailing around to it on sweaty basement dancefloors.

Dexys photo

Of course, Dexys’ most familiar song is “Come On Eileen” from the also superb “Too-Rye-Ay” album which includes their infamous cover of “Jackie Wilson Said”.  Infamous because of a magical TOTP performance and its accompanying Jocky/Jackie Wilson mythical confusion, but Kevin Rowland knew what was going on.  “Too-Rye-Ay” also features “Let’s Make This Precious”, affectionately used by Big Train in the last scene of their second and final series.

What is more interesting about “Come On Eileen” (number one in both the UK and USA) is what followed it.  3 years after the gypsy chic of “Too-Rye-Ay”, an eternity by mid 80s pop standards, Dexys returned looking like Wall Street bankers with their third album “Don’t Stand Me Down”.  And the hotly anticipated lead follow up single to a global number one smash?  A defiantly uncommercial 12 minute epic called “This Is What She’s Like”.  A masterpiece that truly defies categorisation; starting with over a minute of two blokes chatting, two minutes of Beach Boys style harmonies popping up in the middle and a slightly more conventional song bursting out a couple of times in between.  Derided by many at the time, this is now held in the highest regard by Dexys obsessives, myself included, so could easily have been my Dexys pick.  Ultimately though, a 12 minute epic might not have fitted in quite so well on the accompanying playlist, so “There, There My Dear” just edges it to take the Dexys slot.



One thought on “379 to 50: #46 “There, There My Dear” by Dexys Midnight Runners

  1. Pingback: Jumping Fences To Wichita: my 100 favourite songs | No Longer Teenage Fan Club

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