Tag Archives: Chubby Checker

Glee 3: ‘We Got the Beat’ (VIDEO and lyrics)

21 Sep

Do you remember The Go-Go’s or do you remember Go Go dancing? Last night “Glee” featured “We Got the Beat,” a song written by  the lead guitarist of the American rock band, The Go-Go’s. The female band originally formed in 1978 and were based in Los Angeles. The current band consists of Belinda Carlisle, Jane Wiedlin, Charlotte Caffey, Kathy Valentine and Gina Schock.

Lead singer Carlisle was born in Los Angeles and the Go-Go’s have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (11 August 2011). She appeared on season 8 of “Dancing with the Stars” and with her professional partner Jonathan Roberts, was eliminated the very first week. Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson and her partner Mark Ballas would win that season.

The band recorded the song in 1980 and released it as a single in the UK. The song would eventually make it to 35 on the US Hot Dance Club Play chart. The next year, the Go-Go’s re-recorded the song for “Beauty and the Beat,” their debut album and released the song as the second single. It would be their biggest hit, rising to number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Past members of the band include Paula Jean Brown (1985), Margot Olavarria (1978-1980) and Elissa Bello (1978-1979).

The song mentions several dances: Go go, pony and watusi.

Go go dancers are usually women employed to entertain people at a disco, but reportedly the concept began when women at the Peppermint Lounge (located at 128th W. 45th Street from 1958-1965) in NYC began to dance the twist on top of tables in the early 1960s. The fashion of the time for women was mini skirts and the so-called go-go boots. The twist had also gone global from this nightclub.

Of course, someone had to make it sexual and in 1964, after having her breasts enlarged with silicone, Carol Doda began topless go go dancing at the Condor Club in San Francisco.

On TV, things were tamer, including the TV variety show, ABC’s “Hullabaloo” (1965-1966), ABC’s “Shindig”  (1964-1966) and “Shivaree!”

Perhaps the most famous go go girl, Lada Edmund Jr. She had been in the original Broadway cast of “Bye, Bye Birdie” and as a replacement in “West Side Story” and “Promises, Promises.”

Interview with Lada St. Edmund. St. Edmund is still alive and well and interested in fitness.

The Watusi came from a song called “The Wah-Watusi,” originally recorded by The Orlons in Philadelphia.  The song was covered by Chubby Checkers, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Annette Funicello and The Isley Brothers.

The dance is stationary. Knees are bent with palms and arms flat. Arms alternately come up and down. See the videos.

The Pony is also from a song, Chubby Checker’s “Pony Time.”

The Go Gos and “We Got the Beat.”

We Got The Beat Lyrics

See the people walking down the street
Fall in line just watching all their feet
They don’t know where they wanna go
But they’re walking in time

They got the beat
They got the beat
They got the beat

See the kids just getting out of school
They can’t wait to hang out and be cool
Hang around ’til quarter after twelve
That’s when they fall in line

Kids got the beat
They got the beat
They got the beat
Kids got the beat

Go-go music really makes us dance
Do the pony puts us in a trance
Do the watusi just give us a chance
That’s when we fall in line

We got the beat
We got the beat
We got the beat
We got the beat

Everybody get on your feet
We know you can dance to the beat
Jumpin’-get down
Round and round and round

From the Addams Family Wednesday dances the watusi.

How to do the pony.

Go go dancing Carnaby Street 2009

Miami Go Go dancing.