The Safety Dance

You can dance if you want to. You can leave your friends behind. ‘Cause your friends don’t dance, and if they don’t dance, well they’re… no friends of mine.

Ahh, yes… While the message may seem a little harsh, they did have a point. Who wants to hang out with people who don’t dance? Not us. Men Without Hats knew what was up, and they were simply sharing a truth with the rest of the world: People who don’t dance don’t know how to have a good time.

Released in the spring of 1982, “The Safety Dance” shot up the charts, peaking at number three. Many of us were convinced the song was about safe sex, but to this day lead singer Ivan Doroschuk insists that was not the song’s meaning. Instead, he says, it’s a song directed at bouncers who didn’t allow “pogoing” in New Wave clubs. (Get your mind out of the gutter. It’s a less-violent form of slam dancing.)

The video, meanwhile, has an even more WTF quality to it: Ivan seems just a wee bit unstable, there’s a “little person” running around playing a lute, and then there’s the crazy (“and sing!”) woman who’s in desperate need of a barrette… or 12. It’s like a Renaissance Fair on crack.

So, to recap– the video is weird, the song is weird, and Men Without Hats are weird. But, hey, those are just a couple of the things that make them oh-so-80s. We definitely loved the New Wave movement, but “The Safety Dance” just shines a little bit brighter than the rest.

We ♥ The Safety Dance.

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~ by weheart80s on April 16, 2010.

One Response to “The Safety Dance”

  1. […] Ah, music videos (in stereo, no less), 24 hours a day. It was perfection on television. Suddenly we knew what the artists looked like. We could see them move, sing, and dance through the European countryside on their way to a Renaissance fair with a “little perso…. […]

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