Dancing with Myself

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"Dancing with Myself"
Dancing With Myself.jpg
Single by Generation X
from the album Kiss Me Deadly
Released July 1980
Format 7", 12"
Genre Pop punk
Length 3:45 (album version)
3:30 (7" version)
4:06 (12" version)
Label Chrysalis
Songwriter(s) Billy Idol, Tony James
Producer(s) Keith Forsey
Generation X singles chronology
"Friday's Angels"
(1979)
"Dancing with Myself"
(1980)
"Friday's Angels"
(1979)
"Dancing with Myself"
(1980)
"Dancing with Myself"
Dancing with Myself Billy Idol.jpg
Single by Billy Idol
from the album Don't Stop and Vital Idol
Released 1982
Recorded 1980 (remixed in 1981)
Genre Pop punk
Length 3:19 (single version)
4:50 (on Don't Stop)
5:57 (on Vital Idol)
Label Chrysalis
Songwriter(s) Billy Idol, Tony James
Producer(s) Keith Forsey
Billy Idol singles chronology
"Dancing with Myself"
(1982)
"Mony Mony"
(1981)
"Dancing with Myself"
(1981)
"Mony Mony"
(1981)
Music video
"Dancing with Myself" on YouTube

"Dancing with Myself" is a song written by singer Billy Idol and bassist Tony James, first recorded by their band Generation X in 1979. The song was re-recorded and commercially released by the band newly re-branded as Gen X as a 7" single and a 12" in July 1980, but was a sales failure, reaching only #62 in the UK Singles Chart. It was included on the new band's subsequent first album Kiss Me Deadly (1981).

In late 1981 Idol, now a solo artist after Gen X's break-up, remixed and re-released "Dancing with Myself" as a single in the United States, fading down the guitar part from its dominance in the first release, and bringing forward the bass and his vocal tracks, to produce a milder overall sound. The release became his first hit in America, having become popular on the dance club scene, reaching #27 in the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart. Two versions were issued—the 3:20 single version (which was later included on Idol's 11 of the Best compilation) and the 4:50 extended version that appeared on Idol's Don't Stop EP.

Idol plays "Dancing with Myself" at most of his concerts, always introducing the song as having been originally written with Tony James or originally recorded by Generation X.

Background[edit]

The inspiration for the song and its lyrics occurred during Generation X's first international tour in Japan in mid 1979, when Idol and Tony James, whilst visiting a disco club in Tokyo, were struck by the sight of the young Japanese crowd within dancing with their own reflections in walled mirrors, rather than with one another.[1]

Production[edit]

Steve New played the guitar track on the released record.[2]

Video[edit]

A music video directed by Tobe Hooper was produced for the 1981 American release, which gained heavy airplay at the beginning of the MTV television broadcasts. The set for the video was co-opted from an L.A.-based production of Ann Jellicoe's punk rock-themed play The Sport Of My Mad Mad Mother, produced by and starring Dan Shor.[3]

Formats and track listings[edit]

Gen X release[edit]

7": Chrysalis - CHS 2444 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Dancing With Myself" (3:30)
  2. "Ugly Rash" (4:30)

12": Chrysalis - CHS 12 2444 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Dancing With Myself" (4:06)
  2. "Loopy Dub" (5:08)
  3. "Ugly Dub" (3:05)

Billy Idol release[edit]

7": Chrysalis - IDOL 1 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Dancing With Myself" (3:19) [Labelled as "Billy Idol featuring Generation X"]
  2. "Love Calling (Dub)" (5:33)

12": Chrysalis - IDOLX 1 (UK)[edit]

  1. "Dancing With Myself" (6:05) [Labelled as "Billy Idol featuring Generation X"]
  2. "Love Calling (Dub)" (5:33)
  3. "White Wedding" (8:20)
  4. "Hot In The City" (5:20)
  • "White Wedding" is the 12" Shotgun mix, but not labelled as such.

Charts[edit]

Gen X version[edit]

Chart (1980) Peak
position
UK Singles Chart[4] 62

Billy Idol version[edit]

Chart (1981) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play[5] 27
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles 102
Chart (1983) Peak
position
RIANZ New Zealand Singles Chart 9

Covers[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Billy Idol explaining the song's origin, 'Billy Idol Unplugged' (2001), (1.11. mins). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CfYIc4k90fM
  2. ^ Interview with Tony James, April 2002, for the 'Generation X Anthology' (2003).
  3. ^ "Actor Dan Shor talks with TV STORE ONLINE and his work on films like TRON, BILL and TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE and WISE BLOOD". TV STORE ONLINE. Retrieved 7 October 2013. 
  4. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 224. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  5. ^ "Billy Idol | Awards". AllMusic. 1955-11-30. Retrieved 2014-04-09. 

External links[edit]