In the Navy

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"In the Navy"
In the navy.jpg
Single by Village People
from the album Go West
B-side"Manhattan Woman"
ReleasedMarch 1979
Length5:39 (album version)
3:45 (single edit)
Producer(s)Jacques Morali
Village People singles chronology
"In the Navy"
"Go West"
Music video
"In the Navy" on YouTube

"In the Navy" is a song by the American disco group Village People. It was released as the first single from their fourth studio album Go West. "In the Navy" was the last Top 10 hit for the group in the United States.

Background, writing and video[edit]

After the enormous commercial success of their 1978 hit "Y.M.C.A." which unexpectedly became the unofficial hymn and powerful advertising tool for the YMCA,[1] the group took on another national institution, the United States Navy. The Navy contacted group manager Henri Belolo to use the song in a recruiting advertising campaign for television and radio. Belolo gave the rights for free on the condition that the Navy help them shoot the music video. Less than a month later, the Village group arrived at Naval Base San Diego where the Navy provided them with access to film on the deck of the berthed frigate USS Reasoner, in the end the Navy did not use the video, choosing to remain with the traditional "Anchors Aweigh".[2]. According to Billboard Magazine, "In the Navy" is an "upbeat dance effort [which] showcases the group's familiar theme and sound with this comedic spoof on" the Navy.[3]

In a landmark ruling in 2012, the United States District Court for the Southern District of California ruled that under the Copyright Act of 1976, co-writer Victor Willis (Village People's "Cop"/"Naval officer") can recover his share of the copyrights to songs co-written by him.[4] Willis now owns 33% of his songs.[5]

Chart performance[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

In 1979, two Japanese-language covers were released. The first was "Pink Typhoon (In the Navy)" by Pink Lady, and the second was "Young Sailor Man (In the Navy)" by Teppei Shibuya.[14][15][16]

One of the first foreign language covers was done by the children group Parchís in 1979 for whom the lyrics where translated into Spanish as "En La Armada" (lit. In the Navy). The cover was one of the group's most popular songs, and a big hit in some Spanish speaking countries.

The Pirate metal band Alestorm covered the song as a single in 2013.[17]

The song was covered by The Sunlight Shakers in the music video game Just Dance 2021.


  1. ^
  2. ^ Ed Vulliamy. "Ed Vulliamy on the Village People story". the Guardian.
  3. ^ "Top Single Picks" (PDF). Billboard Magazine. March 10, 1979. p. 88. Retrieved 2020-07-08.
  4. ^ Eriq Gardner (8 May 2012). "Village People Songwriter Victor Willis Wins Case Over Termination of 'Y.M.C.A.' Rights". The Hollywood Reporter.
  5. ^ Edvard Pettersson (8 May 2012). "Village People Motorcycle Cop Wins 'YMCA' Copyright Case".
  6. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 329. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  7. ^ "Item: 2712 - Library and Archives Canada". Retrieved 2016-10-15.
  8. ^ "In the Navy in Irish Chart". IRMA. Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 3 June 2009. Only results when searching "In the Navy"
  9. ^ Archived 2014-10-06 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Top 100 Singles of 1979" (PDF). Record Mirror. London: Spotlight Publications. January 5, 1980. p. 30. Retrieved September 27, 2016.
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Top 100 Year End Charts: 1979". Cashbox Magazine. Retrieved 2016-04-12.
  14. ^ "Billboard Magazine, May 12, 1979. "'Navy' Cover Conflict Breaks Out in Japan". Billboard. 12 May 1979. Retrieved 2020-02-26.
  15. ^ "Pink Lady - ピンク・タイフーン - In The Navy". Discogs. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  16. ^ "ヤング・セーラーマン (IN THE NAVY)". Nippon Columbia. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  17. ^ "Alestorm - In the Navy". Discogs. Retrieved 2020-02-26.

External links[edit]