Sunday, 7 August 2022

sounded sad upon the radio, moved a million hearts in mono (10. 044)

Released as the lead single from the group’s second studio album—Too-Rye-Ay (which includes the eponymous refrain)—Dexys Midnight Runners’ (with credit to Emerald Express) “Come on Eileen” climbed to the top of UK charts on this day in 1982, holding number one for weeks, best-seller of the year and later ranked as one of the defining songs of the decade. The character “Eileen” on the single cover as well as in the music video is played by Mรกrie Fahey, sister of Siobhan Fahey of the group Bananarama. The introductory fiddle solo is a riff on the melodic setting of Irish poet Thomas Moore’s “Believe Me, I All Those Endearing Young Charms”—already quite well established in popular culture as the so called “xylophone gag,” wherein a cartoon villain rigs up an instrument to detonate when the C bar is struck and presents the would-be victim sheet music (usually of the above title) who inevitably plays a discordant note at the crucial time, prompting the bad guy to show the other who it is supposed to be played, thus dispatching himself.