"Come On Eileen" is 30 Years Old


In today's "feel old again" news, the classic song "Come On Eileen" by Dexy's Midnight Runners turned 30 this week. The original single was released on June 26, 1982. The song begins with these lines:

Poor old Johnnie Ray Sounded sad upon the radio Moved a million hearts in mono Our mothers cried, sang along Who would blame them?

In case you missed the memo, Johnnie Ray was a crooner who performed wearing a hearing aid in his right ear -- he lost most of the hearing in that ear in a childhood accident. Here's Johnnie Ray sounding sad on TV. Ray is seen in the first minute of the original "Come On Eileen" video, and he's also mentioned in Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire."

Here's an early-80s performance that New Wave Time Warp accurately describes as "live-ish." It appears to be a live performance with significant postproduction editing (and possibly re-recording) added. In any case, you cannot unhear this song for the rest of the day! Too-rye-ay! You're welcome.

And here's a performance from 2003, with Kevin Rowland looking decidedly more dapper:

And the original video (note the onscreen misspelling of Johnnie Ray's first name around 0:45):

And finally, for the younger set, the Save Ferris ska version:

If you don't have the original "Too-Rye-Ay" record, it's well worth a listen. Bet you didn't know it includes a terrific cover of Van Morrison's "Jackie Wilson Said (I'm in Heaven When You Smile)," which was itself released in July 1972...making that song nearly 40.

(Via New Wave Time Warp, wondrous source of a never-ending stream of oh-wow-jeez oldness feelings.)