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Программа для синхронизации oysters

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In 1977, producers Jacques Morali and Henri Belolo assembled a group designed to attract gay audiences while parodying (some claimed exploiting) that same constituency’s stereotypes. Songwriters Phil Hurtt and Peter Whitehead were tapped to compose songs with gay underpinnings. Roles and costumes were carefully selected; among them were a cowboy, biker, soldier, policeman, and construction worker complete with hard hat.

The songwriting credit on «Y.M.C.A» goes to Morali, Belolo and Victor Willis, who was the policeman in the group.

A common misconception was that Village People were an all-gay troupe. Lead singer Victor Willis was not. In fact, from 1978-1982 he was married to Phylicia Ayers-Allen, who played Clair Huxtable on The Cosby Show and later married the sports announcer Ahmad Rashad. Henri Belolo was not gay, but Jacques Morali was, and the image conformed to his vision. The gay stereotype roles played well to the LGBT community associated with disco at the time, but looking back, it’s kind of ridiculous to think that discos were «a gay thing» (nobody was having suspicions of, say, John Travolta). The disco scene, and the Village People, were welcoming to all.

In 2008, Spin magazine asked some of the Village People about this song. Here are some of the responses:

Randy Jones (cowboy): When I moved to New York in 1975, I joined the McBurney YMCA on 23rd Street. I took Jacques (Morali) there three or four times in 1977, and he loved it. He was fascinated by a place where a person could work out with weights, play basketball, swim, take classes, and get a room. Plus, with Jacques being gay, I had a lot of friends I worked out with who were in the adult-film industry, and he was impressed by meeting people he had seen in the videos and magazines. Those visits with me planted a seed in him, and that’s how he got the idea for «Y.M.C.A.» — by literally going to the YMCA.

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David Hodo (construction worker): We had finished our third album Cruisin’, and we needed one more song as a filler. Jacques wrote «Y.M.C.A.» in about 20 minutes — the melody, the chorus, the outline. Then he gave it to Victor Willis and said, «Fill in the rest.» I was a bit skeptical about some of our hits, but the minute I heard «Y.M.C.A.,» I knew we had something special. Because it sounded like a commercial. And everyone likes commercials. «Y.M.C.A.» certainly has a gay origin. That’s what Jacques was thinking when he wrote it, because our first album [1977’s Village People] was possibly the gayest album ever. I mean, look at us. We were a gay group. So was the song written to celebrate gay men at the YMCA? Yes. Absolutely. And gay people love it.»

The presentation has a lot to do with this song’s success, but the horn lines are also a big factor. They were arranged by Horace Ott, who had worked on tracks for Aretha Franklin, Nat King Cole, Joe Cocker and Eartha Kitt. He also co-wrote the oft-covered «Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood,» originally recorded by Nina Simone.

On «Y.M.C.A.,» Ott opened the song with a blast of horns that served as its clarion call. Leading up to the chorus, he added five stabs that mix with strings and percussion to create another very distinctive element within the song.

In America, this stalled at #2, where it spent three weeks, first behind «Le Freak» by Chic and then for two weeks behind another disco burner, «Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?» by Rod Stewart.

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In most other countries, it went to #1. It was especially popular in the UK, where it stayed at the top for three weeks, and in Australia, where it was #1 for five. Australia became a stronghold for the group.

The famous arm movements that go with this song originated when the group performed on American Bandstand in an episode aired January 6, 1979. It wasn’t the band that came up with it — it was the audience.

When they got to the chorus, the group threw their hands in the air. The crowd followed suit, but continued with additional gestures for the remaining letters. It’s not clear if the kids in the audience choreographed it beforehand, or if they made it up on the spot, but Bandstand host Dick Clark was very impressed with them. After the performance, he had the sound engineer re-cue the track and play it again so the group could watch them do it. As the Village People work out the gestures, Clark asks lead singer Victor Willis, «You think you can work that into your routine?» He replies, «I think we’re going to have to.»

This is a very popular song at sporting events, especially baseball games where it is often played between innings. Since 1996, the song has played at Yankee Stadium when the grounds crew dredges the infield in the fifth inning. The crew stops to perform the arm gestures at the appropriate times as the crowd follows along.

This was a good year for the team: They won their first World Series since 1978 and enjoyed their first full season with shortstop Derek Jeter, who would become their captain.

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Structurally, this is very similar to the first Village People single, «San Francisco (You’ve Got Me).» Both songs build to a pronounced, four-syllable chant: Y-M-C-A, San-Fran-Cisc-O.

Jacques Morali wrote the music and produced both tracks, so this makes sense. The lyricists were different, however, as lead singer Victor Willis had replaced Phil Hurtt and Peter Whitehead in this role — something that earned him a great deal in royalties. According to Hurtt, Willis threatened to quit if Phil was brought back to write lyrics. When Willis left the group, Hurtt was called back to write lyrics for the songs in the 1980 Village People movie Can’t Stop the Music.

In 2017, Boy George released an acoustic cover in partnership with YMCA Australia as part of the Why Not? campaign, and effort to connect with young people and let them know they are accepted no matter who they are.

which aims to shine a light on issues that are important to Australian young people: marriage equality, mental health and youth unemployment.

Comments: 27

  • Jamal from San Francisco 855 Sacramento Street, San Francisco, CA 94108, this is the YMCA you will find me at, young man get your feet off the ground, wont you listen to me, I said young man, best representation of true joy and coming out of any song around.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny «Young man, there’s no need to feel down
    I said, young man, pick yourself off the ground»
    On this day in 1979 the Village People’s «Y.M.C.A.»* peaked at #2 on Billboard’s Top 100 chart, the first week it was at #2, the #1 record for that week was «Le Freak» by Chic, and for it’s 2nd and 3rd week at #2, «Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?» by Rod Stewart was in the top spot.
    «Y.M.C.A.» reached #1 in Australian, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands.
    And from the ‘For What It’s Worth’ department, the rest of Billboard’s Top 10 on January 28th, 1979:
    At #3. «Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?» by Rod Stewart
    #4. «A Little More Love» by Olivia Newton-John
    #5. «Too Much Heaven» by The Bee Gees
    #6. «My Life» by Billy Joel
    #7. «Every 1’s A Winner» by Hot Chocolate
    #8. «Fire» by The Pointer Sisters
    #9. «September» by Earth, Wind and Fire
    #10. «I Will Survive» by Gloria Gaynor.
    * Per Wikipedia, worldwide «Y.M.C.A.» has sold over 10 million physical copies.
  • Chris from Somewhere Actually, the Village People themselves did not even know about the dance until their appearance on American Bandstand that Barry from Sauquoit mentioned just earlier, until Dick Clark showed them the audience doing it, which caught their interest. In fact if you watch the original video (scroll up, will ya?) you’ll notice they aren’t doing the dance.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny On June 6th 1844, the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) was founded by Sir George Williams in London, England.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny On January 6th 1979, the Village People performed «Y.M.C.A.» on the ABC-TV program ‘American Bandstand’.
    Three months earlier on October 15th it entered Billboard’s Hot Top 100 chart; and on January 28th, 1979 it peaked at #2 (for 3 weeks) and spent exactly a half-year on the Top 100 (26 weeks).
    «Le Freak» by Chic (for 1 week) and «Do Ya Think I’m Sexy» by Rod Stewart (for 2 weeks) kept it out of the top spot.
    Though it only reached #2 in the U.S.A. it did peak at #1 in Australia, Canada, and the U.K.
    Was track one on the group’s debut album, Cruisin’.
  • Amber from Halifax, Ns This song is fun and i could dance to it for hours.
  • Dave from Liverpool, United Kingdom The best version of this is done by the Ground Staff at Yankee Stadium. At the bottom of the 5th inning, they come on and rake the diamond to this tune, and include their own choreography as well.

As for the song, it is actually one of the best disco songs. To some that may not be saying much, and I’ll admit to having participated in a couple of «Death to Disco» fests in my youth. But it does have an anthemic quality to it, so I can see how it became—and continues to be—iconic among gay men. Furthermore, it’s what the Swedes call a kulturbarer—culturebearer—in that it represents a mood and mode of the time. No song like it could or would have been made after AIDS became widespread and killed so many of the Village People’s contemporaries.

More Songfacts:


We Will Rock YouQueen

There are no actual drums on «We Will Rock You,» just lots of foot stomping.

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