Here She Come Down

Today we get a party rock record from 1968 that is pretty much of a throwback to the early ‘60s, which I hope brings back memories of the kind of fun that rock & roll represented before it redefined itself on more serious terms.  Tommy James & the Shondells went in the studio, and they pasted this thing together out of drums here, and a guitar riff there.  They called it sound surgery, and they were able to put this song together through a trial and error basis in about a month.  They wanted to do more fun music, like a song similar to ‘Hanky Panky’, which they did two years earlier and they had most of the words to their song, but they still lacked a title for this new song.  This was driving them nuts, because they were looking for something catchy like a ‘Sloopy’, or something akin to ‘Bony Morony’, or just some crazy name that would work for them, however it had to be a two-syllable girl’s name that was memorable and silly and kind of stupid sounding.  They had to work within these constraints, but everything they came up with just sounded awful.  One late chilly night in January, Ritchie Cordell and Tommy James got frustrated because nothing was working, so they threw down their guitars, went out on the terrace of Tommy’s apartment up on the 18th floor at 888 Eighth Avenue in New York to smoke cigarettes and they looked up into the sky.  The first thing that they saw was the flashing neon sign for Mutual of New York Insurance Company and they laughed when they came up with M-O-N-Y.  The sign had a dollar sign in the middle of the O, and it displayed the time and the temperature.

The song ‘Mony Mony’ was written by James with producers Bo Gentry and Ritchie Cordell with the exception of one line “I love you Mony, Mo Mo Mony”, which is credited to Bobby Bloom, who was also working for Roulette Records.  This song came out on the Mony Mony album and it charted #1 in the UK and #3 in the US.  They recorded this song as a throwaway B side of a record with ‘One Two Three and I Fell’ being the A side, because they had no idea that it would become such a huge hit.  I thought that this would be a good spot for me to end this post, but hell it is Friday and the weekend is here, everyone wants to party and since I can’t get this song out of my head, I thought, “Shot gun, get it done, come on, honey Don’t stop cookin’, it feels so good, yeah”, so I will continue.

Tommy James and the Shondells are an American rock band, that formed in Niles, Michigan in 1964.  Tommy James & The Shondells played what is now known as Garage Band music which was rooted in pop/rock & roll and they were primarily known as a singles artists, as their albums were considered a secondary concern to them.  They had two No. 1 singles in the U.S., ‘Hanky Panky’ (July 1966, their only RIAA Certified Gold record) and ‘Crimson and Clover’ (February 1969), and also a cluster of twelve other Top 40 hits that charted, including five in the Hot 100’s top ten which are, ‘I Think We’re Alone Now’, ‘Mirage’, ‘Mony Mony’, ‘Sweet Cherry Wine’, and ‘Crystal Blue Persuasion’.  I like to tie in the prompts from the day when ever I can, so it is a good thing that I kept going, as otherwise I would not have been able to use crystal cloves which is where crystal blue persuasion is found.  Imagine that a cave containing amphetamines!

This party song is similar to the Kingmen’s ‘Louie Louie’, because it was played at a lot of Frat houses where people got drunk and started to make up their own lyrics, as they tried to sing along.  The more drunk they got, the more vulgar the lyrics became and they were singing stuff like, “Hey, motherfucker!  Get laid, get fucked!”, or “Hey, what’s that?  Get laid, get fucked!”, and “Come on, everybody!  Get laid, get fucked!”, or “Hey, hey, slut!  Get laid, get fucked!”, or even “Hey, hey what? Get laid, get fucked!” and “Hey, get drunk, get laid, get fucked!”.  In 1968, Tommy James and The Shondells became one of the first acts to experiment with music videos, creating a mini-film around ‘Mony Mony’ for theatrical showings, thirteen years before MTV hit the airwaves.  Lunch time arrived while they were recording ‘Mony Mony”, so the group took a break and went up to Broadway and they talked to all these strangers that were having lunch and invited them into coming down to the studio and start going ‘Mony, Mony!’ for their song.  There weren’t a lot of places to show music videos in 1968, but James thought it was important to have one.  ‘Mony’ was not the first video the Shondells ever did, but they couldn’t get the others played anywhere.  They hired a film company, went in and did the video, but the only place that they could get their video played was over in Europe in the movie theatres in between double features.

‘Mony Mony’ literally means nothing, it is not enigmatic, mysterious or difficult to interpret or understand, as Tommy James and the Shondells crafted the tune as a party song, to become something that would not deplete over time giving an emphasis on the beat while little thought was given to the shout-along nonsense lyrics.  To a 14 year old named William Michael Albert Broad, who is better known as Billy Idol the song ‘Mony Mony’ always meant sex.  That’s because when young William lost his virginity in a public park via a tumble with a more experienced partner, ‘Mony Mony’ was playing on someone’s transistor radio nearby.

In 2008, Tommy James and The Shondells were voted into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends Hall of Fame.  Tommy released the HI-FI album in the summer of 1990 where him and his band drove thru the streets of Manhattan on a flatbed truck playing live music.  The video of ‘Go’ is shown below which is a smokin’ hot get outta your seat and dance song.

Here she come down, say Mony Mony
Well, shoot ‘em down, turn around come home, honey
Hey, she gimme love an’ I feel alright now
Everybody! You got me tossin’ turnin’ in the night
Make me feel alright

I say yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)
Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah), yeah

Well you make me feel Mony, Mony
So Mony, Mony
Good Mony, Mony
Yeah, Mony, Mony
So good, Mony, Mony
Oh, yeah, Mony, Mony
Come on, Mony, Mony
All right, baby Mony, Mony
Say yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)
Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah) , yeah (yeah), yeah

Break ‘dis, shake ‘dis, Mony, Mony
Shot gun, get it done, come on, honey
Don’t stop cookin’, it feels so good, yeah
Hey! well don’t stop now, hey, come on Mony,
Well come on, Mony

I say yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)
Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)

Well you make me feel Mony, Mony
So Mony, Mony
Good Mony, Mony
Yeah, Mony, Mony
Oh, yeah, Mony, Mony
Come on, Mony, Mony
So good, Mony, Mony
All right, Mony, Mony

I say yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)
Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)

Oh, I love your Mony, moan, moan, Mony (so good)
Oh, I love your Mony, moan, moan, Mony (so fun)
Oh, I love your Mony, moan, moan, Mony
Oh, I love your Mony, moan, moan, Mony

Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)
Yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah), yeah, (yeah)

Come on! Mony, Mony
Come on! Mony, Mony
Come on! Mony, Mony
Everybody, Mony, Mony
All right, Mony, Mony
Mony, Mony
Mony, Mony

Written for Daily Addictions prompt – Deplete, for FOWC with Fandango – Trial, for October Writing Prompts – Crystal cloves, for Sheryl’s A New Daily Post Word Prompt – Chilly, for Ragtag Community – Truck, for Scotts Daily Prompt – Cluster and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Enigmatic.

18 thoughts on “Here She Come Down

  1. Is this the one?
    Great story, even if I’ve never heard of them before (I am on the other side of the world), but is it the 1k?

    Party-time! I wish I could do emojies – you’d have a big demo of firewords!!! [not a mistake]

    Liked by 1 person

      1. To do as the vid demonstrates gives me the message: upgrade to business plan to add plugins. I don’t have any plugins at all, and can’t add them. C’est la vie.
        I can live without the little facey things.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s a new song to me — the one called Go. Of course I’ve heard Mony Mony before, but I didn’t know why it was called that. I’m glad to know. I was just talking to someone tonight about people who are visual artists and how they do or don’t turn that into a living or something lucrative. Same with music, just do it… have the nerve (if it’s something you like to do), like Tommy James and the Shondells.

        I nevertheless identify with rock and life defining as more serious. It really is Friday, I guess, though. I talked to someone else tonight who said he lived in Austin and worked in a bar when ecstasy was legal. I was like, I didn’t know it was legal. He was quite happy that had been his life for a few years. Dancing and whatever. His partner with him was “halfway” agoraphobic, though, so they left a little early.

        Liked by 1 person

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