raise your hands in the air, and wave them as if you just do not care
February 21, 2005 6:17 PM   Subscribe

What song forces you to get your ass on the dancefloor? And/or - DJs - what's that surefire track that gets folks moving?

As a sometime DJ, I figured out that, in a pinch, "Blue Monday" is a pretty good bet for getting people dancing. It's worked for me on the other side of the decks as well...
posted by hellbient to Media & Arts (46 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Totally and completely depends on the club/setting/atmosphere. Care to elaborate?
posted by nitsuj at 6:23 PM on February 21, 2005

Well, Neurodancer, London Acid City, or anything by Lab 4... but yeah.. depends on the place/crowd/vibe....
posted by pompomtom at 6:32 PM on February 21, 2005

Tarmvred - Kill All Humans (or) Imminent - Tentack One
posted by Jairus at 6:38 PM on February 21, 2005

Whatever you've noticed - any genre, any preference. Does that help? I'd rather not get too specific - my music taste is fairly diverse.
posted by hellbient at 6:39 PM on February 21, 2005

(Those tracks I posted are tracks that get people dancing when I play them, not tracks other DJs play that get me dancing.)
posted by Jairus at 6:40 PM on February 21, 2005

Try anything from The Faint - Wet From Birth That'll get 'em moving, assuming they're not expecting hip-hop.
posted by nitsuj at 6:49 PM on February 21, 2005

Dragostea Din Tei by O-Zone. It does it for the internet kids.
posted by pedantic at 6:53 PM on February 21, 2005

Ice of Boston or The Dismemberment Plan Gets Rich by The Dismemberment Plan

Junior / Senior - Move Your Feet or Shake Your Coconuts (DFA MIX)

uhhh... Groove is in the Heart - Dee-Lite
posted by Quartermass at 6:53 PM on February 21, 2005

ABBA - Dancing Queen
posted by BoringPostcards at 6:59 PM on February 21, 2005

P-Funk always gets the juices flowing.
posted by davidmsc at 7:03 PM on February 21, 2005

Kerowack's Dirty Bumf. Your only option is to party.
posted by brettcar at 7:11 PM on February 21, 2005

Play Spirit Of The West Home For A Rest at a wedding reception. You'll never see the dance floor fill up so fast.
posted by Dipsomaniac at 7:14 PM on February 21, 2005

Seconded on the Faint, and I'd add the Postal Service, especially "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight".

This is, of course, contingent on it being a relatively indie-rock kinda place.
posted by ITheCosmos at 7:14 PM on February 21, 2005

Client, In It for the Money (Client vs. Zip remix)
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 7:26 PM on February 21, 2005

posted by jennyb at 7:47 PM on February 21, 2005

When it's 80's/90's New Wave/Goth night (and I'm spinning), my "Dancefloor needs help/bar needs less business" tracks are:

Depeche Mode - "Personal Jesus"
Corey Hart - "Sunglasses At Night" (sometimes just the opening riff does the trick)
Information Society - "What's On Your Mind"
Love & Rockets - "So Alive"
Eurythmics - "Sweet Dreams"

Most of those are in the 118-128 range so you can work with a quick little set there if you have no imagination. God knows I lack one on some nights.

Sisters of Mercy - "This Corrosion" (An edit, please)
a-ha - "Take On Me"

also work (at a 150+ speed)

Other times, surefire ways out of a trainwrecking boozed-up Christmas party can include "Love Shack," "The Rockafeller Skank", "Groove Is In The Heart" (a second for that one), "Super Freak" and "Wild Thing".

Personally, if I hear "Let's Groove" by Earth Wind & Fire or the bootleg mashup of "Jus 1 Kiss" by Basement Jaxx with "Who's That Lady" by the Isleys, I create dancing incidents.
posted by kuperman at 7:49 PM on February 21, 2005

i've had a lot of folk who might not otherwise dance to their tracks really get into the rapture's "sister savior".

impeccable bass groove on that track there.
posted by fishfucker at 7:59 PM on February 21, 2005

Celso Pina Cumbia Sobre El Rio from Barrio Bravo, is a winner. Love that song
posted by edgeways at 8:13 PM on February 21, 2005

Just about anything by the Electric 6. Holy shit, those guys put a ton of energy into their shows, and the one I saw was $8. Get tanked on cheap whiskey before you go see 'em.

Fire in the disco!
Fire in the disco!
Fire in the... taco bell!

Shit! They were so much fun.
posted by kavasa at 8:21 PM on February 21, 2005

that sad walking away song from the Incredible Hulk.

look at me! everyone!
posted by lazaruslong at 8:22 PM on February 21, 2005

I don't spend much time in dance clubs, but I'm always listening to dance (house/techno/big beat) music and ocassionally find myself doing the music for house parties and the like.

As for thick house-y stuff, pretty much anything from Junior Jack's Trust It is fantastic, but I particularly like "Trust It", "Da Hype", "Hola" and "E Samba". The new Daft Punk album Human After All has a fantastic heavy track called "The Brainwasher" which gets me going. It's very reminescent of Thomas Bangalter's soundtrack for the movie Irreversible, which has two great tracks on it, "Turbo" and "Outrun". Also, anything from Daft Punk's Homework -- "Revolution 909", "Da Funk", "Phoenix", "Around the World" -- literally every track on there is great. One last Daft Punk-related suggestion: Phoenix's "If I Ever Feel Better". I had a friend who went to Spain a couple of summers ago who said he heard that track in every club.

Benny Benassi's "Able to Love" and "Satisfaction" are great, if simple tracks, but they've probably been played to death by now. I also love FC Kahuna's "Machine Says Yes" but it's more of a grinding song than a shaking song.

For a less dancey, more lounge-type atmosphere, the Avalanches' Since I Left You is a great album, particularly "Since I Left You", "Live at Dominoes" and "Frontier Psychiatrist". Royksopp's "Poor Leno" is great too. Also, David Garza's "Discoball World" and "Dance Commander"/"Gay Bar"/"High Voltage" (particularly "High Voltage") by the Electric Six.
posted by mmcg at 8:41 PM on February 21, 2005

Weird War plays a whole lot of really sexy/funky indie rock. I don't know most of the song titles, because I've only heard them live, but they've managed to get audiences of disaffected hipster kids dancing like it's an orgy. This is pretty damned remarkable to see.

Their previous incarnation, the Make Up, has some pretty sexy tunes too. If the bassline on "White Belts" doesn't get asses shaking, your audience needs hip replacements.
posted by Luther Blissett at 8:42 PM on February 21, 2005

Call me old fashioned, but if I have a few beers in me and hear "Oh What a Night" by the Four Seasons I turn into a dancin' machine.
posted by ttrendel at 8:57 PM on February 21, 2005

"Highway To Hell"
posted by mischief at 9:26 PM on February 21, 2005

It depends on the party - but my personal ammo for surefire sorority party success are "Push It" and "Don't You Want Me."
posted by iamck at 9:41 PM on February 21, 2005

Jay-Z will get me up and dancing. "I'm a hustla bay-bee! Just want you to know... It ain't where I've been, but where I'm bout to go..." There's something about a rap beat paired with a good falsetto. Hard to ignore.
posted by beaverd at 11:25 PM on February 21, 2005

I was once dancing (if you want to call it that) alone in the dark of my bedroom listening to Coil's "Love's Secret Domain" and ended up throwing my back out.

If you get the chance, check out a DJ set from BP Fallon. Your profile says you're in Brooklyn, so this might actually be feasible for you, as his Death Disco has taken up residency in New York. He plays mostly rock, which I usually don't expect to find myself dancing to, but he manages to pick just the right songs. It's not entirely rock he plays. The one time I was at an event he DJed he played stuff like Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus" and some industrial sounding stuff amongst things like the Clash and the Doors and other more rock type stuff. Jaime Coon (NSFW), who had a DJ set before BP (and then spent most of his set dancing around next to him on stage, mostly naked and caked in white make-up powder - like the splash image on her site), played "I Only Want You" by Eagles of Death Metal, which I was surprised to find commandingly danceable.

Electronica (or music with electronic elements that isn't necessarily strictly electronica) that isn't too light and poppy or hollow-feeling usually gets me moving. Off the top of my head I can think of stuff like Underworld ("Cowgirl," "Born Slippy," "Juanita/Kiteless/To Dream Of Love," "Pearls Girl," "Push Upstairs," "Shudder/King of Snake," "Kittens," "Two Months Off," "Dinosaur Adventure 3D"), lots of Björk ("Human Behaviour," "There's More To LIfe Than This," "Big Time Sensuality," "Violently Happy," "I Miss You," just to name a few), New Order's "Blue Monday" (which you mentioned), lots of Peter Gabriel songs from his So album, Leftfield's "Open Up," U2's "Vertigo" (actually, U2 has a lot of very danceable remix material out there as well although it seems like much of the better stuff didn't make it on the b-sides/remix CD of their 1990-2000 best of release), the songs on Daft Punk's Discovery (if I'm in a kinda disco-y mood, which isn't often, but they're perfect for when I am), Portishead's "Wandering Star," for dancing depressed or something, and so on and so forth....

I'm sure there's tons more I'm forgetting, especially non-electronica stuff as I often don't realise when that stuff inspires me to dance as I'm not usually hearing it in a setting where dancing is one of the reasons for it being played. When in a goth club, I found the industrial club type stuff being played very danceable, but listening to it outside that atmosphere I find myself more often annoyed at the fast beat/random loud noise combination, although there are some gems in the genre (unfortunately I usually heard these on Internet radio stations and don't remember the song names).

Um, there's also a really cheesy clichéd techno song that fits into the category I just dismissed (light and poppy), excessively so, that I must admit totally makes me want to dance. It's called "Butterfly" by someone called SMILE.dk and it's off the soundtrack to that Dance Dance Revolution game. But... you never read that from me. Nope.
posted by DyRE at 12:51 AM on February 22, 2005

Did someone say DJ?

So, my club is pretty commercial...but I've been doing this for years, so can spot a dancefloor 'picker-upper' quite well...some of mine are:

Underworld - Born Slippy
Faithless - Insomnia
Tim Deluxe - It just won't do
Afro Medusa - Pasidila
The Heartists - Belo Horizonte (or the remixed thing that is around)
Delirium - Silence
Darude - Sandstorm

on a more funky, R&B tip...

Ice Cube - Put you back into it
Beyonce - Crazy in Love
Crooklyn Clan - Keep Faithfull
Xtina Aguilera - Dirrrty (always gets the girlies up and at em)

but theres loads more - depending on the zeitgeist tunes as well...
posted by mattr at 1:56 AM on February 22, 2005

Tree Frog by Hope - one of my all time favorites
Short Dick Man by 20 Fingers - has a bass line that is hard to resist
Staying Alive Ultimix - Still the dance song
The Spice Must Flow by Eon - gets the electronica/rave crowd out there
At turnbothknobs.com
posted by geekyguy at 3:51 AM on February 22, 2005

Anything by Abba.
posted by SisterHavana at 7:13 AM on February 22, 2005

Motown: just about anything from 1960-1970.
New Order: Substance (disc 1)
The Specials: The Specials (most any track)
Outkast: Gasoline Dreams (Stankonia)
Dexy's Midnight Runners: Come on Eileen
Dead Milkmen: Instant Club Hit [You'll Dance to Anything] (Bucky Fellini)
posted by safetyfork at 7:31 AM on February 22, 2005

The Cult - She Sellls Sanctuary
Jane's Addiction - Mountain Song
Tin Tin Duffy – Kiss Me (with your mouth)
Siouxsie and the Banshees - Dazzle
posted by thomcatspike at 7:51 AM on February 22, 2005

Joy Division (today aka New Order) - Love Will Tear Us Apart
posted by thomcatspike at 7:59 AM on February 22, 2005

Apoptygma Berzerk always does the trick for me.
posted by squidlarkin at 8:20 AM on February 22, 2005

Everytime I'm in a bar and the DJ plays that awful medley from Grease (Greased Lightning, Summer Nights) every girl in the place runs to the dance floor while every guy just stands back looking confused.
posted by Monk at 8:31 AM on February 22, 2005

It's been overplayed, but Benny Benassi's "Satisfaction" will still get a crowd going.

For some strange reason, my goto track is still Uberzone's "Rhythm Device". Every time I spin that people go apeshit. (I think it is the monkey noises :-)
posted by wezelboy at 9:05 AM on February 22, 2005

Madonna's "Like A Prayer" gets me dancing every time.
posted by katie at 9:17 AM on February 22, 2005

Definitely "Closed Casket Requiem" by The Black Dahlia Murder.
posted by baphomet at 9:27 AM on February 22, 2005

For parties I've thrown, and parties I've been asked to bring music to, these seem to be the best at pulling folks to the floor:

Los Amigos Invisibles - Mi Linda, La Vecina
Prince - Let's Go Crazy, U Got the Look, Raspberry Beret, etc.
M People - Sight for Sore Eyes
Blondie - Heart of Glass
Madonna - Ray of Light (I don't like Madonna, but this always works)
Donna Summer - I Feel Love
Sylvester - You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)
Suzy-Q - Get On Up and Do It Again
Zapp - More Bounce to the Ounce
Coolio - Fantastic Voyage
80's stuff - My Sharona, Blister in the Sun, Turning Japanese, Always Something There to Remind Me, Work For Love, I Ran, What I Like About You, Melt w/ You, Favourite Shirts (Boy Meets girls), etc. etc.

Stuff I played that surprised me at how well it went over (depends on current party atmosphere, of course):

David Bowie - Fashion
New Pornographers - Mass Romantic
Tim Maia - Terapéutica Do Grito
Kurtis Blow - The Breaks
Stevie Wonder - I Wish
Fela Kuti - Go Slow

And there's the stuff I love to dance to but that doesn't always pull a crowd:

Yello - Bostich
Jorge Ben - Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)
Frankie Smith - Double Dutch Bus
Pretty much anything from New Orleans Funk & Saturday Night Fish Fry (esp. Roger & the Gypsies - Pass the Hatchet)
posted by hydrophonic at 9:58 AM on February 22, 2005

The Killers - Somebody Told Me
William Shatner - Common People
Rex the Dog - Frequency
Daft Punk - Human After All
posted by mr.marx at 10:42 AM on February 22, 2005

I haven't DJ'd for a while, but a few years ago I had some surefire tracks. I play more hard techno these days, but I found that anything on Bangalter's Roule label was a killer, any Daft Punk, and anything by Frankie Bones. YMMV.
posted by wzcx at 10:50 AM on February 22, 2005

If James Brown's Sex Machine don't get your butt shaking, you got a hole in your soul.
posted by wsg at 2:13 PM on February 22, 2005

"Like a Prayer" might be the perfect club song.

Bunch of other seconded (blue monday, satisfaction, born slippy, don't you want me)

Anything that was reasonably popular with a really strong opening 5 seconds it seems will do the trick.

On that note i'd like to add Daft Punk's "Around the World" , Rolling Stones "Miss You", on the harder side theres the Pump Panel mix of New Order's "Confusion" (you know...the Blade song)... and if you really want to get people into a 303 frenzy, follow that one up with Daft Punk's Rollin and Scratchin and then move into Benny Benassi's "Satisfaction".

In the slow dance realm i've always found Tears for Fears "Head Over Heels" to be a floorfiller for those romantic mid-sets

Also James "Laid"...

And finally, if you hear "Blue Monday", 9 times out of 10 the DJ has to pee.

Seems to be a lot of industrial/goth/synthpop/80s DJs on here. Whoda thunkit.
posted by softlord at 9:28 PM on February 22, 2005

And finally, if you hear "Blue Monday", 9 times out of 10 the DJ has to pee.
sorry, pee-dancing doesn't count!

thanks all...this is great.
posted by hellbient at 9:51 PM on February 22, 2005

For me personally it's Rick James' "Superfreak". You can't touch it!

I was at a wedding with a bunch of college friends who were not so big into the dancing. But we had to give it up for Nine Inch Nails' "Closer (A Warm Place)" whose lyrics really gave it that wedding feel.
posted by Aknaton at 2:30 PM on February 23, 2005

The one record that always does it, no matter where I am..in a pinch, is 'Groove is in the Heart' by Dee-Light.

Granted, that won't work in some goth club or very genre specific venue, but just about any other place it will.

Failing that... "Erotic City" by Prince, it's sexy and it's 80's, which basically covers about 80% of the main stream.

The one key element to keep in mind is the girls. If the girls dance, than you've got it made.

So ask your friends that are girls the same question.
posted by djdrue at 8:56 PM on February 23, 2005

« Older Reconciling and starting over   |   Blues Guitar Thingy Nomenclature Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.