When I first started dancing to ‘Dancing in the Street’ it was at discos and clubs in Manchester in the late sixties and early seventies. I was at the Poly and my friends were really into the club scene in Leeds and the north of England, including the iconic Wigan Casino. Unfortunately I didn’t ever get to go there but Placemate, formerly the Twisted Wheel and other ‘discos’.
At the time I didn’t realise that the song made popular in 1964 by Martha and the Vandellas was written by my favourite, Marvin Gaye. It seems incredible now but this was before we had access to instant in-depth information as we do now… even so, I’m surprised I didn’t ever read the information on the record sleeve.
I also didn’t know that the song became somewhat of an anthem for the Civil Rights movement in the 70’s, and yet I was going on protests and marches for that very cause. I also didn’t know that other well-known people recorded it, including the Mamas and the Papas (I must find their version) and the Grateful Dead (and I must find their version too!)
The version I do know and love, is that by my all-time favourite David Bowie, and my not favourite, Mick Jagger… It was on TV tonight… stars, the pair of them!