dance

Release Date: 8/09

Album: GO WEST

Writer: ADAM MARSLAND

Audio:

Video:

 

Lyrics:

Hey! Who the hell are you?
I just came to drink
I don't want to think til ten til two

Spare me your favors
Do me no good turns
I'm not here to date
Though I appreciate your deep concern

Desperation blows through the front door
Ingratiation trolling for a cheap score
Respiration blows away the dance whores
In.  Out.  In. Out.   1.  2.  3. 4.

Everything's OK, everything's fine (3x)
But I don't wanna dance with you

A small circle of friends to hide the
Bigger ones beneath the eyes
God only knows how many Romeos
will try to penetrate the girl and her disguise

Five hours sleep, five days a week
Running to save face
Clawing at the ground
To the headache sound of a drum and bass

Desperation flows through the dance floor
Destination 'hos throwing soft core
Respiration blows and woofers roar to life
In.  Out.1. 2. 3.  4.

Cash the check... a nervous wreck
With a dragging ass, shaking fast
I just got paid, you won’t get laid tonight
In.  Out.  In. Out.   1.  2.  3. 4.

Musicians:

Adam - vocals, electric guitars, keyboards
Evie Sands - sequencer, vocals
Teresa Cowles - bass, vocals
Kurt Medlin - drums, percussion

Adam sez:

In 2005 I was dating someone a lot younger than me, but despite the age difference it wound up being a really good, and serious, relationship. It put me back in touch with what it was like to be in my early '20s, and I was surprised at how similar the concerns of people just coming out of college were to people approaching middle age. That was the first glimmer of an idea for the GO WEST album. I decided I wanted to do something that tied those ideas together and resonated for both age groups. Annalisa, the girlfriend in question, was the original inspiration for the album and this song in particular, and I had already started the song when we actually went out to a disco together and I got to visualize the whole thing first hand watching Annalisa ducking a dance floor admirer for the entire night.

The genesis of "I Don't Wanna Dance With You" came much earlier, though...it's the last idea to be pilfered from my mid '90s J-pop band Manic 5-0. GO WEST was a great opportunity to go back and rescue good ideas that had never found a home, and the chorus, title and concept are lifted from a song I wrote for them that we only played once or twice. The song ostensibly is about a girl dancing in a bar blowing off a guy that's hitting on her, but it's also about the stress of your first real job, and the exhaustion that sets in when you're trying to prove yourself and you're too young to have learn to pace yourself, so to blow off steam you wind up partying hard and in a perpetual state of extreme fatigue and mild desperation.

And, of course, it's a disco song. I got a huge subversive kick out of trying to pull something like this off, and although the sequencer came later in the song's development, it fit so perfectly that it wound up being the first time I ever used one on a finished track. Recording this song also changed the course of the album. I hadn't planned to record the bulk of GO WEST at home, but seeing how perfectly this song came together sonically -- everything except the not-very-prominent drum track was recorded at my house -- made me realize we could do much more of the recording at home, for free, and that I possessed the skills and gear necessary to do it. From that point on, anything went and new, great-sounding tracks accumulated rapidly.

The song is one of several on disc one of GO WEST from a woman's point of view, and I had always planned to sing the lead vocal in unison with Teresa (Evie joins in on the choruses). It's as much inspired by new bands like the Killers and songs like "Ready To Go" as it is by new wave bands like Blondie (a lot of people have compared this song to "Atomic" and even though I get that, if you play the songs back to back they're really not that similar), so that also made the girl vocal thing desirable for me, having that high shrill vocal carrying the song. Teresa and I did the dual vocal the old school way, at the same time, around one mic and around one track. As you can imagine, getting that kind of precision in our singing (and with me singing in falsetto range for the entire song to boot) took a lot of time and we got pretty punchy before we finally nailed it, but we were very proud of ourselves when we got it...and again, the harmony vocals on the chorus are, to me, simply flawless (and we did do separate performances for each chorus, our standard procedure for the album, instead of getting one good one and cutting and pasting them throughout the song as a lot of folks do).

My favorite thing on this track isn't very loud in the mix -- starting in the solo section, I recorded two very fast clavinet tracks (clavinet being the buzzy instrument featured in a lot of '70s funk tunes, most notably Stevie Wonder's "Superstition"). I've always loved the sound of this classic keyboard and there is nothing cooler, nor more difficult to play, than a rapid fire syncopated clavinet track. The song is fast enough that I had to play at the top of my ability to do the track, and man, I had a blast just wailing on that part.

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