Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)
by Chic

Album: Chic (1977)
Charted: 6 6

Songfacts®:

  • This was Chic's first hit single. In 1977, the band recorded it as a demo and shopped it around to various record companies, all of which rejected it. Shortly thereafter, a small label called Buddah decided to take a chance and released it as a 12" single. The song's success on the club charts led to the band's discovery by Atlantic Records. Toward the end of 1977, the band signed with Atlantic, and the song was re-released nationally.
  • At Studio 54, a legendary dance club in New York City, this was a very popular song, but on New Year's Eve of 1977, Chic leaders Bernard Edwards and Nile Rodgers were turned away at the door. Rodgers quickly wrote a song about the experience called "F--k Off," which was eventually changed to "Freak Out" and became their huge hit "Le Freak."
  • In this song, the line "Dance, dance, dance, dance" appears 26 times. The word "dance" itself is repeated more than 100 times.
  • Luther Vandross provided backup vocals. He was working as a session vocalist at the time.
  • As far as references go, the word "yowsah" (an African-American slang term for the word "yes") was used for the first time by Ben Bernie, a jazz violinist and radio personality. When he became a radio personality, the word became his trademark. Some sources say that he coined the word but this has not been confirmed. During the Great Depression, this word was considered African-American slang. This song helped the word regain popularity. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jerro - New Alexandria, PA, for all above
  • In The Independent newspaper on November 29, 2003, Chic drummer Tony Thompson said: "We actually started as a rock band. At the time, no one would hear of three black brothers playing rock and roll! So Bernard and Nile came up with the whole disco thing. I didn't even know what disco was. We pressed 'Dance, Dance, Dance' ourselves as we didn't have a record deal. We took it to a club, the DJ played it and people just freaked. From there, we signed to Atlantic."

Comments: 3

  • Barry from Sauquoit, Ny*** LUCKY SIXES ***
    On February 19th 1978, "Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)" by Chic peaked at #6 (for 2 weeks) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it entered the chart on October 23rd, 1977 at position #90 and spent over a half-year on the Top 100 (28 weeks)...
    It reached #6 on Billboard's R&B Singles chart, #6 in the United Kingdom, and #6 in Canada...
    And on October 16th, 1977 it peaked at #1 (for 8 weeks) on Billboard's Hot Dance Club Play chart...
    Was the first of six straight #1s for the group on the 'Hot Dance Club Play' chart; started with this one, "Everybody Dance", "You Can Get By", "Le Freak", "I Want Your Love", and "Chic Cheer"...
    R.I.P Bernard Edwards, founding member & bassist, (1952 - 1996).
  • Zappy from Geelong, AustraliaI heard Chic described as a disco version of Steely dan around 1979
  • Kristin from Bessemer, AlThis song was mainly a disco-fied tribute to the dance marathons back in the 1930s and 1940s, hence the "yowsah, yowsah, yowsah" in the background-
see more comments

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