In a Songfacts interview with Harry Wayne Casey
, he told the story behind this song. "'Get Down Tonight' was originally called 'What You Want Is What You'll Get,'" he said. "A lot of times I will have an idea of a song, and during recording I'll just sing whatever comes into my mind and then go back, and if I don't like that, will change it to another complete title. I do it a little bit differently now. I start with titles most of the time and already have the idea of what the title is going to be. But for that particular song and for 'I'm Your Boogie Man
,' it was different.
My working title was 'What You Want Is What You'll Get,' and that's what I used during the recording of the record. Then I came back and decided to change it to 'Get Down Tonight.' I just thought, 'What are the things I like to do?' I love to dance, and so do other people. Do a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight.' It was just a story about life, about the things that one likes to do."