Dance Tonight

Written by Paul McCartney

Album This song officially appears on the Memory Almost Full Official album.
Timeline This song has been officially released in 2007

Related sessions

This song has been recorded during the following studio sessions


"Memory Almost Full" sessions #5

January - February 2007

Other singles from Memory Almost Full


Ever Present Past

Officially appears on Memory Almost Full


Nod Your Head

Officially appears on Memory Almost Full

Related interviews


Paul - Scenes From a Nonstop Life

Nov 07, 2013 • From RollingStone


Billboard interview

Nov 22, 2007 • From Billboard


Interview with The Onion/A.V. Club

Jun 27, 2007 • From The Onion/A.V. Club


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Song facts

From Wikipedia:

“Dance Tonight” is a song by Paul McCartney, the opening track to his 2007 album Memory Almost Full. The song was released as a download single in the United Kingdom on 18 June 2007, McCartney’s 65th birthday. A week later, the song debuted at number 34 in the UK Singles Chart. The UK single was also issued as a picture disc that came in a plastic sleeve with a cardboard insert. On 1 July, the song peaked at number 26 in the UK charts. The song was also nominated for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance at the 2008 Grammy Awards.

In the United States, it was released as the second single from the album. The song also debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 69. It marked McCartney’s final appearance in the Hot 100 until 2015.

McCartney performed the song live as a duet with Australian singer Kylie Minogue on Jools Holland’s 2007 New Year’s Eve television special Hootenanny.

The song was used in the advertising on PBS network Thirteen for its May 2013 lineup.

Origin

The left-handed mandolin used for the song, shown delivered to him by mail in the music video, was purchased by McCartney from a guitar shop he frequents in London. Whenever he would play the mandolin, his three-year-old daughter Beatrice would be moved to dance, after which McCartney states that the song “wrote itself”. It was the last song recorded for the album, and was included on the album at the last minute.

The song is also included in an iPod + iTunes advertisement featuring a black and white McCartney walking down a colourful, animated street while performing the song. It saw frequent airplay in summer 2007.

Recording

“Dance Tonight” was recorded in January–February 2007 at RAK Studios in London, with McCartney playing mandolin, electric guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, percussion and autoharp.

Track listing

Originally the single was to be released simultaneously via download, 7″ and CD, but the release was scaled back to just a download on 18 June 2007. According to the official album website, a picture disc 7″ was released in the UK on 23 July 2007, while the CD was released internationally on a date to be announced. The song still managed to chart in the United States, despite not being released in any form there, except an acoustic version available on iTunes from the Summer of Love 1967 double issue of Rolling Stone magazine.

Interview with David Khane, from Mix Online, October 1, 2007:

That kick drum sound you hear at the beginning and throughout the track is actually Paul stomping on a piece of wood with his foot,” Kahne recalls. The mandolin-based track was recorded in January 2007 at RAK Studios in London. It was the last song recorded for the album and features McCartney on mandolin (an instrument he mastered for this recording), bass, auto-harp, drums, fuzz bass, keyboard and electric guitar.

From paulmccartney.com, May 20, 2007:

This was the last track I recorded for the album. I was on my way into a meeting in London and I always like
to drop off before I actually get into the meeting, have a bit of a walk and experience life for a minute.

Anyway there’s a guitar shop that I always drop in on the way down the street and I went in and was chatting to the guy in there and he mentioned that he had a left-handed mandolin that he wanted to show me. So I ended up getting it anyway and I found the great thing about it was that I didn’t know how to play it, because it’s tuned like a violin so I had no idea what the chords were. This was good because it took me back to when I was a teenager being presented with an instrument you didn’t know how to play. So I had to figure it out for myself. I found one chord, then another one, then a real strange chord, very simple shape, but an odd chord, I still don’t know what it is but it sounded great. This was over Christmas 2006. With this little instrument at home over the holiday I started doing this little thing, stomping in the kitchen, just enjoying myself, trying to find chords, and then I start singing ‘Everybody gonna dance tonight’ got that little thing going, and every time my little girl would come running in and start dancing, so I fell in love with this song and with the mandolin and the whole hoe-down aspect and eventually it kind of wrote itself, I just stuck a few more words in it and thought I’m just gonna keep it simple: ‘everybody’s gonna dance around, everybody’s gonna stomp their feet, everybody’s gonna feel the beat’ and not try and get too deep. I liked it so much I thought I’ve got to record this so I ran in quickly and did it and stuck it on the album. It seemed like a good atmospheric opening.

A couple of weeks ago we made the video, which was great fun. It’s directed by Michel Gondry (Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind) and stars Natalie Portman and Mackenzie Crook. We had a good time doing it. ‘Dance Tonight’ is the opening track to my new album, Memory Almost Full. 

Paul McCartney

Beatrice has established herself as a crucial sounding board for new songs. When McCartney first picked up the mando­lin a few years ago and tried to learn it, he struck upon a spiraling, upbeat riff that would become the 2007 single “Dance Tonight.” “I was hitting the floor, singing, and she came running in, danc­ing around,” he recalls. “I went, ‘Whoa, there’s my proof.’

From RollingStone, November 7, 2013

Last updated on January 19, 2021

Lyrics

Everybody gonna dance tonight
Everybody gonna feel alright
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Everybody gonna dance around
Everybody gonna hit the ground
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Well you can come on to my place if you want to
You can do anything you wanna do

Everybody gonna dance tonight
Everybody gonna feel alright
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Well you can come on to my place if you want to
You can do anything you wanna do

Everybody gonna stamp their feet
Everybody gonna feel the beat
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Everybody gonna dance tonight
Everybody gonna feel alright
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Everybody gonna jump and shout
Everybody gonna sing it out
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Well you can come on to my place if you want to
You can do anything you wanna do

Everybody gonna dance tonight
Everybody gonna feel alright
Everybody gonna dance around tonight

Everybody gonna dance around tonight
Everybody gonna feel alright tonight

Officially appears on


Memory Almost Full

Official album • Released in 2007

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Ever Present Past

CD Single • Released in 2007

3:15 • LiveL1

Concert From the concert in Los Angeles, USA on Jun 27, 2007


Dance Tonight

CD Single • Released in 2007

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Memory Almost Full - 2CD limited edition bonus disc

Official album • Released in 2007

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Dance Tonight

7" Single • Released in 2007

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Dance Tonight

7" Single • Released in 2007

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Good Evening New York City

Official live • Released in 2009

2:59 • LiveL2 • Could have been record on 17, 18 or 21 July 2009

Paul McCartney :
Executive producer
Performed by :
Paul McCartneyRusty AndersonAbe Laboriel Jr.Paul WickensBrian Ray
Geoff Emerick :
Audio mixing
Paul Hicks :
Audio mixing
Jonas Westling :
Additional engineering
Richard Lancaster :
Additional engineering
John Henry :
Recording

Concert From the concert in New York, USA on Jul 17, 2009


Live In Los Angeles

Official live • Released in 2010

2:55 • LiveL1

Performed by :
Paul McCartneyRusty AndersonAbe Laboriel Jr.Brian RayDave Arch
Darrell Thorp :
Recording engineer

Concert From the concert in Los Angeles, USA on Jun 27, 2007


Pure McCartney

Official album • Released in 2016

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Pure McCartney (Deluxe)

Official album • Released in 2016

2:55 • Studio versionA

Paul McCartney :
Autoharp, Bass, Drums, Electric guitar, Keyboards, Mandolin, Percussion, Vocals
David Kahne :
Mixing engineer, Producer
Andy Wallace :
Mixing engineer

Session Recording:
January - February 2007
Studio :
RAK Studios, London, UK

Credits & recording details courtesy of Luca Perasi • Buy Paul McCartney: Recording Sessions (1969-2013) on Amazon


Films


Dance Tonight

2007 • For Paul McCartney • Directed by Michel Gondry

Live performances

“Dance Tonight” has been played in 140 concerts and 53 soundchecks.

Latest concerts where Dance Tonight has been played







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