behindthegrooves:

On this day in music history: April 23, 1983 - “Come On Eileen” by Dexy’s Midnight Runners hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 1 week. Written by Kevin Adams, Jimmy Patterson, and Kevin Rowland, it is the biggest hit for the Birmingham, UK based pop band fronted by lead singer Kevin Rowland. The Celtic influenced pop song will be influenced by remembrances of Kevin Rowland’s childhood girlfriend, and how the nature of their relationship changed while growing up together. Born into a very religious Irish Catholic family, Rowland often felt guilt and ambivalence over how his feelings for his girlfriend had evolved from purely platonic to being more sexual in nature. The song’s memorable music video filmed in the Kennington district of South London is directed by Julien Temple (“The Great Rock N’ Roll Swindle”, “Absolute Beginners”) and features Máire Fahey (also pictured on the single sleeve), the sister of Siohban Fahey of Bananarama and Shakespeare’s Sister as lead singer Kevin Rowland’s girlfriend “Eileen”. Released in the UK first in the Summer of 1982, it is an immediate hit rocketing straight to number one spending four weeks at the top. The single will be released in the US five months later in December of 1982. Entering the Hot 100 at #79 on January 22, 1983, it will climb to the top of the chart thirteen weeks later. Regarded as one of the quintessential songs of the 80’s, “Eileen” will be covered by Save Ferris in 1994, with the original version being featured in the films “Tommy Boy”, “Get Him To The Greek”, and “The Perks Of Being A Wallflower”. “Come On Eileen” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.