18 June 2009

Lola

Lola is song written by Ray Davies and performed by The Kinks.   It was released in June 1970.   The single went to number 2 in the UK, number 1 in Ireland, New Zealand and the Netherlands, and number 9 in the US.

Ray Davies said that it was based on an incident with the band’s manager, Robert Wace:

I remembered an incident in a club... in his apartment Robert Wace had been dancing with this black woman, and he said, ‘I’m really on to a thing here.’ And it was okay until we left at six in the morning and then I said, ‘Have you seen the stubble?’ He said ‘Yeah,’ but he was too pissed [drunk] to care, I think.

Many of our readers must have had the experience, early in their experience of going out dressed, of this song being played in a public place, and fearing that it might point to themselves.

The song has been covered and parodied by many other artists.  A notable cover is by trans musician Dana Baitz, who changed the words to Lola’s perspective.

I met her in a club down in old Soho
Where you drink champagne and it tastes just like cherry-cola [LP version: Coca-Cola]
See-oh-el-aye cola
She walked up to me and she asked me to dance
I asked her her name and in a dark brown voice she said Lola
El-oh-el-aye Lola la-la-la-la Lola
Well I'm not the world's most physical guy
But when she squeezed me tight she nearly broke my spine
Oh my Lola la-la-la-la Lola
Well I'm not dumb but I can't understand
Why she walked like a woman and talked like a man
Oh my Lola la-la-la-la Lola la-la-la-la Lola
Well we drank champagne and danced all night
Under electric candlelight
She picked me up and sat me on her knee
And said dear boy won't you come home with me
Well I'm not the world's most passionate guy
But when I looked in her eyes well I almost fell for my Lola
La-la-la-la Lola la-la-la-la Lola
Lola la-la-la-la Lola la-la-la-la Lola
I pushed her away
I walked to the door
I fell to the floor
I got down on my knees
Then I looked at her and she at me
Well that's the way that I want it to stay
And I always want it to be that way for my Lola
La-la-la-la Lola
Girls will be boys and boys will be girls
It's a mixed up muddled up shook up world except for Lola
La-la-la-la Lola
Well I left home just a week before
And I'd never ever kissed a woman before
But Lola smiled and took me by the hand
And said dear boy I'm gonna make you a man
Well I'm not the world's most masculine man
But I know what I am and I'm glad I'm a man
And so is Lola
La-la-la-la Lola la-la-la-la Lola
Lola la-la-la-la Lola la-la-la-la Lola

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