Song Lyric Sunday — “Havin’ a Party” with Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes

Jim Adams has chosen another great theme for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday: Record/Juke Box/DJ/Radio. As soon as I saw this theme, I started singing my choice for this theme: “Havin’ A Party.” Written and recorded by Sam Cooke in 1962, the song charted at number 4 on the Billboard R&B chart and at 17 on Billboard’s Hot 100. The song has been covered by many groups including, The Pointer Sisters, The Supremes, Rod Stewart, Bruce Springsteen, and Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes. Springsteen fiddled a bit with the lyrics circa 1974 (Springsteen included it in a setlist in 1974), but I’m posting Cooke’s original lyrics.  You can read the Springsteen lyrics here.

My favorite version is Springsteen lyrics exuberantly sung by Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes. Although Southside’s first studio recording of the song is on his 1981 album, “Reach Up and Touch the Sky,” it has been a staple in his live setlist since at least 1978, as evidenced by the below video. Their August 31, 1978, concert at The Agora in Cleveland, Ohio, was delayed about three hours. Their lead guitarist at the time, Steven Van Zandt, was doing double-duty performing first with Springsteen and the E Street Band at another Ohio location, then hustling to Cleveland to play with the Jukes. Both Springsteen and Van Zandt joined with Johnny and the Jukes for “Havin’ a Party.” The video opens with a few bars of Curtis Mayfield’s “It’s All Right” and rolls into the party. (Sam Cooke’s original recording is here.)

 

Having a Party (Sam Cooke original lyrics)

We’re havin’ a party
Dancin’ to the music
Played by the DJ
On the radio
The Coke’s out in the icebox
Popcorn’s on the table
Me and my baby
We’re out here on the floor

So Mr, Mr. DJ
Keep those records playin’
‘Cause I’m a-havin’ such a good time
Dancin’ with my baby

Everybody’s swingin’
Sally’s doin’ the twist now
If you take requests I’ve
Got a few for you
Play that song called soul twist
Play that one called I know
Don’t forget the mashed potatoes
No other songs will do

Let me tell you Mr, Mr. DJ
Keep those records playin’
‘Cause I’m a-havin’ such a good time
Dancin’ with my baby

We’re havin’ a party, yeah
Everybody’s swingin’, oh yeah
Dancin’ to the music, yeah
On the radio

Oh, we’re havin’ a party
Everybody’s swingin’
Dancin’ to the music, yeah
On the radio

One more time
We’re havin’ a party, yeah
And everybody’s swingin’
Oh we’re dancin’ to the music, yeah
On the radioWriter/s: SAM COOKE
Publisher: Abkco Music, Inc.
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind