1001 South African Songs You Must Hear Before You Go Deaf

Just another music list

Elvis Astaire (King Of Swing) – The Soft Shoes

Elvis Astaire (King Of Swing) – The Soft Shoes (And two celebrities rolled in their graves)

Soft Shoes - Elvis Astaire

Soft Shoes - Elvis Astaire

Long before X Factor was invented, there were talent shows on TV, but back then we never got to see those weird and wonderful people whose idea of wonderful singing has alley cats throwing shoes at them. Back then, we only got to see those who could actually carry a tune.  In 1983 the SABC ran a talent competition show called ‘Follow That Star’
and the runaway winners were the Soft Shoes who charmed the nation with their rendition of ‘Elvis Astaire’.

There were some that cried foul as the competition was meant for amateurs and the foursome that made up the Soft Shoes (Jervis Pennington, Roy Bramwell, Tommy Maree & Darren Magnussen) were all experienced entertainers. But all that aside, ‘Elvis Astaire’ seems to have stood the test of time and is remembered with some fondness by those who were young at the time and may have developed crushes on them (no names mentioned Carolyn).

The ditty that starts off as a plaintive piano led song quickly changes into a toe tapping bop as the lads try to convince us they can shake like Elvis Presley and dance like Fred Astaire. I can’t remember how well they danced, so that claim may have been flawed, but the song is what has lasted and it was a pretty catchy tune. It may not be the best song every made, but it certainly made its way into South African musical history to the extent that love it or hate it, it should be included in this list.

Where to find it:

Various Artists – The Best of SA Pop Volume 2 (1994) GMP, CDGMPD 40486 (CD)

Lyrics:

Sometimes I dream I’m riding on a star
Sometimes I dream That I’m going far
Sometimes I’m Elvis A-shakin’ my knees
Sometimes I’m Fred Astaire Dancing to please
And I swear if I ever give up my dreams
I’ll surely die
I will surely die

One, two, three four

He can bop and he can talk and he can shake his knees
He’s the king of shake and rattle, roll
And he can bop and he can jive, but snakes alive
He’s the king of flip and flop live
And he can tip tap tap tap shoft shoe shuffle
And he can tip tap tap tap sandman jive
He’s the king (of what?) the king of swing
He’s Elvis Astaire

Tap your toes and shake your knees
Clap your bones and  buzz your bees
Tap your toes and shake

And he can dress his body oh so neat and oh so sweet
He’s a hit parade madonna man
And he can cuff your hands and tie your hands and break your heart
Doesn’t leave you like he oughta, no
And he can never stop stop stay to long
He can never love you right or wrong
Cause he’s the king (of what?) the king of swing
He’s Elvis Astaire

Tap your toes and shake your knees
Clap your bones and  buzz your bees
Tap your toes and shake

Come on, all right, yeah yeah, sharp shooter
wop bop a lula a wop bam boo, yeah

I can bop and I can talk and I can shake my knees
I’m the king of shake and rattle, roll
And I can bop and I can jive, but snakes alive
I’m the king of flip and flop live
And I can tip tap tap tap shoft shoe shuffle
I can tip tap tap tap sandman jive
Cause I’m the king (of what?) the king of swing
I’m Elvis Astaire

Tap your toes and shake your knees
Clap your bones and  buzz your bees
Tap your toes and shake

Boogie, woogie, flip flop, yeah yeah yeah

I’m the king of shake & rattle
Elvis Astaire

(Written by Jarvis Pennington)

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