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Land Of 1000 Dances
Wilson Pickett Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning | Line by Line Meaning

One-two-three
One-two-three
Ow, uh, alright, uh!

Got to know how to pony
Like Bony Maronie
Mashed potato
Do the alligator
Put your hand on your hips, yeah
Let your backbone slip
Do the watusi
Like my little Lucy
Hey!

Uh, na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Na-na-na-na, I need somebody to help me say it one time
Na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Na-na-na-na, wo-ow!

Wow!
Uh, you know I feel alright
Ha, feel pretty good y'all
Uh, huh!

Na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Na-na-na-na, come on y'all, let's say it one more time
Na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Na-na-na-na, wo-ow!

Twist it in the alley
With long tall Sally
Twistin' with Lucy
Doin' the watusi

Roll over on your back
I like it like that
Do that Jerk-ah
Watch me work y'all

Ow, do it
Wow, do it
Just watch me do it

Aah, help me
Aah, help me
Aah, help me
Aah, help me

Overall Meaning

The song "Land of 1000 Dances" by Wilson Pickett has a very upbeat and lively tune, accompanied by the singer's emphatic performance. The lyrics of the song mainly comprise instructions for various dance steps, and also encourages the listeners to join in through repeated chants of "Na-na-na-na" and "Help me".


The first verse begins with the instruction to "pony", a dance move popular in the early 1960s, and references the song "Bony Maronie" by Larry Williams to describe the move. The second line mentions the "mashed potato", another popular dance move of the time. The "alligator" is a dance step where the performer stands with arms raised and creates a snappy motion with the arms, imitating an alligator's jaws.


The chorus of the song is mainly made up of the repeated "Na-na-na-na" chant, with a call for someone to join in and help sing the song. The second verse describes additional dances such as the "watusi" and "jerkah", and even references Little Richard's "Long Tall Sally". The song ends on a vocal back-and-forth between Pickett and his backup singers, with the iconic request for assistance in singing "Help me" repeated four times.


Line by Line Meaning

One-two-three
Counting down to start dancing


Got to know how to pony
Need to know how to dance with rhythmic motions


Like Bony Maronie
Dance with similar style as Bony Maronie


Mashed potato
Dance with steps like mashing a potato


Do the alligator
Dance with moves like an alligator's tail and arms


Put your hand on your hips, yeah
Gently place your hands on your hips


Let your backbone slip
Relax and let your backbone move smoothly


Do the watusi
Dance with watusi style


Like my little Lucy
Dance like Lucy


Hey!
Exclamation to pump up enthusiasm


Uh, na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Singing a catchy tune to accompany dancing


Na-na-na-na, I need somebody to help me say it one time
Asking for support to sing the tune once again


Wow!
Expressing joy and excitement


Uh, you know I feel alright
Feeling good and energized


Ha, feel pretty good y'all
Feeling very satisfied and happy


Na-na-na-na-na na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
Continuing to hum the catchy tune


Na-na-na-na, come on y'all, let's say it one more time
Encouraging everyone to start singing the tune once again


Twist it in the alley
Twist and dance in the alley


With long tall Sally
Along with tall Sally


Twistin' with Lucy
Twist and dance with Lucy


Doin' the watusi
Continuing to dance with watusi style


Roll over on your back
Roll back on the floor


I like it like that
Enjoying the dance and feeling satisfied


Do that Jerk-ah
Do the Jerk with Jerk-ah style


Watch me work y'all
Asking people to observe how good the dancer is


Ow, do it
Exclaiming to keep dance moves going


Wow, do it
Keep the high energy level going


Just watch me do it
Setting an example of the dance moves


Aah, help me
Asking for some support and encouragement


Aah, help me
Asking once again for support and encouragement


Aah, help me
Asking for one last time for support and encouragement




Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Written by: Christopher Kenner

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Comments from YouTube:

Rodney Allen

RIP to the dynamic drummer who played on this hit record: Roger Hawkins 1945-2021

Lumber Jack

That brother was BAD TO THE BONE!!!!!!

H Mackie

damned straight

Michael Koszowski

Good call sir !!! ...if this song don't make your heartbeat ...your probably dead !!

Cheryl Smith

Yes RIP ❤❤❤❤

Kali Clearwater

Rest In Peace and thanks for sharing your Wonderful Talent with us.

39 More Replies...

Sic Synch

There was a time when the lines between rock and soul were so blurred that artists of either genre reciprocated a reverence for each other's work, covers of well known songs on either side were not uncommon and pretty standard. Music is and has never been a division it's a force that drives us to inspire one another. A heartfelt thank you to those bands on either side that helped make us a collective of music lovers regardless of race, religion or creed. Emotion we draw from song is as intrinsic as having a heartbeat, and I'm pretty sure if you're reading this you got one of them. God bless and keep growing.

Scott Knabb

Yea! I miss the days when rock had horns!

H Mackie

It wasn't the musicians that drew those lines

H Mackie

politicians probably

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