1982 What Do You Do Three-Way: Adam Ant – “Goody Two Shoes”

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by Walter Price

 

In 1982, you were totally trying to get your bopping noggin around tracks like “Rosanna”, “Abracadabra”, “Maneater”, and “Love Plus One”. But there was one song that had you dazed, confused, and completely mesmerized. That song was “Goody Two Shoes” by the newly solo Adam Ant.

What was this? Parts New Romantic, rockabilly, brit pop, and new wave…and lyrics that bewildered not only you but a huge swath of listeners (and the media). Was it about a prudish conquest? (That’s what I had thought.) Or was it a song about straightlaced bores? (I had also thought this at times). Did it have a Dexys Midnight Runners connection…(it’s been rumored).

Don’t drink, don’t smoke, what do you do?
Don’t drink, don’t smoke, what do you do?
Subtle innuendos follow
There must be something inside

What about if, at closer inspection of the lyrics, you discover that this track was actually an introspective rant about the ever-intrusive media and their eagerness to dig too deep? What if Ant, already a star at the time of the release of this top of the charts single, wanted to keep his vibrant and intriguing character’s persona on stage and his true self, private and reserved? Well, that is what this song is really about.

A quote associated with Ant explains, ” Goody Two Shoes was a sort of answer back manifesto and just trying to keep things level-headed because I felt that, and still do, to a degree, that going on stage is creating an illusion. It’s magical and it’s wonderful and I love doing it, but off stage, there has to be time out.”

Look out or they’ll tell you
You’re a Superstar
Two weeks and you’re an all-time legend
I think the games have gone much too far

However you wish to interpret this brilliant classic, I’m sure it is fine with Mr. Ant. Over the decades, many have tried to capture the awe and pure bop of the original to varying successes. I’ve done some digging around and have found three pretty darn good odes to the master of showmanship and pop culture significance.  Here is the GTC’s 1982 what do you do three-way of Adam Ant’s “Goody Two Shoes”.

 

ADAM ANT

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Unwritten Law

 

Brian Ragland

 

The Di Maggio Connection

 

 

MR. ANT

 

 

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