Song Lyric Sunday — Hop, Skip, and Jump

This week, Jim Adams’ Song Lyric Sunday theme words are “hop,” “jump,” “leap,” “pounce,” and “spring.” As soon as I saw these words, I harkened back to my pre-teen days and to what, at the time, was one of my very favorite songs, “At the Hop.”

“At the Hop” was a pop song written by Artie Singer, John Medora, and David White. It was originally released by Danny & the Juniors, a Philadelphia group comprised of Danny Rapp, Dave White, Frank Maffei, and Joe Terranova, in the fall of 1957 and reached number 1 on the U.S. charts on January 6, 1958, becoming one of the top-selling singles of 1958. “At the Hop” also hit number 1 on the R&B Best Sellers list and, in a bit of a surprise, it reached number 3 on the Music Vendor country charts.

In the ’50s, high school dances in America were often referred to as “hops.” Sometimes, these dances would be “sock hops” because school administrators would make the kids take off their shoes so they didn’t scuff up the gymnasium floor where the dance was usually held.

John Medora said that the song, original titled “Do the Bop,” was recorded with him singing lead and with Danny & The Juniors (at the time going by the name The Juvenairs) singing background. Medora said that the recording of  ‘Do The Bop’ was played for Dick Clark, who said that The Bop (the dance) wasn’t really happening around the country and suggested changing it to something about record hops. So with the song’s name changed to “At the Hop” and some additional lyric adjustments, Madora went back into the studio with Danny & The Juniors. Danny Rapp, who was their lead singer, sang lead, using a lot of the same phrasing that Medora did on “Do The Bop.” As Medora said, “The rest is rock and roll history.”

The song describes the scene at a record hop, particularly the dances being performed and the interaction with the disc jockey host.

Here are the lyrics to “At the Hop.”

Bah-bah-bah-bah, bah-bah-bah-bah
Bah-bah-bah-bah, bah-bah-bah-bah, at the hop!

Well, you can rock it you can roll it
You can stop and you can stroll it at the hop
When the record starts spinnin’
You chalypso when you chicken at the hop
Do the dance sensation that is sweepin’ the nation at the hop

Ah, let’s go to the hop
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop
Come on, let’s go to the hop

Well, you can swing it you can groove it
You can really start to move it at the hop
Where the jockey is the smoothest
And the music is the coolest at the hop
All the cats and chicks can get their kicks at the hop
Let’s go!

Let’s go to the hop
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop
Come on, let’s go to the hop
Let’s go!

Well, you can rock it you can roll it
You can stop and you can stroll it at the hop
When the record starts spinnin’
You chalypso when you chicken at the hop
Do the dance sensation that is sweepin’ the nation at the hop

You can swing it you can groove it
You can really start to move it at the hop
Where the jockey is the smoothest
And the music is the coolest at the hop.
All the cats and chicks can get their kicks at the hop.
Let’s go!

Let’s go to the hop
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let’s go to the hop
Come on, let’s go to the hop

Bah-bah-bah-bah, bah-bah-bah-bah
Bah-bah-bah-bah, bah-bah-bah-bah, at the hop!

14 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday — Hop, Skip, and Jump

  1. Maggie March 21, 2021 / 6:22 am

    Great song! A great throw back to a very specific era. Perfect for today.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. newepicauthor March 21, 2021 / 8:31 am

    This is so far the most popular song here today, but I really enjoyed your write-up on this song.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lisa Coleman March 21, 2021 / 9:00 am

    Most popular song of the day! I have to admit, it crossed my mind first! I’ve loved all the different versions today and this live performance is outstanding. Boy band of the late 50’s. This was identical to the recording so I have to wonder if they were lip-syncing. This is one of my “go to” songs when I hula hoop. Love it! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango March 21, 2021 / 10:20 pm

      The video was taken from Dick Clark’s American Bandstand show and I’m pretty sure all of the artists who performed on that show were lip-syncing their songs.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lisa Coleman March 22, 2021 / 7:29 pm

        Yes, I noticed that! I love Dick Clark and used to watch American Bandstand on my grandparents black and white TV. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 2 people

  4. leigha66 March 23, 2021 / 5:19 pm

    Great song! I am glad they changed the lyrics to “at the hop!”

    Liked by 2 people

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