Taco – Putting On The Ritz

Puttin’ On the Ritz” is a song written by Irving Berlin. He wrote it in May 1927 and first published it in December 2, 1929. It was registered as an unpublished song August 24, 1927 and again on July 27, 1928. It was introduced by Harry Richman and chorus in the musical film Puttin’ On the Ritz (1930). According to The Complete Lyrics of Irving Berlin, this was the first song in film to be sung by an interracial ensemble. The title derives from the slang expression “to put on the Ritz”, meaning to dress very fashionably. The expression was inspired by the opulent Ritz Hotel.

Lyrics of song “Putting On The Ritz”:

If you’re blue and you don’t know where to go to
Why don’t you go where fashion sits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Different types of wear all day coat pants
With stripes and cut away coats for perfect fits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Dressed up like a million dollar trooper
Trying hard to look like Gary Cooper
Super-duper

Come lets mix where Rockerfellers
Walk with sticks or umbrellas in their mits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Have you seen the well to do
Up and down Park Avenue
On that famous thorough fare
With their noses in the air
High hats and narrow collars
White spats and lots of dollars
Spending every dime
For a wonderful time

If you’re blue and you don’t know where to go to
Why don’t you go where fashion sits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Different types of wear all day coat pants
With stripes and cut away coats for perfect fits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Dressed up like a million dollar trooper
Trying hard to look like Gary Cooper
Super-duper

Come lets mix where Rockerfellers
Walk with sticks or umbrellas in their mits
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Dressed up like a million dollar trooper
Trying hard to look like Gary Cooper
Super-duper

If you’re blue and you don’t know where to go to
Why don’t you go where fashion sits
Puttin’ on the Ritz
Puttin’ on the Ritz
Puttin’ on the Ritz
Puttin’ on the Ritz

Down, down
Up, down
Get your kicks
Got the Ritz
Dine and wine but not till nine
The time is right for us tonight
We can move
Move to the rhythm
We can
Move
Dance to the rhythm
I want you to move

In 1982 singer Taco released a synthpop cover version of “Puttin’ On the Ritz” as a single from his album After Eight, released on Polydor of Germany. The single was accompanied by a music video, which includes a tap dance solo.[citation needed] The original version of the video contains characters in blackface and has since been banned from many networks. An alternate version eliminates many shots of the blackface characters, though some remain.

The single was a global hit, reaching No. 1 in Cashbox as well as No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, making Irving Berlin, then 95, the oldest ever living songwriter to have one of his compositions enter the top ten. It was certified Gold by the RIAA for selling over one million US copies. It was Taco’s only hit in the States. This version of the song was ranked No. 53 in VH1’s 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s special.

The song topped the charts in Sweden and New Zealand, and it entered the Top 5 in numerous countries including Australia, Norway, Austria and Canada.

The Taco cover of the song was used in Baby Geniuses (1999) and The Call (2013). Alvin and the Chipmunks covered Taco’s version of the song for “Don’t Be a Videot”, a 1984 episode of Alvin and the Chipmunks.

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