eagle rock daddy cool dance

Why The Hell Do Men Drop Their Pants When ‘Eagle Rock’ Is Played At A Function?

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Growing up in a rural town, there were a few things I knew to be true: every bored teenager “lapped” the main when they first got their P’s. Everyone knew everyone by association. A lot of drama happened after school during Thursday night shopping. And at 18ths, 21sts, footy functions, and weddings, if the song ‘Eagle Rock’ by Daddy Cool was played, men would gather in a circle and drop their pants.

Now, sometimes when I state this as a fact, I’m met with confused glances from people I know… mainly those who grew up in bigger cities. “Wait, what?” they’ll say, as if I’m the crazy one. I’m sorry, I’m the crazy one here?! Not the group of grown-ass men dropping their dacks and standing in a circle chanting to ‘Eagle Rock’? MY BAD.

It’s something I never questioned when I first bore witness to it at approximately the age of 18. I have a distinct memory of being at a friend’s 21st that was Scrubs-themed and watching men dressed as doctors and nurses alike, wrap their arms around each other and drop their pants. Like many things men do, I didn’t bother questioning it.

I later moved to a coastal city where the uni culture was huge, and by that I mean, we all liked to party and drink a lot. I lived on college for the first two years, a variation of living on campus. We had many social events like ‘commencement’ at the start of the year and end of year formals. At every event, at some stage, ‘Eagle Rock’ would be played and the men would flock to the dance floor, dropping their nice tailored pants, getting down to their boxers or briefs, and rock back and forth in time to the beat.

Now we’re older, the phenomenon takes off at weddings. I would expect this to happen at most wedding receptions I attend, particularly if the person grew up in a more rural area.

I’m nearly borderline disappointed if it doesn’t happen.

So when did this all start? And why do men do this?

“I genuinely don’t know why we do this,” one man, who grew up in a regional town, told me. “All I know is that I’ve had my pants around my ankles on the dance floor at every wedding I’ve been to.”

“I remember I was 20ish years old and was at a bar with friends after just moving back to Queensland from half a decade in the USA. ‘Eagle Rock’ came on in a bar and I turned around and my mate was sitting, beer in hand, pants around his ankles in satin boxers (as was the fashion of the time). I was confused. I asked him for more details and in his drunken state he just kept saying ‘get your eagle out’,” another man shared.

“I’ve never heard of this garbage happening,” a South Australian man told me.

“I played a gig at a naval base, and everyone did it. I assumed it was just an armed forces tradition, but it seems to be more widespread. How it started, God only knows,” another person shared.

So did the ‘Eagle Rock’ dance originate in Queensland, in an army base, or at a Sydney private school?

It turns out, according to Daddy Cool frontman Ross Wilson, it could come from numerous football clubs, a QLD university, or a number of military colleges.

“I spoke to a military bloke who reckons he’s been to about eight army weddings where the guys have all dropped their dacks and the bride’s parents are like, ‘what the hell is going on?’,” Wilson told Adelaide Now in 2018.

Wilson said he first became aware of the trend in the 1990s, when he came across a court story in a Melbourne newspaper.

“I looked down at one of the pages and there was a story that said, ‘Soldiers fined for lewd behaviour’. I thought it sounded interesting, so I read on. It was datelined Townsville, and it read: Two soldiers were fined for lewd behaviour blah blah blah … In their defence they said to the magistrate, ‘But your Honour, we always do that when they play ‘Eagle Rock!’

“That was the first I’d ever heard of it.”

So while we may have no real idea who invented it or why it’s become a must-do thing at weddings and functions alike, we can’t deny Aussies love a good albeit bizarre tradition.

“At the end of the day though, I know that it had nothing to do with us. It’s a bit like The Angels chant – something cheeky invented by the Australian public,” Wilson said.

So lads, go forth: drop your dacks to ‘Eagle Rock’ and continue to live your best life.