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LOLA (LOH-luh)

1. Seductive temptress in the musical comedy, Damn Yankees
1970 hit song for the Kinks
Common clues: "Damn Yankees" vamp; 1970 Kinks hit; She gets what she wants; Kinks classic; “Whatever ____ Wants”
Crossword puzzle frequency: 5 times a year
Frequency in English language: 33809 / 86800
Video: Whatever Lola Wants

Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets / And little man, little Lola wants you! – Lola

Damn Yankees is a musical comedy, a modern retelling of the Faust legend, set in Washington, D.C., with book by Douglass Wallop and George Abbott and music and lyrics by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross. It was based on Wallop's novel The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant.

The plot is based on a middle-aged fan of the Washington Senators baseball club who sold his soul to the Devil to enable the Senators to win the American League pennant.

Gwen Verdon plays a guilt-ridden temptress

It opened on Broadway in 1955 starring Gwen Verdon (Lola), who was also featured in the movie. In the movie version, Ray Walston played the Devil, "Mr. Applegate".


"Lola" is a song written by Ray Davies and performed by The Kinks which details a romantic encounter between a young man and a transvestite he meets in a Soho club in London.

Released in June 1970, in the UK on the 12th and in the USA on the 28th, the single was taken from the album Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One and reached #2 in the UK charts and #9 in the US. It was ranked 422nd on the List of Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and its C-D-E power riff is recognized among the famous riffs of rock.

In the book The Kinks: The Official Biography, Ray Davies says that he was inspired to write this song after the band manager Robert Wace had spent the night dancing with a transvestite.

In late 1969, Davies' father encouraged him to focus his energy on writing another worldwide hit single after a long dry spell for the band, and "Lola" was the result. Davies and the Kinks spent extra time and effort recording and crafting the song at Morgan Studios in London during early 1970.

In his autobiography, Dave Davies mentions that he came up with the music for what would become Lola. After Dave had shown his brother the music, Ray came up with the lyrics. Dave goes on to claim his brother took all the credit for the song. The original song recorded in stereo had the word "Coca-Cola" in the lyrics, but because of BBC Radio's policy against product placement, Ray was forced to make a six thousand mile round-trip flight from New York to London and back — interrupting the band's American tour — to change those words to the generic "cherry cola" for the single release.

The success of the single had important ramifications for the band's career at a critical time, allowing them to negotiate a new contract with RCA Records, construct their own London Studio, and assume more creative and managerial control. "Lola" also became their most popular sing-along anthem at concerts, as they struggled to regain a footing in the US concert market after a five year absence.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Damn Yankees" and “Lola (song)”.