The Replacements

I Will Dare

Composed by Paul Westerberg

Song Review by

The unwieldy, ramshackle drunk-rockers known as Minneapolis' Replacements landed themselves at the top of the jangle rock heap in 1984 with the recording of "I Will Dare" for their album Let It Be. A band who always had pop tendencies and an extraordinary songwriter in Paul Westerberg, the 'Mats tamped down their rockingest impulses for an irresistible ditty of a love song with the killer chorus, hooky verse, and proficient guitar from the kingpin of the Rickenbacker, R.E.M.'s Peter Buck. An even unlikelier element to the song was the addition of Westerberg on mandolin. The song -- with its skiffle beat, light country-rock flavor, and bouncy new wave beat -- captured the spirit of the times when music was changing, particularly American guitar rock. Lyrically, it captured the tentativeness of young love, presumably something the band and their fans could relate to from their collective pasts. In essence, the song was simply a high-watermark for the college rock sound of the day and contributed to the band's fourth album, which became a big independent-label hit, spurring them onto a major-label recording deal. "I Will Dare" had all the right elements and the Replacements were in the right place at the right time; it stands as perhaps the band's most beloved song and is a touchstone for their mid-'80s heyday, not to mention its status in the jangle and college rock canons.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
No Image 1984
Let It Be 1984 Rhino
No Image 1985 Twin/Tone
No Image 1994 Home Entertainment 3:56
Feeling Minnesota 1996
Original Soundtrack
Rhino Atlantic 3:19
Rykodisc 20th Anniversary 2004
Various Artists
Rykodisc 3:19
Left of the Dial: Dispatches from the '80s Underground 2004
Various Artists
Rhino 3:19
Don't You Know Who I Think I Was?: The Best of the Replacements 2006 ATG / Atlantic / Twin/Tone 3:20
Hot Tub Time Machine [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] 2010
Original Soundtrack
Rhino 3:19
The Complete Box 2013 Rhino 3:19
The Complete Studio Albums: 1981-1990 2015 Rhino 3:19
The Twin/Tone Years 2015 Rhino
Onxrt: Live from the Archives, Vol. 1
Various Artists
3:35
Original Album Series Rhino / Warner Bros.
blue highlight denotes editor's pick