Marquee Moon (song)

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"Marquee Moon"
Single by Television
from the album Marquee Moon
Released April 1, 1977
Format 12"
Recorded A & R Studios, NYC
Genre Art punk, post-punk
Length 9:58
Label Elektra
Writer(s) Tom Verlaine
Producer(s) Andy Johns, Tom Verlaine
Television singles chronology
"Little Johnny Jewel"
"Marquee Moon"
"Prove It"

"Marquee Moon" is the title track from American rock band Television's first album Marquee Moon. It was written by Tom Verlaine.

In the United Kingdom, "Marquee Moon" was released as a single on April 1, 1977. Its first pressing was as a 12" single only, limited to 25,000 copies, with the song in stereo on one side and in mono on the other side. Subsequent pressings of the single were as a 7" single, with the track split into two over the A-side and B-side.


"Marquee Moon" developed from Television's early live shows in the mid-1970s, and even when first performed was an eight-minute epic with complex key changes.[citation needed]


Each of the song's three verses begins with a double-stopped guitar intro before Billy Ficca's drums come in, and after the second chorus Richard Lloyd plays a brief guitar solo. After the third chorus, there is a longer solo by Tom Verlaine, based on a jazz-like mixolydian scale, that lasts for the entire second half of the song. On the original vinyl edition of the album, the song faded out just short of ten minutes, but the CD reissues have included the full 10:40 of the take. In concert, the band has sometimes extended the song to as long as fifteen minutes.[citation needed]


Despite its length, which would typically have been too long for most popular music radio formats, the song was released as a single in the U.K. on April 1, 1977[1] and was a minor success, reaching number 30 on the UK Singles Chart.[2] A mono recording of the song served as the B-side of the 12" single. It was subsequently released on 7" vinyl but, because of its length, the song had to be divided between the two sides; part one running at 3:13 and part two at 6:45.


In 2004, "Marquee Moon" was ranked number 381 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time,[3] and number 41 on its "100 Greatest Guitar Songs" list in 2008.


  1. ^ "Television Here Soon". NME (London): 4. April 2, 1977. 
  2. ^ "1977-04-30 Top 40 Official Singles Chart UK Archive | Official Charts". Official Charts. Retrieved December 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Television, 'Marquee Moon' – 500 Greatest Songs of All Time | Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone. Retrieved December 25, 2014. 

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