Adult Education (song)

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"Adult Education"
Adult Education.jpg
Single by Daryl Hall & John Oates
from the album Rock 'n Soul Part 1
ReleasedFebruary 18, 1984
GenrePop rock
Length5:23 (album version) 4:35 (single edit)
LabelRCA Records
Daryl Hall & John Oates singles chronology
"Say It Isn't So"
"Adult Education"
"Out of Touch"
Music video
"Adult Education" on YouTube

"Adult Education" is a song by American duo Daryl Hall & John Oates, released as a single on February 18, 1984. The song is featured on the duo's second compilation album Rock 'n Soul Part 1 (1983). It was one of two new tracks that were recorded specifically for the compilation release and hit number eight on the US Billboard Hot 100. This song was featured in the 2013 video game Grand Theft Auto V.


The song centers on the plight of a teenage girl in high school. Her girlfriends only "care about what she wears" and the narrator assures her "there's life after high school." The lyrics suggest she is wiser than her years and, in fact, is receiving an education to the behavior of adults in high school.[1]

Music video[edit]

The music video to "Adult Education", directed by Tim Pope, takes place in what appears to be a torchlit stone temple or tomb. As Hall & Oates and their band sing, dance and play with modified instruments and ceremonial objects, a middle-aged man in a baseball cap organizes and wields several idols, while chanting. A teenage boy wearing a loincloth and a teenage girl draped in a white sheet cross a platform illuminated with modern lights and ascend a staircase to meet the man, who appears to bless them with an animal idol. The girl removes the sheet from her head and part of her body and the ritual continues. Eventually, both teenagers are placed on stone slabs; the boy acts terrified and appears to be restrained, while the girl lies motionless, her body draped in the white sheet. The video ends with the boy standing behind the idols' altar and the girl sitting on the stone slab in front of it, as Hall & Oates and their band continue to sing, dance and play instruments in the background. The final shots of the video are of hieroglyphs and ceremonial items scattered around the structure.

Hall later criticized the video in the book I Want My MTV: The Uncensored Story of the Music Video Revolution. "Videos began to attract wannabe Cecil B. Demilles, directors who had almost unlimited budgets and did whatever they felt like. 'Adult Education' is a perfect example. We brought in a director I didn't know [Pope], who was newly hot. He didn't have a clue what to do with the song. The plot? I couldn't tell you."[2]


Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1984) Peak
Australia (Kent Music Report)[3] 94
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[4] 9
Canada Top Singles (RPM) 18
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[5] 7
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[6] 63
US Billboard Hot 100[7] 8
US Radio & Records CHR/Pop Airplay Chart[8][9] 5
US Dance Club Songs (Billboard)[10] 21
US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)[11] 50
US Mainstream Rock (Billboard)[12] 23

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Sexism and Cultural Lag: The Rise of the Jailbait Song, 1955–85.JR Huffman. The Journal of Popular Culture 1987.Wiley Online Library
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  4. ^ " – Daryl Hall / John Oates – Adult Education" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  5. ^ " – Daryl Hall / John Oates – Adult Education" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  6. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  7. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Dance Club Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  11. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  12. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.