Call and Answer

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"Call and Answer"
Single by Barenaked Ladies
from the album Stunt
Released July 13, 1999
Format CD
Recorded 1998
Genre Alternative rock
Length 5:48 (Album)
4:09 (Radio Mix)
Label Reprise
Songwriter(s) Steven Page, Stephen Duffy
Producer(s) Barenaked Ladies,
David Leonard,
Susan Rogers
Barenaked Ladies singles chronology
"It's All Been Done"
"Call and Answer"
"Get in Line"
"It's All Been Done"
"Call and Answer"
"Get in Line"
Music video
"Call and Answer" on YouTube

"Call and Answer" is a song by the Canadian group Barenaked Ladies. It was the third single from their highly successful 1998 album Stunt (the song "Alcohol" had been previously released to radio stations, but was not sold commercially as a single). When released as a single, the song was both remixed and edited into a radio mix which cut from the second verse to the third chorus, skipping a chorus, an instrumental break and the third verse. The remix was a slight adjustment of EQ and levels, and not a comprehensive remix involving adding or replacing musical elements. The song was also included on the soundtrack for the film EdTV.

The song was written by Steven Page and his longtime collaborator, Stephen Duffy. All of the vocals in the song are performed by Page; this includes overlapping vocals, harmonies and octaves, and a call-and-response chorus. This, in addition to a long ad-lib outro makes the song a showcase of Page's vocal abilities. In live performances, the backing vocals were performed by bandmates Ed Robertson and Jim Creeggan. The song seems to be about the reconciliation of a tumultuous relationship.

The song was performed on CBC Radio as a tribute to Peter Gzowski on his death in 2002. It was also performed as a duet with Alanis Morissette in 2004 during the co-headlining Au Naturale Tour.

Music video[edit]

The video for the song used the radio mix version, and involved the band living in a world of duplicates. All the houses look the same, all the cars are white Volkswagen Beetles, and there are several "copies" of each band member. Notably, there are multiple Stevens that sing the multiple vocal lines he sings on the song. Steve is the main band member seen in the video, and the other band members are only in a few shots. Steve is paired with a female character in the video.

The video was shot in the Valencia section of Santa Clarita, California. A second version of the video includes scenes from the film EdTV.

The video for the song was an Easter egg on the install disc for Mac OS 9-9.2, along with the video for Static X's "Push It".


Chart positions[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1998) Peak
Canadian Singles Chart 10[citation needed]
UK Singles Chart 52[citation needed]
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles 21[citation needed]
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Adult Recurrents 14[citation needed]
U.S. Billboard Adult Top 40 17[citation needed]
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Tracks 40[citation needed]

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1999) Position
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[1] 76


  1. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 70, No. 8, December 13, 1999". RPM. December 13, 1999. Retrieved November 21, 2017.