Flagpole Sitta

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"Flagpole Sitta"
Single by Harvey Danger
from the album Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone?
B-side "The Ballad of the Tragic Hero (Pity and Fear)"
Released April 21, 1998 (1998-04-21) (US)
June 27, 1998 (1998-06-27) (UK)
Format CD single, 7" single
Recorded 1996
Length 3:37
Label Slash
Producer(s) John Goodmanson, Harvey Danger
Harvey Danger singles chronology
- "Flagpole Sitta"
"Private Helicopter"
Music sample

"Flagpole Sitta" is a song by American rock band Harvey Danger from their 1997 debut album, Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone?.


It was released as a single in April 1998. The song gained popularity after Sean Nelson gave a copy of the album to a KNDD DJ. Shortly after this, it was picked up by KROQ-FM. It then appeared at #38 on the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart. A music video was produced to promote the single.[1] Notably, the song was first used in the film Disturbing Behavior which is not included in the CD soundtrack. It was also used in the film American Pie, though the song was not included on the DVD release. In 2009, Capitol Records filed a lawsuit against Vimeo about a 'Lip Dub' version of "Flagpole Sitta". The Vimeo version shows the staff of Connected Ventures acting out the song. It went viral when it was released.[citation needed] The song is regarded as a power pop single to MTV and a post-grunge anthem to author Ericka Chickowski.[2][3] PopMatters describes the single as "a hyper-literate alt-rock dissection of the stupidity of the modern age".[4] Music journalist Rob Sheffield also considers the song as "nineties pop-punk rage at its loudest".[5]


Chart (1998-1999) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[6] 50
Canada Alternative 30 (RPM) 9
France (SNEP)[7] 98
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company) 57
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Airplay 38
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks 31
U.S. Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks 33
U.S. Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks 3
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Mainstream 32

Use in other media[edit]

The song has been the theme song for the British comedy Peep Show since its second series. It also appeared briefly in the first series as background music in a bowling alley. Sean Nelson has stated that its use in Peep Show is "...the only pop culture item the song has been associated with that feels like a kindred spirit to the original attitude of the lyric."[8]

American alt-country band Deer Tick performed a version of the song in July 2012 for The A.V. Club‍‍ '​‍s A.V. Undercover series.[9]


  1. ^ Harvey Danger - Flagpole Sitta (Official Music Video). YouTube. 25 March 2011. 
  2. ^ Devenish, Colin (May 12, 1998). "Harvey Danger’s ‘Flagpole Sitta’ Sitting Pretty On Rock Radio". MTV News. Retrieved September 12, 2015. 
  3. ^ Ericka Chickowski (3 July 2012). Moon Washington. Avalon Travel Publishing. p. 147. ISBN 978-1-61238-261-6. 
  4. ^ Sawdey, Evan (June 5, 2013). "Harvey Danger's Unsung Masterpiece". PopMatters. Retrieved September 12, 2015. 
  5. ^ Sheffield, Rob (July 31, 2013). "Rob Sheffield’s 10 Perfect Karaoke Jams". Time (magazine). Retrieved September 12, 2015. 
  6. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Harvey Danger – Flagpole Sitta". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  7. ^ "Lescharts.com – Harvey Danger – Flagpole Sitta" (in French). Les classement single.
  8. ^ "Harvey Danger interview". 21 June 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  9. ^ "Deer Tick covers Harvey Danger". Retrieved April 2, 2013. 

External links[edit]