Fly (Sugar Ray song)

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Single by Sugar Ray
from the album Floored
Released June 17, 1997
Recorded 1996
Genre Reggae rock, reggae fusion
Length 4:04 (original)
4:52 (featuring Super Cat)
Label Atlantic
Writer(s) Sugar Ray
Producer(s) David Kahne
Sugar Ray singles chronology
"Mean Machine"

"Fly" is a song by rock band Sugar Ray. It appears on their 1997 album Floored twice: one version with reggae artist Super Cat (Track 4) and the other without (Track 13).

The song became the band's first hit, holding the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart for four consecutive weeks and spending eight weeks at the No. 1 spot on the Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart. A physical CD-single was not released commercially in the US, although it was a huge hit on American radio. The song also reached No. 1 on Canada's Singles Chart.[1] "Fly" did not sound anything at all like the rest of the tracks on the album, being the only reggae fusion track. It also sampled a line from Gilbert O'Sullivan's 1972 hit "Alone Again (Naturally)." Sugar Ray's lead singer Mark McGrath explained that this song had a bouncy beat, yet it was about death; "Fly" too seemed like a bright, up-tempo song but "there is this stark imagery in there. There's loss in it. There is loss of a mother, obviously. I thought it was a good way to juxtapose the lyrics with the melody on that, similar to what Gilbert O’Sullivan did on “Alone Again (Naturally).”[2]

As a result of the success of "Fly", Floored sold extremely well and was certified double platinum. However, by the end of 1997, critics skeptical that Sugar Ray could put out another successful song labeled them a one-hit wonder. This assumption was noted and accepted by the band, who in playful defiance, named their next album 14:59 in a reference to Andy Warhol's "15 minutes of fame"; that album became certified triple-platinum and outsold its predecessor.

The song was included on VH1's countdown of the "100 Greatest Songs of the '90s" at number 52.[3]

In popular culture[edit]

A cover version was recorded by the band Pinmonkey on their 2002 self-titled album. Four Year Strong also covered the song on their 1990s cover album, Explains It All, featuring Travie McCoy from the band Gym Class Heroes.

In 2011, Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song as a bonus track on the Target limited edition of the soundtrack Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked: Music from the Motion Picture.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[4] 31
Canada Top Singles (RPM) 1
Canada Alternative (RPM) 1
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[5] 64
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company) 58
US Billboard Hot 100 Airplay 1
US Billboard Mainstream Top 40 1
US Billboard Adult Top 40 Tracks 2
US Billboard Modern Rock Tracks 1

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 66, No. 6, October 13, 1997". RPM. Retrieved 2010-06-21. 
  2. ^ Jay S. Jacobs. "Sugar Ray: Living the Dream.", 2009 [1]
  3. ^ "VH1: 100 Greatest Songs of the '90s". VH1. Retrieved 2008-08-09. 
  4. ^ " – Sugar Ray – Fly". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  5. ^ " – Sugar Ray – Fly" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.

External links[edit]