Kyrie (song)

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Single by Mr. Mister
from the album Welcome to the Real World
Released December 21, 1985[1][2]
Recorded 1985
Length 4:25 (album version)
4:10 (single version)
Label RCA
Mr. Mister singles chronology
"Broken Wings"
"Is It Love"
Music sample

"Kyrie" is a song by American pop rock band Mr. Mister, from their 1985 album Welcome to the Real World. Released in late 1985, it hit the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 charts in March 1986, where it was #1 for two weeks. It also hit the top spot on the Billboard Top Rock Tracks chart for one week. In the UK the song peaked at #11 in April 1986.

Background and writing[edit]

The words to "Kyrie" were written by Arizona-born lyricist John Lang who co-wrote the songs on all of Mr. Mister's albums. The music was composed by Richard Page and Steve George while on tour with Adam Ant.

Kýrie, eléison means "Lord, have mercy" in Greek, and is a part of many liturgical rites in Eastern and Western Christianity. Kýrie, eléison; Christé, eléison; Kýrie, eléison is a prayer that asks "Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy; Lord, have mercy".[3] According to Page the entire song is, essentially, a prayer.[4]

There is a myth that singer Richard Page wrote this song while lying in a hospital bed following an attack. John Lang has stated that he was the one who was attacked, three years before "Kyrie" was written, and that the incident has nothing to do with the song.[5]

The video for this song was directed by Nick Morris, and features the band in performance mixed with footage taken at the tail end of their Fall 1985 tour with Tina Turner.[6]

The USA 7" single can be found pressed on transparent purple vinyl or polystyrene, depending on where it was manufactured.

In popular culture[edit]

The song is featured in the films The Squid and the Whale (2005), Adventures of Power (2008) and The Way, Way Back (2013).

Track listing[edit]

7" single
  1. "Kyrie" (single edit) – 4:10
  2. "Run to Her" – 3:36
12" single
  1. "Kyrie" (album version) – 4:24
  2. "Run to Her" – 3:36
  3. "Hunters of the Night" – 5:07

The single edit of the song ends with the a cappella phrase "Kýrie, eléison, down the road that I must travel", while the album version simply fades out.


Cover versions[edit]

In 1993, Acapella Vocal Band, a traditional Southern gospel group, included a version of the song on their album U And Me And God Make 5 (Word). The cover charter on the Contemporary Christian Music charts of 1994.[citation needed] The group later recorded a Spanish version of the song as well.


  1. ^ - Mr. Mister Mr. Mister- History Retrieved 1-14-2012.
  2. ^ Mr. Mister- "Kyrie" single Retrieved 1-14-2012.
  3. ^ Kýrie, eléison – Translation from the StraightDope
  4. ^ Richard Page discusses Kyrie – RetroRewind interview
  5. ^ Lang letter to "Mr. Music" – dated June, 2004
  6. ^ Kyrie details – from Mr. Mister fansite
  7. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  8. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  9. ^ " – Mr. Mister Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  10. ^ "Irish Singles Chart – Search for song". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved July 6, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Hit Parade Italia – Indice per Interprete: M". Hit Parade Italia. Retrieved July 6, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Mr. Mister search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  13. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie". Top 40 Singles.
  14. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie". VG-lista.
  15. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie". Singles Top 100.
  16. ^ " – Mr. Mister – Kyrie". Swiss Singles Chart.
Preceded by
"How Will I Know" by Whitney Houston
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
1 March 1986 – 8 March 1986
Succeeded by
"Sara" by Starship
Preceded by
"How Will I Know" by Whitney Houston
Canadian RPM number-one single
8 March 1986 – 15 March 1986
Succeeded by
"Sara" by Starship
Preceded by
"When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going" by Billy Ocean
Norwegian Singles Chart number one single
26 April 1986
Succeeded by
"A Different Corner" by George Michael
Preceded by
"Silent Running (On Dangerous Ground)" by Mike + The Mechanics
Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks number-one single
1 February 1986
Succeeded by
"Stages" by ZZ Top