More Than Words
|"More Than Words"|
|Single by Extreme|
|from the album Pornograffitti|
|Released||March 23, 1991|
|Format||CD maxi, 7", 12", cassette single|
|Length||5:40 (Album version)
4:09 (Radio edit)
|Extreme singles chronology|
"More Than Words" is a ballad written and originally performed by American rock band Extreme. It is built around acoustic guitar work by Nuno Bettencourt and the vocals of Gary Cherone (with harmony vocals from Bettencourt). Released in 1990 on the album Pornograffitti, the song is a detour from the funk metal style that permeates the band's records. As such, it has often been described as "a blessing and a curse" due to its overwhelming success and recognition worldwide, but the band ultimately embraced it and plays it on every show.
The song was described by Bettencourt as a song warning that the phrase "I love you" was becoming meaningless: "People use it so easily and so lightly that they think you can say that and fix everything, or you can say that and everything's OK. Sometimes you have to do more and you have to show it—there's other ways to say 'I love you.'"
The song's music video was filmed in black and white and was produced and directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris.
Parodies and other uses
The video for "More Than Words" was parodied by "Weird Al" Yankovic for his original song, "You Don't Love Me Anymore". The comedic duo Paul and Storm produced an original pastiche of the song entitled "More Than Two" on their album Gumbo Pants. Also, Amateur Transplants wrote a comedic song to the same tune as "More Than Words" entitled "Northern Birds", which was released on their 2006 album "We Are So Bad". The video was also parodied by Jason Segel and the cast of How I Met Your Mother in an online tie-in music video on the episode "The Sexless Innkeeper". An Indian styled version of the song and video was parodied by Mike Myers in his film "The Love Guru". ApologetiX asserts the Christian proposition that one cannot earn salvation with "More than Works". ZDoggMD has performed a parody-PSA version about HPV and HPV vaccination, entitled "More Than Warts".
"More Than Words" was a favorite song of Hispanic singer and actress Selena Quintanilla Perez. When she was murdered in 1995, the band played and dedicated the song at a Selena Perez tribute.
On March 23, 1991, "More Than Words" entered the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 at number 81 and soon after reached number one. It also reached number two in the United Kingdom, where the group had success before its American breakthrough. Though they had made a few European charts before, this brought the band to their first mainstream success in the United States.
Extreme followed "More Than Words" with another acoustic ballad, "Hole Hearted", which peaked at number four in the United States and number three in Canada.
- CD maxi
- "More Than Words" — 5:33
- "Kid Ego" — 4:04
- "Nice Place to Visit" — 3:16
- 7" single
- "More Than Words (Remix)" — 3:43
- "Nice Place to Visit" — 3:16
End of year charts
"I Don't Wanna Cry" by Mariah Carey
|Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
June 8, 1991
"Rush Rush" by Paula Abdul
"Rhythm of My Heart" by Rod Stewart
|Canadian Singles Chart number-one single
June 8, 1991 – June 29, 1991
"Are You Ready" by AC/DC
|New Zealand RIANZ number-one single
July 5, 1991
"I Wanna Sex You Up" by Color Me Badd
"Gypsy Woman (She's Homeless)" by Crystal Waters
|Dutch Top 40 number-one single
July 13, 1991
"Driver's Seat" by Sniff 'n' the Tears
|"More Than Words"|
|Promotional single by Westlife from the album Grandes Exitos and Westlife|
|Released||1999; 2002 (single)|
|Format||3" CD single (CD3)|
|Label||Sony BMG/ Lideres|
Irish boyband Westlife covered the song for their debut-album Westlife and released as promotional single in their Venezuelan only compilation album Grandes Exitos, peaking at #3 on the Venezuelan singles chart. The single featured exclusive remixes of three of the group's biggest hits.
- "More Than Words
- "I Lay My Love on You (Single Remix)
- "World of Our Own (Single Remix)
- "Uptown Girl (Radio Edit)
|Venezuelan Singles Chart||3|
Other cover versions
- Flip Da Scrip in 1997 sampled the song in their 1997 single "I Never Told You".
- BBMak in 1999-2000, on their first album, released in Asia in 1999, and as a b-side in 1999 for the UK "Back Here" single.
- David Cassidy in 2003 for the album A Touch of Blue.
- Naturally 7 in 2003 a cappella for the album What is It?.
- Owen in 2004, as a Japanese bonus track on his album I Do Perceive.
- Frankie J in 2005, as the third single from his album The One.
- mink, a Japanese-Korean singer, did a bossa nova version on her first album mink ~prologue~.
- Aloha Sex Juice performed in Hawaiian in the 2008 film Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
- "The Gang" from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia sang the last verse in a capella while taking shots in their South Philly bar in the season two episode, "The Gang Goes Jihad".
- Ruben Studdard covered the song on his 2009 album, Love Is.
- Mike Kinsella of Owen has performed covers of the song live, with versions appearing on the Japanese import of I do perceive and on The Seaside EP in 2009.
- Mike Myers performs the song along with Manu Narayan in the film The Love Guru, in a version featuring a sitar.
- Amateur Transplants recorded a parody of the song entitled "Northern Birds".
- Tony Lucca and JC Chasez in 1991, performed the song on the Mickey Mouse Club.
- Walters & Kazha performed it in 2005 as a live performance.
- Serbian singer and participant of reality/talent show Operacija trijumf, Vukašin Brajić, has sung this song twice at the show's gala evenings.
- Varsity Fanclub posted a cover on their YouTube channel.
- Brazilian singer Ivete Sangalo covered the song at her show in Rock in Rio IV in September 30, 2011.
- Performed in the Broadway musical Rock of Ages.
- Performed by Julianne Hough and combined with Heaven by Warrant in the 2012 film Rock of Ages.
- ApologetiX parodied the song as “More than Works”.
- Glee, an American TV series, covered the song in fourth season episode "Shooting Star". The cover is performed by Heather Morris and Chord Overstreet
- Pablo Alboran Spanish singer and songwriter. Has covered the song in live concerts. Videos available on YouTube.
- Italian singer Mina made a cover in duet with her daughter Benedetta Mazzini in 1995.
- American parody glam metal band Steel Panther recorded a song called "Girl from Oklahoma", which is based on the same structure and harmony of "More than Words". This was released in 2009 on their debut album Feel the Steel.
- Soul singer Algebra Blessett covered the song in a duet version with musician Eric Roberson in 2013.
- "VH1's 40 Most Softsational Soft-Rock Songs". Stereogum. SpinMedia. May 31, 2007. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
- "Best Acoustic Rock Song of All Time Poll: "More Than Words" Vs. "Layla (Unplugged)"". Guitar World. NewBay Media. July 18, 2015. Retrieved September 8, 2016.
- Billik, Kira L. (1991-06-20). "Extreme: Boston Group Riding the Funk-O-Metal Machine". Albany Herald. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
- "Jimmy Fallon & Jack Black Recreate "More Than Words" Music Video". 4 May 2015. Retrieved 27 June 2016.
- "Australian-charts.com – Extreme – More Than Words". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
- "Austriancharts.at – Extreme – More Than Words" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
- "Ultratop.be – Extreme – More Than Words" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
- Canadian Singles Chart  (Retrieved September 28, 2008)
- Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin - levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
- "Lescharts.com – Extreme – More Than Words" (in French). Les classement single.
- "Musicline.de – Extreme Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
- Irish Single Chart Irishcharts.ie (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
- "Nederlandse Top 40 – Extreme search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
- "Charts.org.nz – Extreme – More Than Words". Top 40 Singles.
- "Norwegiancharts.com – Extreme – More Than Words". VG-lista.
- "Swedishcharts.com – Extreme – More Than Words". Singles Top 100.
- "Swisscharts.com – Extreme – More Than Words". Swiss Singles Chart.
- UK Singles Chart Chartstats.com (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
- Billboard Allmusic.com (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- 1991 Australian Singles Chart aria.com (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- "Single top 100 over 1991" (PDF) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 13 April 2010.
- 1991 Swiss Singles Chart Hitparade.ch (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- "Billboard Top 100 - 1991". Retrieved 2009-09-15.
- Canada certifications cria.ca (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- Swedish certifications Ifpi.se (Retrieved September 11, 2008)
- UK certifications Bpi.co.uk (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- U.S. certifications riaa.com (Retrieved August 29, 2008)
- "Westlife - More than Words (Single)". Retrieved 2014-07-12.