Say It Ain't So

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This article is about the single. For the quotation about Shoeless Joe Jackson, see Black Sox Scandal.
For the 1975 studio album by Murray Head, see Say It Ain't So (album). For the song by The Thrills, see So Much for the City. For the song by Murray Head, see Say It Ain't So, Joe (song).
"Say It Ain't So"
Single by Weezer
from the album Weezer
Released July 13, 1995
Format CD
Recorded August–September, 1993 at Electric Lady Studios, NYC
Genre Alternative rock, power pop,[1]
Length 4:18 (album version)
4:16 (remix)
Label DGC
Writer(s) Rivers Cuomo
Producer(s) Ric Ocasek
Weezer singles chronology
"Buddy Holly"
"Say It Ain't So"
"El Scorcho"
Music video
"Say It Ain't So" on YouTube

"Say It Ain't So" is a song by the American rock band Weezer. It was released as the third and final single from their self-titled 1994 debut album.

Written by frontman Rivers Cuomo, the song came to be after he had all the music finished and one line, "Say it ain't so".[2] Cuomo made a connection to an incident in high school where he came home and saw a bottle of beer in the fridge. He believed his mother and father's marriage ended because his father was an alcoholic and this made him fear the marriage between his mother and step-father would end this way as well.[3]

In 2008, Rolling Stone ranked "Say It Ain't So" #72 on "The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time."[4] Pitchfork Media included the song at number 10 on their Top 200 Tracks of the 90s.[5]

"Say It Ain't So" is a playable track in the video games Rock Band [6] and Rocksmith 2014[7] in addition to appearing on an episode of Hindsight.


"Say It Ain't So" is written in the key of C minor. It follows a chord progression of Cm-G-A♭-E♭.[8] However, it is tuned up 1/4 step so that playing along in neither Cm nor C#m sounds correct.

Song mixes[edit]

Two mixes of the song exist. The original album pressings had a mix with slightly different sounding drums, bass and no guitar feedback. However, when they released the single, they used the mix that kept the guitar feedback in the song. The band liked this mix so much they asked for it to replace the version on the album, after the album had sold 3 million copies. The album now features the version with the feedback. The deluxe version features both mixes.

Track listing[edit]

Radio Only Promo CD[edit]

  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17

UK Retail Cassette[edit]

  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17
  2. "No One Else" (Live Acoustic) - 3:15

UK Retail CD/UK Retail 10" Single (Black Vinyl)[edit]

  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17
  2. "No One Else" (Live Acoustic) - 3:15
  3. "Jamie" (Live Acoustic) - 3:53

Live acoustic tracks were recorded on April 1, 1995 at Cat's Paw Studios in Atlanta, Georgia.

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Say It Ain't So", directed by Sophie Muller, met with less success than the previous two Weezer videos directed by Spike Jonze, but the song still successfully climbed to the top 10 of the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

As noted in the Weezer DVD collection Video Capture Device and the slip cover of the re-released special edition of their debut album, they filmed the music video at the house where the band used to rehearse and record. The video also features a cameo by the band's webmaster/band photographer/archivist and close friend for many years, Karl Koch.

A small poster of Mercyful Fate/King Diamond frontman King Diamond is visible several times throughout the video, most clearly during the final chorus, just as Rivers Cuomo turns his mic around.


The band Further Seems Forever covered the song on the Weezer tribute album Rock Music: A Tribute to Weezer. An episode of "One Tree Hill" featured a cover by MoZella, Wakey!Wakey!, and Juliana Hatfield. Deftones, The Sleeping, Young Guns, Finch, Real Estate have also covered the song live. Asher Roth sampled the song for his debut rap single "I Love College". After the song leaked onto the internet, Rivers Cuomo reportedly refused to clear sample, which prompted Roth to debut a remixed version of his song as his official debut single.[9] Foster The People also covered the song in August 2011, after Weezer did a version of "Pumped Up Kicks". Chiptune artist Inverse Phase parodied the song on a Commodore 64, titling it "Say It Ain't Sixty-FO"[10]

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1995) Peak
Canadian Singles Chart 6
UK Singles Chart 37
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Airplay 51
U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks 7



  1. ^ "Interviews - Guitar Center". Retrieved 2012-02-13. 
  2. ^ "Wireless". Archived from the original on July 9, 2006. 
  3. ^ Luerssen D., John. Rivers' Edge: The Weezer Story. ECW Press, 2004, ISBN 1-55022-619-3 p. 110-111
  4. ^ The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time : Rolling Stone at the Wayback Machine (archived May 31, 2008). Retrieved 2011-01-25. "Rivers Cuomo is a student of pop history, and his leads on this single (recently given a second life by Rock Band) distill the lessons of punk rock and arena metal into deceptively tricky riffs and solos. The detail that makes the song, though, is the mushroom-cloud swell of feedback before each chorus."
  5. ^ "Pitchfork Top 200 Tracks of the 90s". 2010-09-03. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  6. ^ "Rock Band - Say It Ain't So by Weezer". Retrieved 2012-09-17. 
  7. ^ "Rocksmith 2014 - Say It Ain't So by Weezer". Retrieved 2014-02-14. 
  8. ^ Weezer "Say It Ain't So" Sheet Music
  9. ^ "Weezer Frontman Refuses To Clear Asher Roth Single". Xxlmag.Com. 2008-11-18. Retrieved 2012-02-13. 
  10. ^ "Inverse Phase on Bandcamp: Say It Ain't Sixty-FO". 2009-09-18. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 

External links[edit]