Song 2

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This article is about the 1997 rock song. For the 1926 piano piece, see The Tempest (Sibelius).
"Song 2"
Single by Blur
from the album Blur
Released 7 April 1997 (1997-04-07)
Format
Recorded 1996
Genre Grunge[1]
Length 2:02
Label Food
Writer(s) Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon, Alex James, Dave Rowntree
Producer(s) Stephen Street
Blur singles chronology
"Beetlebum"
(1997)
"Song 2"
(1997)
"On Your Own"
(1997)

Music sample
Sample of "Song 2" from Blur. Inspired by lo-fi and American rock music, "Song 2" was a hit in the US.
Music video
"Song 2" on YouTube

"Song 2" is a song by English rock band Blur, the second track from their 1997 eponymous fifth studio album. The hook features Damon Albarn yelling "woo-hoo!" as the distorted bass comes in. Released in April 1997, "Song 2" appropriately reached number two in the UK Singles Chart,[2] number four on the Australian ARIA Charts,[3] and number six on US Billboard Alternative Songs (previously called Billboard Modern Rock Tracks).[4]

At the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards, "Song 2" was nominated for Best Group Video, and Best Alternative Video.[5] At the 1998 Brit Awards the song was nominated for Best British Single, and Best British Video.[6] In December 1998, BBC Radio 1 listeners voted "Song 2" the 15th Best Track Ever.[7] In October 2011, NME placed it No. 79 on its list "150 Best Tracks of the Past 15 Years".[8]

Blur intended "Song 2" to be a parody of grunge.[9] The song was nonetheless their biggest hit in the United States.[10] The song has often featured in popular culture, and first appeared in the hit video game FIFA: Road to World Cup 98.

Background[edit]

The track was originally nicknamed "Song 2" as a working title, but the name stuck.[11]

Reception[edit]

In the UK, "Song 2" built upon the success of Blur's chart-topping single "Beetlebum" to reach number two in the charts.[2] It was also the band's biggest hit in the US at number 55 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart; it also reached number 6 on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart staying on the chart for 26 weeks and number 25 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.[12] This is the band's only crossover hit to date crossing over to Top 40 radio. It also placed #2 on Triple J's Hottest 100 for 1997 in Australia. The song is atypical of Blur's previous style. The song's intro has been called Graham Coxon's "finest moment".[13]

Other uses[edit]

The song became popular in the UK and overseas upon its release in 1997, and featured on college and modern rock radio stations in the US.[14] It has been licensed worldwide on numerous occasions. Its first appearance came as the title music for the hit FIFA video game FIFA: Road to World Cup 98. It has been used in numerous advertisements, including commercials for the Pentium II and Nissan Sentra and television spots for the film Starship Troopers,[14] and it is often heard in association football, ice hockey, and baseball stadiums when goals or runs are scored, or at the end of a winning game for the home team. The American military allegedly requested to use the track at the launch of a new stealth bomber,[8] but the band refused to allow this, as Albarn is an anti-war campaigner.[8][15] More recently, "Song 2" was used as part of the London 2011 New Year's Eve fireworks display.[16] It appeared in shortened form mixed alongside various other landmark British tracks including "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" by The Beatles, "We Will Rock You" by Queen, and "London Calling" by The Clash.[16]

Television[edit]

The song was featured briefly in the episode "Malled" of the animated series Daria.[17] The song is also used in the twelfth episode of the tenth season of the animated sitcom The Simpsons, entitled "Sunday, Cruddy Sunday". It was played when Homer and the rest of the people from Springfield were running around Pro Player Stadium after Dolly Parton released them from a cell during the Super Bowl. The song appears in the South Park episode entitled "Stanley's Cup", during the pee-wee hockey game. The song is also heard in the Doctor Who spin-off television series Torchwood in the episode "Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang". In 2009, it was featured in a TV commercial for Michelob Ultra. In 2014 New Zealand ISP Xtra used this song as part of an advertising campaign with the boy playing the soldier game on dial-up internet, promoting the benefits of broadband Internet. The song appeared in the Parks and Recreation episode "Prom".[14]

Film[edit]

The song was featured in the 2000 film Charlie's Angels during a Drew Barrymore fight scene.[citation needed] The song was used in the background of the "Star" segment of the short film series The Hire.[citation needed] The song also plays in the teaser trailer for Hop, where the film's main character E.B plays the song on a red drumset.

Video games[edit]

The song is featured on the soundtrack to the videogames Rocksmith, Guitar Hero 5, Just Dance 2 (as a DLC), Lego Rock Band, Madden NFL 11 and Saints Row IV.

Music video[edit]

The music video for this song was directed by Sophie Muller, and it features the band playing in a small, secluded room with loud amplifiers behind them. During the choruses, the volume of the song sends the band members crashing against the walls and ground. This video bears striking resemblances to Blur's video for "Popscene".

Track listing[edit]

All music composed by Albarn, Coxon, James and Rowntree. All lyrics composed by Albarn.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak
Position
Australia (ARIA)[18] 4
Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)[19] 8
Canada Alternative 30 (RPM) 1
Ireland (IRMA) 10
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[20] 73
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[21] 28
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company)[22] 2
US Hot 100 Airplay[23] 55
US Mainstream Rock Tracks[23] 25
US Modern Rock Tracks[23] 6
Chart (2009) Peak
position
UK Singles Chart 163[24]
Chart (2012) Peak
position
UK Singles Chart[22] 64[25]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Italy (FIMI)[26] Gold 25,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[27] Gold 400,000double-dagger

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Song 2 - Blur - Listen, Appearances, Song Review - AllMusic". AllMusic. 
  2. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums. London: Guinness World Records Limited
  3. ^ "Blur - Song 2 (Song)". Australian Charts. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  4. ^ Billboard Alternative Songs Billboard.com. Retrieved 9-1-2014
  5. ^ 1997 MTV Video Music Awards Rock On The Net. Retrieved 10 February 2012
  6. ^ The Brits 1998 Brits.co.uk. Retrieved 10 February 2012
  7. ^ Radio 1 - Best Tracks Ever Rock List.net. Retrieved 10 February 2012
  8. ^ a b c "150 Best Tracks of the Past 15 Years | #79 Blur - Song 2". NME. Retrieved 16 December 2011. 
  9. ^ "SONG 2 by BLUR". songfacts.com. Retrieved August 20, 2016. 
  10. ^ Erlewine, Stephen. "Song 2". allmusic.com. Retrieved 9 October 2014. 
  11. ^ Hottest 100 - Of All Time: Song 2. Blur ABC.net. Retrieved 10 February 2012
  12. ^ Blur | AllMusic
  13. ^ Harry Wylie (August 1997).Top Ten Indie Guitarists Total Guitar. Retrieved 16 December 2011.
  14. ^ a b c Song 2 at AllMusic Song 2 | AllMusic
  15. ^ Wilson, Jamie (9 April 2004). "Britpop rebel with a cause says no new nukes". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 23 May 2012. 
  16. ^ a b "London Eye fireworks mark new year 2011". BBC News. 1 January 2011. Retrieved 10 February 2012. 
  17. ^ Soundtrack Daria: Blur - Song 2
  18. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Blur – Song 2". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  19. ^ "Ultratop.be – Blur – Song 2" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
  20. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Blur – Song 2" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  21. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Blur – Song 2". Singles Top 100.
  22. ^ a b "BLUR | Artist". Official Charts. Retrieved 6 May 2013. 
  23. ^ a b c "Blur - Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 May 2013. 
  24. ^ "Chart: CLUK Update 13.06.2009 (wk23)". Zobbel. Retrieved 2009-06-11. 
  25. ^ "Song search results for "song 2" - AllMusic". AllMusic. 
  26. ^ "Italian single certifications – Blur – Song 2" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Blur in the field Filtra. Select 2016 in the field Anno. The certification will load automatically
  27. ^ "British single certifications – Blur – Song 2". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Song 2 in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Gold in the field By Award. Click Search

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"The Impression That I Get" by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
Canadian RPM Rock/Alternative 30 number-one single
2–23 June 1997
Succeeded by
"The End Is the Beginning Is the End" by The Smashing Pumpkins