|Single by Fountains of Wayne|
|from the album Welcome Interstate Managers|
|B-side||"Trains and Boats and Planes"|
|Released||September 29, 2003|
|Fountains of Wayne singles chronology|
"Stacy's Mom" is a pop rock song recorded by the American rock band Fountains of Wayne for their third studio album, Welcome Interstate Managers. "Stacy's Mom" was released to radio on May 20, 2003. The song was released as the lead single from Welcome Interstate Managers on September 29, 2003 through S-Curve Records and Virgin Records. "Stacy's Mom" was written by bassist Adam Schlesinger and vocalist Chris Collingwood, both of whom produced the song alongside Mike Denneen. Its subject matter was inspired by a friend of Schlesinger's when he was young who had a crush on his grandmother. A power pop song, the group hoped to emulate the sound of the Cars with the track.
"Stacy's Mom" reached number 21 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the band's highest-charting hit in the United States. Additionally, the song peaked within the top 10 in Ireland, and the top 20 in the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. The single was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America for sales of over 500,000 copies. It was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Vocal Pop Performance. The song was accompanied with a music video in which model Rachel Hunter plays the titular role. "Stacy's Mom" was the only mainstream hit by Fountains of Wayne.
"Stacy's Mom" was written by Chris Collingwood and Adam Schlesinger. Stylistically it is power pop. Part of the song's inspiration was a friend Schlesinger had growing up who thought Schlesinger's grandmother was hot. "One of my best friends, when we were maybe 11 or 12, came to me and announced that he thought my grandmother was hot. And I said, 'Hey, you're stepping over the line,' but at that point in life, I wouldn't put it past anyone," he recalled. He hoped to strike a balance "between humor and personality" with the song. In writing the song, he was hoping to take influence from new wave and power pop music: "I was thinking a little bit about "Mrs. Robinson" and sonically I was thinking about the Cars, a Rick Springfield sort of thing." He acknowledged that stylistically, the song "owes a debt" to the Cars' "Just What I Needed"; its opening guitar riff is similar. Cars frontman Ric Ocasek thought that the intro was a sample from "Just What I Needed" but the band says they performed it in the studio and just "got it right."
"Stacy's Mom" debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 the week of October 11, 2003 at number 59, making this their first song to appear on that chart. It entered the top 40 the week after by moving twenty-one spots to number 38 and moved nine spots to number 31 on the week of October 25, 2003. It peaked at number 21 the week of November 21, 2003 and stayed there for two weeks. It stayed on the chart for seventeen weeks.
It was one of the first songs to reach the No. 1 spot on the "Most Downloaded Songs" list of the iTunes Music Store. It reached No. 11 in the UK Singles Chart. It was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Vocal Pop Performance at the 2004 awards. The single's sales were last estimated at 888,000, according to Nielsen SoundScan, in 2011.
Richard Harrington of The Washington Post dubbed it "nicely naughty." Ben Greenman, writing for The New Yorker, considered it the "second-catchiest song ever written about a girlfriend's parent," after "Mrs. Robinson". The song ranks No. 350 on Blender's 500 Greatest Songs Since You Were Born and No. 88 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the '00s.
The music video, directed by Chris Applebaum, features several comedic scenes illustrating the boy's attempts to get closer to Stacy's mother. "We looked at a lot of treatments and some directors were trying to be kind of arty and subtle with it, but Chris Applebaum went completely for the jugular," said Schlesinger. Model Rachel Hunter plays the title role, which she accepted because she was a fan of the band and the song. The group had previously hoped to get Paulina Porizkova for the role. The clip was shot in Los Angeles in late May 2003. "It was 7 a.m., and there was Rachel Hunter doing a striptease on the kitchen counter," remembered Schlesinger. The video was first sent to television in July 2003.
The video begins with the boy (Shane Haboucha), Stacy (Gianna Dispenza) and some other children standing at a school crossing. Stacy's mother (Rachel Hunter) then pulls up in a red convertible in front of them to pick up Stacy. The boy and his friends gaze at her in awe. The boy later goes over to Stacy's house and is seen lying on a pool toy in her backyard swimming pool while wearing large, dark sunglasses. Through a window he sees Stacy's mother, and then watches her undress. Stacy gives the boy a bottle of soda and, as he sees Stacy's mother remove her bra, he spills soda on himself. As his eyes are hidden by his shades, Stacy laughs, thinking that he is just clumsy. After a scene with the band during the chorus, Stacy, in red heart-shaped sunglasses and swimsuit, is shown sunbathing while the boy mows her lawn. Stacy's mother comes out wearing just a towel and is given a massage on both her back and front. The masseur gives the boy a look of amusement, since he gets to look at Stacy's mother naked and the boy does not. The boy is distracted by the massage and ends up knocking over Stacy's birdhouse with the lawnmower. The video then cuts to him and Stacy watching Fountains of Wayne on TV, before the boy imagines Stacy's mother, while scrubbing the floors, as a pole dancer teasing him. Near the end of the video it is implied that the boy begins to masturbate by the bathroom window while Stacy's mother climbs out of the pool in her red bikini. Moments later, Stacy opens the bathroom door, ignoring a sign saying Ocupado, and catches him in the act. This scene is similar to one in the movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High where Linda Barrett (Phoebe Cates) leaves the pool in a red bikini while Brad Hamilton (Judge Reinhold) masturbates while thinking about her. Linda enters the bathroom (looking for a Q-Tip) and catches Brad masturbating. She quickly closes the door in disgust. In contrast, Stacy quickly closes the door and starts smiling, implying that she believes the boy is masturbating to her and not her mother, supported by the fact she shows an obvious attraction to the boy throughout the video.
Fountains of Wayne had asked Ric Ocasek to be in the video for the song. Schlesinger explains that while Ocasek claims that he "politely declined"; he actually just never responded to the request. There are several references to The Cars in the video: a license plate reads "I ♥ RIC", a reference to Ric; one of the boys in the opening scene has dark hair, sunglasses, and clothes such that he looks like an adolescent version of Ocasek; the trademark Elliot Easton "bouncing" (at approximately 1:15 into the video) and hairdo as he plays his guitar for The Cars; and the re-creation of the Fast Times scene, which featured The Cars' "Moving in Stereo". Further links to The Cars and New Wave music are given by the magazine Nu Wave that is featured in the video, the Roland Juno-6 keyboard (a synthesizer of the 1980s), and the record sleeve showing 'Stacy's Mom' in a car. The video reached No. 1 on both MTV's TRL and VH1's VSpot Top 20 Countdown.
Formats and track listing
- Europe 7"
- A. "Stacy's Mom" – 3:17
- B. "Trains and Boats and Planes" – 3:02
- UK CD (Enhanced)
- 1. "Stacy's Mom" – 3:16
- 2. "Elevator Up" – 4:02
- 3. "Trains and Boats and Planes" – 3:02
- 4. "Stacy's Mom" (Video) – 3:16
- US CD (Promo)
- 1. "Stacy's Mom" – 3:18
Charts and certifications
|United States||September 29, 2003||Digital download||
|United Kingdom||October 7, 2003|||
|United Kingdom||March 8, 2004||7" single|||
Bowling for Soup cover
|Song by Bowling for Soup|
|from the album I've Never Done Anything Like This|
|Released||October 10, 2011|
The cover version came about because the original Fountains of Wayne song was often misattributed to Bowling For Soup. The song was misidentified as a Bowling for Soup song on YouTube and other video sites. In multiple interviews, Bowling For Soup bandleader Jaret Reddick has said that he regularly encountered fans at their concerts who mistakenly thought "Stacy's Mom" was a Bowling for Soup song. In 2011, they recorded and released a cover version of the song. Jaret said that by finally releasing their own version of the song, "I’ve basically just taken care of a large part of the population that’s been wrong for years, and I’ve made them right." Alluding to the mistaken identity issue, the cover art for the song release reads: "Finally you can say this is your favorite song by BFS and not look like an idiot!"
Bowling for Soup has since made the song part of their live set list.
In popular culture
The song was included on the setlist for Guitar Hero: Van Halen as a guest act. It also appeared in the 4th episode of the 1st season of the television series Psych, Woman Seeking Dead Husband, Smokers Ok, No Pets. The song was parodied on The Howard Stern Show to mock Wack Pack character Hanzi (Imran Kahn). It has also been performed by Postmodern Jukebox ft. Casey Abrams. A cover of the song by the Northeastern University pep band has become an unofficial theme song for the Northeastern Huskies men's ice hockey team. At each game, the pep band plays the song during a stoppage of play with the fan sections continuing to sing through the chorus without accompaniment once gameplay begins again.
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