The Way (Fastball song)

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"The Way"
The Way (song).jpg
Single by Fastball
from the album All the Pain Money Can Buy
ReleasedFebruary 24, 1998
FormatCD single, cassette single
GenreAlternative rock, power pop
Length4:17 (Album Version)
4:08 (Radio Edit)
Songwriter(s)Tony Scalzo
Producer(s)Julian Raymond and Fastball
Fastball singles chronology
"Are You Ready for the Fallout?"
"The Way"
"Fire Escape"

"The Way" is a song by the American alternative rock band Fastball. It was released in February 1998 as the lead single from their second studio album, All the Pain Money Can Buy.

It peaked at number 1 on the U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart in April and remained there for seven weeks. The song also reached number 1 on Canada's Singles Chart.[1] It peaked at number 21 on the UK Singles Chart, having had a fair amount of airplay from independent radio stations such as Forth One.

The song was voted by VH1 as one of the 100 Greatest Songs of the 1990s, ranking number 94.[2] It was remixed about a year after its original release by Italian DJ Gigi D'Agostino, in his album L'Amour Toujours. Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song for their 2007 video game Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Background and writing[edit]

Fastball front man Tony Scalzo came up with the idea for the song after reading articles which described the June 1997 disappearance of an elderly married couple, Lela and Raymond Howard from Salado, Texas, who left home to attend the Pioneer Day festival at nearby Temple, Texas, despite Lela's Alzheimers and Raymond recently recovering from brain surgery. They were discovered two weeks later, dead, at the bottom of a ravine near Hot Springs, Arkansas, hundreds of miles off their intended route.[3][4]

About the song, Scalzo said that "It's a romanticized take on what happened" - he "pictured them taking off to have fun, like they did when they first met."


The song's lyrics revolve around an older married couple who decide to leave their life behind by packing their things and going driving, without telling their children about their plans. Their car breaks down during the trip, forcing them to continue on foot. The chorus expresses the idea that the couple are achieving happiness by losing touch with the world, even though they may never see their home again.[5]

The beginning of the song features a radio scanning through FM stations; among the songs played are Jewel's "Foolish Games", Roy Orbison's "You Got It", and Madonna's "Vogue."

Track listing[edit]

  • US CD Single:
  1. "The Way"
  2. "Are You Ready for the Fallout?"
  3. "Freeloader Freddy"
  • ITA CD Single:
  1. "The Way"
  2. "Are You Ready for the Fallout?"
  • US Promo CD:
  1. "The Way (Radio Edit)"
  2. "The Way (Album Version)"


Chart (1998) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[6] 14
Canada Top Singles (RPM) 1
Canada Alternative 30 (RPM) 1
Germany (Official German Charts)[7] 66
Italy (FIMI)[8] 28
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[9] 90
Norway (VG-lista)[10] 15
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[11] 7
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[12] 36
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company) 21
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Airplay[13] 5
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks 2
U.S. Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks 25
U.S. Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks 1
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Mainstream 4
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Tracks 31


  1. ^ "Top Singles – Volume 67, No. 12, June 15, 1998". RPM. Archived from the original on October 15, 2012. Retrieved June 21, 2010.
  2. ^ "VH1 Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows – VH1". Archived from the original on December 22, 2007.
  3. ^ Family remains mystified by disapperance [sic] AP Thursday, July 10, 1997. Archived December 20, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Salado couple shared passions for church, each other AP Monday, July 14, 1997. Archived December 20, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Fastball – The Way lyrics on MetroLyrics, retrieved September 23, 2013
  6. ^ " – Fastball – The Way". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  7. ^ " – Fastball Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  8. ^ Italian peak Hitparade Italia
  9. ^ " – Fastball – The Way" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  10. ^ " – Fastball – The Way". VG-lista.
  11. ^ " – Fastball – The Way". Singles Top 100.
  12. ^ " – Fastball – The Way". Swiss Singles Chart.
  13. ^ "Fastball – on Billboard Radio Songs chart". Retrieved February 20, 2016.

External links[edit]