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Single by Chumbawamba
from the album Tubthumper
Released 1997
Format CD single
Length 4:38 (album version)
3:34 (single edit)
Label EMI (UK)
Universal (U.S.)
Writer(s) Chumbawamba
Producer(s) Chumbawamba
Chumbawamba singles chronology
"Just Look at Me Now"
Alternative cover
2003 version
Music sample

"Tubthumping" is a song released by British rock band Chumbawamba in 1997. It was their most successful single, peaking at number two on the UK Singles Chart. It topped the charts in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand and peaked at number six on the US Billboard Hot 100.[1] At the 1998 Brit Awards, "Tubthumping" was nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Single.


Following the UK miners' strike, Chumbawumba, inspired by Frank Zappa, began making music with political themes, while designed for mainstream listening.[2]

The term "tubthumper" is commonly used for someone, often a politician, seeming to "jump on the bandwagon" with a populist idea. The liner notes on the album Tubthumper, from which "Tubthumping" was the first single, put the song in a radical context, quoting a UK anti-road protester, Paris 1968 graffiti, details about the famous McLibel case and the short story "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner".

"Tubthumping" was placed at number 12 in Rolling Stone's list of the 20 Most Annoying Songs.[3] Conversely, "Tubthumping" was voted as the second-best single of 1997 on The Village Voice's Pazz & Jop annual critics' poll, after Hanson's "MMMBop".

The cover art for the single is based on the logo for the manufacturing company of Arm & Hammer.

The song consists of lead vocals by Dunstan Bruce and Lou Watts, and features Jude Abbott on trumpet.

The band has performed the song with alternative lyrics on numerous occasions. When performing on the Late Show with David Letterman, a chant of "Free Mumia Abu-Jamal" accompanied only by a drumbeat preceded the final chorus. At the 1998 Brit Awards, the band performed the song with the added line "New Labour sold out the dockers, just like they'll sell out the rest of us" in protest at the New Labour government's refusal to support the Liverpool dockers' strike. A French version of the song was produced for the French Canadian market.

The song was played as the Flight Day 4 "wake up call" during the final Space Shuttle STS-135 mission and flight of Atlantis in July 2011 for astronaut Sandra Magnus.

The band received an offer of $1.5 million from Nike to use the song in a World Cup advertisement.[4] According to the band it took about "thirty seconds to say no."[4] They did, however, license the song to American video game company Electronic Arts for use as the opening theme of the game World Cup '98, and in television advertisements for the National Accident Helpline, a profit-making firm specialising in personal injury lawyers. It featured in the Knocked Down advertisement for the National Accident Helpline in 2012 which features the Underdog character. It was also used as a theme song for Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves.[citation needed]

The album version of the song opens with a sample of a monologue performed by Pete Postlethwaite in the 1996 film Brassed Off.[5]

In 2011, the UK Independence Party used the song at a political conference to accompany the arrival of Nigel Farage. The band stated that this was a "gross misuse of a band's music", described their own reaction as "total and absolute outrage and horror", and said that UKIP was "a grubby little organisation" which was "stealing (the) song to use for their own ends".[6]

The song was featured in Liv and Maddie, an American teen sitcom that premiered on September 15, 2013 on Disney Channel.

First broadcast in March 2016, the song played over the closing credits of episode 10 of the TV series Billions, and briefly during the same episode by a character listening on a MP3 player as he entered the men’s room.

Tubthumping (Remix)[edit]

"Tubthumping (Remix)" was released in 2003 as a promotional CD by Chumbawamba on their MUTT Records label. The remixed version of the song was done by The Flaming Lips and Dave Fridmann. It is a slower version of the song, with a more minor key feeling to the music.

The other two songs on the CD were taken from the album Readymades and Then Some.

Track listings and formats[edit]

  1. "Tubthumping" (remix) (by The Flaming Lips and Dave Fridmann)
  2. "Salt Fare, North Sea" (vocal sample by Lal Waterson and Oliver Knight from the song "Some Old Salty")
  3. "Jacob's Ladder (Not in My Name)" (vocal sample by Harry Cox from the song "The Pretty Ploughboy")
12" promo (Universal, 1997)
  1. "Tubthumping" (MAWR mix)
  2. "Tubthumping" (original album mix)
  3. "Tubthumping" (Timeshard mix)
  4. "Tubthumping" (Gunshot mix)
CD single 1 (EMI, 1997)
  1. "Tubthumping" (original recording)
  2. "Farewell to the Crown" (featuring Oysterband)
  3. "Football Song"
  4. "Tubthumping" (Butthumping mix)
  5. "Tubthumping" (Danny Boy remix)
CD single 2 (EMI, 1997)
  1. "Tubthumping" (original/Invincible mix)
  2. "Tubthumping" (Butthumping mix)
  3. "Tubthumping" (Danny Boy remix)
  4. "Tubthumping" (MAWR mix)
  5. "Tubthumping" (Timeshard mix)
  6. "Tubthumping" (Gunshot mix)


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Chumbawamba – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Chumbawamba. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  2. ^ TubThumping as the subject of an episode of the Podcast Surprisingly Awesome by Gimlet Media hosted by Adam McKay and Adam Davidson
  3. ^ The 20 Most Annoying Songs at the Wayback Machine (archived 31 March 2014). Rolling Stone.
  4. ^ a b Klein, Naomi (2000). No Logo. New York: Picador. p. 301. ISBN 0-312-20343-8. 
  5. ^ Vallance, Tom (4 January 2011). "Pete Postlethwaite: Distinctive, prolific actor, acclaimed by Spielberg as 'the best in the world'". The Independent. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  6. ^ Topping, Alexandra (9 September 2011). "Chumbawamba go Tubthumping crazy over Ukip's use of No1 hit". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  7. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  8. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  9. ^ "Ultratop.be – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  10. ^ "Ultratop.be – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in French). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  11. ^ "Top RPM Rock/Alternative Tracks: Issue 3388." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 7911." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  13. ^ "Lescharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  14. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  15. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Tubthumping". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 4 June 2013.
  16. ^ a b "I singoli più venduti del 1997" (in Italian). Hit Parade Italia. Creative Commons. Retrieved 4 June 2013. 
  17. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Chumbawamba - Tubthumping search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  18. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  19. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  20. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". VG-lista. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  21. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  22. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  23. ^ "Archive Chart: 1997-08-17" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  24. ^ "Chumbawamba – Chart history" Billboard Alternative Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  25. ^ "Chumbawamba – Chart history" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  26. ^ "Chumbawamba – Chart history" Billboard Pop Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  27. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved May 2, 2016.
  28. ^ "ARIA Charts – End Of Year Charts – Top 100 Singles 1997". ARIA Charts. ARIA. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  29. ^ "Jaaroverzichten 1997" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Hung Medien. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  30. ^ "'97 Year End ...Top 100 Hit Tracks". RPM. Vol. 66 no. 15. 15 December 1997. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  31. ^ (German) Jahrescharts – 1997 at the Wayback Machine (archived May 9, 2015). Offiziellecharts.de. GfK Entertainment.
  32. ^ "Top 100-Jaaroverzicht van 1997" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  33. ^ "Jaaroverzichten – Single 1997" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Hung Medien. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  34. ^ "End of Year Charts 1997". Recorded Music New Zealand. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  35. ^ Årslista Singlar – År 1997 at the Wayback Machine (archived 29 March 2012). Hitlistan.se.
  36. ^ "Chart Archive – 1990s Singles". everyHit.com. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  37. ^ "Top 100 Hits for 1997". The Longbored Surfer. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  38. ^ "Top 100 Hits for 1998". The Longbored Surfer. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 

External links[edit]