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Single by Matchbox Twenty
from the album More Than You Think You Are
Released April 3, 2003
Format CD single, audio cassette
Recorded 2002
Genre Pop rock, soft rock, alternative rock
Length 3:48
Label Atlantic
Songwriter(s) Rob Thomas
Producer(s) Matt Serletic
Matchbox Twenty singles chronology
"Bright Lights"
"Bright Lights"

"Unwell" is a song by American alternative rock group Matchbox Twenty. It was released in April 2003 as the second single from their third album, More Than You Think You Are (2002). It was written by Matchbox Twenty lead singer Rob Thomas. It was very successful on the radio, spending 18 weeks at the top of the US Billboard Adult Top 40 chart, two weeks atop the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart,[1] as well as reaching No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[1] The song was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2004 for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.


On the live DVD Show: A Night in the Life of Matchbox Twenty, Rob Thomas states that he wrote the song as a metaphor for humanity in general, a song for people who are "messed up and feel alone like that. We all feel a little messed up sometimes... you're not alone."

Music video[edit]

Directed by Meiert Avis, the music video predominantly features lead singer Rob Thomas seeing various odd occurrences throughout, all the while singing along to the song. The other band members only appear in cameos, notably when Thomas boards a subway and they are seen in the background. The appearance of the other band mates is also altered like most of the video (their noses are rather large). The other band members are also seen at the end of the video gathered in Thomas' room, and each takes their turn waving goodbye to the camera before Thomas does so as well at the end of the video. One of the reasons Rob Thomas picked Meiert Avis to direct is because his concept for the video was the closest thing to an acid trip out of every other idea.

Critical reception[edit]

The song also was the second most-played song in the United States in 2003 according to Billboard magazine. The music video was No. 1 on VH1's Top 40 Videos of 2003. In 2011, VH1 named the song as the 82nd best song of the 2000s.

Track listing[edit]

  • Australia Maxi-CD
  1. "Unwell" – 3:55
  2. "All I Need" (live) – 3:41
  3. "Unwell" (live acoustic) – 4:12

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2003–04) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[2] 12
Brazil (ABPD)[3] 6
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[4] 8
Romania (Romanian Top 100)[5] 100
UK Singles (Official Charts Company) 83
US Billboard Hot 100 5
US Billboard Mainstream Top 40 3
US Billboard Adult Top 40 1
US Billboard Adult Contemporary 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2003) Position
Australia (ARIA) 65
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[6] 8
US Billboard Hot 100[7] 6


  1. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  2. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Matchbox Twenty – Unwell". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  3. ^ "Brazil" (PDF). ABPD. October 6, 2001. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Matchbox Twenty – Unwell". Top 40 Singles.
  5. ^ Romanian Top 100: Editia 37, saptamina 29.09-05-10, 2003
  6. ^ "End of Year Charts 2003". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved December 12, 2017. 
  7. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 2003". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
Preceded by
"Forever and for Always" by Shania Twain
Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one single
December 20–27, 2003
Succeeded by
"Sending You a Little Christmas" by Jim Brickman/Kristy Starling

See also[edit]