Wish You Were Here (Incubus song)

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"Wish You Were Here"
Incubus wish you were here.png
Single by Incubus
from the album Morning View
  • Mexico (live)
  • Drive (Live)
  • Warmth (Live)
  • Wish You Were Here (Live)
ReleasedAugust 21, 2001
GenreAlternative rock
Incubus singles chronology
"Wish You Were Here"
"Nice to Know You"

"Wish You Were Here" is a song by American rock band Incubus and the lead single from their fourth studio album, Morning View. Released in late summer 2001, it peaked at #2 on the Modern Rock and #4 on the Mainstream Rock Charts that year. "Wish You Were Here" would become one of the band's most well known songs and be included on the 2009 greatest hits compilation Monuments and Melodies.

The song is featured in the video game Donkey Konga 2.

Background, music, and lyrics[edit]

Prior to release, the track was played during Moby's Area:One summer festival in 2001.[1] It was announced as Morning View's lead single in June that year. Guitarist Mike Einziger noted that "Wish You Were Here" was one of the last songs written for Morning View and that "the content is about being happy living for the moment and not looking forward to the future as some event."[1] Vocalist Brandon Boyd also elaborated on its meaning:[2]

"The song wasn't specifically about a person. It was about me acknowledging a very brief moment in my life and in my experience with all of these guys in making this record. In that moment, I wish that I had somebody to go, 'I love you, man.' I was wishing that there was someone there to share that moment with."

Music videos[edit]

A video for "Wish You Were Here" was scheduled for an August 2001 shooting with director Phil Harder. Einziger anticipated finishing everything within a single day like previous Incubus videos had been made.[1] Although it could be streamed from the band's website, in light of the recent September 11 attacks where victims leapt from the Twin Towers, the original "Wish You Were Here" video would be rejected. Boyd remarked on the video's controversy:

The second version, which found substantial airplay upon its late September premiere, has the band performing in front of a white backdrop, a light breeze blowing toward them. The quickly composed substitute mixed the Phil Harder white-backdrop footage with various "home video"-styled footage shot and edited by Brett Spivey of the band members during album production at their Morning View house, including in their control room, at their swimming pool, playing ocean-view lawn golf, and enjoying other summer activities.[3] By December 2001, it reached #8 on MTV's TRL.

In May 2002, the original "bridge jump" version as well as behind the scenes footage would be included on the Morning View Sessions DVD. The video would also air years later on Fuse TV.

Live performances[edit]

"Wish You Were Here" was performed on the Late Show with David Letterman on November 1, 2001. Upon winning Billboard's Modern Rock Single of the Year for "Drive," Incubus performed "Wish You Were Here" at the award show[citation needed].

Cover versions[edit]

Track listing[edit]

CD single[edit]

  1. Wish You Were Here
  2. Mexico (Live)
  3. Drive (Live)
  4. Warmth (Live)
  5. Wish You Were Here (Live)

Australian CD single[edit]

  1. Wish You Were Here
  2. Mexico
  3. Warmth (Live)
  4. Drive (Live)

UK CD single[edit]

  1. Wish You Were Here (Album Version)
  2. New Skin
  3. Drive (Orchestral Studio Version)
  4. Wish You Were Here (Video)

UK DVD single[edit]

  1. Wish You Were Here (Video) – Live at ‘The Morning View Sessions’
  2. Wish You Were Here
  3. A Certain Shade of Green
  4. 4 x Video Clips from the session


Chart (2001) Peak
Canada (Nielsen SoundScan)[5] 33
Portugal (AFP)[6] 8
US Billboard Hot 100 60
US Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks 4
US Billboard Hot Modern Rock Tracks 2
US Billboard Adult Top 40 36


  1. ^ a b c Moss, Corey Incubus Name New Album, Plan Video, Tour MTV.com (July 26, 2001). Retrieved on 2-05-11.
  2. ^ a b Robinson, Iann. Incubus: The View from Here MTV.com (2002).
  3. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon Incubus Release Banned Video, Prepare For Next Band Video MTV.com (November 16, 2001). Retrieved on 2-05-11.
  4. ^ Kraus, Brian (6 November 2015). "Lower Than Atlantis cover Vanessa Carlton's "A Thousand Miles"". Alternative Press. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  5. ^ "Canadian Digital Song Sales". Billboard. December 22, 2001. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
  6. ^ "Music & Media: Eurochart Hot 100" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved May 1, 2018.

External links[edit]