Tubthumping

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"Tubthumping"
Single by Chumbawamba
from the album Tubthumper
Released11 August 1997 (UK)
Recorded1996
GenreAlternative rock, pop rock, rap rock
Length4:38 (album version)
3:34 (single edit)
LabelUnited Kingdom EMI Electrola
United States Universal
Chumbawamba singles chronology
"Just Look at Me Now"
(1996)
"Tubthumping"
(1997)
"Amnesia"
(1998)
Alternative cover
2003 version
Music sample
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"Tubthumping"
Single by Chumbawamba
from the album Tubthumper
Released11 August 1997 (UK)
Recorded1996
GenreAlternative rock, pop rock, rap rock
Length4:38 (album version)
3:34 (single edit)
LabelUnited Kingdom EMI Electrola
United States Universal
Chumbawamba singles chronology
"Just Look at Me Now"
(1996)
"Tubthumping"
(1997)
"Amnesia"
(1998)
Alternative cover
2003 version
Music sample
Sorry, your browser either has JavaScript disabled or does not have any supported player.
You can download the clip or download a player to play the clip in your browser.

"Tubthumping", informally known by its prominent lyric "I Get Knocked Down",[1] is a song released by the British anarcho-punk band Chumbawamba on 11 August 1997 through Universal Records and EMI Electrola. It was their most successful single, peaking at number two on the UK Singles Chart. It topped the charts in Australia, Canada, Italy, New Zealand and the Republic of Ireland and peaked at number six in the United States.[2]

Overview[edit source | edit]

The term "tubthumper" is commonly used for someone, often a politician, seeming to "jump on the bandwagon" with a populist notion or 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] Most recently, Matthew Wilkening of AOL Radio ranked the song at number 35 on the list of the 100 Worst Songs Ever, exclaiming as if in command, "Please, let's all keep knocking [Chumbawamba] down. I don't care what they say, eventually they'll stay down for good."[4]

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

The band has performed the song with alternative lyrics on numerous occasions, notably 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, they 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 Sandy Magnus.

The band received an offer of $1.5 million from Nike to use the song in a World Cup advertisement.[5] According to the band it took about "thirty seconds to say no."[5] 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.

Structure[edit source | edit]

The single version opens with the repeated line "We'll be singing when we're winning", in the style of a football chant, with sparse acoustic guitar backing. The football chant style is re-used for the chorus.

The album version of the song opens with a sample of a monologue performed by Pete Postlethwaite in the 1996 film Brassed Off: "Truth is, I thought it mattered; I thought that music mattered. But does it bollocks! Not compared to how people matter."

The song includes the repeated verse line "Pissing the night away", which returns in the later part of the song as "Sing sing the night away". The song also samples the lead refrain from the 1910 Frederic Weatherly ballad "Danny Boy", which is sung in a verse counter-melody.

The trumpet solo, performed by Jude Abbott, is played in a jazz/pop style but with a multi-tracked fanfare. Towards the end of the song the trumpet part references the Baroque Prince of Denmark's March[citation needed] and the Trumpet Voluntary.

Tubthumping (Remix)[edit source | 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 source | edit]

  1. "Tubthumping" (remix) (by The Flaming Lips and Dave Fridmann)
  2. "Salt Fare, North Sea" (vocal sample by Lal Waterson and Olly Knight)
  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)

Covers[edit source | edit]

A fast Eurodance version of the song was created in 1998 as the beginning track for Dancemania SPEED.

American parody musician "Weird Al" Yankovic covered portions of the song in his song "Polka Power!".

American rock band Phish played a cover of the song as their encore, which made an appearance on their live album Hampton Comes Alive. The song was used in the Children in Need charity single by Peter Kay and was sung by members of the Animated All Star Band.

Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song for their 2007 video game Alvin and the Chipmunks.

It was released as downloadable content in 2011 for Rock Band 3.

It was also covered by They Might Be Giants for the The A.V. Club's A.V. Undercover series of videos in July of 2011. The song was later released on the compilation album Album Raises New and Troubling Questions.

Charts[edit source | edit]

Peak positions[edit source | edit]

Chart (1997)Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[6]1
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[7]14
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[8]9
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[9]30
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[10]1
Canada Alternative 30 (RPM)[11]1
France (SNEP)[12]38
Germany (Media Control AG)[13]11
Ireland Singles Chart[14]1
Italian Singles Chart[15]1
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[16]10
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[17]1
Norway (VG-lista)[18]2
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[19]6
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[20]14
UK Singles Chart[21]2
US Billboard Hot 100[22]6
US Alternative Songs (Billboard)[23]1
US Adult Pop Songs (Billboard)[24]1
US Pop Songs (Billboard)[25]1

Year-end charts[edit source | edit]

Chart (1997)Position
Australia[26]3
Canadian RPM Singles Chart[27]24
US Billboard Hot 100[28]69
Chart (1998)Position
US Billboard Hot 100[29]35

See also[edit source | edit]

References[edit source | edit]

  1. ^ Topping, Alexandra (9 September 2011). "Chumbawamba go Tubthumping crazy over Ukip's use of No1 hit". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 15 October 2012. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ Rolling Stone
  4. ^ Wilkening, Matthew (11 September 2010). "100 Worst Songs Ever -- Part Four of Five". AOL Radio. Retrieved 24 December 2010. 
  5. ^ a b Klein, Naomi No Logo New York. Picador. 2000. pg 301
  6. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  7. ^ "Chumbawamba – Tubthumping – Austriancharts.at" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  8. ^ "Ultratop.be – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  9. ^ "Ultratop.be – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in French). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  10. ^ "Tubthumping in Canadian Top Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  11. ^ "Tubthumping in Canadian Rock/Alternative Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  12. ^ "Lescharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  13. ^ "Die ganze Musik im Internet: Charts, News, Neuerscheinungen, Tickets, Genres, Genresuche, Genrelexikon, Künstler-Suche, Musik-Suche, Track-Suche, Ticket-Suche – musicline.de" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  14. ^ "Tubthumping in Irish Chart". IRMA. Retrieved 4 June 2013.  Only one result when searching "Chumbawamba" or "Tubthumping"
  15. ^ "The best-selling singles of 1997 in Italy". HitParadeItalia (it). Retrieved 4 June 2013. 
    13. Tubthumping - Chumbawamba [#1, 1997/98]
  16. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Chumbawamba search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  17. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  18. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". VG-lista. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  19. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Chumbawamba – Tubthumping". Singles Top 60. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  20. ^ "Chumbawamba – Tubthumping – swisscharts.com". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 21 November 2011.
  21. ^ "Chumbawamba". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  22. ^ "Chumbawamba Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Chumbawamba. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
  23. ^ "Chumbawamba Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Alternative Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
  24. ^ "Chumbawamba Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
  25. ^ "Chumbawamba Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Pop Songs for Chumbawamba. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
  26. ^ http://www.aria.com.au/pages/aria-charts-end-of-year-charts-top-100-singles-1997.htm
  27. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 66, No. 15, December 15, 1997". RPM. Retrieved 2011-07-05. 
  28. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1997". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
  29. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1998". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 

External links[edit source | edit]