Daily Song Study

The Boomtown Rats – I Don’t Like Mondays

In songs on June 30, 2011 at 11:00 am

Most of us who write would like to think that we can keep drawing from the same well we’ve gotten our best ideas from. However, the fact is that most people who write a really great song never write another one. Sure, they may write somewhat good ones, but rare is the songwriter who truly hits it out of the park more than once.

A good example of this is Bob Geldof. He is famous for three things:

1. He portrayed Pink in the film version of Pink Floyd’s The Wall.

2. He organized the massive Live Aid concert and its follow-up Live 8.

3. He wrote one really great song.

The song comes from his tenure with The Boomtown Rats, a rather disjointed late-70s-early-80s band which promptly disappeared shortly thereafter. This tune is a rarity in that it is done in a very musical-theatre style and at the same time is not a song that I hate. There is a New Wave sensibility in the lyrics and delivery, which adds an ironic bite to the music-hall arrangement. It is reportedly inspired by a California teenager who went on a killing spree and justified her action with the words in the title.

The fact that Geldof was never able to repeat this trick is somewhat regrettable, but having said that, we should all be so lucky as to come up with just one song of this caliber in our songwriting careers.

  1. Great song. I never thought of it as musically at all, but then i know a lot of REALLY musically songs. It definitely sounds like late 70s sensibilities.

  2. […] emotionally detached vocals (Pet Shop Boys, etc) and sly commentary within radio-friendly melodies (Boomtown Rats), it is also a tribute to the voice of the […]

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