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"Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" is a song written and recorded by Paul Leka, Gary DeCarlo and Dale Frashuer, attributed to a then-fictitious band they named "Steam". It was released under the Mercury subsidiary label Fontana and became a number one pop single on the Billboard Hot 100 in late 1969, and remained on the charts in early 1970. The song's chorus remains well-known, and is frequently used as a crowd chant at many sporting events.
- 2 Covers and subsequent popularity
- 3 References
- 4 External links
Paul Leka, Gary DeCarlo and Dale Frashuer wrote a primitive version of the song in the early 1960s when they were members of a band from Bridgeport, Connecticut, called The Chateaus. The Chateaus disbanded after several failed recordings. In 1968, DeCarlo recorded several singles at Mercury Records in New York with Paul Leka as producer. The singles impressed the company's executives, who wanted to issue all of them as A-side singles. In need of "inferior" B-side songs, Leka and DeCarlo resurrected an old song from their days as the Chateaus, "Kiss Him Goodbye", with their old bandmate, Dale Frashuer.
With DeCarlo as lead vocalist, the three musicians recorded the song in one recording session. Instead of using a full band, Leka had engineer Warren Dewey splice together a drum track from one of DeCarlo's four singles and played keyboards himself. "I said we should put a chorus to it (to make it longer)," Leka told Fred Bronson inThe Billboard Book of Number One Hits. "I started writing while I was sitting at the piano going 'na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na'... Everything was 'na na' when you didn't have a lyric." Someone else added "hey hey".
On page 87 of Uncle John's Fifth Bathroom Reader, the article titled One-Hit Wonders states that Gary DeCarlo recorded his first single for Mercury Records and was recording a throwaway "flip side"-something so bad, no DJ would accidentally play it as the "A" side. It was described as "an embarrassing record...an insult." Mercury Records decided it was great and planned to release it as a single. Nobody wanted to be identified with the record, so it was credited to "Steam".
"Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" reached number one in the United States for two weeks, on December 6 and 13 of 1969; it was Billboard's final multi-week #1 hit of the 1960s and also peaked at number twenty on the soul chart. By the beginning of the 21st century, sales of "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" had exceeded 6.5 million records.
In 1970, Italian saxophone player Fausto Papetti recorded an instrumental version of the song, included in the album 11ª Raccolta. The same year, the Lebanon-born singer Patrick Samson made his Italian version, but with the original English title.
The song made its debut in the world of sports at the University of Minnesota when basketball coach Bill Musselman began to use it in a pre-game warm-up routine that took the showmanship of the Harlem Globetrotters and brought it to the college court. "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" became a regular event at Gopher basketball games for many seasons.
Beginning in the early 1970s, the Texas A&I University (now Texas A&M University-Kingsville) Javelina Band in Kingsville, Texas played this song in the fourth quarter of home football games whenever it appeared apparent that a victory was at hand. Through the Javelina football team's heyday of the 1970s, including a 42-game winning streak from 1973-1977, the band would often begin playing early into the fourth quarter and play the song over and over until the clock ran down.
When contestants exited the stage through the wall when they did not win on MTV's game show Remote Control, the audience chanted the chorus of the song.
The original recording of "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" has been released in many collections of oldies songs and re-recorded by other groups. In February 1983, UK girl group Bananarama released the song as a single off their album Deep Sea Skiving. This version became a top ten hit in the United Kingdom (#5), but only a minor hit in the US (Billboard #101) later that year. In a sketch on the early 1980s comedy show Three of a Kind, Tracey Ullman spoofed Bananarama singing "Na Na Hey Hey" (as well as "Shy Boy"), with the words "We are nanas".
A disco remake of the song was recorded by original vocalist Gary DeCarlo (credited to his stage name Garrett Scott) and released as a 12-inch single in 1976 on the West End label as "Na Na Kiss Him Goodbye (Disco Version)". Another disco version was released by Pattie Brooks in 1977, as part of a medley that also included "Popcorn" and "Black is Black".
In 1987, Canadian quartet The Nylons released an a cappella version of this song as a single under the shortened title "Kiss Him Goodbye". It became their biggest hit on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number twelve that summer.
In 2000, the German heavy metal band Axxis recorded a cover of the song on the album Back To The Kingdom.
Since 1977, thanks to Nancy Faust, then-organist for the Chicago White Sox, the song has had a revival as a stadium taunt to visiting teams. Although Faust retired as the Sox organist after the 2010 season, an organ recording of the song is still played at U.S. Cellular Field whenever a White Sox player hits a home run or an opposing pitcher is replaced in the middle of an inning. The song was also played at Hartford Whalers home games if the team won.
In 2011, the song was used in a TV commercial for Kohler High Efficiency Toilets.
Since 1996 and onward the song has been sung by the fans at WWE house shows or events when a wrestler or employee is (kayfabe) fired from either the brand or quit of their own volition or, in some instances, are leaving the company in reality (see Brock Lesnar, Vickie Guerrero).
This song has been remixed, covered and sampled by many other artists, including: The Pioneers (cover), The Supremes (cover), and Walé (sampled in the song Chillin' ft. Lady Gaga).
Kristinia Debarge's "Goodbye" interpolates the main hook of the song. At the first inauguration of Barack Obama, the song was sung by the crowd as the departing helicopter carrying ex-president George Bush flew overhead.
Snoop Dogg in his concerts, often closes his show by singing and making his crowd sing 'Na Na Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey, Snoop Dogg'.
Norwegian latino singer Adelén uses the chorus in her tribute song "Olé" for the 2014 FIFA World Cup's album One Love, One Rhythm – The 2014 FIFA World Cup Official Album.
The music video features the band playing in a school playground and then being made to move by a group of lads. They then decide to join a boxing club so the video features them singing the song whilst boxing. By the end of the video they return to the playground wearing leathers and this time make the group of lads move away. They then ride off into the night on motorbikes.
- 7" vinyl NANA4
- "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" 3:22
- "Tell Tale Signs" 2:58
- 12" vinyl NANX4
- "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" (Extended Version) 4:52
- "Na Na Hey Hey Na (Dub) Hey" 4:12
- "Tell Tale Signs" (Extended Version) 4:46