“1979” is a song by American alternative rock band the Smashing Pumpkins. Released in 1996 as the second single from their third studio album, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, “1979” was written by frontman Billy Corgan, and features loops and samples that were uncharacteristic of previous Smashing Pumpkins songs.
The song was written as a coming of age story by Corgan. In the year 1979, Corgan was 12 and this is what he considered his transition into adolescence. The song was popular with critics and fans; Allmusic’s Amy Hanson called it a “somewhat surprising hit”.
The Smashing Pumpkins are an American alternative rock band from Chicago, Illinois, formed in 1988. Formed by frontman Billy Corgan (lead vocals, guitar) and James Iha (guitar), the band included D’arcy Wretzky (bass guitar) and Jimmy Chamberlin (drums) in its original incarnation. It has undergone many line-up changes over the course of its existence, with the current lineup being Corgan and rhythm guitarist Jeff Schroeder.
Disavowing the punk rock roots of many of their alt-rock contemporaries, the Pumpkins have a diverse, densely layered, and guitar-heavy sound, containing elements of gothic rock, heavy metal, dream pop, psychedelic rock, progressive rock, shoegazing, and electronica in later recordings. Corgan is the group’s primary songwriter—his grand musical ambitions and cathartic lyrics have shaped the band’s albums and songs, which have been described as “anguished, bruised reports from Billy Corgan’s nightmare-land”.
SMASHING PUMPKINS LYRICS
Shakedown 1979, cool kids never have the time
On a live wire right up off the street
You and I should meet
Junebug skipping like a stone
With the headlights pointed at the dawn
We were sure we’d never see an end to it all
And I don’t even care to shake these zipper blues
And we don’t know
Just where our bones will rest
To dust I guess
Forgotten and absorbed into the earth below
Double cross the vacant and the bored
They’re not sure just what we have in store
Morphine city slipping dues down to see
That we don’t even care as restless as we are
We feel the pull in the land of a thousand guilts
And poured cement, lamented and assured
To the lights and towns below
Faster than the speed of sound
Faster than we thought we’d go, beneath the sound of hope
Justine never knew the rules,
Hung down with the freaks and the ghouls
No apologies ever need be made, I know you better than you fake it
To see that we don’t even care to shake these zipper blues
And we don’t know just where our bones will rest
To dust I guess
Forgotten and absorbed into the earth below
The street heats the urgency of now
As you see there’s no one around
In a 1996 Spin interview, Corgan indicated that “1979” was probably the only indication he had for what the next Pumpkins album would sound like, “something that combines technology, and a rock sensibility, and pop, and whatever, and hopefully clicks. Between ‘Bullet with Butterfly Wings’ and ‘1979’ you have the bookends of Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. You’ve literally [heard] the end of the rock thing, and the beginning of the new thing”.
According to statements in interviews, Corgan worked nonstop after the Siamese Dream tour and wrote about 56 songs for Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, the last of which was “1979”. As the Mellon Collie sessions came to a conclusion, “1979” was just a couple of chord changes and a snippet of a melody without words. When the time came to choose the songs that were to appear on the album, producer Flood said that “1979” was “not good enough” and wanted to drop it from the record. This, however, inspired Corgan to finish it in four hours. The next day, Flood heard “1979” once and decided immediately to put it on the album. Corgan considers “1979” the most personally important song on Mellon Collie.
Single by The Smashing Pumpkins
from the album Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness
Released January 23, 1996
Format 7″ and 12″ vinyl, CD, cassette
Genre Alternative rock
Length 4:24 (album/single/video version)
4:16 (radio edit)
Writer(s) Billy Corgan
Producer(s) Flood Alan Moulder Billy Corgan
SOURCE: 1979 by WIKIPEDIA (CC BY SA) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1979_(song)
Smashing Pumpkins by WIKIPEDIA (CC BY SA) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Smashing_Pumpkins
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Green Day – Bang Bang – Drum Cover
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