Crash Test Dummies — Mmmm Mmm Mmmmm

Crash Test Dummies — Mmmm Mmm Mmmmm

Each verse describes the isolation and suffering of a child, two of whom have a physical abnormality; a boy whose hair has prematurely whitened from shock and a girl covered in birthmarks. The third child is a boy whose parents take him with them to their church, where they ‘shake and lurch’ on the floor. His situation is said to be worse than the other children’s.

An alternative version sometimes performed at live concerts replaced the third verse with one concerning a boy whose mother disposed of his tonsils after a tonsillectomy, thus depriving him of the possibility of bringing them to show and tell.

Although highly successful when it was released, “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” has since been frequently included on lists of bad songs. The song was number 15 on VH1’s 50 Most Awesomely Bad Songs Ever, named by Rolling Stone the “15th Most Annoying Song”, and ranked at number 31 both on Blenders list of the “50 Worst Songs Ever” and, most recently, on AOL Radio’s list of the 100 Worst Songs Ever (Matthew Wilkening called the song “Not only bad but amazingly monotone and depressing,” and “Absolutely the last song to play for your sad friends”). In 2011, VH1 named “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” the 31st greatest one-hit wonder of the ’90s.

In a 1994 essay in which he makes the case that modern life is better than life in the past, humorist P.J. O’Rourke wrote “Even the bad things are better than they used to be. Bad music, for instance, has gotten much briefer. Wagner’s Ring Cycle takes four days to perform while “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” by the Crash Test Dummies lasts little more than three minutes.

Outside their home country of Canada, the single became the band’s most successful song, reaching number 4 in the U.S. and number 2 in the UK– the group’s biggest hit in both countries. It also reached number 1 on the Modern Rock Chart in the U.S. and in Australia.

In Canada, the song was a comparative flop. While the Crash Test Dummies had 6 singles reach the Canadian top ten, “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” was not one of them. In Canada, the single stalled at number 14.

The associated music video sets the song’s lyrics as the script for a series of one-act plays performed by school children. Throughout, the scenes of the performance are intercut with scenes of the Crash Test Dummies performing the song at stage side.

The first act, set at a city intersection, tells the story of a young boy who was involved in a car crash. His hair turned white due to the force of the crash.

The second act tells the story of a girl that never used to “change with the girls in the change room”, until one day the other girls (portrayed in the act as three inquisitive detectives) force her to change with them, only to discover that her body was covered in birthmarks.

The final act tells of a boy that lives under the strict discipline of his austere parents and how his family attends a church, where church-goers shake and lurch during the services. During the verse, the “boy” nervously looks into the audience at a couple who seem uneasy with the subject, implying that the three are the family being sung about. – Wikipedia

 

Watch music video here —->  Crash Test Dummies, Video

 

“Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm” Lyrics

Once there was this kid who
Got into an accident and couldn’t come to school
But when he finally came back
His hair had turned from black into bright white
He said that it was from when
The car had smashed so hardMmm Mmm Mmm Mmm
Mmm Mmm Mmm MmmOnce there was this girl who
Wouldn’t go and change with the girls in the change room
But when they finally made her
They saw birthmarks all over her body
She couldn’t quite explain it
They’d always just been there

Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm
Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm

But both girl and boy were glad
‘Cause one kid had it worse than that

‘Cause then there was this boy whose
Parents made him come directly home right after school
And when they went to their church
They shook and lurched all over the church floor
He couldn’t quite explain it
They’d always just gone there

Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm
Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm

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