All the Small Things

"All the Small Things" is a song by the rock band Blink-182. It was the second single and eighth track released from the band's third album, Enema of the State (1999). The track was composed primarily by guitarist and vocalist Tom DeLonge as an ode to his then girlfriend. Recorded in Los Angeles with producer Jerry Finn, the song was created with the intention of shipping it to radio, as the trio felt they needed a single "really catchy and basic."

"All the Small Things"
Blink-182 - All the Small Things cover.jpg
Single by Blink-182
from the album Enema of the State
B-side
  • "M+Ms" (US)
  • "Dumpweed" (live) (worldwide)
ReleasedJanuary 18, 2000[1]
Recorded1999
Genre
Length2:48
LabelMCA
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Jerry Finn
Blink-182 singles chronology
"What's My Age Again?"
(1999)
"All the Small Things"
(2000)
"Adam's Song"
(2000)
Audio sample
Music video
"All the Small Things" on YouTube

The single was released on January 18, 2000,[4] and promptly charted worldwide, becoming a number one hit on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart, peaking at number two on the UK Singles Chart, and crossing over to pop radio and peaking at number six on the Billboard Hot 100. The song remains the band's most successful single to date, being their only song to break the Top 40. The song charted within the top 20 in ten other countries, and gained greater significance due to its accompanying music video, which parodies and mocks the boy bands Backstreet Boys, 98 Degrees, and 'N Sync and the pop singers Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. The video was popular in rotation on MTV's Total Request Live, leading to criticism from those who felt their basis for parody was thin.

"All the Small Things" was selected by Rolling Stone as one of the "100 Greatest Pop Songs",[5] and is listed in the 2010 book 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die.[6]

BackgroundEdit

"All the Small Things" can be traced back to when the trio first began writing songs for Enema of the State at DML Studios.[7] DeLonge had just bought his first home in San Diego, and bought two to three thousand dollars worth of foam padding to insulate his room. By this point, most of the tracks present on Enema of the State had been written, but DeLonge felt the album needed "just one song that was really catchy and basic."[8] "I remember thinking, 'The label's gonna want a song for the radio – so here's one,'" said DeLonge. "It was obvious from the beginning it would fit that format."[9] DeLonge had wanted to write a track including "na na na's" as an ode to one of his favorite bands, the Ramones.[7][8] Additionally, in an interview, DeLonge remarked, "I put 'na na's' in it, because I couldn't think of any words, you know?", to explain this lyrical decision.[10] Early demos listed it as "Ramones-style song",[11] and the original working title of the track was "Babycakes-Buttermuffin".[12]

DeLonge wrote the track about Jennifer Jenkins, his longtime girlfriend since high school who he would eventually marry.[13] The lyrics "She left me roses by the stairs / Surprises let me know she cares" are based on an incident in which Jenkins left roses on the stairs after DeLonge returned home late from recording.[14] The guitar riff for the song cycles around chords C, F and G (I, IV and V in C), a familiar chord progression.[15] The texture on the track is due to several overdubs playing various inversions and extensions of the main chords. The bass guitar stays on C while the guitars move to F, creating a 2nd inversion chord.[15] "It was one of the last songs we recorded," DeLonge told Kerrang!, "because it was simple it wasn't that much fun to play. But once we put it all together and played it as a band we all looked at each other and said, 'This song's huge!'"[7]

ReceptionEdit

Q called the song "one of those power-pop tunes that the Americans get soooo right," joking, "[it] has more hooks than the Fishing Channel."[7] The Rolling Stone Album Guide dubbed it the band's "most subtle song about sex," calling it one of the album's classic singles.[16]

It was labeled "a pop punk watershed" by Jonah Weiner of Blender in 2004.[17]

Chart performanceEdit

The single debuted at number 89 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the week of December 4, 1999[18] and eventually peaked at number six, the highest Blink-182 has received on that chart.[17] The song also reached number one on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks. The song also achieved massive success in other countries, most notably in the United Kingdom, where it entered and peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart in March 2000, beaten to the top of the chart by "Bag It Up by Geri Halliwell".[19] "All the Small Things" has since sold 447,000 copies in the UK and been certified Platinum.[20] In Australia, "All the Small Things" peaked at number eight on the ARIA Singles Chart. The single was certified Platinum by the Australian Recording Industry Association.

It was one of the top-selling singles in America in 2000, with Nielsen SoundScan estimating its sales at 500,000 copies.[21]

The song has accumulated over 500,000 plays on US pop radio as of December 2011.[22]

In popular cultureEdit

"Once we recorded this song and heard it, it gave us the chills. We just looked at each other and knew we had this little piece of magic. We knew that thing was going to be a gigantic thing, I don't know how, but we just felt it straight away."
— Tom DeLonge, reflecting on the song's creation[8]

"All the Small Things" was released on the UK compilation album Now That's What I Call Music! 45 (2000) and the US edition of Now That's What I Call Music! 4 (2000). The song was used in 1999 in the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer (season 4, episode 9 - "Something Blue") before it was released on CD, and in Boston Legal (season 1, episode 14 - "Til We Meat Again"). The song is played during the end credits of the 2000 film, Charlie's Angels.[23] It can be heard in the trailer for Alvin and the Chipmunks and in the 2000 film Archibald the Koala: The Movie and the 2002 film Clockstoppers, and is also present on its soundtrack. Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song for their 2008 album Undeniable. The song has been used frequently in music video games; "All the Small Things" is a playable track in Guitar Hero 5, Guitar Hero: On Tour, and Guitar Hero Live.[24][25][26] It appears as downloadable content for Rock Band on consoles, further appearing in Rock Band Track Pack Volume 1 and Rock Band's iOS port.[27][28][29] Covers are present in the video games Rock Revolution, Donkey Konga, and Alvin and the Chipmunks.[30][31][32]

When originally released, the song was performed on Saturday Night Live along with "What's My Age Again?" on January 8, 2000 on the season 25 episode hosted by Jamie Foxx.[33] As a testament to the song's lasting popular impact, it was performed on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno twice: first on October 15, 1999,[34] and second after Blink 182's reformation on May 19, 2009. In "The Simpsons episode "Barting Over" the song is played along with the appearance of the band themselves at the scene where Bart encounters a skateboard hall.[35] A British television series named after the song was broadcast on BBC One in the United Kingdom in 2009. In Family Guy's "It's a Trap!", Han Solo (Peter Griffin) can be heard singing the song after C-3PO (Glenn Quagmire) states the Ewoks "Seem to think I'm some sort of god.", to which Peter exclaims "And they seem to think I'm Sum 41!" before proceeding to enthusiastically sing the first line of "All the Small Things", much to the chagrin of Luke Skywalker (Chris Griffin).[citation needed]

AccoladesEdit

The song proved influential on the pop punk genre, with a host of young musicians emulating its sound. "It blended punk attitude with pop songwriting so much better than other bands," said Simple Plan bassist David Desrosiers.[17]

Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
NME United Kingdom 50 Most Explosive Choruses[36] 2014 16
Rolling Stone United States 100 Greatest Pop Songs[37] 2000 94
1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die United States 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die[38] 2010 *
VH1 United States Top 100 Greatest Songs of the 2000s[39] 2011 53

* denotes an unordered list

Music videoEdit

 
The trio dressed as members of a boy band on Santa Monica Beach

The music video for "All the Small Things" was directed by Marcos Siega, and mocks boy bands and contemporary pop videos.[7] It features the trio doing parodies of other popular boy-bands such as Backstreet Boys (most famously the "I Want It That Way" video), 98 Degrees, and NSYNC. The video also feature parodies of Britney Spears' "Sometimes", and Christina Aguilera's "Genie in a Bottle" video. It became the most successful video from Enema of the State, and its constant airplay on MTV cemented the band's image as video stars.[40] The music video was shot on location from August 5-6 at Van Nuys Airport and Santa Monica State Beach.[41] It premiered September 20, 1999, on MTV's Making the Video.[42] The video was a major success on MTV's Total Request Live (TRL), where it was retired after 65 days on the countdown.[17]

The video was named "Best Video" at the 2000 Kerrang! Awards,[43] as well as nabbing "Best Group Video" at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards.[44] "I was a little surprised it went over so well," recalled Marcos Siega, director of the clip, commenting that he felt it would offend viewers of TRL and boy band fans. "I think we had the opposite effect. In some ways, I think that video put Blink at that sort of pop level with those other bands. We were making fun of them, but it kind of became [what it was making fun of]."[7] "Blink now had the backing of a major record company […] just like the synthesized pop acts they were spoofing," said British journalist Tim Footman. "In what way were they less 'pop' than Sugar Ray and 98 Degrees?"[45] Matt Diehl, author of the book My So-Called Punk, called the basis for satire thin: "To seasoned ears, Blink-182 sounded and looked just as manufactured as the pop idols they were poking fun at."[46] In a similar vein, in 2011, The New York Times wrote, "Fame doesn’t discriminate based on origin, though: soon the group was as famous as those it was parodying."[40]

During rehearsals for the video, bassist and vocalist Mark Hoppus met his future wife, Skye Everly. According to a 2004 interview, Everly, who was then an MTV talent executive, initially said no to dating Hoppus: "Tom [DeLonge] always used to embarrass me. Any girl he'd talk to, he'd say, 'Hey, you wanna go on a date with Mark?' He asked Skye [Everly], my wife, who looked at me and said 'No.' That's how it all started."[17] Hoppus would marry Everly on December 2, 2000.[47]

Track listingsEdit

All tracks are written by Blink-182.

"All the Small Things" US single CD and cassette
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:54
2."M+M's"2:39
"All the Small Things" UK single CD (1)
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:48
2."Dumpweed" (live)2:24
3."What's My Age Again?" (live)2:58
"All the Small Things" UK single CD (2)
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:55
2."All the Small Things" (live)3:15
3."Dammit" (live)2:38
4."All the Small Things" (video)3:00
"All the Small Things" UK single cassette
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:48
2."Dammit" (live)2:45
"All the Small Things" Australian single CD (1)
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:48
2."Dammit" (live in Los Angeles)3:05
3."Family Reunion" (live in Los Angeles)0:51
4."I Won't Be Home for Christmas"3:16
"All the Small Things" Australian single CD (2)
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things" (single edit)2:54
2."Dumpweed" (live in London)3:25
3."What's My Age Again?" (live in London)3:18
4."All the Small Things" (live in London)4:05
5."Dammit" (live in London)2:36
"All the Small Things" Italian promo 12-inch vinyl
No.TitleLength
1."All the Small Things"2:48
2."Dumpweed" (live) 
3."What's My Age Again?" (live) 
  • All live tracks on the UK release were recorded at the Electric Ballroom, London, England, on November 30, 1999.

PersonnelEdit

ChartsEdit

CertificationsEdit

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[82] Platinum 70,000^
Italy (FIMI)[83] Platinum 50,000 
Sweden (GLF)[84] Gold 15,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[86] Platinum 1,070,000[85]
United States 500,000[21]

^shipments figures based on certification alone
 sales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Jedward versionEdit

"All the Small Things"
 
Single by Jedward
from the album Planet Jedward
ReleasedJuly 16, 2010
Recorded2010
GenrePop
Length2:48
LabelUniversal
Songwriter(s)
Jedward singles chronology
"Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby)"
(2010)
"All the Small Things"
(2010)
"Lipstick"
(2011)
Music video
"All The Small Things" on YouTube

"All the Small Things" served as the second single from Irish pop rap duo Jedward's debut studio album, Planet Jedward. The single was released on July 16, 2010. The song performed relatively modestly, peaking at number 21 on the Irish Charts and at number 6 on the UK Indie Chart.

Music videoEdit

The music video for "All The Small Things" premiered on YouTube on July 15, 2010. The video was filmed in June 2010. The video is inspired by the original video by Blink-182, parodying popular music videos that have been seen worldwide. The videos parodied by Jedward include "SOS" by the Jonas Brothers, "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" by Beyoncé, "Telephone" by Lady Gaga, and "...Baby One More Time" by Britney Spears. The video was given its first television airplay by 4Music on July 16, 2010. Since its premiere, the video has more than 2 million hits on YouTube.[87]

Track listingEdit

  1. "All the Small Things" (radio edit)

ChartsEdit

Chart (2010) Peak
position
Ireland (IRMA)[88] 21
UK Singles (OCC)[89] 80
UK Indie (OCC)[90] 6

Release historyEdit

Country Release date
Ireland July 16, 2010
United Kingdom July 19, 2010

In popular cultureEdit

The song is featured in the soundtrack of Horrid Henry: The Movie, released in 2011.[91]

The song is covered by Atlanta ambient artist B.E.N off his album "Benema of the State."

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit