Maneater (Hall & Oates song)

"Maneater" is a song by American duo Hall & Oates, featured on their eleventh studio album, H2O (1982). It reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on December 18, 1982.[3] It remained in the top spot for four weeks, longer than any of the duo's five other number-one hits, including "Kiss on My List", which remained in the top spot for three weeks.

Single by Hall & Oates
from the album H2O
B-side"Delayed Reaction"
ReleasedOctober 12, 1982
RecordedDecember 1981
StudioElectric Lady, New York City
3:28 (DJ 7")
6:00 (extended club mix)
  • Daryl Hall
  • John Oates
Hall & Oates singles chronology
"Your Imagination"
"One on One"
Music video
"Maneater" on YouTube

Background and writing


In an interview with American Songwriter in 2009,[4] Daryl Hall recalled,

John had written a prototype of "Maneater"; he was banging it around with Edgar Winter. It was like a reggae song. I said, "Well, the chords are interesting, but I think we should change the groove." I changed it to that Motown kind of groove. So we did that, and I played it for Sara Allen and sang it for her…[Sings] "Oh here she comes / Watch out boy she'll chew you up / Oh here she comes / She's a maneater… and a…" I forget what the last line was. She said, "drop that shit at the end and go, 'She's a maneater,' and stop! And I said, 'No, you're crazy, that's messed up.'" Then I thought about it, and I realized she was right. And it made all the difference in the song.

Hall also opined,[5] "We try and take chances. Our new single 'Maneater' isn't something that sounds like anything else on the radio. The idea is to make things better."

John Oates has explained that while it is natural to assume the lyrics are about a woman, the song actually was originally written "about NYC in the '80s. It's about greed, avarice, and spoiled riches. But we have it in the setting of a girl because it's more relatable. It's something that people can understand. That's what we do all of the time", after describing how they took a similar approach with the earlier song "I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)".[6][7]

Billboard called it a "moody midtempo piece which has the percolating bass line of a mid-60's Supremes record and the atmospheric sweep of a Giorgio Moroder film score."[8] Cash Box said that the opening bassline resembles that of the Supremes' song "You Can't Hurry Love."[9]

The song is performed in a ballad version by actor Andrew Barth Feldman in the 2023 film No Hard Feelings, and appears on its soundtrack. [10]

Music video


The Hall & Oates music video opens with a woman (Aleksandra Duncan) walking down a red staircase, and the band playing in a dimly lit studio with shafts of light projecting down on them. The band members step in and out of the light for their lip sync. A young woman in a short party dress is shown in fade-in and fade-out shots, along with a black jaguar, hence the song line "The woman is wild, a she-cat tamed by the purr of a Jaguar." (In the lyrics' context, the Jaguar in question is the car manufacturer.)[11]



In November 2008, Hall & Oates initiated legal action against their music publisher Warner/Chappell Music. An unidentified singer-songwriter was alleged to have used "Maneater" in a 2006 recording, infringing copyright, and by failing to sue for copyright infringement, Warner Chappell Music was alleged to have breached their contract with Hall and Oates.[12]




Certifications for "Maneater"
Region Certification Certified units/sales
Canada (Music Canada)[40] Platinum 100,000^
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[41] Gold 45,000
United Kingdom (BPI)[42] Platinum 600,000
United States (RIAA)[43] Gold 1,000,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

See also



  1. ^ Fenton, Will. "15 Best Hall & Oates Songs of All Time (Greatest Hits)". middermusic. The song features a memorable saxophone solo by Charles DeChant and a catchy synth-pop melody, backed by a funk-influenced rhythm section.
  2. ^ a b c Molanphy, Chris (July 31, 2021). "What a Fool Believes Edition". Hit Parade | Music History and Music Trivia (Podcast). Slate. Retrieved February 23, 2024.
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  4. ^ Sharp, Ken (January 23, 2009). "HALL AND OATES: Soul Survivors". American Songwriter. Retrieved April 22, 2012.
  5. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 372. CN 5585.
  6. ^ "Hall and Oates' 'I Can't Go For That' isn't about what you think it's about; neither is 'Maneater'". Something Else!. 24 March 2014. Retrieved 27 November 2014.
  7. ^ Kauffman, Leah (18 March 2014). "John Oates on his new album, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, and what 'I Can't Go For That' is really about". Retrieved 27 November 2014.
  8. ^ "Top Single Picks". Billboard. October 16, 1982. p. 85. Retrieved 2023-02-07.
  9. ^ "Reviews" (PDF). Cash Box. October 16, 1982. p. 10. Retrieved 2022-07-07.
  10. ^ Maneater (Live). Retrieved 2023-10-07.
  11. ^ hallandoatesVEVO (2009-10-03), Daryl Hall & John Oates - Maneater, retrieved 2017-06-07
  12. ^ "Hall and Oates take legal action". BBC News. November 7, 2008.
  13. ^ "Hits of the World". Billboard. Vol. 94, no. 51. December 25, 1982. p. 79. ISSN 0006-2510 – via Google Books.
  14. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  15. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 6182." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  16. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 6219." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  17. ^ "Hits of the World". Billboard. Vol. 95, no. 21. May 21, 1983. p. 50. ISSN 0006-2510.
  18. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Maneater". Irish Singles Chart.
  19. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Daryl Hall John Oates" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.
  20. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  21. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 4 June 2020.
  22. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater". VG-lista.
  23. ^ "SA Charts 1965–1989 (As presented on Springbok Radio/Radio Orion) – Acts H". The South African Rock Encyclopedia. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
  24. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (in Spanish) (1st ed.). Madrid: Fundación Autor/SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2.
  25. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater". Singles Top 100.
  26. ^ "Daryl Hall %2B John Oates – Maneater". Swiss Singles Chart.
  27. ^ "Daryl Hall and John Oates: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  28. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  29. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  30. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Dance Club Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  31. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  32. ^ "Daryl Hall John Oates Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  33. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 Singles – Week ending December 18, 1982". Cash Box. Archived from the original on October 1, 2019. Retrieved January 25, 2024.
  34. ^ "Top 100 Black Contemporary Singles". Cash Box. Vol. XLIV, no. 34. January 22, 1983. p. 21. ISSN 0008-7289.
  35. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater" (in German). GfK Entertainment charts. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  36. ^ "Top 100 Singles of 82". RPM. Vol. 37, no. 19. December 25, 1982. p. 17. ISSN 0033-7064 – via Library and Archives Canada.
  37. ^ "The Cash Box Year-End Charts: 1982 – Top 100 Pop Singles". Cash Box. December 25, 1982. Archived from the original on November 23, 2019. Retrieved January 25, 2024.
  38. ^ "Talent Almanac 1984 – Top Pop Singles". Billboard. Vol. 95, no. 52. December 24, 1983. p. TA-18. ISSN 0006-2510.
  39. ^ "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts – 1983" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved January 25, 2024.
  40. ^ "Canadian single certifications – Hall & Oates – Maneater". Music Canada. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
  41. ^ "Danish single certifications – Daryl Hall & John Oates – Maneater". IFPI Danmark. Retrieved October 1, 2021.
  42. ^ "British single certifications – Daryl Hall & John Oates – Maneater". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved February 9, 2024.
  43. ^ "American single certifications – Hall & Oates – Maneater". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved June 23, 2018.