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Maneater (Hall & Oates song)

"Maneater" is a song by the 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.[1] It remained in the top spot for four weeks, more 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.

Hall & Oates Maneater.jpeg
Single by Hall & Oates
from the album H2O
B-side "Delayed Reaction"
Released October 31, 1982
Recorded December 1981; Electric Lady Studios (New York City, New York)
Genre Soft rock
Length 4:31 (album version)
3:28 (7")
6:00 (extended club mix)
Label RCA Records
  • Daryl Hall
  • John Oates
Hall & Oates singles chronology
"Your Imagination"
"One on One"
"Your Imagination"
"One on One"
Music video
"Maneater" on YouTube


Background and writingEdit

In an interview with American Songwriter in 2009,[2] 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,[3] "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)".[4][5]

Music videoEdit

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." The song's chorus is "oh, oh here she comes; watch out boy, she'll chew you up; oh, oh here she comes, she's a maneater."[6]


Legal actionEdit

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.[7]

Cover versionsEdit

Live cover performancesEdit

  • The now defunct Chicago band Split Butt-Crack covered the song live, and also included it on their 2004 album Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is.
  • The Bird and the Bee covered the song live with John Oates on March 5, 2010, at the El Rey Theater in Los Angeles, California.
  • On December 30, 2011, Umphrey's McGee covered the song live in concert during their New Year's Run in St. Louis.


  • The song "We're Live (Danger)" by rapper Royce Da 5'9" (which was featured in the highly acclaimed game Grand Theft Auto III) contains a sample from the Hall & Oates song "Maneater".[9]
  • The song "Drankin' Partna" by singer T-Pain uses a vocal sample of "Maneater".

Chart performanceEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  2. ^ Sharp, Ken (January 23, 2009). "HALL AND OATES: Soul Survivors". American Songwriter. Retrieved April 22, 2012. 2
  3. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 372. CN 5585. 
  4. ^ Something Else! (24 March 2014). "Hall and Oates' 'I Can't Go For That' isn't about what you think it's about; neither is 'Maneater'". Something Else!. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  5. ^ 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. 
  6. ^ hallandoatesVEVO (2009-10-03), Daryl Hall & John Oates - Maneater, retrieved 2017-06-07 
  7. ^ "Hall and Oates take legal action". BBC News. November 7, 2008. 
  8. ^ "Electric Six - Maneater". YouTube. Retrieved 2016-03-14. 
  9. ^ "Royce Da 5'9'''s We're Live (Danger) sample of Hall & Oates's Maneater". WhoSampled. Retrieved 2016-03-14. 
  10. ^ Danyel Smith, ed. (1982). "Hits of the World". Billboard - 25 december 1982. Billboard Magazine. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 79. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 20 June 2013. 
  11. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 6182." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  13. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 6219." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  14. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  15. ^ "Maneater in Irish Chart". IRMA. Retrieved 30 May 2013. 
  16. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Daryl Hall & John Oates" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.
  17. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  18. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater". Top 40 Singles.
  19. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater". VG-lista.
  20. ^ John Samson. "Maneater in South African Chart". Retrieved 20 June 2013. 
  21. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater" Canciones Top 50.
  22. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater". Singles Top 100.
  23. ^ " – Daryl Hall + John Oates – Maneater". Swiss Singles Chart.
  24. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  25. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  26. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  27. ^ "Billboard - January 30, 1982" (PDF). Billboard Magazine. p. 60. Retrieved August 16, 2017. 
  28. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 30, 2017.
  29. ^ "Daryl Hall & John Oates Awards on Allmusic". Allmusic. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  30. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". 
  31. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1983/Top 100 Songs of 1983". Retrieved 2016-11-05. 

External linksEdit

Preceded by
"Mickey" by Toni Basil
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
December 18, 1982- January 8, 1983
Succeeded by
"Down Under" by Men at Work