Say It Ain't So

"Say It Ain't So" is a song by the American rock band Weezer. It was released as the third and final single from the band's self-titled 1994 debut album.

"Say It Ain't So"
Weezer say it ain't so.png
Single by Weezer
from the album Weezer (The Blue Album)
ReleasedJuly 13, 1995 (1995-07-13)
FormatCD
Recorded
Genre
Length4:18
LabelDGC
Songwriter(s)Rivers Cuomo
Producer(s)Ric Ocasek
Weezer singles chronology
"Buddy Holly"
(1994)
"Say It Ain't So"
(1995)
"El Scorcho"
(1996)
Audio sample
Music video
"Say It Ain't So" on YouTube

Written by frontman Rivers Cuomo, the song came to be after he had all the music finished and one line, "Say it ain't so".[3] Cuomo made a connection to an incident in high school where he came home and saw a bottle of beer in the fridge. He believed his mother and father's marriage ended because his father was an alcoholic and this made him fear the marriage between his mother and step-father would end this way as well.[4]

In 2008, Rolling Stone ranked "Say It Ain't So" #72 on "The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time."[5] Pitchfork Media included the song at number 10 on its Top 200 Tracks of the 90s.[6]

"Say It Ain't So" is a playable track in the video games Rock Band[7] and Rocksmith 2014[8] in addition to appearing on an episode of Hindsight.

CompositionEdit

"Say It Ain't So" is an alternative rock and emo song that lasts a duration of four minutes and eighteen seconds.[9] According to the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Hal Leonard Music, it is written in the time signature of common time, with a moderate rock tempo of 76 beats per minute.[9] "Say It Ain't So" is composed in the key of C sharp minor (Cm), while Rivers Cuomo's vocal range spans one octave, from the low-note of B3 to the high-note of B5.[9] The song has a basic sequence of Cm7–Gadd9–A–E in the verses and interludes, changes to C5–G5–A5–E5 at the chorus and follows B5–Bmaj7–A–E5–G5 during the bridge as its chord progression.[10]

Song mixesEdit

Two mixes of the song exist. The original album pressings had a mix with slightly different sounding drums, bass and no guitar feedback. However, when the band released the single, the mix that kept the guitar feedback in the song was used. The band liked this mix so much that the members asked for it to replace the version on the album, after the album had sold 3 million copies. The album now features the version with the feedback. The deluxe version features both mixes.

Track listingEdit

Cassette single: Geffen Records / GFSC 95 (UK)Edit

Both sides
  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17
  2. "No One Else" (Live and Acoustic) - 3:15
  3. "Jamie (Live and Acoustic)" - 3:53

CD: Geffen Records / GFSTD 95 (UK), GED 22064 (Europe), GEFDM 22064 (Australia)Edit

  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17
  2. "No One Else" (Live and Acoustic) - 3:15
  3. "Jamie" (Live and Acoustic) - 3:53

Limited Edition 10": Geffen Records / GFSV 95 (UK)Edit

Side one
  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17
Side two
  1. "No One Else" (Live and Acoustic) - 3:15
  2. "Jamie" (Live and Acoustic) - 3:53

Promo CD: Geffen Records / PRO CD 4742 (US)Edit

  1. "Say It Ain't So" (Remix) - 4:17


  • Live acoustic tracks were recorded on April 1, 1995 at Cat's Paw Studios in Atlanta, Georgia.

Music videoEdit

The music video for "Say It Ain't So", directed by Sophie Muller, met with less success than the previous two Weezer videos directed by Spike Jonze, but the song still successfully climbed to the top 10 of the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

As noted in the Weezer DVD collection Video Capture Device and the slip cover of the re-released special edition of the group's debut album, the band filmed the music video at the house where the band used to rehearse and record. The video also features a cameo by the band's webmaster/band photographer/archivist and close friend for many years, Karl Koch.

A small poster of Mercyful Fate/King Diamond frontman King Diamond is visible several times throughout the video, most clearly during the final chorus, just as Rivers Cuomo turns his mic around.

CoversEdit

The band Further Seems Forever covered the song on the Weezer tribute album Rock Music: A Tribute to Weezer. An episode of "One Tree Hill" featured a cover by MoZella, Wakey!Wakey!, and Juliana Hatfield. Deftones, The Sleeping, Young Guns, Finch, Real Estate and Dashboard Confessional have also covered the song live. Asher Roth sampled the song for his debut rap single "I Love College". After the song leaked onto the internet, Rivers Cuomo reportedly refused to clear sample, which prompted Roth to debut a remixed version of his song as his official debut single.[11] Foster The People also covered the song in August 2011, after Weezer did a version of "Pumped Up Kicks". Chiptune artist Inverse Phase parodied the song on a Commodore 64, titling it "Say It Ain't Sixty-FO"[12] Calpurnia covered the song for Spotify’s Under Cover podcast in 2018[13]

Chart positionsEdit

Chart (1995) Peak
Position
Canadian Singles Chart 6
UK Singles Chart 37
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Airplay 51
U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks 7

PersonnelEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The 95 Best Alternative Rock Songs of 1995". Spin. August 6, 2015. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  2. ^ Sigur, Matthew (June 19, 2018). "'Say It Ain't So': Weezer's Scott Shriner on how the band has stayed relevant for nearly 25 years". The Advocate. Retrieved August 16, 2018.
  3. ^ "Wireless". Archived from the original on July 9, 2006.
  4. ^ Luerssen D., John. Rivers' Edge: The Weezer Story. ECW Press, 2004, ISBN 1-55022-619-3 p. 110-111
  5. ^ "The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time : Rolling Stone". Archived from the original on May 31, 2008. Retrieved 2014-11-23.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link). Retrieved 2011-01-25. "Rivers Cuomo is a student of pop history, and his leads on this single (recently given a second life by Rock Band) distill the lessons of punk rock and arena metal into deceptively tricky riffs and solos. The detail that makes the song, though, is the mushroom-cloud swell of feedback before each chorus."
  6. ^ "Pitchfork Top 200 Tracks of the 90s". Pitchfork.com. 2010-09-03. Retrieved 2013-09-27.
  7. ^ "Rock Band - Say It Ain't So by Weezer". rockband.com. Archived from the original on 2008-10-18. Retrieved 2012-09-17.
  8. ^ "Rocksmith 2014 - Say It Ain't So by Weezer". rocksmith.com. Retrieved 2014-02-14.
  9. ^ a b c Cuomo, Rivers. "Weezer 'Say It Ain't So' Sheet Music in C Minor - Download & Print". Musicnotes.com. Hal Leonard Music Publishing. Retrieved August 23, 2012.
  10. ^ Cuomo, Rivers. "Weezer 'Say It Ain't So' Guitar Tab in C# Minor- Download & Print". Musicnotes.com. Hal Leonard Music Publishing. Retrieved September 19, 2012.
  11. ^ "Weezer Frontman Refuses To Clear Asher Roth Single". Xxlmag.Com. 2008-11-18. Archived from the original on 2009-03-18. Retrieved 2012-02-13.
  12. ^ "Inverse Phase on Bandcamp: Say It Ain't Sixty-FO". Inversephase.bandcamp.com. 2009-09-18. Retrieved 2013-09-27.
  13. ^ Calpurnia - Say It Ain't So (Spotify Session Cover), retrieved 2019-08-13