Weapon of Choice (song)
"Weapon of Choice" is a song by English big beat musician Fatboy Slim featuring American funk musician Bootsy Collins; from his third studio album, Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars. It was released as a double A-side single with "Star 69" on 23 April 2001, as well as a standalone single release, and a 2010 re-release with remixes. The single peaked at No. 10 on the UK Singles Chart.
|"Weapon of Choice"|
|Single by Fatboy Slim featuring Bootsy Collins|
|from the album Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars|
|Released||23 April 2001|
|Fatboy Slim singles chronology|
|"Weapon of Choice" from YouTube|
"Weapon of Choice"
The music video, directed by Spike Jonze, features actor Christopher Walken dancing around a deserted hotel lobby. It won multiple awards at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards and won the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Music Video.
"Weapon of Choice" features Parliament-Funkadelic and Bootsy's Rubber Band bassist Bootsy Collins, who provides the lead vocals on the song. On the album version, Collins's normal vocals are heard through the right audio channel; the same vocals, distorted to a much deeper pitch, are heard through the left. The song features a prominent sample of Sly & the Family Stone's 1968 song "Into My Own Thing", as well as samples from "All Strung Out Over You" by The Chambers Brothers and "Word Play" by The X-Ecutioners, the latter of which was previously sampled on Fatboy Slim's song "Don't Forget Your Teeth", the B-side to his single "Right Here, Right Now", and "Gangster Trippin".
The chorus of the song, "You could blow with this, or you could blow with that...", is a homage to the Black Sheep song "The Choice Is Yours (Revisited)", which features a similar chorus. The lines "Walk without rhythm/and it won't attract the worm..." is a quote from the science fiction novel Dune, while the line "tone of my voice" may be the titular weapon, as used by some of the novel's characters. The line "halfway between the gutter and the stars" refers to a line in Oscar Wilde's play Lady Windermere's Fan: "We are all of us in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars."
The radio edit is referred to as the "Attack Hamster Edit", and is the version featured on Fatboy Slim's greatest hits album The Greatest Hits – Why Try Harder. Collins's vocal tracks, both normal and distorted, remain intact, though the distorted track is now barely audible. It peaked at No. 137 on the UK Singles Chart. The song was briefly featured in the 2001 film Joe Somebody, and was also featured in the Malcolm in the Middle episode "Malcolm vs. Reese". It was used in the E3 Trailer of Skylanders Swap Force.
On the album, the song segues from "Retox" and thus the ending of "Retox" is on this track. At 5:06 on the "single version", the last second (5:05) gets repeated many times until it finishes at 5:36. However, on the album, the last two seconds get repeated until 5:23, and scratching sounds start at 5:14 until the conclusion at 5:45. The single version and album version also have several other differences, including the ordering of vocal snippets towards the five-minute mark.
The accompanying music video was filmed in the lobby of the Marriott Hotel (now the L.A. Grand Hotel Downtown) in Los Angeles in December 2000. Directed by Spike Jonze, the video features actor Christopher Walken, who trained as a dancer in musical theatre before his acting career. Walken wakes up from a nap in an empty hotel lobby and begins to dance and fly around the area, eventually sitting and going back to sleep in the same chair where he began.
The "Weapon of Choice" video won six awards at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards. Walken was awarded one of MTV's "Moonmen" for Best Choreography. The clip was also ranked number one in a list of the top 100 videos of all time by VH1 in April 2002 that was compiled from a music industry survey. The Swedish actor Mikael Persbrandt has also danced in a version of the music video that was directed by Malik Bendjelloul. In 2012, British comedian and presenter Rowland Rivron also won charity TV show Let's Dance for Sport Relief with his re-enactment of the video's choreography.
Walken has cited the involvement of Jonze as one of his main motivations for appearing in the video, which he also welcomed as a chance to do "something different". He also noted that as a trained tapdancer, dancing to electronic music actually suited him well.
- "Star 69" / "Weapon of Choice"
|1.||"Star 69" (full version)||5:57|
|2.||"Star 69" (radio edit)||3:35|
|3.||"Weapon of Choice"||5:38|
|4.||"Weapon of Choice" (video)||3:31|
- "Weapon of Choice 2010"
|1.||"Weapon Of Choice 2010" (Lazy Rich Remix)||6:05|
|2.||"Weapon Of Choice 2010" (Lazy Rich Dub)||5:48|
|3.||"Weapon Of Choice 2010" (Radio Edit)||2:59|
|Year||Nominee / work||Award||Result|
|2001||MTV Video Music Award||Video of the Year||Nominated|
|Best Dance Video||Nominated|
|Best Visual Effects||Nominated|
|Best Art Direction||Won|
|MTV Europe Music Award||Best Video||Nominated|
|2002||Grammy Award||Best Music Video||Won|
- "Star 69" / "Weapon of Choice" double A-side chart positions
|Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)||14|
|Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)||18|
|Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)||20|
|Germany (Official German Charts)||81|
|Netherlands (Single Top 100)||85|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||10|
- Other versions
|US Modern Rock Tracks (Billboard)||331|
|US Hot Dance Club Play (Billboard)||32, 103|
|UK Singles (OCC)||1374|
- 1 – "Weapon of Choice"
- "FATBOY SLIM - Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 26 January 2018.
- Perich, John. "Cargo Cult: Dune". www.overthinkingit.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
- "VMA Nation". Archived from the original on 13 December 2001. Retrieved 19 September 2011.
- "Jonze dominates video poll". BBC News. 26 April 2002. Retrieved 19 September 2011.
- "Persbrandt dances".
- "YouTube - Mikael Persbrandts Weapon of choice". youtube.com. Archived from the original on 30 May 2007.
- "Vasakronan copies Fat Boy Slim". Retrieved 21 June 2013.
- "Rowland Rivron reveals shock at Let's Dance win as final seen by 6million viewers - Metro News". Metro.
- "The Hollywood Interview: CHRISTOPHER WALKEN: The Hollywood Interview". thehollywoodinterview.blogspot.co.uk.
- "Australian-charts.com – Fatboy Slim – Star 69". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Ultratop.be – Fatboy Slim – Star 69" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Ultratop.be – Fatboy Slim – Star 69" (in French). Ultratip. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Fatboy Slim: Star 69" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Offiziellecharts.de – Fatboy Slim – Star 69". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Star 69". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Dutchcharts.nl – Fatboy Slim – Star 69" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Fatboy Slim: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- on YouTube