Everybody Wants To Rule The World – Tears For Fears

THIS DAY IN MUSIC…………………………………………….on June 9th 1985 Tears For Fears occupy the top spot on Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles Chart with “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”. This song is about the quest for power, and how it can have unfortunate consequences. In an interview with Mix magazine, the band’s producer Chris Hughes explained that they spent months working on “Shout,” and near the end of the sessions, Roland Orzabal came into the studio and played two simple chords on his acoustic guitar, which became the basis for the song. Said Hughes: “‘Everybody Wants to Rule the World’ was so simple and went down so quickly, it was effortless, really. In fact, as a piece of recording history, it’s bland as hell.” “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” is a line from the 1980 Clash song “Charlie Don’t Surf.” Did Tears for Fears lift it? Joe Strummer of The Clash thought so. He recounted a story to Musician magazine about confronting Roland Orzabal in a restaurant, informing Orzabal that “you owe me a fiver.” Stummer said that Roland reached in his pocket and produced a five pound note, ostensibly as compensation for poaching the line for his hit title. Curt Smith, one of the two members of Tears for Fears, did a solo, acoustic version of this for the soundtrack to The Private Public, a 2001 movie where he made his acting debut. Although musically this is quite a jangly and catchy song, its lyrical theme is actually pretty dark. “The concept is quite serious — it’s about everybody wanting power, about warfare and the misery it causes,” Curt Smith explains on the band’s website. This was the first US #1 hit for Tears for Fears. “Shout” went to #1 two months later. The song peaked at #2 in the UK.