The Six Best "Hey!"s in Rock and Roll

Categories: Nitpick Six


No musician puts a "Hey!" in a song for his/herself. "Hey!" is a social cue, an opportunity for engagement between a musician and the audience. It means nothing, but it means the same nothing to all of us and therefore means something, maybe even everything. Woah. Here are the six best "Hey!"s in rock and roll. And, uh, hey, let us know your favorites in the comments below.

See also:
- The 15 Most Ridiculous Band Promo Photos
- The Six Most Absurd Pop Songs Of 2012
- The Six Worst Songs in Movies

6. The Beatles - "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away"

"You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" is best link between the happy go lucky Help! Beatles and the serious, ambitious Rubber Soul Beatles. John Lennon kicks off each hook with a "Hey!" so enthusiastically that he jumps in his chair at the 1:35 mark of the above video. The snippet from the Help! film does a great job of portraying the occasional boringness of being Ringo, and it basically sets up the cover art for Definitely Maybe by Oasis. The "Hey!" is a sly trick at play. Some songs try to get a hook in your head by repeating it ad nauseum. "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" earworms its way in by yelling at you to pay attention first.

5. Arcade Fire - "Une Annee Sans Lumiere"

The aftermath of Arcade Fire's debut Funeral, those thousands of indie bands with dozens of members, can distract from how fresh the album seemed upon release. "Une Annee Sans Lumiere" is never a song people call their favorite. It's a slow jam with more than half of its lyrics in French and it makes zero references to space dogs. But this song may have the largest impact, as it pioneered the modern "Hey!" The Arcade Fire "Hey!" is short and shouted and usually doused in reverb, and there's currently a song on top 40 radio that uses it heavily.

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My my, hey hey

Rock 'n' roll is here to stay 

Hey hey, my my

Rock 'n' roll can never die

There's more to the picture

Than meets the eye

Hey hey, my my



Don't come around here no more...

chrisward99 topcommenter

HEY! I loved this feature. I would have included The Pixies' "HEY! Been trying to MEET YOU!" of course. That one seems obvious.

Like jstoff mentioned, Cake is all about the Hey.

HEY YOU! Get off of my cloud, is a memorable one.

Last year's in-every-commercial-ever "Hey! Ho!" By the Lumineers.

And, you can't go to a theater without hearing Treat Her Right from The Commitments. That's the song with the ubiquitous "HEY HEY HEY HEY!" followed by a big horn section. Oh know it, and you probably are sick of it too.

Rip DiGiorno
Rip DiGiorno

Celtic Frost - The Usurper. The be all end all of HEEEYYYYY!

Matt Harnish
Matt Harnish

And Bunnygrunt's post modulation, pre final chorus "Hey!" in South Kingshighway Bubblegum Factory, duh.

Matt Harnish
Matt Harnish

Also, David Essex's smarmy "Hey, kids, rock-n-roll, rock on."


I take issue with the extreme lack of John McCrea in this list. Hey!

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