Say It Ain't So
Say It Ain't So is an emo alternative rock song by Weezer. A demo of the song was recorded in August of 1992 and placed as track 6 on the 1992 The Kitchen Tape demo and track 1 the Opposite Sides of the Same Good Ol' Fence demo which was released on 1992-09-04. The album version was recorded in the summer of 1993 and released as track 7 on the album Weezer on 1994-05-10 and later released as a single on 1995-07-13.
The song was written, composed, and sung by Rivers Cuomo who also plays guitar. Matt Sharp played bass and sung backing vocals, Brian Bell played rhythm guitar and sung backing vocals, Patrick Wilson played drums, and Ric Ocasek produced the song. Three versions of the song exist, the demo, the original album version, and the single version which has a slightly different drum track, bass track, and more guitar feedback. After the first pressing of the album was sold out, the band requested that subsequent pressings include the single version instead of the original version.
The song is about the fear Rivers Cuomo had regarding alcohol and divorce. Cuomo believed that his father's drinking led to his parents getting divorced when he was a child, and, years later after his mother had remarried, he found a beer in the refrigerator and feared that his stepfather might also have a drinking problem which would cause another divorce. The lyric, "this bottle of Stephen's" is a reference to his father Stephen.
I first heard this song in middle school when a friend of mine bought the blue album and we listened to the songs. Later, I bought the album myself and listened to it a lot. Of the two song versions, I much prefer the single version with the guitar feedback. Because Rivers isn't very articulate, I've always had a hard time understanding the song's lyrics, a problem that wasn't helped by the album liner's lack of lyrics. It wasn't until years, after I already loved the song, that I read about the lyrics online and found out it is about alcoholism. This made the song even more real for me, as my parents are divorced and my father is an alcoholic. Musically, I enjoy the simple guitar intro, the heavy guitar during the chorus, the guitar solo after the last verse, and the rapid drums at the end of it.
Oh yeah, all right. Somebody's Heine' Is crowdin' my icebox Somebody's cold one Is givin' me chills Guess I'll just close my eyes Aw yeah, all right Feels good, inside. Flip on the tele' Wrestle with Jimmy Something is bubbling Behind my back The bottle is ready to blow Say it ain't so Your drug is a heart-breaker Say it ain't so My love is a life-taker I can't confront you I never could do That which might hurt you So try and be cool When I say "This way is a water slide away from me the tanks are fuller every day" Be cool Say it ain't so Your drug is a heart-breaker Say it ain't so My love is a life-taker Dear Daddy, I write you in spite of years of silence. You've cleaned up, found Jesus, things are good or so I hear. This bottle of Stephen's awakens ancient feelings. Like father, stepfather, the son is drowning in the flood. Yeah, yeah yeah, yeah yeah. Say it ain't so Your drug is a heart-breaker Say it ain't so My love is a life-taker
- youtube.com/watch?v=ENXvZ9YRjbo - Official video.
- youtube.com/watch?v=H3uU0mIiDN4 - Demo version.
- youtube.com/watch?v=8RFTB5vgV_4 - David Letterman 1995.
- youtube.com/watch?v=e_Ruon4JQzM - Live in LA, 2016.
- youtube.com/watch?v=_sEpTXvhqPY - The Woodlands in Houston, Texas, 2018-06-29.