Are you waiting to open the door for the 4th December on my UK Christmas number ones advent calendar? I hope so. Apologies for being a little tardy with this one, let’s blame the weather shall we? Anyway as you open that cardboard flap very carefully you will be releasing “Mad World” by Gary Jules and Michael Andrews. The song was originally a hit for Tears For Fears back in 1982 when it reached number 3 in the UK chart. The song was the third single from the band and was written by Roland Orzabal.It was originally the B Side of the band’s second single “Pale Shelter (You Don’t Give Me Love)”
The Gary Jules and Michael Andrews version is slowed down and in my opinion almost menacing at times. It was taken from the soundtrack from one of my favourite films, ‘Donnie Darko‘. It was number one in the UK during Christmas 2003 and held the pole position for three weeks. It also reached number one in Canada and Portugal. It has been covered by quite a diverse group of acts including Adam Lambert and Die Toten Hosen. TV shows have used it to great effect on many occasions too including CSI, Smallville and the Vicar Of Dibley.
Michael Andrews is well-known for his film scores, including Donnie Darko (obviously), My Suicidal Sweetheart and Funny People. Gary Jules is attributed with what in my opinion is a truly wonderful quote. “I found out that people through the ages are exactly the same as now, they had the same issues, the same desires. One thing that’s clear when you read old literature is that there are some great universal truths – things like fart jokes, guys screwing other people’s wives and the hunger for power.” I have to agree on the fart jokes comment.
Enjoy the Gary Jules and Michael Andrews version below
Here are Tears For Fears performing the original song on Top Of The Pops in 1982
And finally experience Die Toten Hosen playing (or maybe murdering) the song live.