Throwback Thursday: Hanson – “MMMBop”
Music has the power to invoke a broad range of emotions. The hipsters of the world will have you believe that the best songs are the ones that make you sad, but it is my unshakable belief that the best ones make you happy. And during the holidays, I am especially hooked on upbeat songs that put me in a good mood.
Hanson’s debut single, “MMMBop,” is one of those songs. Released in April 1997 and written by all three members of the group, “MMMBop” is a rock-yet-“pop” ditty with indelible doo-wop influences. The song has the makings of one that many would dismiss as “fluff”: It’s upbeat, ridiculously catchy, and was sung by kids with long, blond hair aged 11-16. However, anyone with an open mind (and open ears) would be able to catch the rather poignant message in its lyrics.
“MMMBop” is about all that is fleeting — money, youth, beauty, life itself. It’s about knowing and holding on to the things that (should) matter most, which are our loved ones. At this time of year, there isn’t a more appropriate message.
If you were “today” years old when you found this out, don’t be ashamed. Most of us have been conditioned to receive “deep” messages in the form of slow, heart-wrenching ballads. In actuality, some of the most profound lyrics can be found in up-tempos.
“MMMBop” was No. 1 for three weeks in May of ’97. The group went on to have two more top 20 hits, but nothing at the scale of their debut single.