Too Much Monkey Business

Album: After School Session (1956)
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • "Too Much Monkey Business" was released in September 1956 as the B-side of "Brown Eyed Handsome Man." In his comprehensive Berry-ography Long Distance Information: Chuck Berry's Recorded Legacy, Berry fan Fred Rothwell says this is a song about "the everyday hassles of the average working stiff" and asks, "Who but Chuck Berry would consider writing about such an everyday irritant as losing change in a payphone, and who else would do it so succinctly..."

    This echoes Berry's sentiments; in his autobiography he says the song was meant to describe most of the kinds of hassles a person encounters in everyday life. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander - London, England
  • Berry made up a word in this song, singing, "I don't want your botheration." This wasn't the first time he used his own language: In "Maybellene" he sings about "motorvating."
  • Bob Dylan is one of the many musicians to draw influence from Berry. When Berry won a PEN Award for song lyrics in 2012, Dylan sent him a note saying, "That's what too much monkey business will get ya."

    The vocal delivery on this song is something Dylan emulated on his track "Subterranean Homesick Blues."
Please sign in or register to post comments.


Be the first to comment...

Director Nick Morris ("The Final Countdown")Song Writing

Nick made some of the biggest videos on MTV, including "The Final Countdown," "Heaven" and "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)."

Pete AndersonSongwriter Interviews

Pete produced Dwight Yoakam, Michelle Shocked, Meat Puppets, and a very memorable track for Roy Orbison.

George HarrisonFact or Fiction

Did Eric Clapton really steal George's wife? What's the George Harrison-Monty Python connection? Set the record straight with our Fact or Fiction quiz.

Mike Scott of The Waterboys - "Fisherman's Blues"They're Playing My Song

Armed with a childhood spent devouring books, Mike Scott's heart was stolen by the punk rock scene of 1977. Not surprisingly, he would go on to become the most literate of rockers.

Tom Bailey of Thompson TwinsSongwriter Interviews

Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie.

Matthew Wilder - "Break My Stride"They're Playing My Song

Wilder's hit "Break My Stride" had an unlikely inspiration: a famous record mogul who rejected it.