This song is a reminder that even if you have a bad day once in a while, things will get better. In Europe, it was released in 2005 and became a hit when Coca-Cola used it as the theme song for an advertising campaign on the continent. It topped the Italian and German charts and was #2 in England for three weeks. In America, Powter's album was released in 2006, and "Bad Day" became a hit when the singing competition show American Idol started using it as a theme for the "goodbye video" for the departing contestants who were voted off the show on the fifth season.
Daniel Powter is a singer-songwriter from British Columbia who later moved to Los Angeles. "Bad Day" was his first single released on a major label (Warner Bros.), and his only hit. He later described it as "a blessing and a curse." Said Powter: "I was touring the world and performing for thousands of people, but I felt like the song was starting to define me. I actually found myself getting almost angry about it."
His second album, Under The Radar, was released by Warner Bros. in 2008 but got little attention. His third album, Turn On The Lights, was released independently in 2012.
The video features actress Samaire Armstrong, who plays Anna on the popular American teen TV show The O.C. Powter refused to star in the video with Armstrong because of their difference in age: he was 35 and she was 25. While a younger actor stars opposite Armstrong, Powter appears playing the piano while wearing his distinctive beanie. Director Marc Webb, who went on to direct The Amazing Spider-Man, shot the clip in Los Angeles (made to look like New York) in one day.
When this hit #1 in the US, Powter became the first Canadian to top the US chart since Nickelback did it with "How You Remind Me
" in 2002.
Mitchell Froom, who previously worked with Elvis Costello, produced the album.
This was the top-selling digital download of 2006, proving that American Idol fans prefer downloading songs to buying CDs. It was part of a shift toward digital distribution of individual songs: in America, the album sold 500,000, but the single was digitally downloaded over 3 million times - you might have a copy of it on one of your old iPods.
A cover version by Alvin and the Chipmunks returned this song to the Billboard Hot 100 in January 2008 when it reached #67. The Chipmunks version was used in their 2007 film Alvin And The Chipmunks and appeared on the soundtrack.
A survey announced in July 2008 by the British Performing Rights Society revealed "Bad Day" as the most-played song in the UK over the previous five years. The runner-up was Kelly Clarkson's "Because Of You
," and in third place came James Blunt's "You're Beautiful
This song often shows up in TV shows when things are not going well for a character. An early use was in the 2007 Veronica Mars episode "The Bitch Is Back," where Kristen Bell sings it to a guy she's shaking down for information. In The Office episode "Moving On" (2013), Andy sings it as he's firing Pete. It also appears in episodes of Workaholics ("Flashback In The Day" - 2012), Grey's Anatomy ("Wish You Were Here" - 2009), and Elementary ("The One Percent Solution" - 2014).
Billboard named Daniel Powter the top one-hit wonder of the 2000s, defining a one-hit wonder as an act whose second hit did not reach the Top 25.