Out Of My Head

Album: All The Pain Money Can Buy (1998)
Charted: 20

Songfacts®:

  • Fastball, a rock trio from Austin, Texas, earned a contract with Hollywood Records after years of toiling on the road in cramped conditions. Their first album was issued in 1996, but went nowhere. In the aftermath, the band's singer/multi-instrumentalist Tony Scalzo wrote "Out Of My Head," which reflects his mindset. "I was a struggling musician," he said in a Songfacts interview. "I had a record deal, so I knew there was a chance that things were going to turn around for us and for me, but I was struggling, and I was really ambitious at that time. Maybe I was just thinking about recurrent situations and how hopefully things would come out right."

    Things did come out right: The first single from Fastball's second album was "The Way," which became a huge radio hit. "Out of My Head" was a more modest hit, but still did very well, helping that second album, All the Pain Money Can Buy, sell over one million copies.
  • Structurally, this song is very unusual. It open with a verse and a chorus - nothing strange there - but then repeats the chorus twice with no subsequent verses. You have to have a pretty compelling chorus to pull that off, and this song does, with a clever melody and intriguing, ambiguous lyric.

    Scalzo points out that many greats ignored conventional song structures quite often, notably Bob Dylan and The Beatles.
  • Tony Scalzo went for an intimate vocal on this track, similar to some of Elvis Costello's songs where he gets very close to the microphone and sings quietly. He got the sound he was looking for, but couldn't reproduce it live, so he had to make some adjustments.

    "We do it in G, and it was recorded in E, because I can't project loud enough to play it on stage in E," he told Songfacts. "So, it's very different when we play it live, and it always has been."
  • In 2016, an adapted version of the chorus was used in Machine Gun Kelly and Camila Cabello's hit song "Bad Things." Their duet takes the chorus line, "I never mean to do bad things to you," and turns it into "I only wanna do bad things to you," but these bad things are naughty things, and welcomed.

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