This is the first single from American Heavy Metal band Korn's ninth studio album, Korn III – Remember Who You Are and their 34th single overall. The song was debuted live on March 27, 2010 in Anchorage, Alaska.
The song's title references Oildale, a suburb of Korn's hometown of Bakersfield, California. Even though the lyrics don't mention the town, they appear to be referring to frontman Jonathan Davis's troubled past.
This is the first single with the band's new percussionist Ray Luzier, who became Korn's touring drummer in late 2007 and was made an official member in 2009.
Davis said in press materials that the album title sums up the content of the record. He explained: "It comes down to one question: 'Who the f--k am I?' It's about remembering where we came from. The title sums up everything I'm talking about lyrically. During the first two records, we were kids, and we didn't have anything. We were making music, having fun and not worrying. I went back to that place where I wasn't worried. I wanted to be completely honest with my feelings, express myself and let them out. People get so wrapped up in social communities, the Internet and technology that they forget who they are and what life's really about. I f--- forgot who I was until I did this record. This album is just a bass, a guitar, drums and my vocals. I look at the records we've done as slots in time, and I believe Remember Who You Are is very special."
The song's music video portrays a young boy living in Oildale: "We thought it was fitting to have the first single and video from Korn III – Remember Who You Are be 'Oildale (Leave Me Alone)', since Oildale is near where we grew up as kids," said Davis. "It's a poverty-stricken area surrounded by endless, rich oil fields. The money doesn't really help the local people and it's tough for local kids to get out of there. I feel blessed that our music busted us out."
Korn III – Remember Who You Are was helmed by Ross Robinson, who also produced Korn's first two albums. Davis told Billboard magazine that the producer dug deep into his angst-filled lyrics, forcing him to re-visit his painful past. "I'd come in with some lyrics," Davis recalled, "and we'd go through them line by line and talk about everything that was behind them, and [Robinson] would really want to get inside them. And once I'd get in there and start to sing he would use those things against me, like pouring salt on the wound. He got into my head and took me to a very bad place. I relapsed into f--king depression, hard. I got suicidal. I even had my psychiatrist pissed off, wanting to call him and say, 'What are you doing to this poor kid?' It was getting bad when the doctor started to get involved."
Davis continued that he didn't talk to Robinson "for a long time" after the album was recorded. "But I called him up and said 'thank you,' because he did what he had to do to get this record right. I knew it was necessary, but it was hell."