Hymn For The Dudes


  • This song was co-written by Ian Hunter and Verden Allen. It was played live for a while before being taped by Allen in October 1972, and re-recorded for the album Mott. In the band's official biography by Campbell Devine, Hunter says he wrote the song for young kids; it's just to say "somebody cares about you."
  • There has been some suggestion that this song has a secondary meaning, and that the plain speaking Hunter penned the song to take a swipe at David Bowie, who gave the band their big break with "All The Young Dudes." In Devine's book, Hunter likens Bowie to a vampire "draining what he wants before moving on to the next victim." Devine himself says the song "appeared to demolish the pedestal Mott had placed Bowie on." The song ends:
    "You ain't the Nazz, you're just a buzz, some kinda temporary."

    Hunter wanted it to end, "Some kinda temporary twat" but was persuaded to drop this, although in his solo career he has been known to perform the original version.
  • Dale Griffin commented that the song was written before Bowie and amended. The track runs to 5:22 and is a hymn in every sense of the word. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for all above

Comments: 3

  • Zebedyzak from UkI know the band performed this song live before Verden Allen left the band, Kevin. Correct me if I am wrong, but I have reason to believe this was the first new song the band did after completing the "All The Young Dudes" album, and they were playing it live about 8 months before it saw the light of day on the totally excellent "Mott" album. As far as I know, Verden left about 6 months before the album was released. The band's official live album in 1974 originally omitted this song, although it was one of several bonus tracks on the later CD edition. Of course, that wasn't the same line-up and the original version on the "Mott" album remains the best.
  • Zebedyzak from UkI have heard the "twat" version and personally I think the inclusion of that word spoils it. Not that I find that word offensive, I just feel that it doesn't belong there. The version of "Hymn For The Dudes" on the "Mott" album is perfect as it is. It doesn't need any extra words added in.
  • Kevin from Los Angeles, CaThe "Twat" version, played live in the studio with Verden Allen when he was still in the band, is on the MTH box set "All the Young Dudes-the Anthology"...there is also a live in concert "twat" version on the "In Performance 1970-1974" box set on Angel Air Records.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Charlie Daniels

Charlie DanielsSongwriter Interviews

Charlie discusses the songs that made him a Southern Rock icon, and settles the Devil vs. Johnny argument once and for all.

David Clayton-Thomas of Blood, Sweat & Tears

David Clayton-Thomas of Blood, Sweat & TearsSongwriter Interviews

The longtime BS&T frontman tells the "Spinning Wheel" story, including the line he got from Joni Mitchell.

Modern A Cappella with Peder Karlsson of The Real Group

Modern A Cappella with Peder Karlsson of The Real GroupSong Writing

The leader of the Modern A Cappella movement talks about the genre.

Band Names

Band NamesFact or Fiction

Was "Pearl" Eddie Vedder's grandmother, and did she really make a hallucinogenic jam? Did Journey have a contest to name the group? And what does KISS stand for anyway?

Muhammad Ali: His Musical Legacy and the Songs he Inspired

Muhammad Ali: His Musical Legacy and the Songs he InspiredSong Writing

Before he was the champ, Ali released an album called I Am The Greatest!, but his musical influence is best heard in the songs he inspired.

Songs Discussed in Movies

Songs Discussed in MoviesSong Writing

Bridesmaids, Reservoir Dogs, Willy Wonka - just a few of the flicks where characters discuss specific songs, sometimes as a prelude to murder.