Swing, Swing

Album: The All-American Rejects (2002)
Charted: 13 60
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  • The All-American Rejects guitarist Nick Wheeler writes the music for their songs, while lead singer Tyson Ritter handles the lyrics. Ritter was 18 when he wrote this song, and it was inspired by real events; Ritter says he had a rough relationship and found it difficult to move on after the breakup. His heart may have been crushed by a former love, but he soon found a new one: the model/actress Kim Smith, who had a starring role in the 'N Sync "Bye Bye Bye" video. Ritter and Smith dated for about 6 years, which meant he had to evolve as a songwriter; with no more real life heartbreak to draw from, he had to create drama for songs like "Dirty Little Secret" and "Gives You Hell." After the breakup, Ritter went through an understandable period of boorish behavior and lack of productivity, but was once again able to write from experience on songs like "Beekeeper's Daughter." In 2012, Nick Wheeler, who went through a similar breakup, told us how they got through it: "What we learned in writing this record (Kids In The Street, 2012) is we just really had to push ourselves even harder. Lyrically, Ty had to dig way deeper than he had before. We've been doing this for a decade and we've had lots of life-changing experiences, both personally and professionally, and there's plenty to say, there's plenty to write about. It's just, in order to air this stuff out in public, it takes some digging, and some confidence, and a lot of bravery."
  • This was The All-American Rejects first single, and it got them a deal with DreamWorks, who picked up the album from Doghouse Records, where it was first released. In our talk with Nick Wheeler, he explained: "'Swing, Swing' just really came to us, and we knew that was special. We wrote it and we put it aside. That was when we were writing our first record. We'd just gotten signed to Doghouse Records, we only had five songs to our name. We're like, All right, cool. Give you a 3-album deal, finish writing the songs, let's go make the first record. Okay. So the next month, we wrote 6 more songs, 'Swing Swing' was one of them. We knew that was special, but we were on a little label that didn't really talk to radio or MTV, so there really wasn't talk of a single. Turns out it turned the heads of a lot of publishers and label people, and we got to go on this incredible ride because of that song a little over ten years ago. This was when record labels still flew bands out to LA and New York and they still signed, they weren't dropping them left and right. They took us out to these lavish dinners, threw this cash at us - we'd go to strip clubs, it was retarded. You don't get to do that anymore. Being in a new band right now has got to be the most difficult thing. There are no guitars on the radio. It's just different right now. But thanks to that song and thanks to the fact that it was 10 years ago, it really did us right."
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