Bye Bye Love

Album: The Cars (1978)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • "Bye Bye Love," written by Ric Ocasek, is the seventh track from the group's debut album, The Cars. Benjamin Orr does the lead vocals here - he and Ocasek shared lead vocal duties in the group.
  • This is is not at all to be confused with the song of the same title by The Everly Brothers (and covered by Ray Charles, Simon & Garfunkel, and others). The Everly Brothers song implies a comma: "Bye Bye, Love" where The Cars is: "Bye, Bye Love."

    The Everly's hit is very straightforward: the guy has lost his girl and he's heartbroken. Ric Ocasek didn't write like that: his songs were full of contradictions and ambiguity. This one is more chaotic than most, as we hear the singer losing his mind and blaming it on the girl:

    Substitution mass confusion
    Clouds inside your head
    Well, foggin' all my energies
  • This song has been used in the HBO TV series Big Love in the 2010 episode "The Sins of the Father," where it was chosen for having an '80s sound. Since the song was written and released in 1978, that tells you how far The Cars were looking ahead. The song also appears in the movies Super 8 (2011) and 7 Chinese Brothers (2015).
  • In Frank Moriarty's Seventies Rock - The Decade of Creative Chaos, it is noted that "The clever melding of disparate elements that characterized 1978's The Cars led to an astonishing success for the band, chiefly because the stodgy album-oriented radio stations - which had in large part attempted to ignore punk and New Wave - finally were confronted with new music that they couldn't help but play."

    When the album was released in June 1978, the #1 song in America was "You're The One That I Want" from Grease, followed by Shadow Dancing by Andy Gibb. America had Saturday Night Fever and there seemed to be no cure, so getting something not-disco on the charts at all was a spectacular achievement.

Comments: 6

  • Mike G from MichiganI always thought he sang "With your eyes upon us Banana Blue" when it was really "With your eyes of porcelain and of blue".
  • Tim from ClarkdaleI know this is going to sound cliche but it this song reminds me of doing drugs, acid in particular. Especially the first two stanzas. I mean, it's true that I did drugs during this time period, but I still think there may be drug influence on the lyrics. I am wondering, Does anyone agree with me? Great song btw, One of my favorites.
  • Camille from Toronto, OhOh, and I'm surprised to see this song came out in 1978. I surely thought it didn't make an appearance until the MTV generation began in 1981.
  • Camille from Toronto, OhLove the song and vocals. I always thought the words were "It's orange-ade sky" and see now that the word was "orangy", pretty close but still not a word I've ever heard in any other song. I love the delivery of the song. The verses are sung intensely, while the chorus switches to a more abstract approach, just like a guy whose attention is distracted by looking up at the orangy sky. I think he's in love with a woman who keeps stringing him along. She has no intention of ever really being with him, and he's finally realizing that it's pointless to love her when she always with someone else. So he's giving her the big shove-off. Bye, bye love.
  • Eb from Fl Keys, FlI took a long break from secular music when I became a Christian. When I got back to it a bit, the Cars are one of the bands that I really appreciated musically, that I kind of tended to have overlooked and took for granted before. I really enjoy the poetry of the lyrics in "Bye Bye Love." Great, great song.
  • Steve from Chino Hills, CaThe Cars used a lot of abstract lyrics in their earlier albums. This song sounds like it's a break up song with hints of two timing. Great use of visualization of colors.
    A lot of the 70's music seemed to be geared more toward the sound than the lyrics. Bye, Bye Love doesn't make any great statements, but it did rock hard and moved the album toward the final number "All Mixed Up." I believe the Cars kept Bye, Bye Love very tight. Greg Hawkes kept the keyboard interesting without being annoying. Elliot Easton had a strong riff. It has a hard, destinctive sound that didn't escape the scope of the song and the song was neither too sort or too long.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Meshell Ndegeocello

Meshell NdegeocelloSongwriter Interviews

Meshell Ndegeocello talks about recording "Wild Night" with John Mellencamp, and explains why she shied away from the spotlight.

Commercials

CommercialsFact or Fiction

Was "Ring Of Fire" really used to sell hemorrhoid cream?

Graham Nash

Graham NashSongwriter Interviews

Graham Nash tells the stories behind some of his famous songs and photos, and is asked about "yacht rock" for the first time.

Have Mercy! It's Wolfman Jack

Have Mercy! It's Wolfman JackSong Writing

The story of the legendary lupine DJ through the songs he inspired.

John Kay of Steppenwolf

John Kay of SteppenwolfSongwriter Interviews

Steppenwolf frontman John Kay talks about "Magic Carpet Ride," "Born To Be Wild," and what he values more than awards and accolades.

Graham Parker

Graham ParkerSongwriter Interviews

When Judd Apatow needed under-appreciated rockers for his Knocked Up sequel, he immediately thought of Parker, who just happened to be getting his band The Rumour back together.