Get A Job

Album: Get A Job (1958)
Charted: 1
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • This song was written by group member Richard Lewis when he was in the US army. When Lewis returned to his Philadelphia home, he joined a church quartet, the Gospel Tornadoes, which evolved into a secular group, the Thunderbirds. Says Lewis: "When I was in the service in the early 1950s and didn't come home and go to work my mother said 'Get A Job' and basically that's where the song came from."
  • The Thunderbirds recorded for a local label (Kae Records) owned by DJ Kae Williams, whose first act as manager of the group was to suggest that they change their name. Group member Earl Beal offered The Silhouettes, (after the hit by the Rays, and also the Diamonds), which all concerned liked.
  • When the single started to sell, the master recording was sold to Ember Records, which reissued the record for national distribution. It hit #1 - the only single by the Silhouettes to make the national charts. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Brad Wind - Miami, FL, for all above
  • The '50s revivalists Sha-Na-Na took their name from the "Sha na na na, sha na na na na" refrain in this song. Sha-Na-Na covered the song and performed it at Woodstock in 1969.
  • Kae Williams issued this as B-side of the ballad "I Am Lonely," but Philadelphia record stations chose to spin the upbeat "Get A Job," instead. The record was an immediate hit locally but gained national prominence when the group performed it on Dick Clark's Saturday Night Beechnut Show and American Bandstand.
  • This was featured in the movies American Graffiti (1973), Trading Places (1983), Stand By Me (1986), and Good Morning, Vietnam (1987). The group also appeared in the 1986 movie Joey, centered around a former doo-wop singer and his rock 'n roller son, and sang the tune.
  • The Miracles released the answer song "Got A Job" in 1958 as their debut single.
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Comments: 10

  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenNothing about how this song was referenced in Kenny Loggins's "I'm Alright?"
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyAnswer song by The Miracles @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJ7GltNmDbg&feature=related
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyThe Mills Brothers covered this song. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-XgutIfk18
  • Orlando from Long Island 11978, NyGet A Job...every boy while growing up will hear this..many, many times..its a universal truth..not just your girlfriend either..It Just Is
    We get up in the morning..( yes, you don't even need to know the lyrics) to fully understand its meaning. What makes DooWoop Rock n Roll so universal and transends time...Also as George Hamilton IV sang...If You Don't Know..I Ain't Gonna Tell Ya...I think you know just what I am talking about ! "O"
  • Steve Dotstar from Los Angeles, Cawhat a strange, but "neat" sounding doo wop type song!unique!
  • John from Fort Worth, TxI am so happy for this site. I have liked the sound of "Get A Job" since I was a kid but I could never understand many of the lyrics. It was always frustrating to me when I would hear it on the radio over the years. Now that I have had the chance to learn the lyrics I am waiting to hear the song again. Sometimes I'll sing it to myself just because I know how to! John, 44
  • Fyodor from Denver, CoI assume this is where the band Sha Na Na got their name.
  • Pete from Nowra, Australiasorry make that Get A Job.....DOH!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Pete from Nowra, Australiaremember watching a tv show years ago
    sorta music show, hosted by Dick Clarke

    these guys were on the show never forget the intro

    Yes they're back the Silhouettes performing their hit song Sha na na na .... they could hardly stand up and were miming .... bit sad really
  • Matt from Edmonton, CanadaI think it's a rock n' rolla song
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