Fall Out Boy recently released an updated version of Billy Joel’s iconic track ‘We Didn’t Start The Fire,’ but fans might have noticed that it doesn’t reference COVID. In a recent interview, Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz discussed the band’s decision and shed light on the lyrics behind the new version.
The original track referenced historical events and figures like Harry Truman, Doris Day, Red China, and Marilyn Monroe. However, in Fall Out Boy’s version, these references have been replaced with contemporary elements such as Captain Planet, Arab Spring, LA riots, and Kurt Cobain.
Wentz explained that the idea for this version had been brewing for a while, and he had been trying to get someone to do it for years. Finally, the band decided to take it upon themselves.
Wentz recalled listening to the original track when he was young and not understanding some of the references, leading him to research further. He described the new version as a fun and goofy thing.
Choosing the references for the updated track was a challenge. Wentz mentioned that they had to consider which elements to include and exclude. Some references from the original were left out because they felt more important or less important in the context of the updated version. Wentz appreciated the original track’s time capsule-like quality, portraying a tapestry of human existence without judgment.
As for the omission of COVID references, Wentz explained that it felt too on the nose. He mentioned other concerns, like Bush V. Gore, that they included for rhyme. Leaving COVID allowed for some unpredictability and ensured that people still had something to discuss and debate.
Ultimately, Fall Out Boy’s version of ‘We Didn’t Start The Fire’ pays homage to the original while incorporating contemporary elements that resonate with the band and their audience. It’s a playful tribute that sparks nostalgia and invites listeners to reflect on the ever-changing fabric of our existence.