Quintessential Songs of the ’00s: #5 “Use Somebody”

Truth be told, there are about 45 other Kings of Leon songs that I’d like to plug in here — I’ve been a huge fan since Youth and Young Manhood in 2003 — but there’s no doubt that “Use Somebody” is KoL’s signature tune. It hit #4 on the Billboard Hot 100, won three Grammys and is by far the band’s biggest hit.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great track. It has the kind of soaring, arena-filling chorus that the Followills weren’t even trying to write until about four years ago.

It always puzzled me why the band didn’t hit it big earlier in their career, especially with the way the UK adores them. But hey, better late than never.

From the song’s wiki page:

On U.S. radio, the song was a multi-format smash, becoming just the fourth song in history to top the Mainstream Top 40, Adult Top 40, Alternative Songs, and Triple A charts.[9] The three prior being “Slide” by the Goo Goo Dolls, “Every Morning” by Sugar Ray, and “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” by Green Day.

From SongFacts:

Caleb told Uncut magazine October 2008 the story of the song: “The meat of song was written on tour. When I came up with ‘I could use somebody,’ I didn’t know if I was talking about a person or home or God. I felt immediately that it was a big song, and it scared me away. Then, when we were writing the record, Matthew kept sayin’, ‘What’s that song, man?’, and I acted like I didn’t know what he was talking about. Then, finally, I went, ‘All right, we’ll do it,’ and as soon as we started playin’ it, the producers looked up and said, ‘Whoa, that’s a good song.’ I was like, ‘OK.'”

More Quintessential Songs of the ’00s.