Greg Kihn Band – The Breakup Song (They Don’t Write ‘Em)

The Breakup song was released in 1981 and peaked at #15 on the Billboard 100. Greg Kihn would later have a top hit ten hit “Jeopardy” when it reached #2 in 1983. Kihn had 7 songs in total in the top 100.

The song was off of the album  RocKihnRoll.

This is an interview with Greg Kihn in 2011 about writing the song.

Oh, yeah. There are times in your life that the way is clear. I remember coming home from a gig with the guys. We were in a van, and we pulled up to where I used to live. All of my stuff was piled up on the lawn, and it was raining.

I thought, “Oh, God. My first wife had done it.” We pulled up to the house, and I remember Steve, the bass player, looked at me and just went, “Well, you might as well just keep on going. You’re not going in there.”

There was a Japanese restaurant. I went up there with Stevie, and we were pounding down hot sake. I didn’t know where else to go. It was a cold, rainy night, and we were getting toasted. There was an old Japanese dude there at the sake bar, and he kept saying, “They don’t write ‘em like that anymore.” I thought, Yeah, damn. They don’t, do they? So we got the idea, we wrote that song probably in 15 minutes. All of the great songs are written quickly, by the way.

You have to take a lesson that the stuff that’s real, it’s in you and it’s got to come out like that song. I’d really broken up that very day. It wasn’t like I was trying to feel like what’s a guy like when he’s broken up. I was living it. When things are real, they’re always better than when they’re fiction, if you can dig what I’m saying.

 

The Breakup Song

We had broken up for good just an hour before
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
And now I’m staring at the bodies as they’re dancing ‘cross the floor
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
And then the band slowed the tempo and the music took me down
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
It was the same old song, with a melancholy sound
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah

They don’t write ’em like that anymore
They just don’t write ’em like that anymore

We’d been living together for a million years
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
But now it feels so strange out in the atmospheres
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
And then the jukebox plays a song I used to know
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
And now I’m staring at the bodies as they’re dancing so slow
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah

They don’t write ’em like that anymore
They don’t write ’em like that anymore
Oh

Hey
Now I wind up staring at an empty glass
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah
‘Cause it’s so easy to say that you’ll forget your past
Ah ah ah, ah ah ah ah ah

They don’t write ’em like that anymore, no
They just don’t write ’em like that anymore
They don’t write ’em like that anymore
They just don’t write ’em like that anymore
They just don’t, no, they don’t
No, no, uh-uh