Reel Big Fish Catches "Authority Song"

Southern California ska-punk band Reel Big Fish has recorded a version of the Mellencamp classic “Authority Song” for its next album “Fame, Fortune and Fornication,” to be released Jan. 20, 2009.

“I’ve just always really loved this song since I was little, and I think a lot of the younger kids will enjoy this version and be able to appreciate this amazing song!” Reel Big Fish frontman Aaron Barrett told “The words really sound like a punk rock anthem--it could have easily been an Operation Ivy song or a Sex Pistols song. Also, I have a giant list of songs in my head that I've always wanted to cover and this is one of the ones that has been way at the top of my list for a long time.”

Barrett also produced the album, which also includes features such estimable covers as Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down,” The Eagles’ “The Long Run,” and reggae pioneers Toots and the Maytals’ “Monkey Man.” In support of the disc, the popular group is touring Latin America, the U.S., U.K., Europe and Russia.

Incidentally, emo group Jimmy Eat World tributed “Authority Song” in its own “Authority Song” on its 2001 “Bleed American” album. More recently, punk power poppers Bowling for Soup referenced Mellencamp on its 2006 “The Great Burrito Extortion Case” album track “Luckiest Loser.”