On Friday Cee-Lo debuted a delightful new song with the simplest, most uncouth title possible: “Fuck You.” It immediately joined the upper echelons of a surprisingly crowded genre — from 50 Cent to Pharoahe Monch, the Avengers to Pussy Galore, Lil Kim to Atmosphere, there are lots of songs named “Fuck You” or immediate permutations thereof (“Fuck You Lucy,” “I Love You, But Fuck You,” and so on). Here are 10 of the best.
The Stiffs, “Fuck You”
Here’s the original version of the oft-covered Canadian punk classic (see versions by Subhumans, Overkill, and D.O.A., among others), originally penned by one Gerry Hannah, a/k/a Gerry Useless, who later did five years in prison for remarkably intense political activism: “Among other actions, the group blew up an environmentally unfriendly hydroelectric substation on Vancouver Island and bombed the Litton plant near Toronto, which manufactured parts for the American cruise missile, a ‘first strike’ nuclear weapon.” He really meant it, in other words.
Alabama’s finest possibly ascendant white rapper offers an excellent A-Team-remake theme song and/or personal ringtone. Having seen this performed live on multiple occasions I can confirm that people find it at least moderately amusing. That he looks like Trent Reznor helps in terms of conveying sincerity. Feel free to just listen to the first seven seconds on a loop.
Lily Allen, “Fuck You”
Britain’s Sweetheart goes the ironically peppy route in this alleged George W. Bush/British National Party riposte. Not one of the better moments on It’s Not Me, It’s You, but gay-rights activists appreciate the bode of confidence.
Methods of Mayhem, “Proposition Fuck You”
Pretty sure this one’s gonna pass: Here we have the only remotely tolerable moment on the self-titled debut of Tommy Lee’s rap-rock side project, Methods of Mayhem. Yeah, that Tommy Lee. Give him credit for anticipating the health-care debate by 10 years.
Anna David, “Fuck You”
Anna David is basically the Nikka Costa of Denmark. This has 1.3 million plays on YouTube. Pretty sure it soundtracks a montage in Eat Pray Love. If it doesn’t, it should’ve.
The Queers, “I Just Called to Say Fuck You”
The Queers’ first full-length was titled Grow Up; they did not. Stevie Wonder is officially on notice. Fun fact: Appears on the album Beyond the Valley of the Assfuckers.
Wesley Willis, “Fuck You”
You had to know this would happen.
The-Dream, “Florida University”
As usual, The-Dream finds a way to be both more and less mature. Pre-chorus: “This is short for ‘Florida University.'” Chorus: “F-U. F-U. F-U. F-U.” Fun fact: I still love this song.
Smashing Pumpkins, “Fuck You (Ode to No One)”
Billy Corgan’s omnidirectional rage, here resplendent on a Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness deep cut, only gets funnier with time. Take that, Pavement.
Cee-Lo, “Fuck You”
I hereby declare this the best song named “Fuck You” ever written — funny, catchy, cheerfully hostile. Great video, too. There’s no reason to ever try to do this again, really. Of course, inevitably, someone will.