|Single by Everclear|
|from the album Sparkle and Fade|
|B-side||"Heroin Girl" (live)|
|Released||December 5, 1995 (radio)|
|Everclear singles chronology|
"Santa Monica" (subtitled "Watch the World Die" in Europe) is a song by American rock band Everclear, from their 1995 album Sparkle and Fade. The song was written by the band's lead singer, Art Alexakis. Though it was not officially released as a single in the United States, American radio stations played "Santa Monica" enough for it to reach number 29 on the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart and top the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart for three weeks in 1996. It became a top-forty hit in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom; it is the band's highest-charting single in Australia.
In an October 2003 interview with Songfacts, Alexakis explained the song:
I'm using a place where I grew up and palm trees as iconic references. It's what I grew up with. I grew up in a seaside town called Santa Monica, which is like L.A. but on the coast. I've lived in cold places and been in bad relationships, and I think everybody has a place in their mind that is like a safe haven. It's also about getting away from bad times ... the ending of something is also the beginning of something new, whether it's with someone or getting out of a bad job, a bad way of life or an abusive relationship.
When Alexakis was a teenager, his girlfriend committed suicide; shortly thereafter, Alexakis attempted the same by jumping off the Santa Monica Pier in southern California. One theory[according to whom?] as to the meaning of this song is that Alexakis was drawing on this experience from earlier in his life.
US 7-inch jukebox single
UK limited-edition 7-inch red vinyl
Australian CD single
Sparkle and Fade became a surprise hit thanks to "Santa Monica," a gritty, infectious grunge hit that captured Everclear at their best.