Exploring the Fall Out Boy Remix: A Critique of “We Didn’t Start The Fire”


In a recent announcement, American rock band Fall Out Boy revealed that they had recorded an updated version of Billy Joel’s iconic song, “We Didn’t Start The Fire.” However, it quickly became evident that their rendition fell short of capturing the essence and significance of the original. While Joel’s version masterfully summarized important historical events, Fall Out Boy’s attempt seemed to be the result of a quick internet search on world events since 1989. As we delve into the lyrics, it becomes apparent that the band overlooked several crucial events and individuals, both within the United States and globally.

A Lackluster Remake: The Fall Out Boy Remix

Before we proceed, it is essential to stress that listening to Fall Out Boy’s remix is not recommended. The true extent of its awfulness is better understood by reading the lyrics and taking our word for it. The band’s feeble attempt to recreate the magic of “We Didn’t Start The Fire” is evident throughout the song.

Glaring Omissions: Events and People Neglected

While Fall Out Boy attempts to cover a wide range of events and figures, there are undeniably glaring omissions that diminish the credibility of their remix. The band’s haphazard approach to selecting the content for their song becomes evident as we analyze the overlooked events and people.

Neglected World Events

  1. The Fall of the Berlin Wall: One of the most momentous events in modern history, the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, symbolized the end of the Cold War and the reunification of Germany. Fall Out Boy’s oversight of this event is puzzling.
  2. Nelson Mandela’s Release: In 1990, Nelson Mandela, an influential figure in the fight against apartheid in South Africa, was released from prison after spending 27 years incarcerated. This event marked a significant milestone in the country’s journey towards democracy and equality.
  3. Rwandan Genocide: The horrific genocide in Rwanda in 1994, resulting in the loss of hundreds of thousands of lives, was a deeply tragic event with profound implications for Africa and the world. Fall Out Boy’s failure to address this devastating event is regrettable.

Overlooked U.S. Events

  1. September 11 Attacks: The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, shook the United States and had a lasting impact on global politics and security. Ignoring this pivotal event is a disservice to the collective memory and significance of that day.
  2. Hurricane Katrina: The devastating hurricane that struck the Gulf Coast in 2005, particularly affecting New Orleans, showcased the vulnerability of American infrastructure and the need for disaster preparedness. Fall Out Boy’s failure to acknowledge this disaster is a missed opportunity to reflect on resilience and recovery.
  3. Barack Obama’s Presidency: The election of Barack Obama as the first African American president in 2008 was a historic moment in American history. His presidency brought about significant social and political changes that deserved recognition in any homage to major events.


In their ill-conceived remix of “We Didn’t Start The Fire,” Fall Out Boy disappointingly failed to capture the essence of the original song. Their superficial approach to highlighting events and individuals since 1989 neglected significant world events and pivotal moments in U.S. history. The oversight of crucial events such as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Rwandan Genocide, the September 11 attacks, Hurricane Katrina, and Barack Obama’s presidency diminishes the impact and credibility of Fall Out Boy’s remix. As we reflect on the rich tapestry of history, it is essential to recognize and commemorate the events and people who have shaped our world.

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