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Song IconMen At Work "Down Under"

About "Down Under"

"Down Under" is a song recorded by Australian rock band Men at Work. It was originally released in 1980 as the B-side to their first local single, "Keypunch Operator", released before the band signed with Columbia Records. Both early songs were written by the group's co-founders, Colin Hay and Ron Strykert. The early version of "Down Under" has a slightly different tempo and arrangement from the later Columbia release. The best-known version was then released on Columbia in 1981 as the second single from their debut album Business as Usual (1981).

The hit song went to number one in their home country Australia in December 1981, and then topped the New Zealand charts in February 1982. The song topped the Canadian charts in October 1982. In the United States, the song debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 on 6 November 1982 at No. 79, and reached No. 1 in January 1983. Topping the US Billboard chart for four non-consecutive weeks, it eventually sold over two million copies in the US alone. Billboard ranked it at No. 4 for 1983. In the UK, the song topped the charts in January and February 1983: the only Men at Work song to make the UK top 20. The song also went to No. 1 in Denmark, Ireland, Italy and Switzerland, and was a top 10 hit in many other countries.

"Down Under" is perceived as a patriotic song in Australia; it remains popular and is often played at sporting events. In January 2018, as part of Triple M's "Ozzest 100", the 'most Australian' songs of all time so far, "Down Under" was ranked number 2 behind Cold Chisel's "Khe Sanh".

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