Song Lyric Sunday — Adult Education

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme, Jim Adams is asking us to find songs about Educate, Learn, School, or Teach. I decided to go with the song “Adult Education” from Daryl Hall and John Oates. This isn’t one of my favorite Hall & Oates songs, but I think it fits nicely with Jim’s theme.

“Adult Education” was released as a single in February 1984 and debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 on February 18. Hall did most of the songwriting on this track, but John Oates and Hall’s girlfriend/writing partner Sara Allen are also on the credits. The song is featured on the duo’s second compilation album Rock ‘n Soul Part 1 (1983). It was one of two new tracks that were recorded specifically for the compilation release and hit number eight on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.

Ostensibly, the song is about the plight of a teenage girl in high school. Her girlfriends only “care about what she wears” and the narrator assures her “there’s life after high school.” The lyrics suggest she is wiser than her years and, in fact, is receiving an education in the behavior of adults in high school.

But in a 2015 interview Daryl Hall said, “That song is about something I still believe: That one of the big problems with the world is people never grow up — no matter how old they get. And the song is a reminder that there is life after high school. That there’s another way of looking at the world, and that other world is a false world and a meaningless world. So that’s really what that’s about.”

Here are the lyrics to “Adult Education.@

It's afternoon in the homeroom and they're about to let you go.
And the locker slams on the plan you had tonight.
You've been messing around with a boyfriend maybe better left alone.
There's a wise guy that you know could put you right.

In the lot the boy that's idling by doesn't rev your heart.
Cause it's only lonely spots he shares with you.
And the long halls and the gray walls are gonna split apart.
Believe it or not there's life after high school.

The student body's got a bad reputation.
What they need is adult education.
Back to school it's a bad situation.
But what you want is an adult education.

The teacher don't know about how to deal with the student body.
And the underclassmen are flashing hot and cool.
All your girlfriends care about the watch you wear and they're talkin' about it.
Believe it or not there's life after high school.

They're calling it a preparation.
You're waiting for a separation.
You're nothing but another odd number,
Memories that you won't remember.
So you got a little education.
And a lot of dedication.
But you want a little night school.
Maybe some of it will rub off on you.
The boys are busy in the mirrors.
Trying to imitate their heroes.
You make it with a false surrender.
More memories you won't remember.
The senior with the junior Miss's
I wonder what the junior wishes.
That she could graduate to adult.
That she could graduate to adult kisses.

8 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday — Adult Education

  1. Nope, Not Pam August 14, 2022 / 3:41 am

    I like this song, good choice 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nancy Richy August 14, 2022 / 4:37 am

    Love Hall & Oates, one of the most under appreciated groups, IMO. They have a fabulous catalog and never disappoint. Thanks for bringing this great song to the table.

    My contribution this Sunday morning is a real banger … “Whole Lotta Love” by Led Zeppelin.

    If you’ve had the pleasure of seeing Zep in person, you’ll know that Robert Plant is a force to be reckoned with. After a Led Zeppelin concert you know you’ve been to a concert! Few artists commanded the stage like Plant.

    I always get great pleasure in telling my friends this little factoid. Back in the day as I squirmed in the 2nd row of the Felt Forum, Robert Plant swung his hips, bent forward, threw his glorious golden locks over his head and splattered me with his sweat! I was in Zep Heaven! It may not sound terribly sexy now but back then, ooh baby!

    Crank up the volume. Here’s “Whole Lotta Love”: https://youtu.be/HQmmM_qwG4k

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango August 14, 2022 / 6:04 am

      I saw a lot of concerts (including Hall & Oates) back in the day, but I never saw Led Zeppelin live. I like Plant, but I’m not sure I’d find being drenched in his sweat sexy…even back then.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nancy Richy August 14, 2022 / 6:11 am

        Well, that’s ’cause you’re a guy so I won’t even bother telling you about his jeans! 😉 I’ve seen so many concerts, I really should write a book. On second thought ……

        Liked by 1 person

  3. newepicauthor August 14, 2022 / 7:10 am

    This song does fit nicely with the theme today, Fandango and it was good to hear it again.

    Liked by 1 person

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