The Tide Is High

The Tide Is High
"The Tide Is High"
Single by The Paragons
A-side "Only a Smile"
Released 1967
Genre Rocksteady
Length 3:50
Label Treasure Isle Records
Writer(s) John Holt
The Paragons singles chronology
- "The Tide Is High"

"The Tide Is High" is a 1967 song written by John Holt and originally performed by The Paragons with John Holt as lead singer. The song went mainly unnoticed in the rest of the world until it was rediscovered in 1980 when it became a US/UK number 1 hit for the band Blondie. The British girl group Atomic Kitten also had a no.1 with their version of the song in 2002, and it was also a hit for Kardinal Offishall.


The Paragons version

The song was written by John Holt and originally recorded by The Paragons, the vocal trio of which he was a member. It was produced by Duke Reid and released as a 7-inch single on Reid's Treasure Isle and Trojan labels and as the B-side of the "Only a Smile" single.[1]

The song features the violin of "White Rum" Raymond and was popular in Jamaica and became popular amongst West Indians and skinheads in the UK when a deejay version by U-Roy was released in 1971. Both tracks from the single were included on the 1970 collection On the Beach.


  1. "Only a Smile"
  2. "The Tide Is High" — 2:53

Gregory Isaacs version

The song was released as a single in 1978 by Gregory Isaacs, a version produced by "Prince" Tony Robinson. It was released on the State Line label in the US, on Isaacs own African Museum label in Jamaica, and on the Front Line label in Jamaica as a 12-inch discomix featuring a new deejay version by U Roy.[1]


  1. "The Tide Is High" (Gregory Isaacs/U Roy)
  2. "Step It Out a Yard"

Blondie version

"The Tide Is High"
Single by Blondie
from the album The Best of Blondie and Autoamerican
B-side "Suzy & Jeffrey"
Released November 1980 (UK)[2]
March 1981 (US)
Format 7"
Recorded 1980
Genre New Wave, Reggae, Ska
Length 4:39 (Album Version)
3:55 (Edit)
Label Chrysalis Records
Certification Gold (US)
Blondie singles chronology
"The Tide Is High"
Music sample
The Tide Is High

"The Tide Is High" was covered by US new wave band Blondie in 1980, in a reggae/ska style that included horns and strings. It was released as a single, and appeared on the band's fifth album, Autoamerican. It reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, and was popular outside the USA, reaching number one on the UK singles chart, number four in Australia, and number fifteen in the former West Germany.[3] It was the last UK number one single for the band until "Maria" in 1999. The B-side of "The Tide Is High" was "Suzie and Jeffrey", which appeared as a bonus track on the original 1980 cassette edition of the album Autoamerican and was also included on EMI-Capitol's re-issue of Autoamerican in 2001.

Official remixes of the Blondie version have been issued twice. First by Coldcut in 1988 on the Blondie/Debbie Harry remix compilation Once More into the Bleach and the second time in 1995 by Pete Arden and Vinny Vero on the album Remixed Remade Remodeled - The Remix Project (UK edition: Beautiful - The Remix Album).

In November 1980, the song was played on radio stations across the state of Alabama in anticipation of a football game between the University of Alabama, whose nickname is the Crimson Tide, and the University of Notre Dame.

In 1981, Swedish singer Siw Inger recorded a German language version of the song. Although the lyrics are not a direct translation, the vocal and instrumental arrangements are virtually identical.

In 1984, Nigerian singer Onyeka Onwenu covered the song for the album In the Morning Light. A year later, parts of this song were taken and used as a sample for Bryan Adams' "Reggae Christmas".

7" Vinyl Tracklist

  1. "The Tide Is High" (7" Edit) — 3:54
  2. "Suzy & Jeffrey" — 4:09

7" Vinyl Re-issue

  1. "The Tide Is High" (7" Edit) — 3:54
  2. "Rapture" — 4:59


Chart Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 1 Gold
U.S. Billboard AC Singles 3 Gold
UK Singles Chart 1 Gold[4]
New Zealand Singles Chart 1 Gold
Irish Singles Chart 2  
Dutch Top 40 4  
Netherlands Singles Chart 5  
Swiss Singles Chart 5  
Austrian Singles Chart 6  
Norwegian Singles Chart 7  
Swedish Singles Chart[5] 19  
Preceded by
"Woman in Love" by Barbra Streisand
UK Singles Chart number-one single (Blondie version)
15 November 1980 - 22 November 1980
Succeeded by
"Super Trouper" by ABBA
Preceded by
"(Just Like) Starting Over" by John Lennon
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single (Blondie version)
January 31, 1981
Succeeded by
"Celebration" by Kool & the Gang
Preceded by
"Shaddap Your Face" by Joe Dolce
New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart number-one single (Blondie version)
February 13, 1981 - February 20, 1981
Succeeded by
"Woman" by John Lennon
Preceded by
"You're Too Late" by Fantasy
Billboard Hot Dance Club Play number-one single (with "Rapture")
February 28, 1981 - March 21, 1981
Succeeded by
"Breaking and Entering" / "Easy Money" by Dee Dee Sharp-Gamble

Papa Dee version

"The Tide Is High"
Single by Papa Dee
from the album The Journey
Released June 23, 1996
Format CD
Genre Rap, dancehall
Length 3:55
Label WEA Records
Papa Dee singles chronology
"The First Cut Is the Deepest"
"The Tide Is High"

In 1996, Papa Dee covered the song on his Album The Journey. Unlike the original, this version is very dancehall-heavy and includes influences from the rap scene. It was released only as a CD-Single and the Bonustrack is the mixture Funky Raggamuffin/Let the Music Play.

Track listings

CD Single

  1. The Tide Is High 3:55
  2. Funky Raggamuffin/Let the Music Play 5:01


Country Peak
Finnish Singles Chart [6] 20
Swedish Singles Chart[7] 44

Billie Piper version

In 2000, "The Tide Is High" was covered by singer-turned-actress Billie Piper for her second album, Walk of Life. It was due for release in early 2001. However, according to Piper's autobiography, Growing Pains, she told Virgin Records (her record label) not to bother releasing "The Tide Is High" as a single because she was worn out and didn't want to sing anymore after appearing in court against a woman named Juliet Peters who had given Piper, her friends and her family numerous death threats.

Atomic Kitten version

"The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)"
Single by Atomic Kitten
from the album Feels So Good
B-side "Dancing In The Street"
Released August 26, 2002
Format CD single, Cassette
Genre Dance-pop
Length 3:26
Label Virgin Records
Producer Bill Padley, Jem Godfrey
Certification Platinum (RIANZ)
Atomic Kitten singles chronology
"It's OK!"
"The Tide Is High"
"Be With You / The Last Goodbye"

"The Tide Is High" was re-recorded by girl group Atomic Kitten, and was released as the second single from their second studio album, Feels So Good. This time, the song was remade with keyboards to make it more pop-oriented. Their version of the song also added a new bridge, hence the subtitle "Get The Feeling". The full song was played during the opening credits of The Lizzie McGuire Movie, and was also used for a TV commercial featuring Japanese beer company, Asahi Breweries. It was the band's first and only single to chart on the official American Billboard Hot 100 with a peak position of #42. This was the groups third and final number one single.

Spanish version

Atomic Kitten also recorded a Spanish version of the single, titled "Ser Tu Pasion". It was released in Colombia, Mexico and Spain, but failed to chart. However, the song promoted Atomic Kitten's second studio album Feels So Good in Mexico, and in doing so, peaked at #69 on the albums chart; it was also included on the Spanish version of Atomic Kitten's Greatest Hits album. The song is very rare, but is available to listen to on YouTube.[8]

Music video

The music video is invariably Atomic Kitten's most famous music video due to the fact of band member Natasha Hamilton being heavly pregnant in the video. The music video begins with the group walking up to the screen. A flashing rainbow can be seen in the background. Whenever the chorus of the song is on, a dance accompanies it. Natasha, Liz and Jenny do a simplistic dance that they also did during live performances. Whilst they dance, four men are also dancing alongside the group with slightly different moves - they also accompanied the live performances. Behind them is a sign that says "Atomic" that flashes throughout the music video. The dance that accompanies the music video has become extremely famous. Each of the group has a different set for their solo. Liz's is next to a silver tree, with a purple background with a repeating pattern of the same tree that she is dancing next to. Jenny's is next to a car, and Natasha's is in a pink room.

Track listings


  1. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Radio Mix) - 3:28
  2. "Album Medley" - 5:10
  3. "Dancing In The Street" - 3:39
  4. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Video)


  1. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Radio Mix) — 3:28
  2. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Groove Brothers 12" Remix) — 5:27
  3. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Lasgo Remix) — 5:40

UK Cassette

  1. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Radio Mix) - 3:28
  2. "Album Medley" - 5:10
  3. "The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling)" (Groove Brothers Radio Edit) - 3:20

Chart performance

The song did extremely well in the charts, managing to sell over 1.5 million worldwide. The single peaked at #3 in the European charts, and #6 in the worldwide singles chart.[9] It became their second best charting and selling single of their career. In the United Kingdom, the single sold 145,000 copied in its first week, and topped the charts for 3 simultaneous weeks. It was eventually certified Gold, and sold over 410,000 copies in the UK. In Oceania, the song did particularly well. It went platinum in both New Zealand, and Australia, selling approximately 150,000 copies over there. It spent twelve weeks in the Australian top ten, four of which were at #4 - its peak position. This was better than "Whole Again", which only spent ten weeks in the top 10. "The Tide Is High" was also a Christmas hit over there. In New Zealand, the song spent four weeks at #1, and three weeks at #2. The song also spent four weeks at #1 in Ireland. In Germany, the single debuted at #8. In its next week, it peaked at #3 on the chart becoming their second highest charting single over there, where it stayed for 2 weeks. It managed to stay in the top 10 for five weeks. It sold over 100,000 copies. In the rest of German-Speaking Europe, it also peaked at #3 in Austria for two simultaneous weeks, and in Switzerland, it peaked at #4, and spent four weeks in the top 10. The song did exceptionally well all over Europe, becoming a top 20 hit everywhere - except for Italy, where it peaked at #30, and France, where it only managed to peak at #42. Atomic Kitten's only single or album to get anywhere into the top 20 in France was "Eternal Flame", making them one-hit wonders over there. "The Tide Is High" was also a huge success in Asia, becoming the "Best British Single" of 2002.

Charts, Peaks and Certifications


Chart Peak
United Kingdom 1
The Republic of Ireland[10] 1
New Zealand[11] 1
The Netherlands[12] 2
Austria[13] 3
Germany[14] 3
Europe[15] 3
Australia[16] 4
Switzerland[17] 4
Sweden[18] 5
Belgium (Flanders)[19] 5
Taiwan[20] 6
Hungary[21] 6
Denmark[22] 10
Norway[23] 11
Portugal[24] 14
Italy[25] 30
Belgium (Wallonia)[26] 33
France[27] 42
Hot 100[28] 42


Country Certification
Australia Platinum[29] 70,000+
New Zealand Platinum[30] 15,000+
United Kingdom Gold[31] 446,802

End of year charts

Country Chart Ranking
United Kingdom 2002 UK Year-end-singles 13[32]
Ireland 2002 Irish Year-end-singles 15[33]
Australia 2002 Australian Year-end-singles 32[34]
2003 Australian Year-end-singles 38[35]
New Zealand 2002 NZ Year-end-singles 38[36]
Belgium (Flanders) 2002 Belgium Year-end-singles 41[37]
Austria 2002 Austrian Year-end-singles 43[38]
Switzerland 2002 Swiss Year-end-singles 61[39]

Succession and procession

Preceded by
"Like a Prayer" by MadHouse
Irish Singles Chart number-one single
August 31, 2002 - September 21, 2002
Succeeded by
"Complicated" by Avril Lavigne
Preceded by
"Tha Crossroads" by Blazin' Squad
UK Singles Chart number-one single
September 1, 2002 - September 21, 2002
Succeeded by
"Just Like a Pill" by Pink
Preceded by
"Complicated" by Avril Lavigne
New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart number-one single
October 20, 2002 - November 10, 2002
Succeeded by
"The Ketchup Song (Asereje)" by Las Ketchup

Kardinal Offishall version

"Numba 1 (Tide Is High)"
Single by Kardinal Offishall featuring Keri Hilson
from the album Not 4 Sale
B-side "Nina"
Released September 2008 (Radio)
October 14, 2008 (iTunes)
Format Digital download, CD single, 12" single, 7" single
Recorded 2008
Genre Canadian hip hop, dancehall
Length 3:43 (Album Version)
3:41 (Radio Edit)
Label Kon Live/Geffen/Black Jays
Writer(s) J. Harrow, D. Chin-Quee, J. Holt
Producer Supa Dups
Certification Gold (CRIA)[40]
Kardinal Offishall singles chronology
"Set It Off"
"Numba 1 (Tide Is High)"
Keri Hilson chronology
"Return the Favor"
"Numba 1 (Tide Is High)"
"Turnin' Me On"

"Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" is the latest version of "The Tide Is High", performed by Canadian rapper Kardinal Offishall featuring Keri Hilson. Produced by Supa Dups, the song – a percussive, dancehall-infused hip hop update – was released in September 2008 as the fourth single from his fourth album Not 4 Sale.[41] It was released on iTunes on October 14. In March 2010, the single was certified Gold by the CRIA.[40]

Aside from the album version, which features Rihanna, there are three other versions of "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)". The second is the original version, featuring Nicole Scherzinger. A third version features Rihanna and Nicole Scherzinger. The fourth version is the official single and features Keri Hilson. There is also a mash-up version which features Rihanna, Nicole Scherzinger and Keri Hilson.

The music video premiered on October 24, 2008 at Yahoo! Music.[42] It was directed by Gil Green, and Akon makes a cameo appearance.[43] The song "Nina" is featured at the end of the video.


12" single

  1. "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" (Radio Version) — 3:41
  2. "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" (Instrumental) — 3:41

7" single

  1. "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)"
  2. "Nina"



Chart Peak
Canadian Hot 100[45] 38
Hot Canadian Digital Singles[46] 1 32
German Black Charts[47] 1 1
Turkey Top 20 Chart[48] 5
UK R&B Chart 29
UK Singles Chart[49] 84

Rihanna and Nicole Scherzinger versions1

Other covers

  • In 1975, the song was covered by Johnny Clarke on his album Moving Out
  • In 1980, the song was covered by Top of the Poppers
  • In 1981, a German version, "Die Zeit ist reif," was covered by Siw Inger
  • In 1995, the song was covered by Sinitta
  • In 1996, the song was covered by Angelina
  • In 1996, a Spanish version, "La numero uno", was covered by Nydia Rojas
  • In 1998, the song was covered by Take 5
  • In 2001, the song was covered by Seeed
  • In 2006, the song was covered by The Selecter
  • In 2009, the song was covered by Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez
  • In 2011, the song was covered by Andres Calamaro
  • In 2011, the song was covered by Free Wild


  1. ^ a b Roots Knotty Roots, Nighthawk Records, 2002
  2. ^ "Recording: The Tide Is High - Blondie". SHS - secondhandsongs. Retrieved 2011-05-17. 
  3. ^ Collins, Roger. "Blondie". Iomusic News. Retrieved 2008-12-29. 
  4. ^ Certification "Tide Is High" (Blondie) Accessed: October 29, 2006
  5. ^ "Tide Is High" (Blondie) page Accessed: October 28, 2006
  6. ^ "Tide Is High" (Papa Dee) page. Accessed: October 29, 2006
  7. ^ "Tide Is High" (Papa Dee) page. Accessed: October 29, 2006
  8. ^ [1] Youtube - Ser Tu Passion by Atomic Kitten
  9. ^ [2] Chart positions for the tide is high
  10. ^ Irish charts 31 August 2001 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  11. ^ "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) page Accessed: October 29, 2006
  12. ^ Chart week 38, 2002 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  13. ^ "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) page. Accessed: October 28, 2006
  14. ^ German charts 12 October 2002 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  15. ^
  16. ^ Australian chart 20 October 2002 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  17. ^ Swiss chart Accessed: July 21, 2008
  18. ^ "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) page Accessed: October 29, 2006
  19. ^ [3]
  20. ^ [4]
  21. ^ [5]
  22. ^ Danish chart 14 September 2002 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  23. ^ "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) page Accessed: October 29, 2006
  24. ^ Portuguese chart 30 October 2002 Accessed: November 2, 2006
  25. ^ [6]
  26. ^ [7]
  27. ^ "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) page Accessed: October 29, 2006
  28. ^ [8]
  29. ^ Certifications 2002 Accessed: October 29, 2006
  30. ^ [9] New Zealand Certifications
  31. ^ Certification "Tide Is High" (Atomic Kitten) Accessed: October 29, 2006
  32. ^ [10] Best selling singles 2002 for the united kingdom
  33. ^ [11] Best selling singles in Ireland(2002)
  34. ^ [12] Best selling singles in Australia(2002)
  35. ^ [13] Best selling singles in Australia(2003)
  36. ^ [14] Best selling singles in New Zealand(2002)
  37. ^ [15] Best selling singles in Belgium Flanders(2002)
  38. ^ [16] Best selling singles in Austria(2002)
  39. ^ [17] Best selling singles in Switzerland(2002)
  40. ^ a b Gold & Platinum Certifications for March 2010 CRIA. Accessed on October 31, 2010.
  41. ^ Kardinal Offishall interview by Pete Lewis, 'Blues & Soul' February 2009 Accessed on October 5, 2009.
  42. ^ Kardinal Offishall Numba 1 (Tide Is High) Music Video on Yahoo! Music. Yahoo. Accessed on October 24, 2008.
  43. ^ Making of "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" featuring Keri Hilson. MySpaceTV. Accessed on October 21, 2008.
  44. ^ a b Kardinal Offishall Exclusive Interview Champ Magazine. Accessed on November 27, 2008.
  45. ^ "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" (Kardinal Offishall) page. Accessed: November 4, 2008.
  46. ^ "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" (Kardinal Offishall) page. Accessed: October 5, 2008.
  47. ^ "Numba 1 (Tide Is High)" (Kardinal Offishall) page. Accessed: October 5, 2008.
  48. ^ Turkey Top 20 Chart Retrieved on 2009-02-16
  49. ^ UK Singles Chart Retrieved on 2009-02-14

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • The Tide Is High — The Paragons Veröffentlichung 1967 Länge 2:45 Genre(s) Soul/Rocksteady Autor(en) John Holt …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • The Tide Is High — Single par The Paragons Face A Tide Is High Face B Happy Go Lucky Girl Sortie 1967 Genre Rocksteady …   Wikipédia en Français

  • lag of the tide — the interval by which the time of high or low water falls behind the mean time in the 2d and 4th quarters of the moon opposed to priming of the tide …   Useful english dictionary

  • Retardation of the tide — Retardation Re tar*da tion, n. [L. retardatio: cf. F. retardation.] 1. The act of retarding; hindrance; the act of delaying; as, the retardation of the motion of a ship; opposed to {acceleration}. [1913 Webster] The retardations of our fluent… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Lag of the tide — Lag Lag, n. 1. One who lags; that which comes in last. [Obs.] The lag of all the flock. Pope. [1913 Webster] 2. The fag end; the rump; hence, the lowest class. [1913 Webster] The common lag of people. Shak. [1913 Webster] 3. The amount of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • priming of the tide — acceleration of the time of high or low water in the 1st and 3d quarters of the moon opposed to lag of the tide …   Useful english dictionary

  • mean rise of the tide — the height of mean high water above the plane of reference or datum of chart …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • The Paragons — was an influential rocksteady band from Kingston, Jamaica, operating in the 1960s.CareerThe Paragons were originally Garth Tyrone Evans, Bob Andy, Junior Menz, and Leroy Stamp. In 1964 Stamp was replaced by John Holt, and Howard Barret replaced… …   Wikipedia

  • high tide — n. 1. the highest level to which the tide rises; high water 2. the time when the tide is at this level: see SPRING TIDE 3. any culminating point or time …   English World dictionary

  • tide|mark — «TYD MAHRK», noun. 1. a mark left or reached by the tide at high or low water; high water mark or low water mark. 2. a post or the like set up to mark the point reached by the tide …   Useful english dictionary

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