Who, The - Success Story Lyrics

Friday night, I'm on my way home
They oughta make work a crime
I'm home for the weekend
I'm gonna make the most of my time
There's a rock and roll singer on the television
Giving up his music, gonna take up religion
Deserted rock and roll
To try to save his soul

Saturday night, gotta gig with the band
Playing the electric guitar
Someday I'm gonna make it
Gonna be a super-duper-star
Get a flashy car
And a house for my Ma
The big break better happen soon
'Cause I'm pushing twenty-one

Just like Cinderella
When she couldn't go to the ball
A voice said, "I'm your fairy manager
You shall play the Carnegie Hall"
I gotta give up my day job
To become a heartthrob
I may go far if I smash my guitar

Away for the weekend
I've gotta play some one-night stands
Six for the tax man, and one for the band
Back in the studio to make our latest number one
Take two-hundred-and-seventy-six
You know, this used to be fun

Monday morning, I just got home
Six and the birds are singing
I need a drink and my clothes are wet
Ooh, and my ears are still ringing
There's a rock and roll singer boppin' on the TV
He used to be a preacher, but now he sings in a major key
Amended his decision to the new religion

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Who, The Success Story Comments
  1. mike davies

    My favourite song from the album, but it's all good, and so underrated.

  2. matthew jay

    Best tongue-in-cheek Who song ever👍

  3. day tripper

    Love it!

  4. Alex Parker

    Just love this song.

  5. Bryton Cherrier

    Forget “Boris the Spider,” and “My Wife.” I personally think this is John’s best song he ever did for the band.

    This should’ve been a radio smash hit!

    George Price

    Blame MCA, they stuck it on the "Squeeze Box" single as the B Side!


    "Trick of the Light" is John´s best song he wrote for The Who, but this comes close.

  6. James Westhart

    Great song, that drummer is a proper nutter. Non-stop drum beat down

  7. Steve Thompson

    John knew Pete could lead and thank God he did.

  8. mike davies

    Love it !!!

  9. Tony Dee

    In the end they got a house for me but I paid the bills for a while and I still do, lol

  10. Hugh Goldspiel

    I will go far if I ride my skateboard

  11. Giles Cordwangler

    Best track on the album.

  12. TheTestingGrounds

    Entwistle's songwriting ability should never be overlooked. I believe this was actually the first song he wrote where Daltrey sang some of the vocals. Miss you Ox, RIP.

  13. Gtrtech

    Tom Petersson was taking notes. Speak now is based straight off from this.

  14. Dominik Šosták

    happy birthday John Alec Entwistle ( 9.10.1944 - 27.6.2002) R.I.P.

  15. John Oberle

    I love everything The Who done.

  16. alex

    i am your fairy manager. you shall play at carnegie hall

  17. Tony Dee

    I get it, Hello, Hello

  18. Billy McMonagle

    The drumming on this is fucking ripe man god bless you Moonie awesome great tune all round loud and proud what The Who did best....ripping it up

  19. 中木麻利子


  20. bph2099

    honestly this song is so underrated, its been one of my favorites ever since the clip in "The Kids Are Alright" where Entwistle skeet shoots Roger Daltrey gold records with a tommy gun

    Jersey Sucks

    Classic scene indeed!! The Who FOREVER!!


    yes!! that scene made me laugh my ass off, gotta love john


    i came here because of that scenee

  21. bergencountylegend perfect

    Legendary WFAN song here in the NJ/NY area. Boomer Esiason and Craig Carton play this on their morning show every Friday. Although Carton is in jail now.

    TJ Ransford

    bergencountylegend perfect. Thanks to Eddie Scozzare..

  22. Joe Rhodes

    B side of Squeeze Box 45.

    Kurt Winner

    I just found out about this song because I picked it up at a flea market for a buck! Mint shape to.

  23. Kassandra Solon

    stellar drums by Keith...there will never be another like him!

    Joel Day

    you bumped yer head

    BTFB The Duck

    Steven Lornie If a drummer can make his/her drum sound like they are building a shed then that drummer has succeeded.

  24. mike cullinan

    most underrated Who song ever-

  25. Paul Pennestri

    the crowd that is!

  26. Paul Pennestri

    some music is too powerful for a live audience.........they might friggin lose it...so to speak!

  27. James M

    Rock On John a True Rock Icon, Who didn't try to take it to the ledge?

  28. grahammj

    Great song. Wondering why they never played it live...

    Nicklaus Kindelberger

    grahammj I heard that That John Entwistle despised it.


    Not true.  John Entwistle WROTE it.  They did perform "Success Story" live while they were supporting "By Numbers" on tour.  It was trotted out on occasion both with the Who and Entwistle's own band.

    Nicklaus Kindelberger

    rocketman63 Hmm, I guess that makes sense, Wikipedia' why have you forsaken me!?


    rocketman63 you would think that this song would have been played on tour in 75-76, but I've never seen a set list with it let alone footage of them playing it. it's by far my favorite song on the album. weird.


    same with Cobwebs and Strange

  29. nymike06

    Sounds like The Who are referring to Cat Stevens in this song.


    cat stevens converted to the islam religion.

    jim hoover

    It does sound a little bit like Cat Stevens who is a great singer songwriter.


    no-I think he was talking about the meaning of the songs lyrics.


    This album was from 1975. As was this.... https://youtu.be/EOrzLxM_OGE

  30. gjmoore5757

    love this song.

  31. The Great Gazoo

    This is a great great song!!

  32. cosmicdrifter287

    this john entwistle tune is a success story.


    its a blister


    one of the whos best songs.

  33. Luileadolfo

    Good song ! Sad, John Entwistle was not aloud to include more of his own penned songs. The Who never played this song live in concert. But, John Entwistle did it with his band.

  34. John stevenson

    i'm andrea leather...what's not to love? especially if you're a musician. who ... how about john entwhistle's part in this tune?

  35. MsChris402

    he tried to save his soul.

  36. Steve Berry

    fave song off this album. 

  37. Kenneth Hall

    Take two hundred and seventy six...you know, this used to be fun. :-)

  38. Highcullsofliving

    This is your fairy manager...you shall play at Carnegie Hall

    Cat Man

    My goodness...all these years I thought he said "I'm your fairy manager, you shall play a comic role' You live and learn eh?

  39. chromebone3

    8 String Rickenbacker...'nuff said

  40. davidh2136

    This Album got a bad Rap in 1975 when it was released.. But I love It..

    Marc Domicello


    Dave Ciccantelli

    It had the misfortune of having to follow "Tommy", "Who's Next", & "Quadrophenia" so it wasn't as commercially successful. But it's a solid album & has stood the test of time.

    William Langan

    This blows away the Tommy soundtrack. Highlights include Elton John's cameo, Tina Turner's cameo, Eric Clapton's cameo and the scene where Ann Margaret is being washed in bath full of beans is amusing.
    By Numbers is a solid album and you can tell John wrote this song with the Who in mind.

  41. SgtTravisBickle

    I didn't know John Paul Jones wrote this!? Thanks for the info.

    Moonie Hurdy

    SgtTravisBickle no, John Entwistle wrote this


    Yeah, John "Paul Jones" Entwistle! 😀😁😂

  42. solarwave

    Me too! Love the riff on this one.

  43. MsChris402

    this is another great who song!

  44. Pat 12Pack

    First song side 2!!

  45. MojoWorkinBut

    They ought to make work a crime. Best lyric ever!

  46. Ken Vail

    this is certainly one of their most underrated songs.

  47. tulllguy

    @choff56 best doesn't mean smartest, although you can also mention Geddy Lee and Chris Squire up there.

  48. pattap37

    I'd say the Top 3 bassists are John, Duck Dunn and Bootsy Collins. Differnet genres but all 3 are outstanding.

  49. Regor Rosenlund

    I said It Before and I'll say it again,,John(the Ox,Thunderfingers) Entwistle,Is The BEST,BASS GUITARISTEVER!!! REGOROXXX

  50. pbrick6301

    "i'm your fairy manager" heh heh heh

  51. choff56

    @gilteed77 long live johnny indeed, but did he have to do coke with a hart condition ?

  52. choff56

    I love this album , very very underrated

  53. Regor Rosenlund

    John THUNDERFINGERS Entwistle was the BEST bassGUITARIST Ever!!!

  54. Dan Pagan



    those were Roger Daltrey gold records

  55. gilteed77

    this is one all time favorite songs, long live Johnnny!

  56. Gary Bonavito

    i'm 45yrs old..my first concert was the who at the spectrum in philly 1979...i'l never forget the roar when the ox came on stage..

    Nick Morelli

    Gary Bonavito please. Really Gary. Thata made you a whole 6 years old! So how was the pot at that show? I imagine u also had your choice of Ballantine, Black Label and Blue bunch oh Bullshit!

  57. Ben W.

    1:16 Boris the Spider growl!

  58. thekraken

    you know i really like the songs that entwistle writes

  59. 5150zac

    @darrell7878 he is the one and only BASS GOD!!!!

  60. TheWhoFan4

    Cat Stevens.

  61. TheWhoFan4

    Seems to be missing something, oh yeah where is John shooting Roger's records?

  62. Colin Daniels

    One of The Ox's best bass solo's bar none!

  63. Colin Daniels

    The Who By Numbers is my all time favorite album.In spite of it not originally meant to be a concept album,it kind of became one.To me it became:"Pete Townshend's I've turned 30 and I'm still here and hating album!"

  64. chrisput1024

    A very underrated album. Entwhistle is the great ever on his instrument. His version of "Here Comes the Sun" on the George Harrison tribute CD was amazing.

  65. UFO Partisan

    "They ought to make work a crime"

    He was right about that!

  66. 88Napolitano

    Saw the John Entwistle Band in Pittsburgh,some years back,i tell you raw,explosive energy!Very fucking loud!Long Live THUNDERFINGERS!

  67. firesoforion

    John Entwistle forever.

  68. kostasgreece1994

    awesome song dudes.!:):D

  69. darrell7878

    this song was writen by the greatest bass player in the world

  70. THEsamgamerWTF

    I don't even have an ipod, ...but then again who cares?

  71. Theo

    thanks for uploading. I don't have this album on my ipod.