“Monday Monday” by The Mamas & The Papas

The Mamas & The Papas’ “Monday Monday” is somewhat sarcastic in its approach. In the early part of the song, the lyrics read as if the singer is actually praising Monday, which as we all know is the first day of the week. But getting deeper into the track, we discover that “whenever Monday comes” he is instead “crying all the time”. Indeed the actual sentiment this song is founded on is the vocalist dreading Monday, due to it being the day in which the work week begins. In other words, it is a time of dreariness, dread and even to some extent, as highlighted during the conclusion of the song, depression.

But as stating earlier, as the lyrics progress from the beginning of the track to the end, the sentiment changes. Or put differently, the lyrics seem to contradict themselves. And the reason for this may be that the song’s writer, John Phillips, was not fully vested in writing a logical song, as in he himself experiencing the same dismay at the task ahead of him as relayed through the song. Or more accurately, John penned the song quickly and did not have a full understanding of what he had written. The only thing that probably made him latch onto it was the fact that he thought it sounded cool. And this ultimately proved to be a good decision, as this track went on to become The Mamas & The Papas greatest hit.

But that being said, the general understanding of this song is based on its concluding sentiment. And that expression is that the singer has a total dislike for Mondays.

Lyrics of "Monday Monday"

Facts about “Monday Monday”

This classic was released by Dunhill Records during March of 1966 as the third single from The Mamas & The Papas first album, “If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears”. The group’s iconic song “California Dreamin‘” was also one of the tracks on that album.

The lyrics and music of “Monday Monday” were composed entirely by John Phillips. Interestingly enough, he actually did so within the timespan of 20 minutes.

He also did so while being pressured by his band mate, Dennis Doherty, to come up with a new song. And after recording “Monday, Monday” neither Denny nor the other two members of The Mamas & The Papas  (Mama Elliot or Michelle Phillips) were particularly fond of it.

Yet it went on to become the only song by The Mamas & The Papas to ever top the Billboard Hot 100.

It also set a couple of other milestones on the Hot 100. First instance it was the first to top the list that had a day of the week in its title. It was also the first number one in which the artists were at least two women and two men.

The song also achieved a number-one status in Canada and South Africa.

And it peaked at number three on the UK Singles Chart in addition to making it into the top five in Australia, Ireland and New Zealand.

Moreover this classic won a Grammy in 1967, specifically in the category of “Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal“.

Background Instrumentals

The background instrumentals on this track were provided by a transient group dubbed “the Wrecking Crew”. And whereas you probably never heard of them, they actually played on “several hundred Top 40 hits” during the 1960’s and 70’s.


Notable artists who have covered this iconic song include Neil Diamond (1966) and Dionne Warwick (1977).

Popular usage of “Monday Monday”

The track has also been used on the programs of major media companies the Discovery Channel, ESPN and Netflix.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may also like...