"Common People" is a song by English alternative rock band Pulp, released in May 1995 as the lead single off their fifth studio album Different Class. It reached number two on the UK Singles Chart, becoming a defining track of the Britpop movement and Pulp's signature song in the process.
The song is about those who were perceived as wanting to be "like common people" and who ascribe glamour to poverty. This phenomenon is commonly referred to as slumming or "class tourism".[according to whom?] The song was written by the band members Jarvis Cocker, Nick Banks, Candida Doyle, Steve Mackey and Russell Senior. Cocker had conceived the song after meeting a Greek art student while studying at the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London (the college and the student feature in the lyrics). He came up with the tune on a Casiotone keyboard he had bought in a music store in Notting Hill, west London.
Justin Myers of the Official Charts Company wrote, “Common People was typical Pulp – a biting satire of posh people ‘roughing it’ and acting like tourists by hanging with the “common people”. Jarvis delivered his scathing putdown with glee, in an iconic music video featuring actress Sadie Frost as the posho on the receiving end of Jarvis’ acid tongue.“ Pulp first performed the song in public during the band's set at the Reading Festival in August 1994. A year later they performed it at Glastonbury Festival as the headline act. The song has since been covered by various artists. In 2004, a Ben Folds-produced William Shatner cover version brought "Common People" to new audiences outside Europe.