Lisa Tate

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Today marks the start of Year of the Rat!

According to some Chinese zodiac sites, people born these years can be quick witted, ambitious, practical and stubborn.

Well, if you look at the music world, rats can also be pretty musical. In celebration of rats everywhere, here’s some favorite bands who have chosen these resourceful little rodents as their name, as well as songs dedicated to them as well.

Let’s start with the most obvious…


Heavy metal band RATT was one of the big faces of the “hair band” era in the 1980s, but dates back as far as 1973 with a band called Firedome. The named was changed to Mickey Ratt by 1979, and shortened to just RATT by 1980. They’re still rocking today, but it's their 1984 hit “Round and Round,” famous for being comic Milton Berle’s music video debut, we still love to rock to. And yes, it ends with a close up of rat.

Boomtown Rats

This Irish rock band is by music legend Bob Geldolf, who named it for a gang of children mentioned in singer Woody Guthrie’s autobiography, Bound for Glory. One of their catchiest tunes is “I Don’t Like Mondays,” the 1979 sing-a-long about the 1979 California School shooting. But they were already getting into full 80s mode in the late 1970s with this appropriate tune, “Rat Trap.”

Paddy and The Rats

Not as mainstream as these previous two bands, Paddy And The Rats hail from Hungary, but pump out a mix of high-energy Celtic punk and folk punk, often with some gypsy and Romani elements. They often take on a pirate vibe in their appearance, and their first album was appropriately titled “Rats on Board.” Here’s one of their more recent hits, “Join the Riot.”

“Rats” by Ghost

Why is it the metal bands from Sweden, Norway or Denmark make American and British metal look like Lawrence Welk? Ghost is a heavy, dark and wildly popular progressive metal band who have taken on a “evil church persona.” This 2018 single comes with a creepy, rat infested horror video, to boot. Go to church, say your prayers, make sure you soul is in order, then feel free to enjoy this nightmarish progressive metal hit.

“Ben” by Michael Jackson

Before he grew up and went down the path of oh so much weirdness, Michael Jackson was an adorable, talented kid who had a huge award-winning hit with the theme from the monster rat movie Ben, the sequel to the creepy 1971 film Williard. Here he is on the 1973 Academy Awards (introduced by Charlton Heston) singing a sweet song of love and friendship based on the murderous psychotic rat of the same name.

And, as a bonus and because you can find pretty much anything on the internet….

Music FOR Your Rat

Yes, it’s time to put those little rats to bed, and PetTunes offers a selection of music to help your rat “relax and calm down” after a day of festivities of a new year dedicated to its species. Awww.

Happy Year of the Rat, everyone!

Cover image from the movie "Willard," ©New Line, 2003

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