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Maniac sembello.jpg de Michael Sembello
del álbum Bossa Nova Hotel and Flashdance soundtrack
4:21 (album version)
Dennis Matkosky and Michael Sembello
Phil Ramone
Cronología de sencillos de Michael Sembello
"Automatic Man"
Audio sample
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"Maniac" is a pop song performed by Michael Sembello.

Song information[]

The song was used in the 1983 film Flashdance and was inspired by the 1980 horror film Maniac. The film Maniac was about a serial killer who stalks his victims in New York City. The song's performer and co-writer Michael Sembello recalls that an early version of the chorus was:

He's a maniac, maniac that's for sure,
He will kill your cat and nail him to the door.

At the suggestion of the record's producer Phil Ramone, the lyrics were rewritten to describe a girl with a passion for dancing. The lyrics became:

She's a maniac, maniac on the floor
And she's dancing like she's never danced before.

"Maniac" appears during an early scene in Flashdance and is used as the backing track of a montage sequence showing Alex (Jennifer Beals) training strenuously in her converted warehouse.

The song was included in Flashdance after Sembello's wife sent a tape to executives at Paramount Pictures who were looking for music to use in the film.

Charts and awards[]

"Maniac" reached number one in the Billboard Hot 100 in September 1983, and is one of the highest grossing songs ever written for a film. The Original Soundtrack of Flashdance won the 1984 Grammy Award for Best Album of Original Score Written for A Motion Picture or a Television Special.

The song was nominated for an Academy Award, but it was disqualified since the original version had not been written for the film[citation needed]. Michael Sembello states on the website Songfacts that the decision "pisses me off to this day." Another song from the film, "Flashdance... What a Feeling" performed by Irene Cara, won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1984.

Cover versions[]

  • American metalcore band Evergreen Terrace covered the song for their 2004 album Writer's Block (Evergreen Terrace album).
  • Norwegian heavy metal band Street Legal covered the song.[1]
  • Måns Zelmerlöw on his 2007 album Standing By For...
  • Italian nu metal band Biosystem55 covered the song in 2008.[2]
  • Belgian dance group Milk Inc. covered this song in 2008.
  • German hi-NRG dance group Topmodelz covered this song in 2008.[3]
  • Greek power metal band Firewind covered the song on their 2008 album The Premonition.[4]


External links[]

Preceded by
"Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" by The Eurythmics
Billboard Hot 100 number one single
September 10 1983- September 17 1983
Succeeded by
"Tell Her About It" by Billy Joel