(Debuted October 18, 1980, Peaked #74, 5 Weeks on the Chart)
At the time, the B-52s music came across as fresh and bright because it was so different from what was playing around it at the time. Of course, it wasn't exactly new (the band was influenced by surf music, 1960s dance records and garage rock) but it was given a conduit due to its New Wave label.
It's hard to listen to "Private Idaho" without wanting to move. Its guitar line (a very present but still understated effort by Ricky Wilson) works like a timing chain pulling the entire engine along, Fred Schneider's nonsensical lyrics are fun, and the dual attack of Cindy Wilson and Kate Pierson punctuating him are sublime.
There may be a message behind the words (an appeal for small-town America to pull the stick out of its collective backside, perhaps?), but the song is just too fun to pay any attention to it. As a song from the band's second LP, it holds up well to "Rock Lobster" and "Dance This Mess Around," which made their debut such a classic.