Monday, 21 September 2015

My Top Ten Jeans Songs

Surprisingly, despite making Number One in last week's Top Ten Jean Songs, Bruce doesn't make the Songs About Jeans chart at all... despite that iconic image above. (However, a band of his biggest fans do feature at #5.)

Here are ten songs about pulling your blue jeans on and getting that denim all dirty...

Special mentions to The Swinging Blue Jeans, Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves Of Destiny, Bob B. Soxx & The Blue Jeans, Mr. Little Jeans, Pissed Jeans, and Jack Jeans (I had to link to that one).

10. Gene Vincent - Blue Jean Bop

Be-Bop-A-Lula is one of the defining records of rock 'n' roll, but Gene Vincent was never really able to bottle that lightning again. This is about as close as he got, a "minor" follow-up "hit"... although this was back in the days when "minor" hits still sold a million copies even if they only made number 49 in the charts.

9. Little Man Tate - Hello Miss Lovely (So You Like My Jeans)

Unfairly labeled a poor man's Arctic Monkeys, Little Man Tate called it a day in 2009. Which is a shame, because they wrote witty, spiky guitar pop songs... the sort of thing the radio is sorely missing these days.

8. David Dundas - Jeans On

The 70s was obviously a great decade for songs about jeans (see below) and this is the one that famously doubled up as an advert for Brutus Jeans. It seems Dundas was a member of British nobility - his full name and title is Lord David Paul Nicholas Dundas - as his dad was Lawrence Aldred Mervyn Dundas, 3rd Marquess of Zetland (also a famous tennis player in the 40s).

Well, I never knew that.

Of course, iffypedia might have made it all up... you never know.

The song was also covered a few years back by Chungking... but sadly, I can't find their version on youtube.

7. The View - Same Jeans

Scruffy Scottish indie kids - they've had the same jeans on for four days now - with their only Top Ten hit from 2007. It's rare I say this... but it seems longer ago than that.

6. Jimmy Webb - Lady Fits Her Blue Jeans

As previously discussed on this site, Jimmy Webb is god. Although he's more famous as a songwriter than a performer, he's also released a succession of excellent solo albums over the last 40 years, five of which were recently reissued in an extremely affordable box set on the Rhino label. Considering how rare these albums were prior to the box set, it's pretty much an essential purchase for fans of quality songwriting. This is taken from the 4th album in the 5 disc set, 1974's Land's End. Gorgeous stuff.

5. The Gaslight Anthem - Blue Jeans & White T-Shirts

The Gaslight Anthem always wear their New Jersey roots on their sleeves and this one describes perfectly Bruce's famous 80s dress sense... while also throwing in a sly reference to early Tom Waits.

This track's a bit of a rarity, from the 2008 EP Señor and the Queen, but it stands up as well as some of their better known songs.

4. The Donnas - Dirty Denim

Classic spunky & punky girl-pop from the California foursome led by the female Brett Anderson. In the Suede versus Denim battle, it's hard to call a winner. The other Brett never wrote anything as bitchy as this...
You look like you've only slept for an hour
You smell like you haven't taken a shower
And your hair is so dirty
It makes you look like you're thirty

Your pants are slung way too low
I see stuff I don't wanna know
I wonder why you're so moody?
Is it 'cause you've got no booty?
3. Lana Del Rey - Blue Jeans

That second Lana Del Rey album - the one with Video Games on, the one that made her a star - is still an amazing piece of work, even if she's failed to live up to its potential since. The cognoscenti may have tried to expose her as a phoney or a poseur... but what do the cognoscenti know? She has a new album out this week - fingers crossed it's a return to form.

2. Denim - Back In Denim

Lawrence (he has no second name... except he does, and it's Hayward) started life in fondly remembered 80s indie band Felt. Then sometime in the early 90s, he folded up the Felt and embraced Denim - with added glam stomp. Since then, he's gone ultra lo-fi with Go Kart Mozart... but if you ask me, Denim will always be his finest hour.

1. Neil Diamond - Forever In Blue Jeans

Listen - money talks, all right? Even if it don't sing or dance or walk...

There is a popular mondgreen associated with this tune, that Neil's actually singing "Reverend Blue Jeans". Which would be wonderful... if it were true.

What can I say, if you don't appreciate a bit of classic Neil... there's something missing in your life.

Next week (if I have time) - the final part of the trilogy. My Top Ten Gene Songs.

Meanwhile, don't put your jeans back in the wardrobe just yet. Which is your Nick Kamen?


  1. Perhaps a bit tenuous, but.. Bell Bottom Blues.

    1. Ah, yes - great song. It will have its day.

  2. Good to see the View feature and you couldn't really finish with anyone else than Mr Diamond!

  3. My only issue with The View's song is this: okay, you've had the same jeans on for four days now, but that's nothing! Come back and see me when you've had the same jeans on for a fortnight! Young scamps, haven't lived, different in my day, etc.

    1. True. I thought the whole idea of jeans was that you wear them till they can walk to the washing machine on their own!


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