Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Jane's Addiction - Jane Says

Alternative rockers Jane's Addiction were a truly unique band when they emerged from the LA scene in the mid 1980's.  While their music was shaped by many bands and genres, supposedly their two most significant influences were Led Zeppelin ... and The Cure.  Add some provocative art school imagery and a healthy dose of drugs and the band became a sensation in the LA club scene.  The buzz around Jane's Addiction led to a bidding war, which Warner Bros. won with a then record advance of $250,000 (or so).

The group was named after Jane Bainter, who really did have a drug problem and was a housemate of lead singer Perry Farrell (along with a dozen or so other folks).  The classic lineup added Dave Navarro (guitar), Stephen Perkins (drums) and Chris Chaney (bass).

"Jane Says" was written about the same Jane (Bainter), and incorporated elements of her life, including her boyfriend/drug dealer Sergio.  An earlier version of the song was released on Jane's Addiction's self titled independent record, but the song was re-recorded for the group's major label debut, 1988's Nothing's Shocking.  The re-recorded version added the steel drugs that are a key element of the song's now classic sound.

While "Jane Says" received some college radio airplay, it did not chart on the main charts (it did hit #6 on the Modern Rock Charts).  Nothing's Shocking did not break the top 100 on the album charts, hurt by the lack of videos and mainstream radio airplay.  Jane's Addition did not make a video of "Jane Says" in 1988, and the video they made for "Mountain Song" was banned from MTV due to nudity.  The video below is from Jane's Addition's 1997 compilation album, Kettle Whistle.

Jane's Addiction would go on to release another strong album in 1990, Ritual de lo Habitual, and would co-found the first Lollapalooza festival before the band broke up in 1991.  Farrell and Perkins would go on to form Porno for Pyros while Navarro would join the Red Hot Chili Peppers for a time.  Jane's Addiction has re-formed several times in recent years, even releasing an album in 2011.

Cool trivia fact:  While the Kettle Whistle live version of "Jane Says" features Eric Avery on bass, the video is with Flea (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers).  The audio for the song was recorded in 1991 with Avery, while the video was recorded in 1997 on the Relapse tour (with Flea).

Cool trivia fact #2:  Jane's Addiction never had a top 40 hit, and only had one single that charted at all, 2003's "Just Because," which peaked at #73.


  1. Would Love to meet You, Sir
    Your Music Taste Is Mine
    So Wonderful
    I Live In Dallas Tx
    Amazing MUSIC

    1. Thanks, Sam -- I'm in the Northeast, so pretty far away, but appreciate the thoughts. We have 200+ videos in the bullpen, so lots still to come. Also, check out the Facebook page for great rare songs where no video was made. I think you'll like it. Keep the faith.