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"Jealous Guy" is a song by English rock musician John Lennon from his 1971 album Imagine. Lennon began writing the song in 1968, when, as "Child of Nature", it was among the many songs demoed by the Beatles before they recorded their self-titled double album (also known as the "White Album"). The lyrics were originally inspired by a lecture given by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in early 1968, when the Beatles attended his spiritual retreat in Rishikesh, India. In its rewritten form, the song serves as a confessional in which Lennon addresses the feelings of inadequacy that resulted in his failings as a lover and husband.

"Jealous Guy"
Jealous Guy single.jpg
Single by John Lennon
from the album Imagine
B-side"Going Down on Love"
Released18 November 1985 (UK)
Recorded24 May 1971 – 5 July 1971
GenreSoft rock, pop
Length4:14
LabelApple
Songwriter(s)John Lennon
Producer(s)John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Phil Spector
John Lennon singles chronology
"Every Man Has a Woman Who Loves Him"
(1984)
"Jealous Guy"
(1985)

"Jealous Guy" is one of the most commonly recorded Lennon songs, with at least 92 cover versions. Released as a single, Roxy Music's version reached number one in several countries three months after Lennon's death in December 1980.

Contents

OriginsEdit

The song's inspiration came in India, after the Beatles attended a lecture by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi about a "son of the mother nature". This inspired both Paul McCartney and John Lennon to write songs about the same subject. McCartney's composition, "Mother Nature's Son", was selected for The Beatles, but Lennon did not attempt to record "Child of Nature" during the sessions for the album. Both were demoed at George Harrison's Esher home in May 1968. The demo of "Child of Nature" featured Lennon's double-tracked vocal and playing an acoustic guitar. Early the following year, Lennon revisited the song during the Get Back sessions.[1] Eventually, the lyrics were scrapped and replaced by the now well-known "Jealous Guy" lyrics for Imagine.

Three recordings of "Child of Nature" are currently known. The first is a demo of the song recorded at the home of George Harrison in May 1968. The second, on which Harrison sings backing vocals, was recorded at Twickenham Film Studios on 2 January 1969. A third recording was made at the Beatles' Apple Studio on 24 January. A snatch of the chorus from the second recording appears on the Fly on the Wall bonus disc packaged with Let It Be... Naked.[1] The first recording appears on 3CD, of the fiftieth anniversary release of The Beatles, which contains all of the demos recorded at Esher.[2][3]

RecordingEdit

Lennon recorded "Jealous Guy" on 24 May 1971 at Ascot Sound Studios, where his vocals were overdubbed on 29 May 1971. String overdubs took place on 4 July 1971 at the Record Plant, in New York City.[4] Musicians included Mike Pinder of The Moody Blues and Joey Molland and Tom Evans of Badfinger.

ReleaseEdit

Lennon's recording of "Jealous Guy" was released on the Imagine album in 1971. It was not released as a single until November 1985, five years after Lennon's murder, and four-and-a-half years after Roxy Music had taken their cover of the song to number one. Accompanied on the B-side by "Going Down on Love", a track from Walls and Bridges, the single reached number 65 in the UK charts.[5]

In the United States, the single reached number 80 on the Billboard Hot 100 in November 1988, in conjunction with the release of the film Imagine: John Lennon.[6] "Jealous Guy" also peaked at number 22 on the Hot Adult Contemporary chart.[7]

PersonnelEdit

The following musicians performed on the final track on Imagine:[8][9]

Promotional videoEdit

A promotional video was made for the song in 1971. It showed, mostly in a continuous overhead shot by helicopter, John and Yoko travelling in a hearse from their Tittenhurst Park mansion to a nearby lake, where they were then shown hopping into a rowing boat.[10][11]

Other versionsEdit

"Jealous Guy" has been recorded by many musicians including Aslan,[12] Roberto Bellarosa, Donny Hathaway, Frankie Miller, Roxy Music, Deftones, and indie-band Spector. Lou Reed covered the song for a 2001 Lennon tribute concert.

Roxy Music versionEdit

"Jealous Guy"
 
Single by Roxy Music
B-side"To Turn You On"
ReleasedFebruary 1981 (UK)
GenreSynthpop, pop rock
Length6:10
LabelPolydor/E. G.
Songwriter(s)John Lennon
Producer(s)Bryan Ferry and Rhett Davies[13]
Roxy Music singles chronology
"In the Midnight Hour"
(1980)
"Jealous Guy"
(1981)
"More than This"
(1982)

Following Lennon's death in 1980, Roxy Music added a version of the song to their set while touring in Germany, which they recorded and released in February 1981.[13] The single was released by Polydor with "To Turn You On" as the B-side, with catalogue number "ROXY 2".[13][14] The song was the only UK No. 1 hit for Roxy Music, topping the charts for two weeks in March 1981.[15] "To Turn You On" later appeared on the 1982 album Avalon, although it was slightly remixed.[16] Roxy Music's cover of "Jealous Guy" features on many Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music collections and 1980s music compilations, though not always in its full-length version.

ChartsEdit

Weekly chartsEdit
Chart (1981) Peak
position
Australian Kent Music Report[17] 1
Austrian Top 40[18] 6
Belgium VRT Top 30[18] 5
Dutch Top 40[18] 7
French Singles Chart[19] 9
German Media Control Singles Chart[18] 19
Irish Singles Chart[20] 3
New Zealand Singles Chart[18] 4
Norwegian Singles Chart[18] 6
Radio Luxemburg Singles[21] 1
Spanish Singles Chart 22
Swedish Singles Chart[18] 18
Swiss Singles Chart[18] 4
UK Singles Chart[22] 1
Chart (1988) Peak
position
US Billboard Hot 100[23] 80
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[24] 22
US Cash Box Top 100[25] 64
Year-end chartsEdit
Chart (1981) Position
Australian Kent Music Report 4
Belgian VRT Top 30[26] 28
Dutch Top 40[27] 61
UK Singles Chart[22] 20
Music videoEdit

A music video was filmed for the song, which mainly consisted of Bryan Ferry singing to camera before whistling and playing on a Sequential Circuits Prophet-5 synthesizer during the coda. Guitarist Phil Manzanera and saxophonist Andy Mackay also appear in the video during their respective solos.

Roberto Bellarosa versionEdit

"Jealous Guy"
Single by Roberto Bellarosa
from the album Ma voie
Released4 April 2012
FormatDigital download
Recorded2012
GenrePop
Length2: 50
Label8ball Music, Sony Music Entertainment
Songwriter(s)John Lennon
Roberto Bellarosa singles chronology
"Jealous Guy"
(2012)
"Je Crois"
(2012)

In 2012, the song was recorded by Belgian singer of Italian origin Roberto Bellarosa, after winning the first season of The Voice Belgique in 2012, released on 4 April 2012, from his debut album Ma voie (2012). The single reached number 4 in Belgium.[28]

Track listingEdit

Digital download
  1. "Jealous Guy" – 2: 50

Chart performanceEdit

Chart (2012) Peak
position
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[29] 4

Release historyEdit

Region Date Format Label
Belgium 4 April 2012[30] Digital download 8ball Music, Sony Music Entertainment

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Child Of Nature". The Beatles Bible. Archived from the original on 17 April 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  2. ^ "The Beatles / The 'White Album' 50th anniversary super deluxe edition | superdeluxeedition". www. superdeluxeedition.com. Archived from the original on 17 November 2018. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
  3. ^ Aswad, Jem (24 September 2018). "The Beatles Announce 'White Album' Deluxe 50th Anniversary Edition". Variety. Archived from the original on 17 November 2018. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
  4. ^ Madinger, Chip; Raile, Scott (2015). LENNONOLOGY Strange Days Indeed, – A Scrapbook Of Madness. Chesterfield, MO: Open Your Books, LLC. pp. 239, 247. ISBN 978-1-63110-175-5.
  5. ^ "Jealous Guy b/w Going Down On Love – John Lennon". Archived from the original on 16 July 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2009.
  6. ^ "The Billboard Hot 100-Jealous Guy".
  7. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–2001. Record Research. p. 143.
  8. ^ John Blaney (6 June 2005). John Lennon. John Blaney. p. 86. ISBN 978-0-9544528-1-0.
  9. ^ "John Lennon: Jealous Guy". The Beatles Bible. Archived from the original on 16 June 2016. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
  10. ^ "YouTube – Jealous Guy (John Lennon) – promotional music video". Archived from the original on 24 March 2016. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  11. ^ "YouTube – Jealous Guy (John Lennon) – official music video". Archived from the original on 10 March 2016. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  12. ^ "Aslan Official Site – Singles". Aslan.ie. Archived from the original on 26 February 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  13. ^ a b c Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 212. ISBN 0-85112-250-7.
  14. ^ "Discogs - Jealous Guy - 1981 single, Polydor (ROXY 2) UK". Archived from the original on 10 March 2016. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  15. ^ "UK top 40 database". Archived from the original on 13 September 2008.
  16. ^ "Roxy Music – Songs – on". Vivaroxymusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  17. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h Steffen Hung. "Roxy Music – Jealous Guy". swisscharts.com. Archived from the original on 22 June 2013. Retrieved 21 February 2013.
  19. ^ "InfoDisc: Tout les Titres par Artiste". Infodisc.fr. Archived from the original on 14 June 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  20. ^ Jaclyn Ward – Fireball Media Group. "The Irish Charts – All there is to know". Irishcharts.ie. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  21. ^ "Ultimate Music Database". Umdmusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  22. ^ a b "jealous guy | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". Archived from the original on 20 November 2018. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  23. ^ "John Lennon Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  24. ^ "John Lennon Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  25. ^ Cash Box Top 100 Singles, October 29, 1988
  26. ^ "1981". Luckysdb.be. Archived from the original on 2 July 2013. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  27. ^ "Dutch Single Top 100: 1981" (PDF). Top40.nl. Archived (PDF) from the original on 4 November 2013. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
  28. ^ Jealous Guy – Single by Roberto Bellarosa, 4 April 2012, archived from the original on 20 November 2018, retrieved 20 November 2018
  29. ^ "Ultratop.be – Roberto Bellarosa – Jealous Guy" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  30. ^ "iTunes Music – Jealous Guy – Single by Roberto Bellarosa". iTunes Store. 4 April 2012. Archived from the original on 18 June 2015. Retrieved 29 March 2014.

External linksEdit