Kiss Me, Son Of God
|song name||Kiss Me, Son of God|
|artist||They Might Be Giants|
|releases||Lincoln, They'll Need A Crane (EP) [UK Release], Then: The Earlier Years, Selections From Then|
|first played||March 4, 1987 (52 known performances)|
|sung by||John Linnell; John Flansburgh harmonizes|
- John Flansburgh in a 1988 interview:
When Linnell first played me "Kiss Me, Son of God" my jaw just hit the floor. I was almost afraid to play the song publicly, because I was just thinking, "This is not going to be accepted." To be standing on stage singing "You love me, and I love me" just strikes me as a scary moment.
- On April 17, 1987, a network television performance of this song on Kansas City, Missouri CBS affiliate KCTV was cut short. At a show later that year, Flansburgh explained, "Right after the line 'I look like Jesus', they pulled us off the air. We are still waiting for a written explanation and apology." The band's manager Jamie Kitman told the story in his 1988 essay, Our Roadies, Ourselves:
The band certainly has considered religious themes, as evidenced by John Linnell's solo accordion number, "Kiss Me, Son of God." A stinging indictment of organized religion, it was, in fact, the exact number [he] was crooning for [KCTV anchor Lili Bliss] and the audience at home when the folks at the studio control board panicked and pulled the plug.
"I built a little empire out of some crazy garbage called the blood of the exploited working class," [Linnell] had begun to sing, while [Flansburgh] smiled and snapped out an uptempo beat. "Now they've overcome their shyness, and they're calling me 'Your Highness,' and the world screams, 'Kiss me, Son of God.' "
Poor Lilly [sic]. Her evanescent smile had completely disappeared. Her hard-boiled co-anchor, a crusty old news guy straight from central casting, fell out of his chair laughing. Linnell continued: "I look like Jesus, so they say..." [..] as the monitor in the Green Room went blank.
- The studio recording features the multi-instrumental talents of The Ordinaires.
- In live performances, the song is played only with accordion instead of stringed instruments, showcasing a duo-style unplugged arrangement similar to the alternate version.*This song has been covered by both OK Go and Frank Bennett.
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Kiss Me, Son Of God is currently ranked #30 out of 908. (173 wikians have given it an average rating of 9.07)