John Mellencamp has many hits in his career, but it took him years to appreciate, perhaps, his greatest and most popular song.
In an interview with Forbes, Mellencamp talked about songwriting when he mentioned, “I had to learn how to write songs. And I wrote songs and I grew up in public. And at first I didn’t like that idea, but now I’m glad it happened because it gave me the opportunity to have the chip on my shoulder and grow. And like I wrote a song called “Jack & Diane”. And I always hated that song until the last two years, three years.
He continued, “I watched a football game last weekend and 80,000 people were singing that song at halftime. Can you imagine? I thought, ‘S—.’ I said, ‘How do all these fuckin’ people know this song?’
When the interviewer mentions that he needs to know the impact his greatest hits have had on popular culture, Mellencamp said, “But see, I don’t know, because I’m not really part of the club. I live a very lonely life. I am often alone, whenever I can. I am alone at the top of this mountain. So I don’t really pay attention to popular culture. As I was talking to [Bruce] Springsteen, and he asked me if I was watching the Grammys. I said, ‘No, I didn’t even know they were happening.’ He said, ‘Well, we have nothing to do with that.’ [chuckle] I said, “Well, I got that.” We have nothing to do with it. It means nothing to me at this point in my life.
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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who knows the label well and is extraordinarily nice.