- Dear God (XTC song)
"Dear God" Single by XTC from the album Skylarking Released June 1, 1987 (UK) Format 7", 12" Genre Baroque pop, Alternative rock Length 3:34 Label Virgin (UK)
Writer(s) Andy Partridge Producer Todd Rundgren XTC singles chronology "The Meeting Place"
"You're a Good Man Albert Brown (Curse You Red Barrel)/Vanishing Girl"
"Dear God" is a song on XTC's 1986 album Skylarking. It was not a part of the original Skylarking album, but after DJs across America picked up the song, Geffen Records decided to replace "Mermaid Smiled" with "Dear God." The song was inspired by a series of books with the same title, seen by lead singer Andy Partridge as an exploitation of children.
Background and content
The first verse and closing line are sung by the then eight-year-old Jasmine Veillette, the daughter of a friend of producer Todd Rundgren. In the video a boy lip-syncs her vocals. The lyrics are addressed to God, and vividly describe the range of human suffering, which the narrator attributes to God. The singer concludes every verse with the line "I can't believe in you." Despite the prayer-like quality, the lyrics strongly imply doubt as to the existence of God ("Did you make mankind after we made you?"), benevolence ("The wars you bring, the babes you drown, those lost at sea and never found"), and the value of the Bible as God's word ("Us crazy humans wrote it [...] Still believin' that junk is true / well, I know it ain't and so do you").
In the UK, when the song was originally released as a single many record shops refused to stock the track, fearing a religious backlash.
It is ranked #62 on VH1's 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s despite never having charted on the Billboard Hot 100 and despite peaking at #37 on the Billboard Album Rock Chart, and the band had larger hits on both charts and the later Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart.
Charts (1987) Peak
UK Singles Chart 99 US Billboard Album Rock Chart 37
Studio albums Live albums CompilationsWaxworks: Some Singles 1977–1982 · Beeswax: Some B-Sides 1977–1982 · The Compact XTC · Chips from the Chocolate Fireball · Explode Together: The Dub Experiments 78-80 · Rag and Bone Buffet: Rare Cuts and Leftovers · Drums and Wireless: BBC Radio Sessions 77–89 · Fossil Fuel: The XTC Singles 1977–92 · Upsy Daisy Assortment · Transistor Blast: The Best of the BBC Sessions · Coat of Many Cupboards · Apple Box Other albums Related articles
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