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Music / Bluejeans & Moonbeams

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When the Captain went "further than he had ever gone", but not in the way you'd hope for.

"This is the Beefheart album where he writes love songs like nobody else."
Kate Bush, who ranks Bluejeans & Moonbeams among her 10 favorite albums of all time, according to a November 27 - December 10, 1980 issue of "Smash Hits Magazine".

Bluejeans & Moonbeams is a 1974 album by Captain Beefheart. After his Magic Band had left him Beefheart was forced to record this album with a group of session musicians. Much like its predecessor Unconditionally Guaranteed, this album had a Lighter and Softer sound than Beefheart's usual Avant-garde Music roots, though more comparable to a late night romantic atmosphere. The record is further notable for featuring a cover of a JJ Cale song, "Same Old Blues", Beefheart's first cover since Robert Pete Williams' "Grown So Ugly" on Safe as Milk (1967).

Yet, just like "Unconditionally Guaranteed" it failed to become a bestseller, got awful reviews and even alienated his loyal fans. To this day many Beefheart afectionado's refuse to acknowledge "Unconditionally Guaranteed" and "Bluejans & Moonbeams" ever happened and consider those to be his weakest effort. Even Beefheart himself would later perceive both records as an Old Shame and advised everybody who bought them to go to the store and ask their money back.


Interestingly enough, despite its atrocious reputation, Bluejeans & Moonbeams did inspire some covers. The White Stripes covered "Party of Special Things to Do" on their 2000 EP of that title, which also features covers of other Beefheart songs such as "China Pig" note  and "Ashtray Heart" note . "Observatory Crest" has been covered by Whipped Cream note , Mercury Rev note  and Snow Patrol note . As mentioned in the title quote Kate Bush is a huge fan of this album too.



Side One

  1. "Party of Special Things to Do" (2:48)
  2. "Same Old Blues" (4:00)
  3. "Observatory Crest" (3:32)
  4. "Pompadour Swamp" (3:32)
  5. "Captain's Holiday" (5:43)

Side Two

  1. "Rock 'n' Roll's Evil Doll" (3:20)
  2. "Further Than We've Gone" (5:31)
  3. "Twist ah Luck" (3:22)
  4. "Bluejeans & Moonbeams"" (5:02)


  • Captain Beefheart: vocals, harmonica
  • Dean Smith: guitar, bottleneck guitar
  • Michael Smotherman: keyboards, backing vocals
  • Ty Grimes: percussion
  • Ira Ingber: bass
  • Bob West: bass
  • Gene Pello: drums
  • Jimmy Caravan: keyboards, star machine
  • Mark Gibbons: keyboards

Party of Special Things to Trope:

  • Animal Motifs: A deer is featured on the cover.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: "Rock 'n Roll's Evil Doll"
    Here she comes down the hall
    Her eyes are flashing
    She's looking big, I'm feeling small
    Rock 'n Roll's evil doll
    Rock 'n Roll's evil doll
    Feel like running
    But I don't want to fall
    She's so big
    I'm so small
    I heard the door slam
    And I ran down rock 'n roll's evil hall
  • Call-Back and Continuity Nod: During the fade-out of "Party Of Special Things To Do" Beefheart mentions "I met the mirror man", a reference to his album Mirror Man (1970).
  • Cover Version: "Same Old Blues" is a JJ Cale cover.
  • Creepy Doll: "Rock 'n' Roll's Evil Doll".
  • "Days of the Week" Song: "Bluejeans and Moonbeams"
    I been hopin' on Moondays
    Some how's and Moondays
    Sunday's and some days
    I been hopin' on Mondays
    Some how's and Moondays
    Sundays and some days
  • Design Student's Orgasm: The cover is a painting by Victor Hayden, Beefheart's cousin and also "The Mascara Snake" on Trout Mask Replica.
  • Epic Rocking: The 5:02 "Bluejeans & Moonbeams".
  • Heavy Meta: "Rock 'n' Roll's Evil Doll". In "Observatory Crest" Beefheart and his partner attend a rock concert. "Captain's Holiday" also references Captain Beefheart himself.
  • Hurricane of Puns: "Bluejeans and Moonbeams"
    I been hopin' on Moondays
    Some how's and Moondays
    Sunday's and some days
    I been hopin' on Mondays
    Some how's and Moondays
    Sundays and some days
  • Lighter and Softer: Just like Unconditionally Guaranteed, this is easy listening Beefheart.
  • Location Song: "Observatory Crest" is set at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, California, where Beefheart and his partner go and see a concert at this location and spend some time together afterwards. "Pompadour Swamp" is described as an "avenue where the silhouettes dance" and where Beefheart wants to be with his partner.
  • New Sound Album: The music is pure, uncomplicated Rock, with some Soul influences, sparkly keyboard, guitar and star machine effects and lacks any Word Salad Lyrics.
  • Record Producer: Andy DiMartino.
  • Sell-Out: Just like Unconditionally Guaranteed it was perceived as such by his fans.
  • Silly Love Songs: "Observatory Crest", "Further Than We've Gone" and "Twist Ah Luck" are all silly or touching, depending on your point of view.
  • Something Blues: "Same Old Blues".
  • Something Else Also Rises: "Rock 'n' Roll's Evil Doll"
    She's so big
    I'm getting big, too
    She's looking small
    She's looking big
    I'm getting big, too!
  • Title Track: "Bluejeans & Moonbeams".