There are certain people who get trapped in your heart and certain tunes that get stuck in your head. So when you listen to songs with names in the title, it tends to spark a curiosity about who exactly the characters are.
From Sweet Caroline to Sister Christian, certain names in music somehow stick out in our mind, and we’re left wondering if they’re an idea or named after a real person. Is Jessie’s girl a real person, and if she is, how does Jessie feel about Rick Springfield lusting over his girlfriend? Who is the auburn-haired homewrecker in Dolly Parton‘s “Jolene”? We know these are the questions that have kept you up at night.
Watch the video below to see just how some of the greatest singles of all time were named, and who they were named after.
As it would turn out, getting your name written into a song is always subject to editing — while musicians occasionally play it straight, they’re also quick to alter a moniker to something more melodious, or use a pseudonym altogether. Even if that’s the case, it must certainly be something to be written into a track title and live on forever… long after the actual band is forgotten. As such, we sought out the chosen few: the Jolenes, the Carolines, the Jessies…and his girl.
Fair warning though, we never found out if Tommy Tutone’s Jenny (of “867-5309” fame) ever was a real bonafide person. There’s way too much back and forth between the band about whether that was even a phone number of someone they knew or something randomly made up.
Regardless, watch the video to see the inspirations behind some of the most iconic song names in rock and roll history!