Saturday, December 29, 2012

"Back of My Hand" by the Jags

Song#:  0199
Date:  06/07/1980
Debut:  86
Peak:  84
Weeks:  2
Genre:  Power Pop, New Wave

Pop Bits:  This UK group formed in 1978 and got quickly signed to Island records. They released an EP in the UK that featured this single. At the time, Elvis Costello was being considered the new king of UK pop and, perhaps unfairly, the Jags drew constant comparison to Costello. It dogged them through their debut disc in 1979, "Evening Standards," but this first single was strong enough to hit #17 on the UK chart. And even though Costello would get albums on the chart in the US, the Jags were quick to point out that they were able to get a song on the US pop singles chart before Costello could. This is true, but just barely as this song was almost a one-week wonder. After one more album the group would call it a day.

ReduxReview:  This is kind of a lost power pop song that probably should have gotten more attention. It's jangly, quirky, jittery, and pretty cool. It kind of reminds me more of The Romantics than Costello - or maybe an odd combo of both with a little Nick Lowe tossed in.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Their debut album was co-produced by Jon Astley (no relation to Rick Astley) who would go on to put a couple of songs on the pop chart in 1987-88. He also produced albums for Eric Clapton and Deborah Harry. His sister was married to Pete Townsend from 1968 to 2009.



  1. Very underrated song. One of my favorites from 1980, seemed a bit ahead of it's time to me.

    1. Solid power pop. It's too bad they didn't last long.