How to do the personal jesus dance
Personal Jesus vs. Line Dancing
classic alternative Depeche Mode
Laura Bock dance, Depeche Mode, new wave, post punk
On March 19, 1990, Depeche Mode released one of their most successful albums,Violator.
Once I had that album in my hot little hands, it took no time at all to know all the words to every song on my Violator cassette tape.
Over the years I bought 3 cassettes, 4 CDs and 1 digital copy of that album – cassettes eventually warped, CDs got borrowed out and never returned, so I finally opted for an iTunes download of Violator. That’s dedication.
Their most popular single off that album, of course, is the often played, Personal Jesus. The song was released as a precursor to Violator, making Depeche Mode fans hungry for more.
Personal Jesus was an instant hit and has played millions of times on mainstream radio stations; hard rock icon, Marilyn Manson, as well as country legend, Johnny Cash, both had cover versions of this Depeche Mode treasure. The song is timeless and solidified Depeche Mode in the minds of music lovers worldwide.
There was one unfortunate side effect of becoming a popular tune in the early 1990’s – line dancing.
Line dancing was (unfortunately) popular and someone developed a line dance to Personal Jesus.
I don’t know about some of you hardcore alternative music fans, but one of “our” bands going mainstream like that used to piss me off. There was nothing worse than having a preppy fluff chick squeal with glee when they heard the opening chords of Personal Jesus, as they run out to the dance floor with their girls and start line dancing.
Of course, being the rebellious anarchist punk chick I was (and still am), I would also hit the dance floor and dance right through their stupid line dance in protest to this conformist dance style.
My best friend at the time and I would attend this rock music club where local cover bands we knew played – we were regular fixtures there and everyone knew us. In between band sets, the DJ would play rock and popular dance tunes, and that included Personal Jesus.
A friend of mine through the punk scene was at the club one night and as we were catching up on each other’s lives, Personal Jesus started playing. She jumped up and motioned for me to hit the dance floor with her. I thought, finally, I’ll have another fellow punk to dance with and disrupt the line dancers!
It was then I realized my punk friend was lined up with the “fluff chicks”, performing the conformist dance.
I stood there in astonishment. This can’t be happening! She looked at me funny, but I kept doing my own thing.
When we got back to the table, she said,
“I can teach you the line dance so you don’t look all weird out there dancing alone.”
When I told her I had no desire to learn that conformist piece of crap dance, she said,
“I guess you’re not a real fan of Depeche Mode, then if you’re not going to learn the dance and do it right!”
Punk rock is all about following your bliss, doing your own thing and being free.
She was free to do the conformist line dance, just as I was free to dance all wild alone on the dance floor, standing out in the crowd.
How dare she say I wasn’t a fan just because I wouldn’t conform!
It’s not like Depeche Mode created the stupid line dance, in fact, I’m sure they cringe thinking someone did that to one of their songs!
I don’t know what I was more upset over: that there was a line dance to Personal Jesus or that my punk friend was now someone who cared what others thought, AKA a conformist!
I’m still in conflict…
Personal Jesus from Lithuania HQ on Beatport
- Release Date 2022-02-18
- Label Lithuania HQ
- Catalog LHQ472
- Boehm, Ben Lorentzen
- Release Date 2022-02-18
- Label Lithuania HQ
- Catalog LHQ472
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How did DEPECHE MODE write a song about a "personal Jesus"? | Culture
"Here's where!" - said the DISPATCHES, and first brought down on the heads of the listeners the killer refrain "Reach out and touch faith!" (“Reach out your hand and touch faith!”) , and then an equally killer riff of the song “Personal Jesus” (“Personal Jesus”), which any bluesman could boast of.
Interestingly, the song still retained both the electronic sound and the DEPECHE MODE signature style. In particular, the drums in "Personal Jesus" were sampled jumps of three people on empty suitcases.
The sound of the song largely determined the theme of Corbijn's video, where the musicians appear not as fashionable lads in leather jackets, but as harsh cowboys visiting a brothel in the Wild West.
Personal Jesus is possibly my worst memory. We were in a desert town in Spain, one of those cowboy towns where they shoot westerns and stuff like that. And all day I was told, "Well, Fletcher, you're going to have to ride a horse later." I thought, "But I can't ride a horse!" And they said, "Don't worry, she's nice, quiet - well, big, but it's all right."
As a result, it turned out that Fletcher was simply bullied - the horse turned out to be ... wooden.
There were also real horses in the frame. Coincidentally or not, the image of their asses coincided with Martin's breaths, so the censors saw bad hints in this and demanded that these frames be removed from the clip. Although why hint at the bad, if there were enough quite accessible girls in the video . ..
The motive and theme of "Personal Jesus" came to Martin Gore back in 1988, when the band was touring the world with their "Music for the Masses".
While in the USA, every day Martin watched another preacher on TV with calls “Come to me and repent” (below are the addresses and phone numbers where to come and repent). Subsequently, Gore will expand his interpretation of the song, citing that he wrote it under the influence of the memories of Elvis Presley's wife, Priscilla.
“This is a song about being Jesus to someone, giving hope and care. It's about how Elvis was her man and mentor, about how often this happens in a love relationship; about how someone's heart becomes in some way like God, and this is not a very objective view of a person, is it?
The attempt to give the song a broader interpretation is understandable. The DESPACKS had already had problems with the song "Blasphemous Rumours" from the 1984 album. It sang about a girl who survived a suicide attempt, believed in Christ, and two years later was hit by a car. And output "I think God has a terrible sense of humor" . Zealous Christians were indignant at such poetic revelations, and the song had big problems with radio rotation.
Martin understood that "Personal Jesus" is a powerful hit, so the lyrics of the song itself did not contain any blasphemous ideas, and could be perceived as a completely Protestant idea of personal salvation.
Your own, personal Jesus -
The one who will listen to your prayers,
The one who will take care of ...
Your own, personal Jesus -
The one who will listen to your prayers,
The one who will be there. ..
You are all alone.
mere mortal -
At the phone.
Answer the phone -
I'll make you believe...
The only hooliganism the musicians allowed themselves before the release of the single was when they published an advertisement in the newspaper classifieds section with the words "Your own personal Jesus". Below was the phone number by which the caller could listen to the song itself (for a fee, of course).
This stunt stunned a lot of people, but overall the song was received quite favorably.
I must say that I even met on some Orthodox forums serious disputes of neophytes (and obviously former "depechists") about who Martin Gore is in this song for: for Christians or for Satanists? In fact, with an unclouded eye, it is immediately clear that “Personal Jesus” contains a large charge of gloomy irony, and it is not only about Christ. In fact, this is a spell cast by the “priest” to the “flock”, a kind of Kaa dance. And no Christian would sing the words "Touch Faith" to such gloomy chords.
However, Martin's ambiguity played its part. So in 2002, a staunch Christian and country singer Johnny Cash recorded a cover of "Personal Jesus". And he really made the song “his own” and Christian.
“…this is probably the most preachy song I have ever heard. I don’t know if the author intended this, but it happened.”
Dave Gahan on Cash's version of :
“We were shocked! You should have seen Martin's reaction! He made a serious face and said: "Well, yes, it sounds very good. " I tell him: “Not bad? Martin, it's the same as if Elvis sang one of your songs!"
On the other hand, the song was approached in 2004 by the famous "antichrist-superstar" Marilyn Manson.
“In my understanding, she was completely different from Martin Gore's interpretation. I knew that recording this song would allow me to express significant thoughts about politics and religion."
The cover itself didn't sound as original as Cash did. But Manson played back in the video, where he shoved a bunch of characters (Stalin, Mussolini, Kennedy, Hitler, Castro, Gandhi, Bush Jr. and Christ in a negative image), four sexy horsemen of the Apocalypse and brutal nuns offering a baby to the singer. The baby is dropped on the floor, and it is clear that this is just a figurine, from which, like from a piggy bank, money is pouring. In general, the whole set is in the style of Manson ...
“I've heard about ten different interpretations of 'Personal Jesus' and that's what Martin likes. "Personal Jesus" raises general questions, that's what's important. The lyrics are very ambiguous, so while the song might have been dubious, it ended up being anything but. Most people thought it was a Christian hymn, even though it wasn't meant to be. When you release a song with the word 'Jesus' in it, you're asking for trouble, but we wanted to release it because we liked it."
The song really made a splash even among those critics who didn't like DEPECHE MODE. "Personal Jesus" became #13 in the UK and the first single in the band's history to go gold in the US.
In 2011, the band will release a new (all electronic this time) version of the song, "Personal Jesus (The Stargate Mix)", accompanied by a new, ambiguous music video. In it, the inhabitants of a medieval city lead a girl accused of witchcraft to a bridge and put her to the test with water (if she doesn’t sink, then she’s a witch). After several attempts, the girl still drowns, but then suddenly rises from the lake along with a column of water, which pours out on the executors with punishing burning rain.
But we are way ahead of ourselves. And then - in 1989, after "Personal Jesus" - the world froze in anticipation of a new album.
But about him - in the final part of the cycle.
Tags: biographies, songs, musicians, popularity, music, ambiguity
Are Christians allowed to go to discos and go to dances?
Bible Questions and Answers
Are parties (for example, in college) sinful in relation to the Bible? I am a college student, but I don't like parties like this because of various sinful activities going on there. But what I don't understand exactly is, are Christians allowed to go to discos and go to dance clubs, for example? I know that the Bible is against drunkenness, immoral behavior, but what does it say about situations where people just visit such places with friends?
Of course, the Bible is very clear in condemning drunkenness, drugs, and all immoral behavior. I understand that your question is, is it possible to be in an environment where people do these things? More precisely, is it not sinful to attend such parties, dance clubs and discos, although we ourselves do not practice such behavior?
My answer is that being among people who sin is not sinning. We do not automatically become sinners when we are around those who sin. In my opinion, in this matter, rather, it is necessary to talk about wisdom. Is it wise to be at parties like this where things like this happen? Jesus does not require us to leave this world. He wants us to be in the world and influence the world. Jesus went to a wedding that was most likely attended by many drunks (Gospel of John 2:1-11). Jesus was accused of associating with sinners, as well as His disciples, however (Gospel of Matthew 9:11-12, etc.).
When the Pharisees saw this, they began to ask His disciples: “Why does your Master eat with tax collectors and sinners?” When Jesus heard this, he said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. (Matthew 9:11,12)
It's not a sin to go to a bar or room where drugs are used. In fact, Jesus also likely visited many such places.
But with all this, the Bible tells us that there are wise and unwise things. It's certainly not wise for Christians to be at parties like this. Drunk people are unlikely to be sincere and open to the gospel. For what reason does a Christian even want to go to discos or such a party? If a faithful Christian says that he is going to a party where there will be booze and drugs, a reasonable question arises - for what? What is so attractive there? Going to sporting events where people also like to drink is one thing. But going to a drunken party is another matter entirely.
There is another problem. Paul vowed not to do anything that could cause another brother or sister to fall in the faith. Maybe for us being in such a place does not cause serious problems, but for others - yes. Then attending such a party can rise to the level of sin (Romans 14 and 1 Corinthians 8, for example). 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 warns us to be careful in situations where we may be tempted. Be careful not to fall.
Therefore, he who thinks that he stands firm must be careful not to fall. You did not have such a temptation that would be alien to people. But trust God. He will not lead you into temptation beyond your strength, but together with temptation he will show you how to avoid it in order to resist. (1 Corinthians 10:12,13)
If you or a friend attends these parties, you must ask yourself the question - why? Why even ask such a question? Are you looking for excuses for what, you know, is stupidity or worse, a sin?
In summary, we don't need to make categorical statements. There are no passages we can use to prove that being around sinners is sinning. This is a very bad idea, if anyone thinks so. Nevertheless, general opinion, wisdom, and biblical principles tell us that it is foolish to attend such parties in most cases, especially to make it a habit.