Jon Spencer of the Blues Explosion: My Life in 10 Songs

From Pussy Galore to 'Freedom Tower,' the combustible blues-punker looks back

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The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, "Bellbottoms" (1994)

Things changed a little bit [after 1994's Orange], but we were just always nose-to-the-grindstone. We were working, and working very hard, making the records we wanted to make and touring. I'd like to think that if we got over, it was just through hard work and sweat and playing and turning people on. Yeah, things changed, but it's not like I was given keys to the city or the record label bought us Cadillacs or that I got a dinner invitation from Eric Clapton or something.

"Bellbottoms" was originally twice as long, there was this whole end section that was cut out of the record. The string section was just something I had heard and wanted to do. A buddy of mine knew a cellist and a violinist, so I hummed this part to my buddy, he made some sheet music and then we got the two string players in and had them play it twice so it sounded a little bit bigger.

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