Top 10 Luscious Jackson Songs

Luscious Jackson Songs

Feature Photo: Luscious Jackson

Our top 10 Luscious Jackson songs list presents the music of a female rock band best known for its alternative/indie rock sound. The band was formed in 1991 by Gabrielle Glaser and Jill Cunniff. While its sound has been described as alternative/indie rock, Luscious Jackson’s songs also feature sonic influences of alternative pop and trip-hop genres. The band’s name was inspired by a former power forward/center of the NBA team Philadelphia 76ers, Lucious Jackson.

Luscious Jackson’s Career Beginnings

After its formation in 1991, Luscious Jackson went on to release its first extended play, In Search of Manny. The seven-track EP saw the band usher in extra members to the band’s lineup, albeit in two songs. Luscious Jackson’s new members were keyboardist Vivian Trimble and drummer Kate Schellenbach. Kate is notable from the original lineup of the American rap rock/hardcore punk/alternative rock band Beastie Boys.

In Search of Manny had, for the better part, been recorded by Gasper and Jill. Vivian and Kate were only featured on the EP’s tracks, “Bam-Bam” and “Satellite.” The EP was a success, featuring some of the best Luscious Jackson songs, “Daughters of the Kaos” and “Let Yourself Get Down.” Luscious Jackson had by this time made quite a remarkable following. The band’s initial following is credited to Cypress Hill and the Beastie Boys, who gave the band a chance to open for them.

Luscious Jackson’s Breakthrough and Album Releases over the Years

In Search of Manny unlocked the doors of limitless possibilities for the band, prompting its members to consider making a major release. Eventually, the band issued its debut album, Natural Ingredients, in 1994. The album was issued through Beastie Boys’ Grand Royal Label. Grand Royal Label would later become home to Jimmy Eat World, At the Drive-In, and Sean Lennon, the son of the late John Lennon.

Natural Ingredients was a success, rising to the second spot on the Billboard Heatseekers Albums chart. The album also peaked at number one hundred and fourteen on the Billboard 200. Some of the biggest songs by Luscious Jackson from the album include “Citysong,” “Deep Shag,” and “Here.” Thanks to the success of the band’s debut album that Luscious Jackson was among the bands that made up the lineup of the 1994 Lollapalooza tour. Other notable bands present on this tour included Beastie Boys, The Smashing Pumpkins, A Tribe Called Quest, and The Flaming Lips.

Luscious Jackson enjoyed greater commercial and mainstream success with its sophomore studio album, Fever In Fever Out. The album was issued in 1996, with most of its production work done by Daniel Lanois. Lanois has also worked with other reputable artists, including U2, Bob Dylan, and Emmylou Harris.

Fever In Fever Out managed to rise to position seventy-two on the Billboard 200. The album also managed to enter the UK Albums chart, peaking at number fifty-five. One of the songs featured on the album, “Naked Eyes,” saw the band take pride in having a song in the Billboard Top 40. Other reputable songs from the band’s sophomore album include “Under Your Skin” and “Why Do I Lie?” Fever In Fever Out was Gold-certified by RIAA after its sales rose above the five hundred thousand mark.

Luscious Jackson later returned in 1999 with its third studio album, Electric Honey. The album was a success rising to position one hundred and two on the Billboard 200. Electric Honey also made it to the UK Albums chart, peaking at number ninety-nine. While the album was a success, it failed to match feats reached by the band’s sophomore LP. Nevertheless, the album was home to some of the best Luscious Jackson songs, including “Ladyfingers” and “Nervous Breakthrough.”

Unfortunately, Luscious Jackson disbanded in 2000, only to reunite in 2011. However, Trimble never returned to the band in 2011. The band went on to release its fourth studio album, Magic Hour, in 2013. Magic Hour was issued through City Song, featuring musical gems including “Show Us What You Got” and “#1 Bum.” Unfortunately, the album never made it to the charts.

A week after the release of Magic Hour, the band issued its fifth studio album, Baby DJBaby DJ is the band’s most recent album release. The album is home to some of the best Luscious Jackson songs, including “Freeze Dance” and “Baby DJ.” Like its predecessor, Baby DJ failed to break into the charts.

Luscious Jackson’s Other Musical Pursuits

Luscious Jackson recorded a cover of the song “I’ve Got a Crush on You” by George Gershwin in 1998. The cover song was featured on the compilation album Red Hot + Rhapsody. Money collected from the sales of the compilation album was used for charity, including raising awareness and helping fight AIDS. The band also released the cover of “Let It Snow,” a 1945 song penned by Sammy Cahn. “Let It Snow” was used for a Christmas ad in TV Guide.

After departing from Luscious Jackson, Trimble later joined hands with Josephine Wiggs of The Breeders to form Dusty Trails. The now-defunct Dusty Trails released its eponymous studio album in 2000. Jill Cunniff, on the other hand, collaborated with Sisely Treasure to form the pop group Cooler Kids, releasing Punk Debutante in 2003. In 2007, Jill released a solo album entitled City Beach.

Luscious Jackson’s Legacy

While its fame never lasted for long, Luscious Jackson remains a significant ensemble in classic rock history. The band’s mainstay in the music scene was the alternative rock sound. However, Luscious Jackson never restricted itself to the alternative rock sound. In fact, the band is best known for its fusion of alternative rock with alternative pop, indie rock, and trip-hop sound. Here we present the ten best Luscious Jackson songs of all time.

# 10 – Nervous Breakdown

Ushering us to the top 10 Luscious Jackson songs list is the groovy hit “Nervous Breakdown.” The song was penned by Jill Cunniff, who also takes on the lead vocals on this song. “Nervous Breakdown” is featured on the band’s third studio album, Electric Honey. The song also features rap vocals by Gabrielle Glaser. Canadian jazz musician Robert Aaron is featured as a guest musician on this song, having him play the horn. Robert Aaron has also been featured in songs by David Bowie, Wu-Tang Clan, Heavy D, and Blondie.

# 9 – Show Us What You Got

By the time the band was releasing Magic Hour, its influences on the alternative rock scene had been greatly diminished. However, fans of this female band were quick to welcome the album. While Magic Hour might not have reached the projected levels of success, it featured several musical gems, among them “Show Us What You Got.”

The song serves as the first single off the album. “Show Us What You Got” reminisces the band’s groovy sound that made people fall in love with the band back in the ‘90s.

# 8 – Why Do I Lie?

“Why Do I Lie?” is one of the most underrated songs by Luscious Jackson. The song was penned by the band’s vocalist Jill Cunniff. It is featured on Luscious Jackson’s sophomore album, Fever In Fever Out. “Why Do I Lie?” sonic influences make it feels more like a soul song from the ‘70s.

The song features some guitar work from the Canadian musician and record producer Daniel Lanois. Lanois has also worked with other musicians, including Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, U2, and Emmylou Harris. Keyboardist Vivian Trimble adds to the song her backing vocals. The song is featured on the soundtrack of the 1997 drama movie Good Will Hunting.

# 7 – Daughters of the Kaos

In 1992, Gabrielle Glaser and Jill Cunniff hit the studio to record the band’s first EP. “Daughters of Kaos” is among the five songs from the EP, In Search of Manny, Glaser, and Jill, released as a duo. The song is especially known for pulling quite a huge audience to Luscious Jackson’s live performances even before the band released its debut album. “Daughter of Kaos” remains one of the band’s best amalgam of alternative rock and alternative hip hop sounds.

# 6 – Deep Shag

Number six on our top 10 Luscious Jackson songs is the dazzling hit “Deep Shag.” The song is featured on the band’s debut studio album, Natural Ingredients. Jill and Glaser are credited with having composed this magical hit. The two also contribute to the song’s vocals.

“Deep Shag” alludes to the good feeling of a person in the arms of her significant other. This touching song is among the tracks featured in Rob Sheffield’s autobiographical memoir, Love Is a Mix Tape.

# 5 – Under Your Skin

After a successful debut album, Luscious Jackson returned with its sophomore album, Fever in Fever Out, which catapulted the band to global success. “Under Your Skin” is among the musical gems featured on the album. The song was penned by Jill Cunniff. Jill is also credited with having played the bass and guitars during the recording of this song. Hence, the success of the song was majorly attributed to Jill’s individual brilliance on the instruments and vocals.

# 4 – Here

“Here” is yet another big hit by Luscious Jackson from the band’s debut studio album. The over-three-minute track was penned by Jill Cunniff and Gabrielle Glaser. All the band members play a part in this song, with Jill and Glaser left on the role of the vocal once again. “Here” samples the hit “Scorpio” by Dennis Coffey and The Detroit Guitar Band. The song was among the songs featured on the soundtrack of the 1995 teen comedy film, Clueless.

# 3 – Ladyfingers

The third pick on our ten best Luscious Jackson songs list is the exceptional hit “Ladyfingers.” “Ladyfingers” is one of the band’s most radio-friendly hits from the band’s album, Electric Honey. Like most of the songs from the album, “Ladyfingers” is quite catchy, thanks to its playful tunes.

“Ladyfingers” was penned by Jill Cunniff, who gave a hand in the song’s production. The song’s accompanying music video was directed by Tamra Davis, who has worked with other ensembles, including Sonic Youth, N.W.A., and Black Flag. “Ladyfingers” has its lyrics alluding to being tender to other souls without holding back the nurturing vibe. The song rose to number forty-three on the UK Singles Chart. It also managed to peak at number twenty-eight on the Billboard Alternative Airplay.

# 2 – Citysong

“Citysong” is one of Luscious Jackson’s earliest releases. The song is featured on the band’s debut album, Natural Ingredients. Jill and Glaser once again teamed up in penning this song. “Citysong” samples the hit “On and On” by Gladys Knight & the Pips. This alternative rock ballad rose to number thirty-nine on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart. “Citysong” also peaked at number sixty-nine on the UK Singles Chart.

# 1 – Naked Eye

Number one on our top 10 Luscious Jackson songs list is the alluring hit “Naked Eyes.” The song was penned by Jill Cunniff and featured on the band’s 1996 LP, Fever In Fever Out. Singer Jill revealed in an interview that “Naked Eye” alludes to honesty emotionally.

“Naked Eye” went on to become the band’s only song to break into the Billboard Hot 100. The song went on to rise to number twenty-five on the UK Singles Chart. As if that wasn’t enough, “Naked Eye” made it to the Australian and Scottish Singles charts. The song went on to appear on the Billboard Adult Top 40, Modern Rock Tracks, and Top 40 Mainstream charts.

Top 10 Luscious Jackson Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2022

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