Souljacker part I
by Eels

Album: Souljacker (2001)
Charted: 30

Songfacts®:

  • Eels's lead singer, E (aka Mark Oliver Everett), explained on the band's website the origin of this song: "People keep asking me, 'what is a Souljacker?' Originally the press coined the term 'Soul Jacker' for an American serial killer in the 1990s that claimed to not only kill, but also steal the souls of his victims. This is not his story. But I was very interested in this idea, that someone could take your soul. During the recording of the EELS record Electro-Shock Blues, I did something I never would normally do, but I was going through a lot and needed a break. I went to a meditation retreat and did not speak, read or write for ten days. During these ten days I began to think about this idea of stealing a soul on a larger scale. It seemed to me that there were just too many distractions and that people were losing their souls because they had no way of knowing what they had in the first place. How can you keep what you don't know you have? I then realized that no one can take your soul if you know what you have and you don't want them to. I wrote the song that became 'Souljacker part II' in my head during these 10 days. Breaking the retreat's rule about not writing anything, I would go to the outdoor bathroom and use the pencil for bathroom cleaning duty sign-up, and write the words on toilet paper, hiding it whenever someone came in. Later we wrote 'Souljacker part I,' which is about the ugliness of a soulless life. And then came all the other characters in this world that make up 'Souljacker.' Just thought I should explain. It's really a beautiful thing." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • The cover of the Souljacker album featured Eels mainman Mark Everett hooded and with a thick beard, making him look like a terrorist. Consequently after the events of 9/11, the album's American release was delayed until March 2002. The worst irony of the album's cover and title, however, was that one of Everett's cousins, Jennifer, was a stewardess on board America Airlines Flight 77, the plane that flew into the Pentagon, killing everyone on board.
  • The video clip to this song was directed by German director Wim Wenders in an abandoned prison in Berlin. Wenders, who's an avid fan of Eels' music, also directed music documentaries like Buena Vista Social Club about Cuban musicians (check the Songfacts for "Chan Chan") and The Soul of Man about blues musicians. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Martin - Rostock, Germany
  • This featured in the 2007 films Hot Fuzz and The Condemned.

Comments: 1

  • Lila from San Diego, CaThe song was featured in the series United States of Tara, when she is bringing up the alter Buck. either way, i love this song.
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