Fooled Around And Fell In Love

Album: Struttin' My Stuff (1975)
Charted: 34 3

Songfacts®:

  • Bishop is a blues guitarist who played in The Paul Butterfield Blues Band before forming his own group in 1968. Mickey Thomas was a vocalist in Bishop's band and sang lead on "Fooled Around And Fell In Love."

    In our interview with Elvin Bishop, he explained: "My voice is very plain. It's better suited for blues. It's been good for me, because it's made my songwriting strong, because to really get over with a voice like mine, which is not a thrill in itself - the quality of the voice - you have to have a strong story and really good words to capture people's imagination.

    And that tune, I gave it a try. The producer, Bill Szymczyk, said, 'We need one more piece of material here. You got anything else laying around?' I said, 'Well, there's this tune I wrote the other day.' Well, not the other day. I'd actually tried to get a couple of other people to sing it, but somehow it didn't work out. I said, 'How about this 'Fooled Around and Fell In Love'?' We cut a track, it was a really nice track. I tried singing it, and I said, 'That's not buttering my biscuit, my vocal on this. Why don't we give Mickey a shot at this?' And the producer said, 'Well, that's big of you.' And I said, 'Well, I don't think so. It's just common sense, you know?' And Mickey just tore it up."
  • Mickey Thomas replaced Marty Balin as the male lead singer of Jefferson Starship in 1979 and was with the band in 1985 when they changed their name to Starship and had huge hits with "Sara," "We Built This City" and "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now."
  • This song is about a guy who callously played the field until one day when he falls madly in love with a girl he can't stop thinking about. "The better a song is, the less story there is to it, as far as I can tell," Bishop said in his Songfacts interview. "The best songs just come rushing out. I don't know if life squeezes them out of you, or if they're just so right that they take no thought. I don't know. Or if you're given a temporary connection to the flow of the universe, or whatever it is. But that song just damn near wrote itself."
  • Although Bishop is known as a blues musician, this song was a huge pop hit and still gets considerable airplay on Adult Contemporary radio. The song does not represent the body of Bishop's work, but he does love playing it live. Says Bishop: "I figured out a way to have my cake and eat it too on that one. I play it as a slide instrumental, pretty much, with the guys singing background vocals, and they get the crowd to sing, and it works just amazingly well. Slide is kind of like the voice I never had. I can sing as high or as low as I want to, put as much sustain, as much treble... I learned to play the melody 'Fooled Around And Fell In Love' on the slide. It doesn't sound like it would work, but it does."
  • Many younger listeners discovered this song when it was used in the 2014 film Guardians Of The Galaxy and included on the soundtrack, which went to #1 in America. In the film, Chris Pratt plays it to seduce Zoe Saldana. "The melody is pleasant," she says, before pulling a knife on him, refusing to succumb to his "pelvic sorcery."
  • This song has appeared in a number of movies and TV series. Among them:

    TV:
    Entourage ("The Bat Mitzvah" - 2005)
    Friday Night Lights ("Tomorrow Blues" - 2009)

    Movies:
    Boogie Nights (1997)
    Big Daddy (1999)
    Summer of Sam (1999)
    The Devil's Rejects (2005)
    Invincible (2006)
    Lovelace (2013)

Comments: 18

  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenI had a friend at the time who thought this song was called "Screwed Around and Fell in Love."
  • Bob J from Ocean City, MdJust really got hooked on "Fooled Around and fell in Love" BUT!! I suddenly fell in love with Reni Slais. . At 88 years old, I loved seeing her do the harmony part of the song and was totally mesmerized by he face and body coordination with the tune. I used to sing in a local band in the 70's, did this piece but never really found just how great it was until recently.
  • Drew from SacramentoI believe the female backup singer is Reni Slais
  • Chris Sd from Right Where I’m Standing.Who is the female backup singer? She has a great voice but it’s her facial expressions and body movement that I find very interesting. Thanks in advance.
  • Keywestcow from Austin,texasWho is the girl with Mickey singing "fooled around and fell in love" ?
  • Everett Why is there absolutely no mention of the female singer on the original video? Not even mentioned in the list of band members
  • Andrew from MemphisWho was the girl in the video singing with Thomas?
  • Tony from San DiegoHi Jeanie from Georgia. It's actually pretty simple. Radio stations today generally play the shorter cut because they can get more songs in per day and per hour. And with today's adult contemporary stations it's not about long playing tracks, it's about the singles. And classic hard rock stations never play this song. You can listen to the long version on the album Struttin My Stuff
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 28th 1976, "Fooled Around and Fell In Love" by Elvin Bishop entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #88; and on May 16th it peaked at #3 (for 3 weeks) and spent 17 weeks on the Top 100 (and for 6 of those 17 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
    In 9185 T.G. Sheppard covered it; his version reached #21 on Billboard's Hot Country Singles chart...
    Mr. Bishop will celebrate his 72nd birthday this coming October 21st (2014).
  • Jeanie from Alto, GaOk, can someone please explain to me why I never hear the second verse of this song....ever? When it was popular the second verse always played. Even years after it dropped from the charts the second verse always played. All of a sudden, like maybe 15 or so years ago, I heard it on the radio and I was singing along and it got to the part that WOULD BE the second verse and I started belting it out and realized the verse wasn't playing. Ever since then, no matter what oldies or classic rock station I hear it on skips that part. Why? I even looked it up on youtube. I know I can buy a cd if I really have to hear that part but at this point, I guess it ultimately doesn't matter but it's just such a mystery to me I just really want to know. I've called a few radio stations over the years and the only explanation they ever give me is that with any song there is a "longer" album version and then the one that is heard on the radio. Then I proceed to explain to them that the "longer" version is the one that was played on the radio back in the day. I usually ask the dj how old he/she is and if he/she is old enough, ask them do they not remember this song from back then. Anway, can anyone explain to me why that verse is always skipped? I know it's not the length of it, not when they play other even much longer songs like "Do You Feel Like We Do" or "Stairway to Heaven" or the live version of "Free Bird" or CCR's version of "Heard it Through the Grapevine", etc.
  • Pierre from Ottawa, OnAlways loved this song but never knew who sang it, Thanks for educating me on Mickey Thomas. I was always a big fan of J Airplane as well as Starship. Now thanks to Internet Jukeboxes I can walk into my favorite bar in Ottawa..........the Chateau Lafayette and play it.Also bouht the CD from amazon. Can anyone tell me where I can find a 45 of this song Thanks Pierre
  • Camille from Toronto, OhFirst, fabulous song, words and music. But I never knew a thing about at guy named Mickey Thomas, his involvement with Starship or that he sang lead on this. The song still has a great appeal and sound years after it was a hit.
  • Lee from Huntsville, Al"elvin bishop sitting on a bale of hay...he ain't good looking but he sure can play" from charlie daniels hit "the south's gonna do it again". and he's right,elvin sure can play! great tune from "75.
  • Mark from New Orleans, LaIt's also featured in "Invincible," another movie with Mark Wahlberg. It really added to the 70s vibe of the movie.
  • Brad from Barry, TxCountry artists Gary Morris and Juice Newton performed a nice duet version of this song, too.
  • Jami from Redding, CaI met Elvin Bishop and Mickey Thomas in Ukiah, CA back in 1976. Good people both of them. I had a feeling Mickey wouldn't be hanging around for long with that band, not with that incredible voice.
  • Joe from Chicago, IlAlso gets a lot of airplay on classic rock stations. (At least, in Illinois)
  • Joey from Boston, MaThis song has been featured in several movies, including Boogie Nights. The song is very soulful, with an incredible melody.
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