Over My Head

Album: Gretchen Goes To Nebraska (1989)

Songfacts®:

  • King's X frontman dUg Pinnick wrote this rocker from the band's second album. The lyrics were inspired by his grandmother, who brought music into his life.

    "It's like a negro spiritual," he said in King's X: The Oral History. "It was an old thing:

    Over my head, I hear music in the air
    There must be a God somewhere


    It's an old gospel thing that I grew up listening to all my life. And when I wrote the song, all I could hear was, 'Over my head, I hear music in the air.' And I went, Oh, Lord, music over my head. But I kind of figured, well, I'm not going to say, 'There must be a God somewhere.'"
  • Structurally, "Over My Head" was inspired by the Lenny Kravitz song "Let Love Rule."

    "The way Lenny Kravitz wrote that song, it was real 'Beatle sensible,'" Pinnick said in a Songfacts interview. "It had this real Beatle vibe to it, but when you got to the chorus, the song was building, building, building up for the chorus. But all of a sudden, he comes into 'let love rule,' and it didn't bring it up, it brought it down. That was the first time I ever heard a chorus that was anticlimactic, but it works.

    So when I wrote 'Over My Head,' when I got to, 'Music, oh, oh, oh, lord,' I purposely left it at that level just to be like Lenny Kravitz."
  • Pinnick came up with the track for this song on a Mattel drum pad five years before King's X recorded it. He recorded it onto cassette, then played that cassette back, adding parts he recorded on another player - very rudimentary multi-track recording. He thought it "sucked" and didn't didn't play it for anyone until one day when he and his bandmates were going through their old demos looking for material for the Gretchen Goes To Nebraska album. He was going to skip over the song, but guitarist Ty Tabor convinced him to play it. Pinnick was shocked when they all loved it. He added lyrics, the band worked up the song, and it became one of their most popular selections, played at most of their live shows.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Director Wes Edwards ("Drunk on a Plane")Song Writing

Wes Edwards takes us behind the scenes of videos he shot for Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley and Chase Bryant. The train was real - the airplane was not.

Dar WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

A popular contemporary folk singer, Williams still remembers the sticky note that changed her life in college.

Women Who RockSong Writing

Evelyn McDonnell, editor of the book Women Who Rock, on why the Supremes are just as important as Bob Dylan.

Divided Souls: Musical Alter EgosSong Writing

Long before Eminem, Justin Bieber and Nicki Minaj created alternate personas, David Bowie, Bono, Joni Mitchell and even Hank Williams took on characters.

Art Alexakis of EverclearSongwriter Interviews

The lead singer of Everclear, Art is also their primary songwriter.

Lita FordSongwriter Interviews

Lita talks about how they wrote songs in The Runaways, and how she feels about her biggest hit being written by somebody else.