by Korn

Album: Korn (1994)
Play Video


  • This is about how people try to be something they're not in order to be accepted instead of just being themselves. What inspired lead singer Jon Davis to write the lyrics, though, was an early gig where a skinhead was booing them and telling them to "go back to Bakersfield!" Jon kneeled down to hear him and the guy took a swing at him. The skinhead was all tattooed and looked like a clown, so that was the inspiration for the title of the song and also the line "Hit me clown, because I'm not from your town."
  • This was the fourth (and final) single released from the band's first album, and like all Korn songs, is a band composition. The group's first two albums were recorded at Indigo Ranch Studios in Malibu, California, which their guitarist Brian "Head" Welch tells us was a great place to work. "It was in the hills and it was all like vintage stuff," he said. "There was some partying and stuff like that, so some of those memories are kind of blah. But the creative process was really cool to experience."

    Unfortunately, the studio burned down in 2007 wildfires that also destroyed about 50 homes in the area.
  • The video for this song was Korn's third, following "Blind" and "Shoots And Ladders." All three were directed by McG, who would later direct the first two Charlie's Angels movies and the TV show Chuck.
  • McG, who also did the videos for Korn's "Got The Life" and "Shoots And Ladders," was the director. Around this time, he worked with a lot of bands from the Southern California area, including Sugar Ray and The Offspring.

Comments: 11

  • Khafre from Indianapolis, In"I wrote a song about a guy in San Diego who took a swing at me. He's all "f--k you! Go back to Bakersfield!" Well I didn't understand that, so I bent down and he tried to swing at me, and our road manager Jeff knocked his ass out, that song is Clown." - Jonathan Davis
  • Nathan Ritz from Paoli, InThe manager didnt knock him out he just hit him and the security and the mamager escorted him out of the concert
  • Rob from Chicago, IlPretend you know nothing about what happened to Jon Davis, and read the lyrics again. The song is about the nature of bullies, in this case a "cowardly man" who hides behind his tattoos to justify his actions. It's not really about people in general who try to be things they aren't. You have to be careful interpreting songs based on biographical events or the author's stated intent.
    Rob, Wilmette, IL
  • Kelsey from Rustburg, VaI agree with you Matt. The guy who hit Jon fit my brother's description perfectly. I actually had to make sure that my bro has never been to a KoRn concert.
  • Matt from Corinth, MeThis is a great song. Korn is just an awesome group in general.
  • Sierra from Flip, Kyi enjoy this song along with twist, shoots and ladders and twisted transistor.... Woo!!!
  • George from Philadelphia, Payes john did get hit
  • Scummy from Spokane, WaJon didnt actually get hit by the skinhead. The skinhead swung and missed thats when Jon's manager stepped in and knocked the dude out!
  • Rob from ???, TxThis is one of my favorte Korn songs, and when I backyard wrestle with my friends, this is my enterence music.
  • Josh from El Paso, TxI have had similar incidents. I'm an otr truck driver and being from El Paso, I'm hispanic (dark skinned). Any ways, I was delivering a medical load in Missouri when 3 other drivers from different companies along with the dock manager approached me and started insulting me, kicking my truck, trying to open my doors, and yelling racial slurs at me. Now I have a speaker hidden outside my truck and I started blasting this song while calling the police. sad to say that even the Missouri police are racist a**holes (they told the drivers to leave the wetback alone)!!!
  • Brian from Paoli, InSupposedly their manager at the time, knocked the guy out who punched Jon in the face.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Vanessa Carlton

Vanessa CarltonSongwriter Interviews

The "A Thousand Miles" singer on what she thinks of her song being used in White Chicks and how she captured a song from a dream.

Spooner Oldham

Spooner OldhamSongwriter Interviews

His keyboard work helped define the Muscle Shoals sound and make him an integral part of many Neil Young recordings. Spooner is also an accomplished songwriter, whose hits include "I'm Your Puppet" and "Cry Like A Baby."

Early Days of MTV

Early Days of MTVFact or Fiction

If you can recall the days when MTV played videos, you know that there are lots of stories to tell. See if you can spot the real ones.

Famous Singers' First Films

Famous Singers' First FilmsSong Writing

A look at the good (Diana Ross, Eminem), the bad (Madonna, Bob Dylan) and the peculiar (David Bowie, Michael Jackson) film debuts of superstar singers.

Al Jourgensen of Ministry

Al Jourgensen of MinistrySongwriter Interviews

In the name of song explanation, Al talks about scoring heroin for William Burroughs, and that's not even the most shocking story in this one.


U2Fact or Fiction

How did The Edge get his name? Did they name a song after a Tolkien book? And who is "Angel of Harlem" about?