Jungle Love

Album: Book Of Dreams (1977)
Charted: 23
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • This song, like many other of Steve Miller's, contains mostly sexual innuendo as he sings about a woman who has has "jungle love" with. Various jungle sounds were added for effect. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Tim - New York, NY

Comments: 9

  • Liam from CaliforniaRE: Brad from Johnstown

    you're thinking of Jungle Fever, my guy.
  • Dave from HawaiiIt’s pretty much the same story told in roughly half of every song (or story, for that matter) ever written, with a few variations based on the current culture and the writer’s experiences and state of mind. ... And even though this song is great without the lyrics, the imagery the words invoke is really cool too ... coulda been cliche, but definitely not. ... Too bad this song came out pre-MTV. .. could’ve had a great video too. ... so, the story: Guy pursues a hot woman he meets at a nightclub, which in those days were basically jungles where a lot of people preyed on each other for casual sex. He gets lucky with her once and has the greatest sex of his life.. Falls for her and wants to be her one and only, her protector from the dangers of “the jungle.” But he’s insecure because she “probably wouldn’t remember” and is in high demand and LIKES the jungle excitement. He can’t get with her again because all the competition in the jungle intimidates him. Eventually, he realizes he’s gone overboard, and that maybe he should just be thankful for the good time with her, since we all “live our life in a dream” and come to the “scarlet conclusion” of death eventually.
  • Me Meme Me from Usa or maybe Steve just liked the song and didn't really think about meanings? He didn't write it after all. Unless an artist explicitly spell out what agenda their music is for it is almost 1000% just a cash grab. (duh, they want to make money too ya know!)
  • Jusme from UsaI believe he was talking about the ‘private island’ where all the celebs have visited....
  • Tim Miltz from Pittsburgh PennslyvaniaJust posting a link of what triggered the connection of these Islands, the JellyFish, the use of Papaya in quantity to treat the stings ->

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jellyfish_Lake

    The Islands look to be uncountable, so 'on Somebody's Island' 'create of papaya' 'protect and keep you from harm' as the lakes do protect the Jellyfish, ok ok - I'll stop heh... IF this IS correct though as to what Miller was writing about - my oh my - I don't think anyone would get this in a million years. I am not sure if I watch too many Columbo episodes or I didn't watch enough HR PuffnStuff.
  • Tim Miltz from Pittsburgh PennslyvaniaI have a very strange interpretation of this song I just formulated.

    I was watching a movie where someone had a pet 'box jellyfish' - so I looked it up - having listened to Jungle Love 50 times in the last 2 days ? When I noticed Papaya is used to treat jelly fish stings? I thought - hmm there is that strange line in the song. Then I came across this place called

    Jelly Fish Lake

    It is a marine lake on is a marine lake located on Eil Malk island in Palau. The golden jellyfish, Mastigias cf. papua etpisoni <- papua ! papaya.

    Now - this lake is unique, it is protected from the ocean

    "My cycles of circular motion
    Protect you and keep you from harm"

    But the lake does have access to the sea.

    Further

    "But lately you live in the jungle
    I never see you alone"

    This lake on this island is IN the jungle and well- it's called JellyFish Lake because there are millions of jellyfish in it - it's totally filled with jellyfish - people go there to 'swim with them' - they CAN sting but not that much. Alas again - who needs a CASE of papayas - I'd argue if you go swimming with 1 million jellyfish, you too might keep a case of papayas on hand for when you get out.

    BIG reach on this - I also simply don't want this song to be some 'mating call' authorial intent on lyrics either.

    I really really enjoy the music to this song, and the delivery of the three ambiguous lines.

    Is it POSSIBLE Steve Miller visited JellyFish Lake on Eil Malk Island ?

    IS this Jungle love ? the out of this world joy people report who come to that Island TO ? swim with the Jellyfish?

    BIG reach here- if anything, this theory MIGHT make you smile- and who knows, maybe it is what the song is about.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn July 31st, 1977, "Jungle Love" by the Steven Miller Band entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #83; and on September 25th, 1977 it peaked at #23 {for 2 weeks} and spent 14 weeks on the Top 100...It reached #18 on the Canadian RPM 100 Singles chart...Between 1968 and 1993 the band had twenty Top 100 records; five made the Top 10 with three reaching #1, "The Joker" {for 1 week in 1974}, "Rock'n Me" {for 1 week in 1977}, and "Abracadabra" {for 2 weeks in 1982}...They just missed having a fourth #1 when "Fly Like An Eagle" peaked at #2 {for 2 weeks} on March 6th, 1977... The two weeks "Fly Like An Eagle" was at #2, the #1 record for both those weeks was "Love theme 'A Star Is Born' (Evergreen)” by Barbra Streisand.
  • Brad from Johnstown, OhThe term "Jungle Love" is a term used when a white person is in love or in lust with a black person. I thought that was the meaning behind the song.
  • Hank from Omaha, NeDespite the images conjured up by the title, this song is about more than simple sexual innuendo. The lyrics seem to be a commentary by Miller on the biological forces behind attraction and sexuality. Imagery within the song such as "you swim in my blood when it's warm" and "my cycles of circular motion" seem to reference parasite/host relationships and cellular reproduction, while "the patterns of the rain...have written my life on your skin" represent evolution and DNA.

    The opening two lines of the song "I met you on somebody's island/You thought you had known me before" suggest that Miller is framing the song with the belief that we are, in large part, controlled by our natural instincts regarding sexual attraction. He addresses this further during the 5th/6th lines of the song, when he discusses memory, an acknowledgment that many people choose to ignore the role that nature plays in their sexuality, despite the fact that we have little control over our sexual impulses.

    Lastly, he ends the song by discussing "a world of illusion" and "a scarlet conclusion", signifying that while Miller acknowledges romantic notions to exist, he believes biological forces that play the dominant role in human sexual behavior. The title of the song thus takes on a different meaning as the audience gleans that Miller believes the modern conception of romance and sexuality to be "jungle love" dressed up with illusions and dreams.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Gentle Giant

Gentle GiantSongwriter Interviews

An interview with Ray and Derek Shulman of the progressive rock band Gentle Giant to discuss counterpoint, polyrhythms, and... Bon Jovi.

Ed Roland of Collective Soul

Ed Roland of Collective SoulSongwriter Interviews

The stories behind "Shine," "December," "The World I Know" and other Collective Soul hits.

Kerry Livgren of Kansas

Kerry Livgren of KansasSongwriter Interviews

In this talk from the '80s, the Kansas frontman talks turning to God and writing "Dust In The Wind."

James Williamson of Iggy & the Stooges

James Williamson of Iggy & the StoogesSongwriter Interviews

The Stooges guitarist (and producer of the Kill City album) talks about those early recordings and what really happened with David Bowie.

Verdine White of Earth, Wind & Fire

Verdine White of Earth, Wind & FireSongwriter Interviews

The longtime bassist of Earth, Wind & Fire discusses how his band came to do a holiday album, and offers insight into some of the greatest dance/soul tunes of all-time.

Martyn Ware of Heaven 17

Martyn Ware of Heaven 17Songwriter Interviews

Martyn talks about producing Tina Turner, some Heaven 17 hits, and his work with the British Electric Foundation.