Alex Chilton

Album: Pleased To Meet Me (1987)


  • This song is a tribute to former Box Tops/Big Star member Alex Chilton, credited by many as being the founder of Power Pop. He has produced several songs for The Replacements. The song is not only a tribute, but a reminder of Alex Chilton's relative obscurity, as emphasized in the ironically hyperbolic chorus: "And children by the million sing for Alex Chilton/When he comes 'round/They sing, "I'm in love/What's that song?/Yeah, I'm in love, with that song." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    John - Levittown, NY
  • Chilton may have played guitar on "Can't Hardly Wait," one of the singles from Pleased To Meet Me. In a 2008 interview with, the Replacements singer and guitar Paul Westerberg, who co-wrote the song with bandmates Chris Mars and Tommy Stinson, said that he couldn't remember if Chilton played on the track: "He was there. I mean, uh...well, s--t did he play on it... I don't know if we had actually played with him earlier or not but I don't think we had the 'Alex Chilton' song when we he did that 'Can't Hardly Wait,' that early thing."

    In the same interview, Westerberg described the songwriting process: "it's one of those where melody and chord changes were there and the lyrics changed over the course of six months or so. By the time we were down in Memphis we had already met Alex and I steered it toward him. Of course it was as the legend goes 'George from Outer Space' was the first working title, but that just didn't grab it quite as well. I just thought it would be fun to write a song about a living person and we've been through this, Al and I, and I sort of regret the albatross that it's came with... I was certainly trying to like, I guess, hip the outside world on who this guy might be publicly, but he didn't need that. It would kind of hurt if he was always known as Alex Chilton of that song."
  • In a 1987 interview with Buzz magazine, asked how he felt about the song, Alex Chilton said: "Uh well, I didn't feel any way about it. I mean I'm so used to having these kind of fawning, imbecilic fans you know. To have it take on some coherence is refreshing."

Comments: 7

  • Eb from Fl Keys, FlClassic. Pleased To Meet Me deserves to be in the top 50 rock albums of all time, and this is such a happy shout-out to Alex Chilton, who was a genius. The Replacements have influenced so much of the rock music since them, a brilliant band.
  • Ryan from Anahola, HiThis song is on Rock Band 2. R.I.P. Alex Chilton.
  • Kevin from Reading , PaI recently read a Chilton interview from the 90s and when asked about this song and whether it made him feel honored or proud or something like that, Chilton responded with what sounded like a cavalier, "no."
  • Darrell from Eugene, United StatesIs the real Alex Chilton connected to the family that created Chilton auto repair, motorcycle repair and appliance repair manuals? I have a collection of over 100 Chilton, Haynes, Clymer, Motor, Glenn's and factory-issued manuals (most notably: a 1943 wartime Motor auto-repair manual with Duesenberg, Cadillac V-16 and Cord prominntly featured, a 1959 Fiat 1100 factory-issued manual and a British Leyland-issued Austin Marina shop nanual of unknown vintage)
  • Mister Whirly from Minneapolis, MnAlex Chilton was originally supposed to produce "Tim", and actually started working on the album until the studio thought they needed a "bigger name" and brought in Tommy "Ramone" Erdelyi - who was unfortunately going a little deaf by this time. Some of the Chilton produced demos are still floating artound out there on bootlegs.
  • Andrew from Bergenfield, Nj"Feelin' like a hundred bucks/Exchanging good lucks face to face" is a reference to two Kinks albums "Face to Face" and the rare bootleg "Good Luck"
  • Dan from Tonawanda, Ny"checkin his stash by the trash at st. mark's place" is a reference to the first time Paul Westerberg met the subject, Alex Chilton.
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