Novelty Song Friday #2 — Bugs by Pearl Jam

I remember the first time I heard “Bugs” I thought what the HECK is this?? With the COVID-19 pandemic occurring as I type, this song fits right in.

Vitalogy is the third studio album by American rock band Pearl Jam, released November 22, 1994, through Epic Records. Pearl Jam wrote and recorded Vitalogy while touring behind its previous album Vs. (1993). The music on the record was more diverse than previous releases, and consists of aggressive rock songs, ballads, and other elements making it Pearl Jam’s most experimental album to date. Upon its CD release, Vitalogy became the second-fastest selling album in history, only behind the band’s previous release Vs., selling 877,000 copies in its first week and went multi-platinum quickly. The album has been certified five times platinum by the RIAA in the United States. This is Pearl Jam’s last album to feature drummer Dave Abbruzzese.

Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic said that “thanks to its stripped-down, lean production, Vitalogy stands as Pearl Jam’s most original and uncompromising album.” He added that “in between the straight rock numbers and the searching slow songs, Pearl Jam contribute their strangest music—the mantrafunk of ‘Aye Davanita‘, the sub-Tom Waits accordion romp of ‘Bugs’, and the chilling sonic collage ‘Hey Foxymophandlemama, That’s Me’.” “Bugs” features Vedder playing an accordion that he found at a thrift shop, while “Hey Foxymophandlemama, That’s Me” was created using looped recordings of real patients from a psychiatric hospital.

Many of the songs on the album address the pressures of fame and dealing with the resulting loss of privacy. These include “Not for You,” “Pry, To,” “Corduroy,” “Bugs,” “Satan’s Bed” and “Immortality.” Vedder said, “I’m just totally vulnerable. I’m way too fucking soft for this whole business, this whole trip. I don’t have any shell. There’s a contradiction there, because that’s probably why I can write songs that mean something to someone and express some of these things that other people can’t necessarily express.


All these…
I got bugs
I got bugs in my room
Bugs in my bed
Bugs in my ears
Their eggs in my head
Bugs in my pockets
Bugs in my shoes
Bugs in the way I feel about you
Bugs on my window
Trying to get in
They don’t go nowhere
Waiting waiting…
Bugs on my ceiling
Crowded the floor
Standing sitting kneeling…
A few block the door
And now the question’s:
Do I kill them?
Become their friend?
Do I eat them?
Raw or well done?
Do I trick them?
I don’t think they’re that dumb
Do I join them?
Looks like that’s the one
I got bugs on my skin
Tickle my nausea
I let it happen again
They’re always takin’ over
I see they surround me, I see…
See them deciding my fate
Oh, that which was once…was once up to me…
Now it’s too late
I got bugs in my room…one on one
That’s when I had a chance
I’ll just stop now
I’ll become naked
And with the…I’ll become one
Songwriters: Eddie Vedder / Jeff Ament / Mike Mccready / Stone Gossard / David Abbruzzese


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Weird song, but bugs are better than bug bites.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. memadtwo says:

    Always makes me think of Kafka. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. badfinger20 says:

    I would have never thought it was them…this is cool

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      It’s weird, but after you’ve heard it a few times, it’s like, oh, it’s just part of the album…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. badfinger20 says:

        I like when bands do that…it shows they have a sense of humor…and do different things.

        Liked by 1 person

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