If I Had Eyes
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|"If I Had Eyes"|
|Single by Jack Johnson|
|from the album Sleep Through the Static|
|B-side||"Let It Be Sung"|
|Released||December 11, 2007|
|Recorded||Los Angeles, California, 2007|
|Jack Johnson singles chronology|
"If I Had Eyes" is the first single from Hawaiian singer-songwriter Jack Johnson's album Sleep Through the Static. It was released exclusively on Brushfirerecords.com November 29. The official iTunes single was released on December 11, 2007.
The track features more electric guitar work, similar to that on his On and On album. The track is a mix of acoustic, jazz, and blues. Lyrically, the song expresses the sad breakup of a long-term relationship.
Background and Writing
Johnson elaborated to the Herald Sun on how his son Moe (3-years-old at the time this was written) inspired this song: "He was drinking a lot of soya milk at the time. I told him if he kept drinking too much, he would grow a tail with an eyeball at the end. He looked at me trying to make sure I was kidding. When he figured that out, he attached his elbow to his butt and pointed his finger around the room. He had made this tail with an eyeball. He pointed at me and said, 'Dad, you look good.' I thought that was a sweet thing to say."
This inspired Johnson to immediately write If I Had Eyes. Johnson added: "I made a song that said, 'If I had an eyeball on the end of my tail, I'd tell you that you look good as I walked away'. I meant it literally, but once I thought about metaphors (Johnson's friends were divorcing), it was a beautiful way to put it. I switched it around, made it less silly, but kept my son's ideas. I need to give him a songwriting credit."
The music video for "If I Had Eyes" shows Jack Johnson and his fellow musicians (see below credits) performing the song in a recording studio. The video was shot in grayscale with a few other colors appearing, mostly from the instruments they're playing.
- Jack Johnson - vocals, guitar
- Adam Topol - drums
- Merlo Podlewski - bass
- Zach Gill - piano, clavinet, backup vocals
- Danny Riley - backup vocals
- JP Plunier - claps, backup vocals
- Emmett Malloy - claps
- Josh Arroyo - claps
|Ö3 Austria Top 40||37|
|Canadian Singles Chart||11|
|German Media Control Charts||73|
|Netherlands Mega Single Top 100||60|
|New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart||33|
|Swiss Singles Chart||30|
|UK Singles Chart||60|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||47|
|U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks||7|
|Venezuela Pop Rock (Record Report)||2|
- If I Had Eyes by Jack Johnson - Song Facts (accessed May 29, 2014)
- Jack Johnson - If I Had Eyes (Official Video) on YouTube (uploaded June 16, 2009)
- "Pop Rock" (in Spanish). Record Report. 2008-04-05. Archived from the original on 2007-07-02.