Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam

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"Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam"
Song by The Vaselines from the album Dying for It
Released 1987
Genre Alternative rock
Length 3:31
Label 53rd & 3rd
Writer Eugene Kelly, Frances McKee
from the album MTV Unplugged in New York
"Come As You Are"
"Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam"
"The Man Who Sold The World"

"Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam" is a song originally recorded by Scottish alternative band The Vaselines for their EP Dying for It. It is a parody on the Christian children's hymn, "I'll Be a Sunbeam," which has the opening line "Jesus wants me for a sunbeam."

The song was a hit only in indie-pop and twee circles until in 1992, The Vaselines re-released the song with a slight title change ("Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam") on the compilation album "The Way of the Vaselines: A Complete History."

Nirvana released a cover titled "Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam" on their live acoustic album "MTV Unplugged in New York." Two more versions of this song were released on the 2004 box set With the Lights Out. This included an acoustic version recorded in Europe in 1994, along with a live electric performance on the DVD section of the box-set.

On the version contained on the MTV Unplugged in New York album, Kurt Cobain refers to the song as: "a rendition of an old Christian song, I think. But we do it the Vaselines' way." [1]

Elvis Costello uses the line "Maybe Jesus wants you for a sunbeam" in the song "Alibi" from his 2002 album When I Was Cruel.


  1. ^ Kurt Cobain, Nov. 18, 1993. MTV Unplugged in New York, DGC Records, released Nov. 1, 1994.