Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam

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For the children's hymn, see I'll Be a Sunbeam.
"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
"Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam"
Song by Nirvana from the album MTV Unplugged in New York
Released 1 November 1994
Recorded 18 November 1993 at Sony Music Studios in New York City
Genre Alternative rock
Length 4:37
Label DGC Records
Writer Eugene Kelly, Frances McKee
Producer Alex Coletti, Scott Litt, Nirvana
MTV Unplugged in New York track listing
"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[citation needed] circles until in 1992[citation needed], The Vaselines re-released the song in 1992 on the compilation albums The Way of The Vaselines: A Complete History and All the Stuff and More. On All the Stuff and More, the title was changed slightly to "Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam".

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. Another version was released on 2011 as a bonus track on the 20th anniversary edition of Nevermind.

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.

On the deluxe edition of their 2014 Album Bleach House, Phillip Boa And The Voodooclub released a cover of "Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam".


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