Insensitive (song)

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Single by Jann Arden
from the album Living Under June

June 24, 1995 (UK)[1]

October 24, 1995 (US)
Genre Pop rock, Pop punk, Adult Contemporary
Length 4:16
Label A&M
Writer(s) Anne Loree
Producer(s) Jann Arden, Ed Cherney
Jann Arden singles chronology
"Could I Be Your Girl"

"Insensitive" is the title of a track from the 1994 Jann Arden album Living Under June; an international hit single, "Insensitive" remains the career record for Arden. The song is unique in Arden's repertoire as the one song she's made the first recorded version of which she did not write, the composer of "Insensitive" being Anne Loree.


Anne Loree would recall writing "Insensitive" in response to an unhappy tryst with a chef at a Calgary restaurant where Loree was waiting tables. "I sat down at my electric piano in the basement of a rented house I shared with four roommates, broke and broken hearted, full of pain and angst, and wrote 'Insensitive'. It took me probably less than half an hour and I walked away feeling much better for it and much hipper to Prince Charmings who aren't really into you."[2] Jann Arden, then based in Calgary, optioned "Insensitive" for Living Under June after hearing Loree perform the song at a local club.

"Insensitive" remains by far Arden's most successful single to date outside of Canada (where it hit #1 on the RPM 100 national singles chart on January 30, 1995 and remained there for three weeks),[3] reaching #12 on the Hot 100 in Billboard (US) also reaching the Top Ten on Billboard's Adult Contemporary charts. The song's US success was assisted by its presence in the film Bed of Roses; although Bed of Roses was not a major success the video for "Insensitive" was aired on an episode of Entertainment Tonight on which the film had been promoted. Even before its Canadian chart success, "Insensitive" had afforded Arden a hit in Italy reaching #14 in December 1994 the track's Italian success being occasioned by its use as a jingle in a TV ad campaign for a brand of jeans. "Insensitive" reached #1 on the Australian charts on August 19, 1996 and also charted in New Zealand at #44 and the UK at #40. At the Juno Awards of 1996 "Insensitive" was named Single of the Year.

"Insensitive" was also included on Arden's 2001 greatest hits album, Greatest Hurts, in both the original and live versions.

Music video[edit]

For the track's US release a video was prepped comprising clips from the film Bed of Roses interspersed with footage of Arden singing the song; Jeth Weinrich directed. The video for "Insensitive" was nominated for Video of the Year at the 1995 Juno Awards.


End of year chart (1996) Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[4] 22

The song also achieved Top 1 in the National Singles Charts of the Philippines.

Cover versions[edit]

Country singer LeAnn Rimes also released her own version of "Insensitive" on her 1998 album Sittin' on Top of the World. Jasper Steverlinck remade "Insensitive" for his 2004 album Songs of Innocence. Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario-based punk rock band The Decay also released a cover version on the Juicebox Recording Co. compilation Our Favourite Songs.[5]

In the Media[edit]

The popular podcast "How to Do Everything" created by the producers of the NPR news quiz "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!" featured the song in a series of podcasts. The song was introduced by a music expert when asked if there was a song she loved, but understood was terrible. This began a segment on the podcast titled "Best-Worst Song Competition" where listeners submitted songs they secretly enjoyed, but knew were generally considered to be poor songs. Each segment opened with a clip of "Insensitive" with the hosts saying "You know what that sound means - it's time for our Best-Worst Song Competition!"[6]

The song is also featured in the Corner Gas episode "Super Sensitive".


External links[edit]

Preceded by
"On Bended Knee" by Boyz II Men
Canadian RPM number-one single
January 30 - February 13, 1995 (3 weeks)
Succeeded by
"Bang and Blame" by R.E.M.
Preceded by
"Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me" by U2
Australian ARIA number-one single
August 19, 1995 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Kiss From a Rose" by Seal