Jesus Built My Hotrod

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"Jesus Built My Hotrod"
Jesus Built My Hotrod.jpg
Single by Ministry
from the album Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs
Released November 7, 1991
Format CD single
Recorded 1991
Length 4:51
Label Sire
Warner Bros.
Songwriter(s) Al Jourgensen
Paul Barker
M Balch
Gibby Haynes
Bill Rieflin
Producer(s) Hypo Luxa
Hermes Pan
Ministry singles chronology
"So What"
"Jesus Built My Hotrod"
"So What"
"Jesus Built My Hotrod"
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[4]

"Jesus Built My Hotrod" is a song by American industrial metal band Ministry. Co-written by Al Jourgensen, Bill Rieflin, Michael Balch and Gibby Haynes, it was released in November 1991 as a debut single from Ministry's fifth studio album, Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs. Release went successful, while it was not expected.


The track features a driving beat and speed metal guitar work which backs Butthole Surfers' singer Gibby Haynes' gonzo vocal stylings. It is notable for its polyrhythmic structure with the guitar riff in 5/4 and the drums in 4/4. Guest vocals for the song were recorded by the Butthole Surfers vocalist Gibby Haynes.[5] In an interview for Songfacts website Jourgensen explained the process of collaborating with Haynes during the recording process:

Gibby came down completely drunk off his ass to the studio we're at in Chicago. He couldn't even sit on a stool, let alone sing. I mean, he was wasted. He fell off the stool about ten times during the recording of that vocal. He made no sense and it was just gibberish. So I spent two weeks editing tape of what he did.[6]

Some of the vocal samples are from films, including Brad Dourif in Wise Blood, and Dennis Hopper in Blue Velvet.

Release and reception[edit]

The song was released November 7, 1991, a little more than half a year before it appeared on Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs. MuchMusic and MTV championed the accompanying video (which featured, among others, various footage of vintage NASCAR and drag racing events) and it enjoyed repetitive plays on both stations. The photo that adorns the cover of the single depicts a 1970 Chrysler 440 Six Pack V8 engine (equipped with 3 2-barrel carburetors). At one point in the video, a 1970 Plymouth GTX, equipped with the 440 Six Barrel, is shown driving down the street, as the "Air Grabber" hood scoop opens.

The song achieved sudden success, being unexpected by listeners.[citation needed] According to Al Jourgensen's autobiography, the single sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide.[7]

Appearances in other media[edit]

The song is available for download in the Rock Band series of games.

A lyric from the song ("Ding a ding dang my dang a long ling long") was used (without spaces) as a cheat code in the video game Sleepwalker.

The song was featured in the 2014 Ubisoft video game, Watch Dogs, both as a song available in game, and as a backdrop for a set piece during the game's storyline; one reviewer called it a "fantastic moment".[8]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Credit Length
1. "Jesus Built My Hotrod" (Redline/Whiteline Version) Jourgensen, Rieflin, Balch, Haynes 8:15
2. "Jesus Built My Hotrod" (Short, Pusillanimous, So-They-Can-Fit-More-Commercials-On-The-Radio Edit)   3:45
3. "TV Song" Barker, Rieflin, Scaccia, Connelly 3:12



Additional personnel[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Weekly charts
Chart (1992) Peak position
Billboard Alternative Songs [9] 19
Billboard Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales[10] 37
Year-end charts
Chart (1992) Position
Festive 50 (John Peel)[11] 3


  1. ^ Ramirez, AJ (August 3, 2011). "The 10 Best Alternative Metal Singles of the 1990s". PopMatters. Retrieved 21 June 2015. 
  2. ^ Steve Huey. "Jesus Built My Hotrod - Ministry". Allmusic. All Media Network. Retrieved May 26, 2017. Jourgensen usually reserved the crazed humor of "Jesus Built My Hotrod" for his Revolting Cocks side project, but pairing it with the precise Ministry attack produced a classic of industrial metal. 
  3. ^ Ramirez, Carlos. "10 Best Ministry Songs". Retrieved February 1, 2017. 
  4. ^ John Book. "Ministry — Jesus Built My Hotrod". AllMusic. 
  5. ^ Mark Rowland (August 18, 2004). "Gibby Haynes : Interview". Pennyblackmusic. Pennyblackmusic. Retrieved June 16, 2013. 
  6. ^ Dan MacIntosh (2012-02-18). "Al Jourgensen of Ministry". Songfacts. Retrieved 2016-09-08. 
  7. ^ Al Jourgensen, Jon Wiederhorn (2013). Ministry: The Lost Gospels According to Al Jourgensen. Da Capo Press. While we were "working," Sire pressed "Jesus Built My Hotrod" into a maxi-single, and the radio department started pimping the song to all the college and commercial radio stations across the country. The thing went supernova. They sold 1.5 million copies of the single alone—to everyone’s surprise. 
  8. ^ Nicholas Bashore (June 3, 2014). "Watch Dogs Review". Gamer Assault Weekly. 
  9. ^ "Ministry charts - Alternative Songs". Billboard. Retrieved November 11, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Ministry - Charts & Awards - Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Archived from the original on 2016-03-05. 
  11. ^ BBC - Radio 1 - Keeping It Peel - Festive 50s - 1992

External links[edit]