Jill Sobule – Supermodel
Sometimes I think I take pop a bit too seriously, because it irks me to this day that Jill Sobule isn’t a superstar. In the mid-nineties I was briefly part of her UK “street team,” although I only did it to get a free exclusive CD and I didn’t take my responsibilities seriously enough. So I guess I’m saying her failure is partly my fault.
Jill comes from a long line of ballsy, mouthy women in pop, and she always had something interesting to say, whether it was about pill-popping housewives (Happy Town) or shoe shop managers who live exciting double lives (Karen by Night.) And of course you may remember her for I Kissed a Girl which was featured quite heavily on The Chart Show in 1995. Of course a certain Katy Perry later had a global no.1 with a song which shared its title, so naturally Jill was asked about it, telling The Rumpus in 2009: “Fuck you Katy Perry, you f***ing stupid, maybe ‘not good for the gays,’ title-thieving, haven’t heard much else, so not quite sure if you’re talented, f***ing little slut.” She was totally joking, but you get my point about being mouthy. You don’t get that with Taylor Swift.
Anyway – the song we’re here to discuss is 1995’s Supermodel, which you will recognise as being part of the soundtrack from Clueless.
It’s the perfect send-up of Valley Girl vacuousness (“I wish I was like Tori Spelling, with a car like hers and a dad like hers”) complete with a Carrie inspired video, but more importantly it just rocks, for three glorious minutes. Unfortunately for Jill, she had the misfortune to come up against angry, angsty old Alanis Morissette, who had just exploded, figuratively speaking, with You Oughta Know. If history has taught us anything it’s that there’s generally only room for one girl with a guitar at a time, and Alanis got in there first *shakes fist at patriarchal record industry*.
Jill continues to record to this day and has made many wonderful, under-bought albums (most notably Happy Town) so if you want a treat, head over to iTunes and investigate. You won’t regret it.
Entered chart: did not chart
Who could sing this today and have a hit? I must stop giving things to Kelly Clarkson but she has the mouth, she has the voice, she has the attitude and it would be an awesome two fingers to everyone who’s had a bad word to say about her weight.