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Top 10 Jailbait Songs

When it comes to rock’s Top 10 Jailbait Songs, some artists are all talk, and others actually walked that walk. Like Ted Nugent, who didn’t just sing about underage girls: When he was 30, he became the legal guardian of a 17-year-old so they could be together. It’s also not too hard to imagine that legendary Lotharios like Gene Simmons and Mick Jagger are probably singing from experience. While several of these odes to forbidden fruit come across like barroom bragging, others serve as cautionary tales. Let’s just hope that none of them give Nugent any ideas.


JimCroce
10

‘Five Short Minutes’

Jim Croce
 
 
From: ‘I Got a Name’ (1973)

Jim Croce wrote and recorded this song about lustful comeuppance for his last album, which hit stores just after the singer-songwriter died in a plane crash. In the boogie-woogie 'Five Short Minutes,' Croce has an encounter with an underage member of the famous Plaster Casters of Chicago. As a result, “five short minutes of lovin’” net him 20 years in the pen. Rumor has it that the part about the Plaster Caster was true; Croce’s wife later found out and got meaner than a junkyard dog.

 
Winger
9

‘Seventeen’

Winger
 
 
From: ‘Winger’ (1988)

The New York hair-metal band landed its first big hit with this tribute to illegal pleasures. Unlike most of these sort of stories (“She said she was 19, I swear!”), the shameless subject of ‘Seventeen’ proudly declares her age in the chorus. And what can poor, defenseless Kip Winger do but oblige? He screeches, “Daddy says she’s too young / But she’s old enough for me.” Which begs the question: Where exactly would he draw the line? Fifteen? Twelve? Kip’s just gotta have his little girl, whom he compares to a “magic mountain” and a “leather glove.” She might still be a kid, but she’s probably way smarter than him.

 
TheBeatles
8

‘I Saw Her Standing There’

 
 
From: ‘Please Please Me’ (1963)

A quarter century before Winger recorded ‘Seventeen’ (see No. 9 on our list of the Top 10 Jailbait Songs), Paul McCartney was working on this early Beatles hit, originally titled ‘Seventeen.’ We have to put an asterisk next to ‘I Saw Her Standing There,’ because the girl who was “way beyond compare” is also one year over the age of consent in the band’s native England. The Beatles played the hit on their second ‘Ed Sullivan Show’ appearance, but the host didn’t make them alter the lyric. After all, he was just singing about dancing all night. Right?

 
SteelyDan
7

‘Everyone’s Gone to the Movies’

 
 
From: ‘Katy Lied’ (1975)

Mr. LaPage shares a trait with other louses in Steely Dan’s loser parade. Just like the characters in ‘Hey, Nineteen’ and ‘Janie Runaway,’ he has an infatuation with young lovers. This pedophile’s specialty is showing pornographic films to kids in his den, and Donald Fagen makes LaPage sound rather disgusted that one of them will soon be turning 18. But the line “We know you’re used to 16 or more / Sorry, we only have 8” isn't a reference to age, but to film stock. Before VHS, porn movies were distributed in 8mm, as opposed to the 16mm educational films that children watched in school. Creepy and clever.

 
TedNugent
6

‘Jailbait’

Ted Nugent
 
 
From: ‘Intensities in 10 Cities’ (1981)

Ted Nugent's real-life underage affair may have inspired this charming little ditty from the Motor City Madman’s second live album. Nugent first widens the age gap (“Well, I don’t care if you’re just 13”) and then hits on her mama (“She’s got a craving for the underage”). As he’s about to get arrested for his dalliances, Nugent pleads with the officer, “Don’t put those handcuffs on me / Put them on her, and I’ll share her with you.” Excuse us while we go scrub our minds clean from this entry on our list of the Top 10 Jailbait Songs.

 
garypuckett
5

‘Young Girl’

Gary Puckett & the Union Gap
 
 
From: ‘Young Girl’ (1968)

Gary Puckett has just enough “lady willpower” (to borrow a phrase from his follow-up hit) to resist the temptations of an underage girl. But he sounds absolutely despondent about this youngster who “kept the secret of her youth” -- as if they were destined to be soul mates. Producer Jerry Fuller wrote this smash hit (it reached No. 2 in the U.S. and No. 1 in the U.K.) about his time on the road, “when 14-year-olds looked like 20-year-olds.”

 
Kiss
4

‘Christine Sixteen’

 
 
From: ‘Love Gun’ (1977)

The story goes that Paul Stanley came up with the title (nice rhyming, Starchild), but that Gene Simmons beat him to actually writing the song. As the title suggests, Christine is someone that Simmons really shouldn’t be obsessed with, but “she’s young and clean” and he just can’t help himself. Even though the single did fairly well (reaching No. 25), some radio stations refused to play it or only aired it at night. Perhaps Simmons' spoken-word section about seeing Christine “coming out of the school that day” made some parents feel just a bit uncomfortable?

 
RollingStones
3

‘Stray Cat Blues’

 
 
From: ‘Beggars Banquet’ (1968)

In the free-love era, you could justify just about anything. On this hard-rocking track (inspired by the sound of the Velvet Underground’s ‘Heroin’), Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones try to brush away their statutory rape of not one, but two 15-year-olds: “It’s no hanging matter / It’s no capital crime.” When the Stones toured with ‘Stray Cat Blues,’ Jagger tested boundaries by lowering the age to 13. Perhaps that’s what gave bassist Bill Wyman the notion to begin dating a 13-year-old girl in 1983, when he was a spry 47.

 
ThePolice
2

‘Don’t Stand So Close to Me’

 
 
From: ‘Zenyatta Mondatta’

A schoolgirl crush on a teacher is one thing; reciprocation is another. Sting, who worked as a teacher before the Police hit it big, has said that ‘Don’t Stand So Close to Me’ was not inspired by any of his own experiences. Instead, he was inspired by ‘Lolita’ (“that book by Nabokov”), in which an older man obsesses over a young girl. Flipping your mortar board over a student doesn’t sound too appealing in the band’s tense hit: The story ends in accusations, pain and embarrassment.

 
SpinalTap
1

‘Tonight I’m Gonna Rock You Tonight’

 
 
From: ‘This Is Spinal Tap’ (1984)

Leave it to this redundantly titled gem to perfectly skewer a rock 'n' roll cliché. In the second verse of this Spinal Tap classic, David St. Hubbins takes underage infatuation to an even lower level. He howls, “You’re sweet, but you’re just four feet / And you still got your baby teeth / You’re too young, and I’m too well hung / But tonight I’m gonna rock ya.” No way anything else on our list of the Top 10 Jailbait Songs can top that. Smell the glove, Nugent, smell the glove.

 

Next: Disturbing Songs People Love

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