"Alex Chilton" as written by Paul Westerberg, Tommy Stinson and Chris Mars....
If he was from Venus, would he feed us with a spoon?
If he was from Mars, wouldn't that be cool?
Standing right on campus, would he stamp us in a file?
Hangin' down in Memphis all the while.

Children by the million sing for Alex Chilton when he comes 'round
They sing "I'm in love. What's that song? I'm in love with that song."

Cerebral rape and pillage in a village of his choice.
Invisible man who can sing in a visible voice.
Feeling like a hundred bucks, exchanging good lucks face to face.
Checkin' his stash by the trash at St. Mark's place.

Children by the million sing for Alex Chilton when he comes 'round
They sing "I'm in love. What's that song? I'm in love with that song."

I never travel far, without a little Big Star

Runnin' 'round the house, Mickey Mouse and the Tarot cards.
Falling asleep with a flop pop video on.
If he was from Venus, would he meet us on the moon?
If he died in Memphis, then that'd be cool, babe.

Children by the million sing for Alex Chilton when he comes 'round
They sing "I'm in love. What's that song? I'm in love with that song."

"I'm in love. What's that song? I'm in love with that song."


Lyrics submitted by krushzed

"Alex Chilton" as written by Paul Westerberg Chris Mars

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., BMG Rights Management

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Alex Chilton song meanings
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  • +3
    General CommentI've listened to this song a couple times, so I think I've got a pretty good handle on what the meaning is:

    This band obviously has an affinity for Chilton automotive repair manuals, hence the title of the song. It's a song about working on a car that keeps breaking down, an AMC Venus. (crappy car from the 70's) The odd thing is that it keeps breaking down in front of a particular grocery store, Big Star. The kids that loiter in front of the store love it hear the engine purr when he finally gets it working, though; that's the "I'm in love with that sound," line.
    Imsogladon June 04, 2013   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThe "I'm in love with that song" is sung in the same style as "In the street" by Big Star, written by Alex.

    Instead of the lyrics:

    "I'm in love. (pause) What's that song? (pause) I'm in love (pause) with that song."

    Try singing instead:

    "Hanging out, (pause) down the street (pause) The same old thing (pause) we did last week"
    robertretro86on April 26, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General CommentIs that a joke? cause that is the funniest thing I've ever read if so. fucked up if not haha
    rossgreatscotton February 03, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentActually it is "I'm in love with that song".

    Alex Chilton as it was already said fronted the 70s Power-Pop band Big Star and the Box Tops who had the 1960s hit "The Letter". I have heard Westerberg say on occasion that he just threw Chilton into the song but Peter Jesperson the manager/twin tone guy said that he took Westerberg along once to meet with Alex Chilton and Westerberg wrote it after that experience.

    I think this song is pretty universal. It really gets at how it feels to really just have a band hit a chord with you.

    Big Star are pretty wicked. I am a big fan of "I'm in Love With a Girl" and "Thirteen" in particular.
    billboneson August 01, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentBig Star was the name of a short-lived, but highly influential and much celebrated power pop band in the early 70's. Alex Chilton and Chris Bell were the two main songwriters in the group. They hailed from Memphis, Tennessee and took their name from a chain of grocery stores that were scattered around the South at the time.

    Paul Westerberg (lead singer for The Replacements) was a massive fan of the band, and Alex Chilton's work in particular, so this song serves as an homage to his musical hero. In the mid-80's The Replacements had the pleasure of meeting Chilton, and many of the lyrics reflect these interactions and conversations.

    "Checkin' his stash by the trash at St. Mark's Place," refers to the first time Paul met Alex. They were in New York City on St. Mark's Place which is a street near East Village known for its prevalence of alternative cultures, and Chilton was strangely sifting through barrels of trash looking for something.

    The chorus, "I'm in love. What's that song? I'm in love with that song," was exactly what Paul said to Chilton when they first met. He was thinking of the song "Watch the Sunrise" off Big Star's debut album, #1 Record, but he couldn't remember the name of the song he was thinking of, so he came off as a bumbling fan.

    The Replacements would often have guest musicians whom they admired play on their albums, such as Peter Buck playing on "I Will Dare" and Tommy Ramone playing on "Kiss Me on the Bus." Alex Chilton helped with some of the production of the album Pleased to Meet Me, and he played guitar on the song "Can't Hardly Wait."

    Source: I recently read the incredible bio about The Replacements, Trouble Boys by Bob Mehr. They discuss Paul Westerberg's love of Alex Chilton at length.
    win6lowon August 28, 2018   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAlex Chilton was the lead singer of a group called Big Star, one of the first pop-rock bands. They did not have much comercial success, but freatly influenced the alternative/power pop music we hear today
    CathWheelon July 29, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAh, Power Pop. I believe Chilton had originally been slated to produce "Pleased to Meet Me", or possibly "Tim". Big Star was pretty big to the 'Matts, and also to R.E.M. and the dB's. "September Gurls" is a decent sample of their stuff.
    fission_holeon October 19, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's "I'm in love with that sound". not "I'm in love with that song".
    three575on November 24, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm in love.
    With that song.

    This is my favourite Replacements song. The chorus at the end just gets me.
    bottledlifeon February 27, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti heard alex chilton hated this song, hah..

    the replacements are such a great band and i really love this song too. something about the band just brings such a sincerity.. dunno, i'm sure you know what i mean without me explaining
    royalewithcheeseon July 27, 2006   Link

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