Last year, when Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl” stormed the charts and radio airwaves, people of a certain age wondered aloud, “Why would anybody want to cover a Jill Sobule song?” To which people of an entirely different (translation: much younger) responded, “Who is Jill Sobule?” The singer-songwriter — who also had a hit with a song called “I Kissed a Girl” in 1995 — talked to The Rumpus about how she felt about the song. “As a musician I have always refrained from criticizing another artist. I was, ’Well, good for her,'” she told the Web site. “It did bug me a little bit, however, when she said she came up with the idea for the title in a dream. In truth, she wrote it with a team of professional writers and was signed by the very same guy that signed me in 1995. I have not mentioned that in interviews as I don’t want to sound bitter or petty.” She closed by saying, “If I really think about it, there were a few jealous and pissed off moments. So here goes, for the first time in an interview: F— you, Katy Perry.”
At least part of the interview was tongue-in-cheek, but even Sobule admits that some of her friends were angry that Perry had taken the title and turned it into “this kind of ’girls gone wild’ thing.” Indeed, Sobule’s hit was a quirky exploration of sexuality. “I looked at you/ You had guilt in your eyes/ But it only lasted a little while/ And then I felt your hand above my knees,” she sings coyly in the song. Interestingly, there’s even a line that is mirrored by Perry’s “cherry chapstick” line: “I kissed a girl/ Her lips were sweet/ She was just like kissing me.”
Sobule continues to make albums. In fact, her most recent effort California Years got a little bit of buzz not only for being an excellent collection of SoCal tunes but also because it was entirely fan-funded. Sobule solicited donations for the production budget and rewarded fans with notes in the credits and a song that contained each of their names.
What do you think: Who kissed a girl better? Leave your thoughts in the comments or head over to Your.MTV.com to make your voice heard!