The J. Geils Band: “Give It to Me”

A “lady friend” of Peter Wolf‘s brought back some early reggae records from England, so he and writing partner Seth Justman tried to write a song in that style.

Album: Bloodshot

Year: 1973

Writers: Peter Wolf and Seth Justman

Stats: Peaked at number-30 on the Billboard Hot 100

On April 13th, 1973, the day after the Bloodshot album was released, The J. Geils Band‘s performance of “Give It to Me” on ABC in Concert was censored. The offending phrase was “get it up.”

Give It to Me” was The J. Geils Band’s second charting single and first to go Top 30. Singer Peter Wolf explains that the rhythms you hear in it were pretty novel in the U.S. back in 1973.

J Geils Band singer Peter Wolf on “Give It to Me”:

“I had a lady friends who was my high school sweetheart and she went off to England and came back with these great records. And they were called reggae. Very few people were into reggae at the time and I said, ‘Hey Seth, you gotta check these out.’ And we were up at my place and he started playing, like, this reggae feeling and we said, ‘Let’s do a song in this kind of way,’ and came up with this idea of ‘Give It to Me’ and we just wrote it, trying to keep it funky and kind of sleazy in a kind of Don Covay way.”


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