Blind Melon – No Rain

This 1993 song has a sixties feel to it. The lead singer Shannon Hoon did a great job on this track.

Blind Melon bass player Brad Smith wrote this song before he formed the band. He had moved from Mississippi to Los Angeles, where he fell into a down period. He said that the song is about not being able to get out of bed and find excuses to face the day when you have nothing. At the time he was dating a girl who was going through depression  and for a while he told himself that he was writing the song from her perspective. He later realized that he was also writing about it himself.

The video was very popular. It has a very intriguing video featuring a girl dressed in a bee costume. The bee girl, Heather DeLoach, was 10 years old when she starred in it, creating one of the most enduring images on MTV.

The concept for the video was inspired by the Blind Melon album cover, which features a 1975 photo of Georgia Graham, the younger sister of Blind Melon drummer Glenn Graham. DeLoach was the first to audition for the role, and because she resembled Graham’s sister so much, director Samuel Bayer (who also directed Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit”) chose her.

This song peaked at #1 in Canada, #20 in the Billboard 100, #17 in the UK, and #15 in New Zealand in 1993.

Blind Melon’s songs, were credited to the entire band even when one member wrote most of the song, as Brad Smith did with this one. Brad says that even though he wrote it, lead singer Shannon Hoon took it to a new level with his vocal.

The video made #22 on MTV’s Greatest Videos Ever Made countdown at the end of 1999.

From Songfacts

The bee girl parlayed the role into a credible acting career, appearing in the movie Balls of Fury, a remake of the Shirley Temple film A Little Princess and the TV shows ER and Reno911. She got married in 2017. DeLoach recalled to MTV News her audition for the bee girl: “They told me Sam didn’t look at any other tapes. I went in with my hair in braids and wearing those chunky glasses, because they said to look nerdy. My mom said we had to find some glasses before we went in, so we ran to a local mall right before the audition and bought them, and Sam liked them so much they’re the same ones I used in the video.”

This was a hit on a variety of formats. It reached #1 on the AOR (classic rock), modern rock and metal charts.

The first performances of this song were on Venice Beach, where Brad Smith would do his busking. “That’s where the lyric and the song was inspired from, is just having to write songs,” he said. “Then being in the state of mind I was in and having to come up with material to go play down on the beach for change. I played that song on the beach for change for over a year before Shannon Hoon actually joined the band and really made that song a hit.”

The band didn’t always appreciate this song. When they opened some shows for The Rolling Stones in 1994, they left it off their setlist. Their tour manager, Paul Cummings explained: “They had become one of those bands that hate their hit – at least at that point. I couldn’t understand it, but it’s not my call. That probably would have been the only song that crowd would have recognized.”

A hallmark of Brad Smith’s lyrics a feeling of melancholy, which doesn’t always match the music he puts to the song. He describes the music to this song as a “jaunty little happy halfway island beat,” which sounds like “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” He explained: “A lot of my songs come from a darker place. And if you just met me walking down the street, you’d say, ‘Oh, you’re such a happy guy, Brad. Why the dark songs?’ I’m like, ‘I don’t know.’ For me, it just has more meaning if you can get inside someone’s soul and identify with them on a heavier level and try to connect with them on that level. Because when you’re sad and you’re down, you’re the most vulnerable, and you feel the most alone.”

In 1993, Heather DeLoach reprised her role as Bee Girl in the Weird Al Yankovic video for “Bedrock Anthem” (a parody of “Give It Away” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers).

The inertia described in this song sounds typical of the stoner ennui like that described in “Because I Got High,” but you can blame this one on the herb. “I wasn’t even on drugs or drinking,” Brad Smith told us. “It was just a tough point in my life. And the cool thing about that song, I think a lot of people do interpret those lyrics properly and can connect with it on that level, where ‘I don’t understand why I sleep all day and I start to complain that there’s no rain.’ It’s just a line about, I’d rather it be raining so I can justify myself by laying in the bed and not doing anything. But it’s a sunny day, so go out and face it.”

In 2003, this was used in a commercial where a girl in a hot dog costume meets a guy in a Pepsi costume. Love blooms.

Pearl Jam has a song called “Bee Girl” that they first performed in 1994. With lyrics like, “Bee girl, you’re gonna die. You don’t wanna be famous, you wanna be shy,” the track was seen as a very accurate warning to Shannon Hoon that he was on a path of destruction. The song can be found on their Lost Dogs rarities album.

In 2016, the pop singer Mandy Jiroux released a song called “Insane” using many elements of “No Rain,” including the signature riff. Her song has similar but different lyrics, for instance:

All I can say is that my life’s not really plain
I like dancing in puddles that gather rain

In places where Shannon Hoon sang “no rain,” Jiroux substituted “insane.”

This prompted Blind Melon to file a lawsuit using the same lawyer who won big bucks for Marvin Gaye’s estate in the “Blurred Lines” case. Had Jiroux simply covered the song, it wouldn’t be an issue, but Blind Melon claimed that she created a “derivative work” that requires licensing.

The suit is unusual in that the plaintiff is trying to prove that the defendant didn’t make the song similar enough.

This song was featured in the 2004 comedy movie Without A Paddle.

No Rain

All I can say is that my life is pretty plain
I like watchin’ the puddles gather rain
And all I can do is just pour some tea for two
And speak my point of view but it’s not sane
It’s not sane

I just want someone to say to me, oh
I’ll always be there when you wake, yeah
You know I’d like to keep my cheeks dry today
So stay with me and I’ll have it made

And I don’t understand why I sleep all day
And I start to complain that there’s no rain
And all I can do is read a book to stay awake
And it rips my life away but it’s a great escape
Escape, escape, escape

All I can say is that my life is pretty plain
You don’t like my point of view, you think that I’m insane
It’s not sane, it’s not sane

I just want someone to say to me, oh
I’ll always be there when you wake, yeah
You know I’d like to keep my cheeks dry today
So stay with me and I’ll have it made, I’ll have it made, I’ll have it made
Oh, no, no, you know, I really wanna, really gonna have it made
You know, I’ll have it made