What does Jumpin' Jack Flash mean?

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The Rolling Stones: Jumpin' Jack Flash Meaning

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Song Released: 1968


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Jumpin' Jack Flash Lyrics

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I was born in a cross-fire hurricane
And I howled at my ma in the driving rain,
But its all right now, in fact, its a gas!
But its all right. Im jumpin jack flash,
Its a gas! gas! gas!

I was raised by a toothless, bearded hag,
I was...

  1.  

    anonymous
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    Oct 29th, 10:40am report


    This is about someone's hard life and after death is enjoying his stay in hell because he says its better than life doing the Jumping Jack Flash (Jack Flash a euphemism for the devil) and "The Jumping Jack Flash" is a dance done in hell jumping around to keep ones feet from being burned by the hot coals.



  2.  

    anonymous
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    Aug 2nd, 8:24pm report


    It's interesting that both Mick and Keith were born in 1943 in Dartford, Kent. 1943 was at the heart of WWII, when, even though the Germans were no longer bombing London, there were still almost daily air raids by German fighters on the far east of England. Exactly where Dartford, Kent is located.

    In some ways they WERE both literally "born in a crossfire hurricane" of WWII. Probably not important but the British Hawker Hurricane aircraft was doing a lot of the defense of Kent as the more powerful Spitfires were running raids of their own on German positions in northwestern France.

    I think that "Jack" has been through hell and has come out the other side, different but wiser, maybe more carefree, more content that he has survived what most would't have. He has nothing left to prove, his manhood, even, is "secure." "It was hell but I survived and now everything is gravy." When you have lived with nothing for so long, faced terrible hardship, then a beater car that gives you independence is like a limo. A box of macaroni is a banquet, A simple cot to lay your head is like a luxury bed. Perhaps "Jack" is both Keith and Mick and the lives they led and what they had to and will survive. "Jack" to me is a kind of musical "Cool Hand Luke," "Sometimes "nothing" can be a real cool hand."



  3.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 21st, 2017 11:36am report


    The gardener may have inspired the Jack part of the title, but the lyrics have nothing to do with gardening! They're all primal, visceral and exaggerated. It's the soundtrack to Beowulf.



  4.  

    anonymous
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    Aug 22nd, 2017 8:59am report


    This song is about a man who gives himself the nickname Jumping Jack Flash. He is celebrating the fact that he is making fun of the hardships of his life. Overcoming the problems - Life is a Gas,Gas,Gas.



  5.  

    anonymous
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    Mar 14th, 2016 3:51am report


    I was always lead to believe that a "Jumpin Jack Flash" was the practice of administering liquid L.S.D via an eyedropper to the tear duct.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway


  6.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 15th, 2015 12:51am report


    It's actually about my friend's grandad, Jack Dyer who was the gardner at Redlands.



  7.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 16th, 2015 11:08am report


    This song is about war. In the lyrics "I was born in a crossfire hurricane" they allude to a destructive force with a path and direction, as well as a crossfire which is a danger to innocents while two sides fight."But its alright I'm jumping jack flash its a gas gas gas" Jumpin Jack Flash creates an image of a man, ready to jump into action at a moments notice ex a soldier, while saying its a gas gas gas represents how the conflict is a fuel, something that is consumed for progress/movement. "I was drowned, I was washed up and left for dead" "I fell down to my feet and saw they bled" Both images of the aftermath of a conflict , falling down to your feet means they were coming from the sky, and may be referencing paratroopers landing to see fallen men. "I was crowned with a spike right through my head" is a reference to Jesus. Jesus, representing a sacrifice for the good of mankind, can be related to the sacrifices that soldiers make every day. This is my personal conclusion, taking into consideration that peace and war were a popular topic in the 60/70s.



  8.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 10th, 2015 11:10pm report


    It was inspired by Keith Richard's gardener, there is secret or deep hidden meaning.



  9.  

    SainterSan
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    Oct 27th, 2015 10:11pm report


    I think it's pretty straight forward. Jagger (who wrote most of the lyrics) was rebelling against the "wholesome" self righteousness of Christianity by writing with sympathy about the fallen angel, Satan, with a typical attitude. He's saying Satan has suffered more than Jesus, he is the rejected one, washed up and left for dead, declining the crumbs of bread from the last supper, but that's ok, in fact it's a gas to be free and unchained from the grasp of pious religion.



  10.  

    anonymous
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    Jul 22nd, 2014 7:23am report


    I read above about a review referring to a guy who associated the song with his covertable Buic well kiddies I did it on a George Brown special conversion Vincent Black Shadow and back in the day I was Jack too. Now just a crubley old fart but still have the Shadow so can still get that Jack feeling!



  11.  

    fistofate
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    Aug 9th, 2013 8:11pm report


    Musically, I know this was inspired by "Day Tripper" by the Beatles.
    Lyrically, I read the same story someone wrote above about Keith saying the song is about his gardner.
    It's ironic that sometimes people who don't like to write too much wind up writing the best songs. People who love to write create things many times which are way too deep and don't give the listener enough space to crawl into it and "own it" in their own way.
    I love the Stones songs, but I know they're just excuses to play music.



  12.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 19th, 2012 11:20pm report


    Drugs, simple really, Jumping jack flash is a term used to describe free-base cocaine (its a gas gas gas) and the line
    "I was crowned with a spike right thru my head
    "I looked down to my feet and I saw they bled..."
    Refers to a practice if injecting into ones tear duct, your feet aren't bleeding but in ones intoxicated state the fact that you have injected yourself in the eye chances are blood will spill and land on ones feet creating the illusion to the "user"



  13.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 18th, 2012 11:57pm report


    Oh one gets by however one is lodged out of the ole' birth canal.

    But perhaps the lyric that snuck through, gone unnoticed by perhaps nearly all is-

    "I was crowned with a spike right thru my head"-
    is a purely channeled line straight out of Dagobert II's mouth, who has inspired music from Arcadian realms for ages and ages.

    All the more perfect since this is considered to be a delta blues motif-the Cajuns were the remnants of Nova Scotian folks (Arcadian/Acadian) who carried little ditties like "Good King Dagobert" with them when they left for the gulf

    enjoy



  14.  

    anonymous
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    Jun 23rd, 2012 6:06am report


    You all are so fucking stupid except for the guy who mentioned the Keith's gardner. He was the inspiration for the song. Their was no deep hidden meaning or whatever. Yes it was written coming off of some hard partying but what stones song wasn't written that way back then?



  15.  

    RoseCaroline
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    Oct 26th, 2011 10:26am report


    I think you are all way off base... the real question to ask is what does "Jumping Jack Flash" mean, and why is it a "gas"? What are jumping jacks, and what do they do? We used to play a game called Jacks, where there were 5 little plastic knuckle-shaped "jacks", that you would toss onto the floor... I can't remember the aim of this game. Why would a jumping jack "flash"?

    I do not believe the song is about Jesus Christ; if anything, it is about Lucifer, falling down from heaven. This would tie in with some of the lyrics in Don MaCleans "American Pie", in the lyrics "... Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack Flash sat on a candle stick, cos Fire is the Devil's only friend/And while I watched him on the stage, My hands were clenched in fists of rage/No Angel born in Hell, could break that Satan's spell..."

    If MaClean was talking about the demise of Buddy Holly in the song "American Pie", then to me it sounds like he is referring to Mick Jagger, and the incoming flux of "new" rock and roll, which maybe he didn't like...I also hear undertones in the song suggesting that perhaps the Rolling Stones were engaged in the black arts. At the end of American Pie, he talks about the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, who caught the last train for the coast (perhaps cos they didn't like the Rolling Stones).



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