The Internet Gets Rick (Springfield) Rolled

Maura | February 26, 2008 - 6:00 am

A glimpse into the life of the “professional blogger”: When you’re looking at Google Trends and you notice that an I Love The ’80s-mention-worthy pop star is at No. 1, you get briefly stricken with panic. “Did he die?” you wonder to yourself. “And if he did, what the fuck am I going to say in his obituary?” Happily, I don’t really have to worry about that right now, as Rick Springfield–who is currently at No. 1 on Google’s list of what the Internet wants to know about–is alive, well, and fresh off an appearance on Oprah, which is a far cry from the Illinois county-fair stage where I paid a dollar to see him a few years back. And not only did he let the Oprah viewing audience know that he loves his dogs, he talked about whether or not “Jessie’s Girl” was about a real person!

“Oh, yeah,” Rick says. “All my songs start from a core of a relationship.” Although his fantasy girl was real, Jessie wasn’t. “Her boyfriend’s name was actually Gary and not Jessie, but Gary just somehow didn’t sing right,” Rick says. “So I changed it to Jessie.”

Rick can’t say Gary’s girl’s name–because he can’t remember what it was! “I was never really introduced to her. It was always just, like, panting from afar,” he says. To this day, Rick thinks Gary’s girl doesn’t know the famous song is all about her. “As far as I know, she doesn’t know,” he says. “And I lost contact with them before the song came out.”

And Rick is surely hoping she doesn’t watch Oprah. Or have the Internet handy. Anyway, I’m going to gauge that this little appearance means that digital-track sales of “Jessie’s Girl” will be somewhere in the mid-five-figure range next week, and that they’ll definitely outstrip last week’s American Idol-assisted numbers for Mika. Anyone want to make a friendly wager?

Is Rick Springfield’s Jessie’s Girl A Real Person? []