All White People Look Alike was purported to be a rare Jane’s Addiction demo. The story was that it was this demo that got Jane’s Addiction signed to Warner Brothers Records. The story grew on to say that due to this song, WBR thought Jane’s Addiction was more like the band They Might Be Giants. This story is completely false on every level.
The source of this song being a Jane’s demo is the double vinyl bootleg Mephisto Demos. This bootleg contains sixteen tracks, only five of which are actually from Jane’s Addiction. The remaining tracks are from several bands whose only connection appear to be that they had all submitted demos to Triple-X records around 1986. The five Jane’s demos, recorded at Radio Tokyo in December of 1986, were all eventually officially released by the band.
The source of the They Might Be Giants extension of this rumor is unknown. While it is logistically possible in time, this part of the story seems very unlikely due to a number of reasons. While TMBG had been around since 1982, their debut album wasn’t released until about a month before Jane’s recorded their demos and after Jane’s had already established their reputation in the L.A. music scene. Additionally, it took another two years for TMBG to sign to Elektra records, a subsidiary of Warner Brothers Records. If WBR was so hot to sign them, why did it take an extra two years to do so, and why place them on one of their subsidiary labels and Jane’s Addiction on the parent label? It simply makes little sense. Plus, any label rep to confuse two bands with such disparate styles would have to be completely incompetent.
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