"867-5309/Jenny" by Tommy Tutone was released in 1981 on the album Tommy Tutone-2. It reached #4 on the Top 40 music chart in 1982 and was on the charts for 40 weeks. It was written by Alex Call and Jim Keller.
Download the full song at the official Tommy Tutone site (Click "Songs" » Tommy Tutone-2).
Watch the video on YouTube.
Listen to a 30 second clip on VH1.com (Disk 1, Song 12)
Who is Jenny?
One of the most frequently asked questions about this song is, "Who is Jenny?" Was she a girlfriend? A groupie? An actual number on a wall?
Alex Call, one of the songwriters, explains,
Jim Keller goes along with this version. In the clip of VH1's "One Hit Wonders" on on the band's site (in the "news" section), he says, "There really wasn't a 'Jenny;' you know, there were Jennys around, but there wasn't one person and that wasn't really her phone number."
The Access Hollywood clip on their site, however, claims that "the real Jenny was Jim Keller's girlfriend." The mystery goes on.
According to Keller in a recent interview, Tommy Heath makes up different stories about "Jenny" every time he is asked about it. This may explain the confusion.
Jona Denz-Hamilton writes that she knew the Jenny while working as the program director for KLRB in Carmel, California (the band was from the Bay Area when it released the song):
One thing is for sure, many, many people prank-called (and still call) the number, "driving the phone companies (and their customers) nuts" (snopes.com).
Other Jenny Info
Who has the number now?
16 Jennys in the US
Sandra E., writes that she went "through every area code in the AnyWho.com database and found 16 people across the US who are cursed with this number. One of them is named Jennifer."
But I'm not going to tell you which one.
Four of Them Plumbers
Interestingly, Eric W. of Charlotte, NC writes, that of these 16 people:
That's 25% of Jennys that are Plumbers. I'm not going to give you specifics but one's in Richfield, Minnesota, another in Boston, one in Hazel Crest Illinois, and the last in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
One Norwegian Jenny
Jenny A. in Norway writes:
Jenny Fan Calls 'Em
Another devoted fan has called all the 867-5309s in North America. He has written down what each answerer has said.
"666 the number of the beast"
Dan Perez makes note that the first ever usenet posting mentioning "867-5309" was in January 1983. It asks, "666 the number of the beast: Could the number really be 867-5309?"
Interestingly, or not, the first posting mentioning "876-5309" was ten years later, in July 1993.
Jenny, Jenny, who can I turn to?
I got it (I got it) I got it,
Repeat until fade:
(Thanks to Andrew Lloyd [not Webber] for pointing out an incorrect lyric in my original listing. These are from the band's official site with a couple of grammatical changes.)
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