Chestnut Street Incident

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Chestnut Street Incident
Chestnut Street Incident.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 1, 1976
StudioGilfoy Sound Studio, Bloomington, Indiana,
The Hit Factory, New York City
GenreHeartland rock
ProducerTony Defries, James J. C. Andrews
Johnny Cougar chronology
Chestnut Street Incident
A Biography
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic1/5 stars[1]
Classic Rock5/10 stars[2]
Rolling Stone0/5 stars[3]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide2/5 stars[4]

Chestnut Street Incident is the debut studio album by John Mellencamp, then known as "Johnny Cougar," released in 1976.[3]

Signing on with David Bowie's manager, Tony DeFries, Mellencamp travelled to New York City to cut this first album. DeFries would also go on to produce the album as well. With the thinking that a name like "Mellencamp" wouldn't generate a lot of interest DeFries changed Mellencamp's name to "Johnny Cougar."[5] Mellencamp would later go on to say that he had no idea about the name change until he saw the final product and that nobody had ever called him "Johnny" before. It would take Mellencamp 15 years to have his full real name on an album, Whenever We Wanted, in 1991.[6][1][7][3]

With five of the tracks covers from the 50s and 60s,[3] only six are original songs by Mellencamp. The 1998 Original Masters rerelease added two bonus songs that were also covers.[1] The album only sold 12,000 copies when it was originally released, which would lead to MCA's refusal to release his next album, The Kid Inside, and drop Mellencamp.[7]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks composed by Johnny Cougar (a.k.a. John Mellencamp); except where indicated[1]

  1. "American Dream" – 2:21
  2. "Oh, Pretty Woman" (Bill Dees, Roy Orbison) – 2:54
  3. "Jailhouse Rock" (Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller) – 2:11
  4. "Dream Killing Town" (Cougar, George M. Green) – 3:20
  5. "Supergirl" (Aldo Legui, Bob Marcus) – 2:37
  6. "Chestnut Street" – 3:18
  7. "Good Girls" – 3:09
  8. "Do You Believe in Magic?" (John Sebastian) – 2:38
  9. "Twentieth Century Fox" (John Densmore, Robby Krieger, Ray Manzarek, Jim Morrison) – 2:14
  10. "Chestnut Street Revisited" – 5:22
  11. "Sad Lady" (Cougar, George M. Green) – 3:26
  12. "Hit the Road Jack" (Percy Mayfield)* [bonus] – 2:32
  13. "I Need Somebody Baby" (Iggy Pop, James Williamson)* [bonus] – 3:43


  • John Mellencamp – vocals, guitar
  • Mike Boyer, Richard Kelly, Mick Ronson, Mike Wanchic – guitars
  • David Mansfield – steel guitar, mandolin, violin
  • Michael Kamen – keyboards
  • Tom Wince – keyboards, chimes
  • Kirk Butler – synthesizer, percussion, engineer
  • David Parman - bass, guitar, backing vocals
  • Wayne Hall – saxophone
  • Bill Bergman, Jerry Deupree, Hilly Michaels – drums
  • Tony Defries - producer
  • James J. C. Andrews - co-producer
  • Bruce Tergesen - engineer


  1. ^ a b c d Allmusic.
  2. ^ Hotten, Jon (February 2010). "John Cougar - Reissues". Classic Rock. No. 141. p. 93.
  3. ^ a b c d Wild 1986.
  4. ^ Brackett & Hoard 2004, p. 536.
  5. ^ Hunt, Dennis (December 7, 1980). "Rock singer wages war against pretentiousness". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). (Los Angeles Times). p. 2D.
  6. ^ Mellencamp.
  7. ^ a b Stafford 2012.
Online resources

External links[edit]