“Lizard Love” the weird sexy rocker re-worked for kids that made it a decade later

“Lizard Love” is an Aerosmith song originally written by Steven Tyler, Joe Perry & Jeff Lynne during the January/Febuary 1992 sessions for Get a Grip with producers Jeff Lynne and/or Bruce Fairburn at A&M Studios in Los Angeles. Copyright seem to be owned by Swag Song Music, Inc., the publishing entity for Aerosmith. The 1992 version featured the same kind of intense sexual references as other tracks from the first attempt of Get a Grip, and was probably left off the album for that very reason by the label and John Kalodner.

The song was finally released in 2003 on the Rugrats Go Wild soundtrack, with new vocals and new lyrics recorded over an original 1990s backing track. The song is known to be later reworked for the Jurassic Park movie, but was again rejected. In fact, there is some theories that Jeff Lynne was not involved with the first Get A Grip sessions version at all and was only brought in for the Jurassic Park version. The original version recorded during Aerosmith’s Get A Grip sessions and the Jurassic Park version remain unreleased. Some original lyrics were posted online in the past, but it is unclear if these are the original Get A Grip or Jurassic Park lyrics, but they are clearly different than the eventual Rugrats Go Wild version.

The song stands out for being the only Aerosmith song to feature 2 different bridge sections, and outro similar to that in “Monkey on my Back” and several different edits, mixes and lyrics in existence.

“It was great fun meeting them. I just did a little bit with Aerosmith. We just tried to write a little song called Lizard Love, but uh, it never got finished and uh… But it was great hanging out with the guys, real nice guys.”

Jeff Lynne (June 6, 2001 – Rockline)

Jurassic Park Version
Aerosmith took another attempt at recording Lizard Love for use in the 1993 Jurassic Park movie, which was eventually rejected. It is unclear if the song was rerecorded or remixed for the movie soundtrack, although it was likely re-worked in some fashion if not completely rerecorded. Rumor has it that Stephen Spielberg didn’t like the song or he felt it was inappropriate for the film and that’s why it’s not used in the movie. Also, there are some rumors that Jeff Lynne may have not worked on the song until it was re-worked for the Jurassic Park movie, thus the original Get A Grip sessions version was not written or produced by him.

“Further production work by Jeff included a few tracks for Aerosmith including Lizard Love in 1994 but they have yet to see the light of day…”

Patrik Guttenbacher, Marc Haines, & Alexander von Petersdorff (1996 Unexpected Messages)

Rugrats Go Wild Version
This is a re-recording of the original version, which was done in 1992. It uses the original backing tracks from 1992/1993, but has new lyrics and vocals recorded in 2003 during the Honkin’ on Bobo sessions, and includes animal sound effects to suit the “kiddie” nature of the Rugrats Go Wild movie which features the song. The song was only featured during the end credits of the movie, but was originally intended to be used in a deleted scene where Spike and the babies rescue Dil from almost falling in the Cruise.

“Yeah, Lizard Love. I mean, it was something that was on the back burner forever, and we rewrote it for this record (2004’s Honking on Bobo). It didn’t quite fit. We got a phone call, and we said ‘Let’s do it’ and so, uh… I think you saw it in the commercials. It’s fun.”

Steven Tyler (June 12, 2003 – interview with DJs Mark & Brian on 95.5 KLOS)

Video clip and alt mix
A small video clip was recorded in front of a green screen after being ordered and produced by Interscope and Nickelodeon. It was directed by Jim Gable / Graying & Balding (same director they used during Super Bowl halftime show 2001 and the Just Push Play tour visuals) with direction of photography by Tony Molina. The video served to promote the new movie and premiered on Nickelodeon, a low-res version was later uploaded to Aerosmith.com and in 2018 an HQ edited down version was uploaded by Tony Molina as part of his cinematography reel to Vimeo. It’s worth noting that the video version of the song is under 1:20 minutes long and features extra solo fills by Perry (rather than the saxophone).

The session was covered by famed rock photographer Ross Halfin. His photos of the behind the scenes made it into several publications including tour programs, Honking on Bobo booklet, and on-tour videos for the band, and were shared on his website diary.

Original 1992 demo lyrics:

(Steven Tyler)

I was walkin’ down the street
When someone called my name
She had spiked heels on her feet
And she was feelin’ no pain

Chorus:
Ohhh must be Lizard Love

So I hid behind the newspaper
Turned to page six
She was in her birthday suit
Behind a crucifix

Chorus

She was hangin’ big booty
She was puss n’ boots way up to here
She’s a little bit of heaven, a 24-7
A 10 every day of the year

Now there must be some mistake
I’m feelin’ so high strung
She said ‘I make love like a snake
I even got a forked tongue’

At first I thought I was dreamin’
That I’d wake up and she’d dissappear
But when I opened up my eyes
She was laughing and a screamin’ swinging from the chandlier

You know I never seem to give
Or ever get enough
And I just can’t seem to live without
That sweet bodacious stuff….

Rugrats Go Wild 2003 version lyrics:

I woke up in the mist on a desert isle
I dreamt that I was kissed by a crocodile

Oh woa woa… must be lizard love

I think this must be love ’cause I just go slimed
Like Tarzan kissin’ Jane for the very first time

Oh woa woa… must be lizard love
Oh woa woa… call it lizard love… yea yeah

It’s a jungle love lover
It’s the kind that likes ta kiss ‘n tell
It’s a little bit a heaven
24 / 7… ridin’ off on the back of a gazelle… ahaa

I let them voodoo be make it do the do
And you can blame it on the heat… I put a spell on you

Oh woa woa… must be lizard love
Oh woa woa… call it lizard love

At first I thought I was dreamin’
Then I’d wake up and she’d disappear
But by the time we got to Jurassic Park
She was barefoot ‘n screamin’… swingin’ from a chandelier
Oh ha haaa…
Woo wow wow wowa…

You know I never seem to give or ever get enough
And I just can’t seem to live
Without that sweet bodacious stuff

Oh woa woa… call it lizard love
Oh woa woa… call it lizard love… yea yea yea…
Oh woa woa… call it lizard love… lizard love… 


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