In 1972, The Doobie Brothers released "Jesus Is Just Alright," a cover song that instantly became a US hit and confounded listeners ever since. Was it ironic? (Nope.) Are the Doobies actually Jesus freaks? (Nah.) Why did Christian rappers DC Talk release their own cheesy cover of the song with "modernized" lyrics in 1992? (God only knows.)
"Jesus Is Just Alright" was written by Art Reynolds and first recorded by The Art Reynolds Singers in 1966. And it is smoking. Three years later, The Byrds' drummer, Gene Parsons, who had been in the studio during the Art Reynolds Singers sessions, introduced the song to his band. The Byrds released their own killer version of the tune in 1969 (live performance below). And after hearing that cover, the Doobie Brothers added their own take to their live set and eventually recorded it in 1972 (live performance below).