a short site about The Divine Comedy

French version

Gin Soaked Boy

Lyrics & Music: Neil Hannon

Published by: BMG Music Publishing Ltd.

Originally interpreted by: The Divine Comedy


To see the lyrics, click on the name of the version you are interested in (on the left).




This song was played live in 1999, probably at gigs, but also, which is more unusual, during radio sessions.

It is one if the unedited songs which were on A Secret History and was released as a single for the promo of the best of. It’s a very catchy song, perfect for a single, although it didn’t manage as well as ‘National Express’. The radio edit has a verse less than the original version.

Neil Hannon said on BBC1: “The song is really a riddle and I’m still waiting for someone to get it right. My mother got it right, in fact, but nobody else has yet.” [1] Later he gave the clue: “If Chianti is a wine, then gin a _____.” [2]

The Catcher in the Rye is a novel by J.D. Salinger, while The Fly is a film by David Cronenberg with Jeff Goldblum.

The video for ‘Gin Soaked Boy’ was produced by Phil Harrow and directed by Toby Tobias. It takes place at the Brighton Race Track. Gin Soaked Boy was the name of a race horse. It appears in the video along with Sunset East, Gene Genie, Xmas Toy, Ruby In The Dust, Rye Catcher, The Trojan, The Captain (not referenced in the song) and Toby Tobias. The week after the filming, the band returned the favour by sponsoring a race called The Divine Comedy Handiccap on June 30 1999. [3]

[1] BBC 1, 1999 (?)
[2] The Divine Comedy Q&A 2001
[3] NME 21/05/1999