Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)

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"Drops of Jupiter"
Train Drops of Jupiter single.jpg
Single by Train
from the album Drops of Jupiter
  • "It's Love"
  • "This Is Not Your Life"
  • "Sharks"
ReleasedJanuary 29, 2001 (2001-01-29)
Producer(s)Brendan O'Brien
Train singles chronology
"Ramble On"
"Drops of Jupiter"
"Something More"
Audio sample
Music video
"Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" on YouTube

"Drops of Jupiter", initially released as "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)", is a song written and recorded by American rock band Train. It was released on January 29, 2001, as the lead single from their second studio album, Drops of Jupiter (2001). The song hit the top five of the Billboard Hot 100 chart and also charted in the top 40 for 29 weeks.[1] The European single has tracks "It's Love", "This Is Not Your Life", and "Sharks" as its B-sides.

The recording features the signature strings of arranger Paul Buckmaster, who won the 2001 Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) for "Drops of Jupiter."

Background and composition[edit]

Lead singer Patrick Monahan has stated that the song was inspired by his late mother, who had died after a struggle with cancer, and that the opening lines "came to [him] in a dream". He said, "The process of creation wasn't easy. I just couldn't figure out what to write, but then I woke up from a dream about a year after my mother passed away with the words 'back in the atmosphere...It was just her way of saying what it was like – she was swimming through the planets and came to me with drops of Jupiter in her hair."[2][3] The verse has a noted resemblance to the chorus of "Drift Away", a song most famously performed by Dobie Gray.[4] The song is written in the key of C major.[5]

Critical reception[edit]

Chuck Taylor of Billboard magazine reviewed the song favorably, saying that it "demonstrates a truly artistic lyrical bent that merits instant acceptance of this credible rock-edged song". He sums up the review saying "add piano, a splendid orchestral backdrop, and a vocal shimmering with passion and personality, and this is a runaway track for Train".[3]

Chart performance[edit]

"Drops of Jupiter" ascended to the top 10 of the Adult Contemporary chart in its 49th week, marking the longest climb to the top 10 on that tally by any act.[6] The song has spent over 100 weeks on the Adult Contemporary charts, and is still charting on the Recurrents chart. Although the song was released years before digital download became commonplace, the song has sold over 1,000,000 downloads (it was also certified Gold by the RIAA), and hit the top 50 of the Digital Songs charts five years after its release due to Ace Young singing it on the fifth season of American Idol.

The track re-entered the UK Singles Chart for the week ending on April 7, 2012, at number 53 following a performance from contestant Phil Poole on The Voice UK. On the week ending April 28, 2012, "Drops of Jupiter" climbed to number 34, marking its ninth non-consecutive week inside the top 40.[7] As of January 2017, the song has sold 564,460 copies in the UK.[8]

Music video[edit]

There are two music videos for this song. The first one shows the band performing it on a stage, with a large banner reading "TRAIN" in the green-lit background. Clips of a woman performing various actions in various backgrounds related to the lyrics (e.g., Jupiter, holding her hands out in the rain) are inserted into various parts of the song.

The second, more famous video shows the band performing the song on a stage backed by a string ensemble. As the video progresses, people come in to watch the song being performed. The video was shot at Union Station in Los Angeles, California, and was directed by Nigel Dick. It was released in July.[9] The first version of this particular video also featured the story of a girl who ran away from home and, upon arriving at the station where the band was playing, was so moved that she decided to return home. However, this storyline was dropped during the editing process.


The song was nominated for five Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal, and won two for "Best Rock Song" and "Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)".

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Drops of Jupiter"
  2. "It's Love"
  3. "This Is Not Your Life"
  4. "Drops of Jupiter" (Video Version)

Charts and certifications[edit]


Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[46] Platinum 70,000^
Italy (FIMI)[47] Platinum 50,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[48] Platinum 600,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[49] 6× Platinum 6,000,000double-dagger

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format(s) Label(s) Ref.
United States January 29, 2001 (2001-01-29) Hot adult contemporary radio Columbia [50]
January 30, 2001 (2001-01-30) [51]
February 27, 2001 (2001-02-27) Contemporary hit radio [52]
Australia May 21, 2001 (2001-05-21) CD [53]
United Kingdom July 30, 2001 (2001-07-30) [54]


  1. ^ Billboard Drops of Jupiter Facts
  2. ^ "Train". Behind the Music. Season 15. Episode 1. September 16, 2012. Vh1.
  3. ^ a b Billboard, February 3, 2001 – Vol. 113, No. 5, Page 38.
  4. ^ https://www.rollingstone.com/music/features/train-the-little-band-that-could-20020328
  5. ^ Patrick, Monahan; Jimmy, Stafford; Rob, Hotchkiss; Charlie, Colin; Scott, Underwood. "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Musicnotes.com. MN0046022. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
  6. ^ Drops of Jupiter Songfacts
  7. ^ "Official Charts Company - Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me) by Train Search". Official Charts Company. 6 May 2013.
  8. ^ Jones, Alan (February 3, 2017). "Official Charts Analysis: La La Land hits top of the albums chart". Music Week. Retrieved February 4, 2017.
  9. ^ http://www.mtv.com/news/1445446/train-readying-second-video-for-drops-of-jupiter/
  10. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  11. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  12. ^ "Ultratop.be – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  13. ^ "Ultratop.be – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in French). Ultratip.
  14. ^ "Hitlisten.NU – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in Danish). Tracklisten.
  15. ^ "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 19 no. 34. August 18, 2001. p. 15. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  16. ^ "Lescharts.com – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in French). Les classement single.
  17. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  18. ^ "Irish-charts.com – Discography Train". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  19. ^ "Italiancharts.com – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Top Digital Download.
  20. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 38, 2001" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40 Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  21. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  22. ^ "Charts.nz – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Top 40 Singles.
  23. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  24. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Singles Top 100.
  25. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Swiss Singles Chart.
  26. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  27. ^ "Official Rock & Metal Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company.
  28. ^ "Train Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  29. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Alternative Songs)". Billboard.
  30. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  31. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  32. ^ "Train Chart History (Alternative Airplay)". Billboard.
  33. ^ "Train Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard.
  34. ^ "Train Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  35. ^ "Train Chart History (Canadian Digital Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  36. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  37. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  38. ^ "ARIA Top 100 Singles for 2001". ARIA. Retrieved March 16, 2021.
  39. ^ "Jaaroverzichten 2001" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  40. ^ "Top 100–Jaaroverzicht van 2001". Dutch Top 40. Retrieved February 7, 2020.
  41. ^ "Jaaroverzichten – Single 2001" (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  42. ^ "End of Year Charts 2001". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  43. ^ "The Official UK Singles Chart 2001" (PDF). UKChartsPlus. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  44. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 2001". Billboardtop100of.com. Retrieved March 16, 2021.
  45. ^ "Greatest of All Time Adult Pop Songs : Page 1". Billboard. March 18, 2016. Retrieved February 14, 2020.
  46. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2001 Singles" (PDF). Australian Recording Industry Association.
  47. ^ "Italian single certifications – Train – Drops of Jupiter" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Select "2019" in the "Anno" drop-down menu. Select "Drops of Jupiter" in the "Filtra" field. Select "Singoli" under "Sezione".
  48. ^ "British single certifications – Train – Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  49. ^ "American single certifications – Train – Drops of Jupiter". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved March 10, 2021. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  50. ^ "Hot AC: Going for Adds" (PDF). Radio & Records. No. 1386. January 26, 2001. p. 89. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  51. ^ "Going for Adds" (PDF). Radio & Records. No. 1386. January 26, 2001. pp. 100, 105, 115. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  52. ^ "CHR/Pop: Going for Adds" (PDF). Radio & Records. No. 1390. February 23, 2001. p. 46. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  53. ^ "The ARIA Report: ARIA New Releases Singles – Week Commencing 21st May 2001" (PDF). ARIA. May 21, 2001. p. 24. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  54. ^ "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Amazon. Retrieved July 6, 2021.

External links[edit]