The Byrds

Jesus Is Just Alright

Composed by A. Reid Reynolds

Song Review by

Although sounding like a hugely dated, Christian-Rock song, “Jesus Is Just Alright” is arguably the most successful song on The Ballad Of Easy Rider. The Byrds had a natural affinity towards a rather Christian morality, a facet that’s especially evident in their Sweetheart of the Rodeo album, and “Jesus Is Just Alright” fits neatly with many songs in the group’s canon. Essentially a song about finding Christ, the song’s lyrics are certainly lacking in inspiration, but the message is clear and, crucially, the performance lacks the pretension that accompanies much Christian music. McGuinn sings it beautifully, and is backed by some adept guitar work from Clarence White. “Jesus Is Just Alright” is a lot of fun, and there’s no denying that it’s one of The Byrds finest pure rock songs of this period.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Ballad of Easy Rider 1969 Friday Music
Untitled 1970 Columbia
The Best of the Byrds: Greatest Hits, Vol. 2 1972 Columbia 2:12
The Byrds 1973 Flashback Records / SOI
No Image 1973 CBS Records
No Image 1990 Discarios
Classic Rock: Rock Renaissance, Vol. 4 1991
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 2:10
Definitive Collection 1995 Columbia 2:10
Expanded Edition Album Sampler, Vol. 2 1997 Columbia 2:10
Ultimate Byrds 1998 Legacy / Columbia/Legacy 2:08
12 Dimensions: 1965-1972 2002 Columbia
No Image 2002 Timeless 2:11
The Essential Byrds 2003 Columbia / Legacy 2:10
Very Best of the Byrds [2006] 2006 Sony Music Distribution
There Is a Season 2006 Legacy / Columbia/Legacy / Sony BMG 2:10
Live at Royal Albert Hall 1971 2008 Sundazed 3:03
The Complete Columbia Albums Collection 2011 Columbia / Legacy / Sony Music / Sony Music Entertainment 3:09
Original Album Classics [2012] 2012 Columbia / Sony Music
Straight for the Sun 2013 Let Them Eat Vinyl
Lee Jeans Living Rock Concert 1969 2015 All Access 3:12
The Boston Tea Party 2016 Iconography 3:40
blue highlight denotes editor's pick