"'No Rain' came from when I first moved to California, and I was playing songs on Venice Beach for change. I was having to come up with the material during the week after my construction job, and then I would get my guitar and go down to the beach and open up a guitar case. I'd play on the Venice Beach boardwalk for change, for enough money to pay for parking and chicken teriyaki. That was my weekend.
And it was inspired by just how tough it was in LA. I had bouts of depression and the whole, 'What am I doing out here? Am I going to go back to Mississippi? I'm never going back to Mississippi.' I would just fight it and stick to my guns. Like, 'I want to be a musician, I want to be out here in California. I don't want to go back home.' I had nobody out here. There was no family; I didn't know a soul out here at first.
So the song is about not being able to get out of bed and find excuses to face the day when you have really, in a way, nothing. It was like rock bottom. I wasn't even on drugs or drinking. It was just tough. It was just a tough point in my life. And the cool thing about that song, I think a lot of people do interpret those lyrics properly and can connect with it on that level, where "I don't understand why I sleep all day and I start to complain that there's no rain." It's just a line about, I'd rather it be raining so I can justify myself by laying in the bed and not doing anything. But it's a sunny day, so go out and face it.
So that's where the lyric and the song was inspired from, is just having to write songs. Then being in the state of mind I was in and having to come up with material to go play down on the beach for change. I played that song on the beach for change for over a year before Shannon Hoon actually joined the band and really made that song a hit. I think that was a good song, and Shannon made it a great song."
The song is the band's highest-charting song, reaching number 20 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and number-one on both the Album Rock Tracks and Modern Rock Tracks charts.
Official Music VideoThe concept for the official video was inspired by the "Blind Melon" album cover, which features a 1975 photo of Georgia Graham, the younger sister of Blind Melon drummer Glenn Graham.
Heather DeLoach was the first to audition for the role of the bee girl, and because she resembled Graham's sister so much, director Samuel Bayer, who also directed "Smells Like Teen Spirit," chose her.
Heather DeLoach recalled to MTV News her audition for the bee girl:
They told me Sam didn't look at any other tapes. I went in with my hair in braids and wearing those chunky glasses because they said to look nerdy. My mom said we had to find some glasses before we went in, so we ran to a local mall right before the audition and bought them, and Sam liked them so much they're the same ones I used in the video.
Brad Smith recalled:
"At the time we were doing "No Rain," it was like, "This is great." But I felt this way about all the other videos. So you just never know. Sam Bayer was a killer director and shot an amazingly beautiful video that had a storyline in it, and people connected with that bee girl. We brought the bee girl to life that was on the front of the album cover."The video made #22 on MTV's Greatest Videos Ever Made Countdown at the end of 1999.
Rogers StevensRogers Stevens used his "Blind Melon" Strat for this recording. This guitar can be seen in the official video for the song.
He described the story behind this guitar:
"I bought the guitar in Hollywood in 1991 at a music store on Santa Monica Blvd. It was a new 1962 reissue model ... I'm assuming a late '80's model ... creamy yellow color with a rosewood board. I seem to remember the neck being on the chunky side — I've had Strats of the same make that felt somewhat slimmer. Overall, I'd say that guitar was a bit on the heavy side for my taste. I like Strats to be super-light.
Anyway, I recorded the entire first record with that guitar, but nothing beyond that. We were doing a festival gig in Europe (Glastonbury or Reading, I think) and the jack shorted out. I took the guitar and sort of "dropped" it by my amp because I couldn't find a stand nearby and there was quite a bit of adrenaline going at the moment. For reasons I will never understand, Shannon [Hoon] took this as an indication that I was entirely done with the guitar and would never pick it back up again. Perhaps in some antiquated common law scheme, one might say I no longer had possession of the guitar, so I must've surrendered ownership.
Whatever the case, Shannon immediately picked, smashed it, and threw it out into a crowd of about 300,000 drunken Englishmen. I wasn't really heartbroken, I guess ... there will always be other guitars out there. I've often wondered what happened to it and would be happy to buy it back. I suspect it's buried in the mud out there in that field…"