Good Things Happen to People Who Write Songs About Peyton Manning

John Stevens Jr started writing songs at age 15 to try and process the death of a friend. He's been playing music in Indiana for 30 years, but it wasn't until he sat down at his kitchen table early this year with the intent to make his friends laugh that he found that little breakthrough so many artists never achieve.

The song is a simple ditty called "She Loves Peyton Manning More Than Me." He uploaded the home video to YouTube two weeks before the Super Bowl, and I bet you can already guess how it got from there to, say, a music blog in Denver, Colorado.

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The views piled up, and a definitely incredulous Stevens started getting requests for the song at his shows. The demand reached the point that he decided to produce his first proper music video, which came out a couple weeks ago and has racked up more than 16,000 views (or more than all his other videos except the original "Peyton" one combined).

He's donating some of the proceeds from the song to the Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at St. Vincent, because suddenly there are proceeds, and playing music for 30 years will teach you some things about karma and perspective.

Toward the end of the clip, he's playing the song for a packed house of people singing along, and he glances back at the camera, smiling wryly. It might have been a joke in January, but "She Loves Peyton Manning More Than Me" is now the defining effort of John Stevens Jr.'s career.

Here's the video. It's goofy, but you and he both already knew that. The Broncos square off against the 49ers this Sunday in Denver, and she's not the only one.


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Kiernan Maletsky is Westword's music editor. His writing has appeared in alt-weeklies around the country as well as Miley Cyrus's mom's Twitter feed.
Contact: Kiernan Maletsky