Kick out the jams

Posted by Masakim on October 11, 2001

In Reply to: Kick out the jams posted by ESC on October 11, 2001

: : kick out the jambs -- meaning, to go all out. has anybody else ever heard this? i've used it but don't know where I picked it up. when I started asking around in my new hometown, no one had heard of the phrase. actually, one person said he'd heard it but didn't know what it meant. help!!!!!

: KICK OUT THE JAMS -- "vb. American. to 'let rip,' get rid of all inhibitions and restrictions. A catch phrase in the rock-music world of the late 1960s, to which it was introduced by the rock group the MC5, who were allied to the anarchistic White Panther movement in Detroit. The phrase probably comes originally from an instruction to remove the chocks or wedges restraining a dragster car or aircraft." From the "Dictionary of Contemporary Slang" by Tony Thorne (Pantheon Books, New York, 1990).

kick (or break) out the jams (or jambs) v phr 1960s musicians To behave in an unrestrained way; be uninhibited; = let oneself go: "Kick out the jams, motherfookers -- Village Voice / "On Side Two they kick out the jams, or at least shake the Jello -- Rolling Stone [said to be fr jams, "chocks under the wheels of a dragster, used to hold it in place"]
From the Dictionary of American Slang by Robert L. Chapman
The big-beat sound of a dozen 50-year-old junkies kicking out the jams on "September Song." (H.S. Thompson, _Las Vegas_, 1971)
I just needed to kick out the jambs, you know what I mean? (De Christoforo, _Grease_, 1978)