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Misunderstood Lyrics

Posted on Wednesday, August 1, 2007 at 09:47AM by Registered CommenterAllyson B. Crawford | Comments9 Comments

Did you know there's a website dedicated to misunderstood lyrics?

Apparently, misunderstood lyrics are en vogue now as there are currently two shows on network television that deal with average people singing famous songs.

Last night, the glam rock husband and I were driving along, listening to Dirty Penny. Eric kept saying "What word was that?" "What is he saying?" I got annoyed and switched discs for Faster Pussycat (for the record, I think the lyrics on Dirty Penny's Take it Sleezy are very easy to discern). When I popped in the self-titled Faster Pussycat release, I immediately clicked to "Bathroom Wall." Eric likes this song, too so there were no issues. Then, I clicked over to "Babylon," and I thought his head would explode.

I'll admit Taime shifts his voice more than normal during "Babylon," but the lyrics really are smart. Here's the first verse:

"Lvin' in L.A. is so much fun/
Boy you is ugly and your girlfriend weighs a ton/
We was sittin' in our car in a traffic jam/
And some tourist started screamin', 'Hey, ain't you that guy in Wham?'/

Classic.

As Eric complained about not understanding "A single word Taime is saying" I started thinking about all those misunderstood lyrics and wondered if I've been wrong during concert sing-a-longs.

At www.kissthisguy.com - I have no idea why anyone would name a lyrics-database website this...that's like me naming this website www.cornonthecob.com or something equally as dumb - there's a list of artists and their most misunderstood songs. The following are quotes from the Kiss This Guy website.

For Motley Crue, there's "Smokin' In the Boys Room"

The real lyrics are:
Teacher don't you fill me
Up with you your rules.
Everybody knows that smoking
Ain't allowed in school.

But I misheard them as:
Teacher don't you kill me
Up with your rule.
Everybody knows that
Smoking in the lounge is cool.

For Def Leppard, there are several entries and most are related to "Pour Some Sugar On Me."

Here are some of the entries:

The real lyrics are:
Pour some sugar on me...

But I misheard them as:
Go son, shoot your own knee...

and

The real lyrics are:
Pour Some sugar on me, oh in the name of love

But I misheard them as:
Come on join the army, when you need guns bad

or even

The real lyrics are:
You got the peaches, I got the cream
Sweet to taste, saccharine

But I misheard them as:
You got the pizzas, I got the cheese
Sweet potatoes, is that for me?

Seriously, did someone think Def Leppard were singing about sweet potatoes and shooting his own knee?

It was inevitable.

During my research, I found lyrics to a song I'd been singing wrong for more than a decade: Warrant's "Heaven."

Again, from the Kiss This Guy website:

The real lyrics are:
See the factory that I worked, silhouetted in the back.

But I misheard them as:
I see the factory that I worked. I seen you welding in the back.

"Silhouetted in the back?" I always thought it was "Seen you standing in the back." I actually like my version better. Not because I think I'm a better songwriter than Jani Lane, but because I'm more comfortable with my version. It just feels right.


Do you have any favorite misunderstood lyrics?

Reader Comments (9)

I had a friend in college who insisted the line in Aerosmith's Dream on that went "Sing with me, sing for the years" was "Sing women, sing for the years".

I think I would rather be shot in the knee then listen to "Pour some sugar on me" though.

August 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMetal Mark
Yeah I have probably had some misunderstood lyrics, but I just can't recall them right now. You are right, how could someone mix up those Def Leppard lyrics!
Nice job with the research and blog.
August 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenteraXe mAn
Um... not sure if you were kidding or not - but kissthisguy is probably the most famous misheard lyric ever. I think I heard Ozzy in an interview say that the first time he heard Jimi Hendrix sing Purple Haze, he misheard '...scuze me, while I kiss the sky...' as 'scuze me, while I kiss this guy.' Hence the name of the site.
August 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChuck
Chuck,

I was not kidding. I think it's a dumb website name.

Allyson
August 1, 2007 | Registered CommenterAllyson B. Crawford
...and when Winger remade Purple Haze they didn't help matters any! :P

Usually I like to think that Kip has better enunciation, but our favorite joke with the Wingernuts is "I hear the chicken on the cloth" instead of "I hear the ticking of the clock" at the start of Hungry. >:)
August 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChessie >^..^<
I have two.

1 - I refused to believe that Def Leppard sang anything so banal as 'Rocket - satellite of love'. Workmates argued the point with me for an hour until we googled it.

2 - Matt ( who you met at Rocklahoma ) has become a Poison fan due to me dragging him to a show 12 months ago. He loves 'look what the cat dragged in', but he insists the words are:

I've got a girl on the left of me, a girl on the right. I know *them* well, I slept with both last night.

Which I guess would be true, in a biblical sense.

I tend to be pretty good with lyrics. Hell, if I could sing along to all of 'kill em all', it's kind of hard to think I'd have too much trouble with more middle of the road stuff. There is one Angels song tho, called Mr Damage. Every set of lyrics I've seen online for this song are TOTALLY wrong, but there are lines I just cannot work out ( hence my looking ).

Hell, I went to prove it and google gave me this: http://www.mp3lyrics.org/a/angels/mr-damage/ which is probably not too far from correct ( the bits I am sure of, are all correct here )
August 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChristian Graus
I should add that after Rocklahoma, the idea of Taime ever having been smart, is something I have trouble grasping.
August 3, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChristian Graus
Christian,

Aw, c'mom!

Allyson
August 3, 2007 | Registered CommenterAllyson B. Crawford
ha ha ha there is always a song that i usually get wrong. pour some sugar on me is a good song, but it isn't so bad that i would want to shoot myself.
December 8, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChey

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