Those of you who've suffered through all the incarnations of my radio show know what I like, which is almost everything between the 50s and the 90s, with a couple handsful of random songs from 2000 to now. I also like classic country music, but not too much of 'today's' country.
I love to turn up the radio and sing at the top of my lungs - in the house, in the car...in the grocery store.
There are a ton of misheard lyrics that I sang incorrectly for years, and I still do, because it's fun.
♪ Big old Chad and Lionel, don't carry me too far away! Oh oh oh big old Chad and Lionel, 'cause it's here that I've got to stay... ♫
But I don't usually stop and think about the lyrics. I mean, sometimes the story the song is telling is just right there and easy to follow and you don't really need to think about it.
And of course there's all the (c)rap and other songs with the horrible lyrics about fuck the police and having 99 problems but a bitch ain't one (yeah, because no girls want to get with you, doy) and "blurred lines" between consensual and forced sex.
Then this morning "December '63 (Oh what a night)" came on the radio - I was just listening and not singing along - and it struck me that there could be some room for interpretation, and frightening song lyrics are not a New Thing.
"You know I didn't even know her name
But I was never gonna be the same
What a lady, what a night..." So, clearly already setting up to be a one-night stand.
"As I recall it ended much too soon..." This can only be premature ejaculation. Or erectile dysfunction.
"I felt a rush like a rolling bolt of thunder, spinnin' my head around and takin' my body under!" Uh-oh, sounds like someone got roofied!
"Seemed so wrong but now it seems so right..." It seemed so wrong because you got doped up, had 2 minutes of sex with some nameless stranger, blaming her for "mesmerizing and hypnotizing" you and now you're trying to rationalize it in the clear light of the next day. IT WAS SO WRONG. Leave it at that.
SEE? What a horrible song!
And don't even get me started on those stalkery songs of 1970-71ish...
Brand New Key, by Melanie
"I rode my bicycle past your window last night..." Yeah, that isn't AT ALL creepy.
"Sometimes I think that you're avoiding me..." Um yes, because STALKER.
"I asked your mother if you were at home - she said yes but you weren't alone..." See, for most people this is a big, unmistakable sign that you are NOT WELCOME HERE.
Knock Three Times by Tony Orlando
"I can hear your music playing, I can feel your body swaying one floor below me - you don't even know me, I LOVE YOU." So dude is laying on his floor, feeling the bass through the floor, getting off imagining the downstairs neighbor doing a strip-tease and is in love with someone based on the floor vibration. Yes. Sounds legit.
"Read how many times I saw you, how in my silence I adored you, and how only in my dreams did that wall between us come apart." Can you say PEEPING TOM? (Peeping Tony, whatevs). With his sick fevered and probably fetishy and nasty dreams about this woman he's never met. I'd get a deadbolt on my door if I was the neighbor in question.
And the pedophile songs...
"Love you so much, can't count all the ways...Girl, you'll be a woman soon. Soon, you'll need a man."
EW GROSS. Just what every young girl dreams of, Neil Diamond's old balls. #Pervert
"You'll be a woman soon" makes her sound pre-menstrual.
Gary Puckett isn't any better - he sounds kind of like a rapist.
"Young girl, get out of my mind, my love for you is waaaaaaay out of line..." Um YEAH IT IS.
"BETTER RUN, GIRL!" At least he tries to give her a warning...or maybe just a head start before he starts hunting her down like a 10 point buck on the first day of bow season.
Maybe I should just start listening to classical music.