Misheard Lyrics Of The 1980s

Adolescence: a period of chaos and confusion. There’s little rhyme or reason to one’s heightened sensibilities, and it doesn’t help when pop songs have such bloody weird lyrics.

Initially, maybe it was a crap hi-fi/radio signal that sent you down the wrong track, or maybe some jackass got in your ear.

Either way, a song’s lyrics were often lost in translation, the meaning – such that it was – got skewed and from that moment on you couldn’t hear it without factoring in your messed-up version. And it didn’t matter if it was a tune you loved or hated.

Sad to report, to this day, when I hear these songs/lines, I get the lyrics ‘wrong’. And yes, it has to be said, you don’t have to be Dr Freud to see that sex was usually the driver. That’s adolescence for you…

Blondie: ‘Island Of Lost Souls’
Misheard line: ‘I’m f*ckin’ near/Can you help me put my truck in gear’
(Correct line: ‘Oh buccaneer/Can you help me put my truck in gear’)

Irene Cara: ‘Flashdance (What A Feeling)’
Misheard line: ‘Take your pants down/And make it happen’
(Correct line: ‘Take your passion/And make it happen’)

UB40: ‘Food For Thought’
Misheard line: ‘I’m a prima donna’
(Correct line: ‘Ivory madonna’)

Bryan Adams: ‘Heaven’
Misheard line: ‘Love is all that I need/And I found it there in your shirt’
(Correct line: ‘Love is all that I need/And I found it there in your heart’)

Billy Joel: ‘An Innocent Man’
Misheard line: ‘Some people live with the fear of a touch/And the anger of having dinner poo’
(Correct line: ‘Some people live with the fear of a touch/And the anger of having been a fool’)

Lionel Richie: ‘All Night Long’
Misheard line: ‘Everybody’s seen everybody dance’
(Correct line: ‘Everybody sing/Everybody dance’)

It Bites: ‘Calling All The Heroes’
Misheard line: ‘High on a mountain the men looked below/Cucumber pineapple something and Poe’
(Correct line: ‘High on a mountain the men looked below/Cooked up a plan that would outwit their foe’)

The Police: ‘So Lonely’
Misheard line: ‘Simone/Simone’ (There was an Italian bloke at school called Simone…)
(Correct line: ‘So lonely/So lonely’)

The Beatles: ‘The End’
Misheard line: ‘Matthew/Matthew’
(Correct line: ‘Love you/Love you’)
(That’s enough misheard lyrics, Ed…)

Check back here for updates; the memory banks will doubtless reveal more over time… And feel free to add your own (from any decade) in the comments section below.

Crap Lyrics Of The 1980s (Part Two)

I thought I had unearthed all of the decade’s stinkers in movingtheriver.com’s extensive first round-up.

But it turns out that we were just scratching the surface. And I feel pretty confident that there will be many more to highlight as the weeks, months and years roll by.

So here we go again with some more logic-defying, ill-conceived, harebrained – and sometimes just plain weird – song lyrics of the 1980s. China Crisis obsessives: look away now…

 

Most of my friends were strangers when I met them.’

BROS: ‘I Quit’

 

Why do you do that poor man thing/Why do you do that poor man/All of my life it’s as sharp as the bigger the punch I’m feeling.’

CHINA CRISIS: ‘Bigger The Punch I’m Feeling’

 

‘Work in my world/Put up for sale/You buy you me/I buy me you.’

CHINA CRISIS: ‘The Highest High’

 

This wreckage I call me/Would like to frame your voice.’

GARY NUMAN: ‘This Wreckage’

 

We made our love on wasteland/And through the barricades.’

SPANDAU BALLET: ‘Through The Barricades’

 

All we want is our lives to be free/If we can’t be free then we don’t want to be we.’

CURIOSITY KILLED THE CAT: ‘Free’

 

‘If I was you/If I was you/I wouldn’t treat me the way you do.’

EIGHTH WONDER: ‘I’m Not Scared’

 

Words don’t come easy to me/How can I find a way/To make you see I love you?’

FR DAVID: ‘Words’

(How about saying the words ‘I love you’? Ed.)

 

‘I’m young and free and single/I just want to mingle with you, lady’

SUNFIRE: ‘Young Free And Single’

 

Can’t complain/Mustn’t grumble/Help yourself to another piece of apple crumble.’

ABC: ‘That Was Then But This Is Now’

 

Hello, hello, hope you’re feeling fine/Hello, hello, hope you’re feeling mine/Hello, hello, hope you’re feeling time.’

NICK HEYWARD: ‘Whistle Down The Wind’

 

A motivated, liquidated nightmare/Like a baby with a laser on a rocking chair.’

IT BITES: ‘Black December’

Crap Lyrics Of The 1980s (Part One)

dynasty_wallpaper_by_mabmeddowsmercuryDuring a 1981 interview, Peter Gabriel said: ‘Many great songs have really appalling lyrics, but no great songs have had appalling music. If you’re going to write lyrics, you might as well make them try and communicate something.’

Sadly, it was a maxim ignored by many of his contemporaries in the ’80s pop pantheon… But these sad wretches have our sympathies; anyone who’s ever tried to pen a song knows the potential pitfalls.

Got a good melody? Great, but you’ve got to sustain the lyrical narrative across the whole song in a cogent way (got that, Coldplay and Keane?). Got some words? Handy, but it can be very tricky to fit a melody to ‘poetic’ ramblings. Basically, for every ‘Talking Scarlet‘, there’s a ‘With Or Without You’.

So join us as we take a trip through a collection of the sometimes inane, occasionally coarse, often totally meaningless ramblings of the 1980s.

And don’t forget – sometimes these lexical disaster-areas didn’t detract from the quality of the song at all. But sometimes they did…

 

Sittin’ on a mountain, looking at the sun/Plastic fantastic lobster telephone’.

THE CULT: ‘Electric’

 

‘Heart of mine, sewing frenzies of steel to the sky/By night, a child in a harvest of virginal mines’.

IT BITES: ‘Midnight’

 

‘This morning there was joy in my heart cos I know that I loved you so/Scrambled eggs are so boring, for you’re all, all that I want to know’.

PRINCE: ‘Life Can Be So Nice’

 

She’s got eyes like saucers, oh you think she’s a dish/She is the blue chip that belongs to the big fish’.

ELVIS COSTELLO: ‘Big Sister’s Clothes’

 

‘I know that I must do what’s right/As sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti’.

TOTO: ‘Africa’

 

‘Only time will tell if we can stand the test of time’.

VAN HALEN: ‘Why Can’t This Be Love’

 

‘I’m so bad I can suck my own d*ck’.

LL COOL J: ‘Clap Your Hands’

 

‘Late spring and you’re drifting off to sleep/With your teeth in your mouth’.

REM: ‘You Are The Everything’

 

‘Let’s go crazy, let’s get nuts/Look for the purple banana til they put us in the truck’.

PRINCE: ‘Let’s Go Crazy’

 

‘You set my teeth on edge/You think you’re a vegetable, never come out of the fridge/C-c-c-cucumber/ C-c-c-cabbage/C-c-c-cauliflower!’

ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN: ‘Thorn Of Crowns’

 

‘Where does it go from here/Is it down to the lake I fear/Ay-ya-ya-ya-ya-ya/Ah-ya/Ah-ya-ya-ya-ya-ya’

HAIRCUT ONE HUNDRED: ‘Love Plus One’

 

‘Oh babe/I wanna put my log in your fireplace’.

KISS: ‘Burn Bitch Burn’

 

‘A stripping puppet on a liquid stick gets into it pretty thick/A butterfly drinks a turtle’s tears/But how do you know he really needs it?’

ELVIS COSTELLO: ‘Deep Dark Truthful Mirror’

 

Every second counts when I am with you/I think you are a pig, you should be in a zoo’.

NEW ORDER: ‘Every Second Counts’