misheard lyrics

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Everytime I play Morrissey's debut solo album (and I do not play it that much anymore) I hear him sing 'Bent darling, bent darling' when actually he sings "bengali, bengali'...(no freudian comments here, I'm quite capable of finding them ny own way, merci)

does anyone else have misheard lyrics which sometimes outstand the original singers notes or else are daft or hilarious?

erik, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

In Underpass by John Foxx, I always think he's shouting "Underpants!"

This is mega-annoying because it's a really cool song but I can't listen to it anymore.

jamesmichaelward, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Wait: that would make it "bent darling in platforms," which sounds like a rather poetic description of a softcore photo.

Nitsuh, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

A sinister one: a girl I know told me once that whenever she heard the fadeout of Blur's "Chemical World", she thought that Damon Albarn was singing "I do intend to rape her". The actual line is, I think, "Until you can see right through", but he pronounces so sloppily he could be singing anything.

Chris Lyons, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Smells Like Nirvana

by Al Yankovic


What is this song all about?
Can't figure any lyrics out
How do the words to it go?
I wish you'd tell me, I don't know
Don't know, don't know, don't know, oh no
Don't know, don't know, don't know...

Now I'm mumblin' and I'm screamin'
And I don't know what I'm singin'
Crank the volume, ears are bleedin'
I still don't know what I'm singin'
We're so loud and incoherent
Boy, this oughta bug your parents

It's unintel-ligible
I just can't get it through my skull
It's hard to bargle nawdle zouss
With all these marbles in my mouth
Don't know, don't know, don't know, oh no
Don't know, don't know, don't know...

Well, we don't sound like Madonna
Here we are now, we're Nirvana
Sing distinctly? We don't wanna
Buy our album, we're Nirvana
A garage band from Seattle
Well, it sure beats raising cattle

And I forgot the next verse
Oh well, I guess it pays to rehearse
The lyric sheet's so hard to find
What are the words? Oh, nevermind
Don't know, don't know, don't know, oh no
Don't know, don't know, don't know...

Well, I'm yellin' and we're playin'
But I don't know what I'm sayin'
What's the message I'm conveyin'?
Can you tell me what I'm sayin'?
So have you got some idea?
Didn't think so -- Well, I'll see ya
Sayonara, sayonara
Ayonawa, odinawa
Odinaya, yodinaya
Yaddayadda, yaaahyaaah

Kodanshi, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

I have a friend who thought that in "All Apologies," the lines "What else should I be? All apologies . . ." was, "Where else should I pee? All along the trees . . ."

brains, Monday, 22 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

The "Underpants"-one is really hilarious...

It brings visions of Rem Koolhaas searching hystericaly through his minimally futuristic loft for his knickers.

now another one for readers who understand Dutch (not many I guess). A friend of mine thought that in 'Vicious' Lou Reed actually sang the dutch word 'visjes' which means 'little fish'

Little fish You hit me with a flower

erik, Tuesday, 23 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Ryan Adams "New York". Instead of New York, I heard "you're... you're". During the concert I was tempted to hell "So what NEXT? You're WHAT?". Then I saw him on Jools and realized it was New York. Yes, I am not the brightest creature.

helen fordsdale, Tuesday, 23 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

You are Bruno Brookes and I claim my five pounds.

Ah well. I used to hear "I'll get another job at night" from XTC's "Earn Enough For Us" as "I'll get another job at *nine*". (i.e. back to work at 9 am the next morning, which makes sense)

Robin Carmody, Tuesday, 23 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Gary Numan, my favourite robot, bleeping monotonously "you ain't the real one, you ain't the real one" while the Telekon lyric-sheet reads "you end on reel one, you end on reel one".

Gary Numan, his love is real, but he isn't? ;-)

erik elektrik, Tuesday, 23 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Oasis- 'Live Forever'- 'I said maybe I don't really wanna know how your garden grows, cos I've just swallowed a fly'. Not mine, to be honest, but certainly an improvement on Noel's usual attempts at apeing Lennon doing Edward Lear.

Snotty Moore, Friday, 26 October 2001 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

eleven months pass...
My favourite misheard lyric is the exact same song! Ah... 1994, Oasis have released one highly promising single ("Supersonic") and one highly embarrassing one ("Shakermaker"). They could go either way... but then comes their monstrous new slab of sound:

I don't really wanna know
How you got engrossed
'Cause I just wanna play...

I marvelled at the way the guy with the eyebrows stretched out that syllable "gross", as if solely to disgust anyone who expected a sense of decorum from him. I had a new favourite great white hope. Of course, I soon found out the lyric was actually "how your garden grows", which is just so lame.

I never really got over that.

B:Rad (Brad), Wednesday, 23 October 2002 20:11 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Cher, "If I Could Turn Back Time." The line is, "Words are like weapons, they wound sometimes." For a very long time I heard, "Words are like whale bones, they move sometimes." I was amazed at Cher's knowledge of whale physiology, and equally puzzled by how whales could survive at their size, with their bones moving all the time...

Prude, Thursday, 24 October 2002 01:24 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

the guy with the eyebrows

That's funny, I only count one per head.

It's great when misheard lyrics mean the opposite of the real thing. I spent months singing along to Wilco's "Radio Cure" as "distance has a way of making love understandable," when the lyric is "no way." Shucks.

wl (wl), Thursday, 24 October 2002 22:57 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I always thought Black Star by Radiohead went "Baby I'm your black star..." when in fact it goes "Blame it ony our black star..."

What an interesting life I lead.

Callum (Callum), Thursday, 24 October 2002 23:06 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

six months pass...
"...Britney Spears / she drinks my wine..."

oops, but that's the way I heard that line, from Dylan's 'All Along the Watchtower', listening to Mad Sheer Khan's live version of the song on the radio tonight

t\'\'t (t\'\'t), Thursday, 15 May 2003 20:19 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

That bitch.

Kenan Hebert (kenan), Thursday, 15 May 2003 20:36 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

maybe i'm totally conceited about this but i keep hearing my name in songs. like in tv personalities "prettiest girl in the world" i swear they keep talking about an emily (ie "when emily dreams/the prettiest girl in the world). i also keep hearing emily in jd's "isolation" even though it doesn't make sense at all.

emily bee (emilybee), Thursday, 15 May 2003 20:50 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I always thought that "Actin' funny / But I don't know why" from "Purple Haze" was "I've got money / But I don't know why," which I still think is better than the actual lyrics.

Curt1s St3ph3ns, Thursday, 15 May 2003 23:09 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
"you want your ketchup cakes, call me -
you want your cheesesticks... call me!"

Can anyone guess which one this is? These might be the real words, for all I know.

Tracer Hand (tracerhand), Sunday, 22 August 2004 19:20 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

"In Underpass by John Foxx, I always think he's shouting "Underpants!"

Jesus, I think you have ruined this one song for me. I used to love it but I have the feeling that since this day I'll be hearing John Foxx singing "underpants!" everytime.

Diego Valladolid (dvalladt), Sunday, 22 August 2004 22:35 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

My girlfriend believed - until recently - that the lyric "I'd like to smash every tooth in your head" in "Bigmouth Strikes Again" was "I'd like to mash a grapefruit in your hair."
Which I can imagine Morrissey writing/singing, actually...

David N (David N.), Sunday, 22 August 2004 22:42 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

The cheesesticks line resurfaced in a "Dude" remix.

Forksclovetofu (Forksclovetofu), Sunday, 22 August 2004 23:08 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I happened to see the video clip for Britney Spears' 'Toxic' (shite song BTW).

It sounded like she was singing "Your toxic come dripping down my body" or summat. That can't be right though can it? I mean, she's not putting (or rather, her songwriters aren't) THAT much innuendo in her songs yet are they? Although that thing where she fiddles with her breasts in the video clip lead me to believe that it's not far off.

Sasha (sgh), Monday, 23 August 2004 00:31 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

I thought that in "Genie in a Bottle" Christina was singing "you gotta rub before you play" rather than "You gotta rub me the right way."

Wooden (Wooden), Monday, 23 August 2004 00:33 (thirteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
i want the digibeet to see this!! and the rest of you, too!


Tracer Hand (tracerhand), Friday, 7 October 2005 17:22 (twelve years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

MOTHERFUCKER! A recent detour to a Beastie Boys lyrics site disabused me of the following lyrics to "Hold It, Now Hit It:

As transcribed: "Every day I drink O.E. and I don't go to work."
As heard in my brain for the past 20 years: "Every day I take a wee and I don't go to work"

Goodgod y'all, is nothing sacred?

kingkongvsgodzilla, Thursday, 28 June 2007 17:43 (ten years ago) Permalink

In Kristin Hersh's version of "Cuckoo" on Hips and Makers, I know it's "Oh the cuckoo / She's a pretty bird / She warbles / As she flies" -- but I always hear (prob bcz I want to hear) "... / She wobbles / As she flies".

anatol_merklich, Tuesday, 10 July 2007 23:00 (ten years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

As A kid I listened to Mariah Carey's Breakdown millions of times and I always thought the last line of the chorus was 'I tell my mother lies and then I breakdown and cry.'

Christyles, Monday, 3 September 2007 08:37 (ten years ago) Permalink

"just because of love what does?"

-devin the dude

Lowell N. Behold'n, Monday, 3 September 2007 09:19 (ten years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

I heard Unbelievable at Skate King and thought the chorus was "you're ugly and bald"

musically, Thursday, 3 December 2009 16:51 (eight years ago) Permalink

the fact that I heard it at Skate King was very relevant btw

musically, Thursday, 3 December 2009 16:52 (eight years ago) Permalink

six months pass...

Torche - "Across the Shields"

Can't be right:

Harsh mad anger all the time! Soothsay big on your dime! Send all your kingdoms porn! And pray mother keep us all!

ksh, Friday, 4 June 2010 13:50 (seven years ago) Permalink

I don't know if its right or not, but i like those Torche lyrics.

For a really long time I thought ZZ Top was singing "Every girl's crazy 'bout a shy gas mask." In fact, I found the actual lyrics quite disappointing.

ImprovSpirit, Friday, 4 June 2010 15:01 (seven years ago) Permalink

As heard in my brain for the past 20 years: "Every day I take a wee and I don't go to work"

Still prefer this.

Otherwise you're kinda being comp-lit in his racism. (kkvgz), Friday, 4 June 2010 15:32 (seven years ago) Permalink

there's another, longer thread on this

Misheard lyrics

anagram, Friday, 4 June 2010 15:39 (seven years ago) Permalink

six years pass...


well i crossed my old man back in Aragorn, don't take me alive

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Saturday, 10 December 2016 15:48 (one year ago) Permalink

The Jags - 'Back Of My Hand'

When I was younger, I kept hearing "you're not unreadable, you're not unbeatable" as "get out of Weinerville, get out of Weinerville"

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Saturday, 10 December 2016 22:08 (one year ago) Permalink

six months pass...

alan alda's all we are

reggie (qualmsley), Wednesday, 28 June 2017 21:23 (nine months ago) Permalink

six months pass...

Someone in this usually very quiet Huntington Beach neighborhood is gettin' all crunk this Saturday evening, presently to the sound of C+C Music Factory's 1990 single 'Gonna Make You Sweat.' This has reminded me that, when the song was current, me and my ten year old friends had a joke that the lyric was actually, "Everybody, pants down!"

he doesn't need to be racist about it though. (Austin), Sunday, 14 January 2018 05:10 (three months ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

I thought for years that the line in 'Daydream Believer' was 'my shaving razor's cold and it stinks'. That's when it's time to buy a new one, Davy. Gross.

Senior Soft-Serve Tech at the Froyo Arroyo (Old Lunch), Thursday, 1 February 2018 19:48 (two months ago) Permalink

"i'm just liberal nerves and feelings" - Joni Mitchell, "People's Parties"

kolakube (Ross), Sunday, 11 February 2018 23:51 (two months ago) Permalink

Nelly Furtado:

"I am like a bird, I'll only fly away. I don't know where my phone is."

he doesn't need to be racist about it though. (Austin), Monday, 12 February 2018 00:01 (two months ago) Permalink

one month passes...

she's little miss prissy
and she love you, gene, baby, all the time
baby all the time!

reggie (qualmsley), Sunday, 18 March 2018 22:57 (one month ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

Let's dance
Let's shout
Shake your body and do the brown

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Saturday, 14 April 2018 18:43 (five days ago) Permalink

invest in a stool softener, man

fuck the NRA (Neanderthal), Saturday, 14 April 2018 18:52 (five days ago) Permalink

or, y'know, drugs are bad

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Saturday, 14 April 2018 18:53 (five days ago) Permalink

i did see this humorous transcription of Two Chainz's verse on Rick Ross's "Fuck Em":

"I'm chain smokin loud
Like it's a newborn"

fuck the NRA (Neanderthal), Saturday, 14 April 2018 18:54 (five days ago) Permalink

I've got a Japanese edition of R.E.M.'s Monster with a lyric insert included - of course, as with all R.E.M. albums before 1998, the UK/US edition didn't include the lyrics, so someone clearly was hired to write down what they thought was being sung. Stipe's lyrics are hard to make out in general, particularly when you consider that Monster's production is quite murky in places, so of course the lyrics printed in the book are completely wrong!

Here's an excerpt from 'Circus Envy':

Here comes that awful feeling again
Make way for monstor (sic) jealousy
The strove man kicks in ending my breakfast
Cereal Bowl, I spell your name with Oaties
Oh, I messed it, messed it, messed it up

I got my car stolen there in the haystack
I am tired of your dark warm circus eyes
Put pepper in my coffee, I forgot to bath
Encore man

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Saturday, 14 April 2018 19:11 (five days ago) Permalink

definetely an improvement.

Ludo, Saturday, 14 April 2018 20:03 (five days ago) Permalink

"She Belongs to Me": for at least a couple of decades I used to sing "For Halloween buy her a trumpet/And for Christmas, get her a bit drunk." As is often the case with these things, I like my lyric better.

clemenza, Saturday, 14 April 2018 20:07 (five days ago) Permalink

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