A Random Wednesday Conversation Starter

Does it bug you when song lyrics make no sense? And when they don’t, do you try to figure out a meaning for them?

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7 Responses to A Random Wednesday Conversation Starter

  1. Lynn says:

    No, not all. People who are bugged by song lyrics that "make no sense" bug me. I don't really try to figure out the meaning. Sometimes I just like the way words sound together.

  2. Anonymous says:

    No, and no. Beck and J. Robbins (of Jawbox, Burning Airlines and Channels) come to mind as lyricists who are sometimes stream-of-consciousness and more interested in how the words sound with the music than with meaning.

    Beck has admitted that the Odelay album had lots of leftover scratch vocals that he and the band had grown attached to, and anyone can work the Google and find several attempts to interpret that album as supremely meaningful.

    I'm a lot more focused on the music in the first place, though. I don't believe that a song has to be profoundly meaningful in order to be a good listen or even a work of art.

  3. mylittlegeekery says:

    Sometimes. It depends. If the song is good, I can forgive. If it's crap, well…

    Isn't it ironic when a singer doesn't know what ironic means?

  4. Justin Whitaker says:

    I'm still trying to figure out the meaning behind the lyrics of "The Reflex" by Duran Duran. "Why don't you use it, try not to bruise it, buy time don't lose it." I still dig it though! Nonsensical lyrics don't bother me.

  5. Michael May says:

    Duran Duran is a great example. They're the ones who broke me of requiring sense from song lyrics. The Cocteau Twins took it further and helped me realize that I can actually enjoy and sometimes PREFER not understanding the lyrics.

    I like digging into the thoughts behind some artists' lyrics (U2, for example), but I don't need that from every song by every musician. In fact, I'm listening to a lot more international music lately with non-English lyrics, because it lets me focus completely on the rhythm and sounds.

  6. Roger Owen Green says:

    Half the time, I can't make them out, o mishear them. Doesn't matter much of the time.

  7. Earl o says:

    Yes then I heard Tom Petty declare that songs are not poetry, they don't need to make sense. I also heard Freddy Mercury comment that no matter how good or how profound his latest work, it would end up in the garbage if he did not think it would sell.

    This coming from two men I hold in high esteem.

    So I have concluded that songs without meaningful lyrics are the fast food of music. No sustenance.

    This is one reason I keep coming back to this blog, sustenance is in short supply for those of us who are recovering pop music addicts. I want desperately to appreciate classical music.

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