Song Lyrics I Have No Business Singing
A listicle of lyrics I will continue singing regardless of how ridiculous they sound coming out of my mouth
On a road trip long, long ago, my best friend and I asked our youth minister to play a new song we liked on our way to the annual Catholic Youth Conference. This was back in the recording-mixtapes-off-the-radio days. We knew this song had a bad word in it and talked about sex but how bad could it be? And so we handed him the tape with Nine Inch Nails’ new song.
“Do you two know what he’s singing about?”
We hadn’t thought this all the way through. Better than our parents but this was not a conversation we wanted to have with our youth minister either.
“Why would you want to do that ‘like an animal’?” he asked us, “Do you think that might be kind of degrading?”
The true-love-waits abstinence culture was not the most likely place to be exploring the nuances of human sexuality, nor was a carful of teenage virgins equipped to do anything but speculate. But I give him credit for not shaming us and ripping the ribbon right out of the tape. We just talked.
We liked the melody, the urgency of the tempo, the intensity of his voice. For better and worse my best friend and I were both starting to be drawn toward male aggression. Listening to a song was a harmless experiment. Closer was a toe-dip in whatever it was grownups were doing. And it was the first song I analyzed for its lyrics instead of just on the binary of whether or not I liked it in its entirety.
I was well into adulthood when I realized I had never analyzed an 80s Heart song I always liked. Or many of my 80s favorites for that matter. But it turns out “making love” can also be about cheating on your man and getting knocked up by a drifter. In some roadside motel. That you apparently “know well” for some reason. I have never cruised a rainy highway, any highway, at night, looking for a sperm donor. But damn I loved that ballad.
Have you ever been singing along with an old favorite or a new find and suddenly realize how absurd the lyrics are? Have you realized how much more absurd those words sound coming out of your mouth?
May you never stop.
Escapism is one of the many spendored gifts of music. I have no shame in loving what I love. Or even some of the songs I just kind of like for now. But I can also laugh at myself.
Everyone quoted on the list below is immeasurably cooler than I am. Tougher than I am. But bravado is to be expected from superstars and aspiring celebrities. The superlative is as common as a greeting in rock, rap and hip hop.
But me? I don’t start parties. I will never be the baddest bitch in the club. Any club. Ever. I’m just a suburban chick running errands. And #protip, cars are not soundproof. But no matter. There is no shortage of lyrics I will continue to sing. Here are just some of the most ridiculous when sung by me, in no particular order.
- Cause it’s one eight seven on an undercover cop
- I mean I’m not cock diesel, but I’ll be your Conan
- I got Patron in my cup and I don’t give a fuck
The baddest bitch in the club right here
- I wanna sex you up
- I put the na-na in naughty
- Are you talking to me? No way, punk. Walk on home, boy!
- I am iron man
- Here’s your one chance, Fancy, don’t let me down/ I’s gonna be a lady someday, I just didn’t know when or how
- I slay
- Want to get dirty, It’s about time that I came to start the party
- Stay up off my Instagram, pure temptation
- You know I got the sauce (sauce), you know I’m saucy
And it’s always wet, a bitch never ever had to use lip gloss on it
- Ready to make an entrance, so back on up
(’Cause you know about to rip shit up)
- Death Row is the label that pays me
- Know how to mack a broad, she’s on your sack and balls, You call her Jabberjaws — WHAT/
Doggy and froggy-style
- Push it real good
- Good lovin, body rockin, knockin boots all night long
- Will some woman in this desert land, make me feel like a real man, take this rock and roll refugee, oh baby, set me free
- He might be doin you but he’s thinkin about me — (I wrongfully assumed my elderly Nana wasn’t paying attention to the lyrics and I was singing along while I was driving her somewhere. She immediately demanded to know why any woman would want to be with a man she knew was cheating on her. I, of course, had no good answer.)
- And the song whose lyrics I can’t even bring myself to type, can’t even copy and paste, a pure 90s timeless time-travel that remains the filthiest, most violent, most anachronistic glorification of misogyny but dammit I still can’t help but love — Xxplosive. Damn near every line makes everything else on this list read like Anne of Green Gables.
Dr. Dre, you epitomized the 90s. I love this atrocious song. But Lord knows I will only sing along in the privacy of my car. And I turn it up every time.
I don’t think this exercise necessarily reflects anything deep or intrinsic or abiding about anyone’s truest self. But if it turned into a Facebook chain post I would eagerly read all of them.