There are a lot of horrible, terrible songs out there with content that is seriously wtf, which is no surprise to anyone. But guess what? Not all of them are rap lyrics.
Do you have songs on your playlist from back in the day that, as you’re singing along, you suddenly notice they are HORRENDOUS?
Because I sure do.
I apologize in advance for opening your eyes and/or ruining your listening pleasure if these are on your playlist as well:
Classic Christmas ditty written in 1944, I loved my Zoey Deschanel/Leon Redbone version until my 30ish girlfriends from work informed me it’s completely rapey. And just that one word took me one second to go:
“Say what’s in this drink?” “I really can’t stay...baby, don’t HOLD OUT...baby, it’s cold outside.” I ought to say no, no, no sir Mind if I move in closer? At least I'm gonna say that I tried What's the sense of hurting my pride?
Holy crap, that’s bad!
From the soundtrack of Mermaids, a great Cher/Winona Ryder flick from 1990, comes this compulsively singable, incredibly misogynistic ditty. The advice is in the chorus – yay!
If you want to be happy for the rest of your life Never make a pretty woman your wife So for my personal point of view Get an ugly girl to marry you
#1 on the Hot 100 in 1963. I guess a lot of men really appreciated the heads up. Insert head exploding emoji here.
Carrie Ann Moss from The Matrix was named after this song, which came out in 1967. It’s actually about Marianne Faithfull, who briefly dated the Hollies’ Allan Clarke but whose most famous romance was with Mick Jagger.
You were always something special to me Quite independent, never caring You lost your charm as you were aging Where is your magic disappearing?
If she’s not playing with HIM, she’s not that special anymore apparently. “As you were AGING”? They met at school. What is she now… 20??
While not as egregious as the other songs on the list, the romantic vibe Ian Thomas is going for as a guy afraid to talk to the woman of his dreams feels stalkery now. It lost me at:
Today I'm done with games Gonna ask you for your name Say I've been watching you I even know what you do
Full disclosure: this is on my exercise list as it’s a perfect tempo to run on a rebounder. Damn its beat!
Again, catchy 70s song but the words all say, “how dare you dress and live your life as you choose while endlessly tempting me!”:
You run around town like a fool and you think that it's groovy You're givin' it to some other guy who gives you the eye You don't give nothin' to me.
And your point is?
A hit for Gary Puckett and the Union Gap in 1968, I totally used to love singing along to this! And no, I did not say I have excellent taste in music. Ever.
With all the charms of a woman You've kept the secret of your youth You led me to believe you're old enough To give me love nd now it hurts to know the truth…
Gary, are you really blaming an underaged girl for leading you on? Really?
This was a recent singing-in-the-shower song for me. Super boppy! Released by the one hit wonder J. Geils Band in 1981, it really brings back fun memories! But am I really supposed to feel sorry for this guy?
Does she walk? Does she talk? Does she come complete? My homeroom, homeroom angel Always pulled me from my seat
My blood runs cold My memory has just been sold My angel is the centerfold Angel is the centerfold
First of all, she DOES walk and talk… because human, not a weird fantasy avatar. And your memory of her imagined purity isn’t “sold” just because she’s in a girly magazine that YOU bought because again, she’s human.
Oh, Dr. Hook. You crafted some crazy, fun and popular songs when I was a kid.
When you're in love with a beautiful woman, you watch her eyes When you're in love with a beautiful woman, you look for lies Everybody tempts her, everybody tells her She's the most beautiful woman they know
But honestly? Describing a beautiful woman as by default an egotistical, easily tempted, always on the verge of cheating a partner…? Shouldn’t he be describing himself as an insecure, controlling nutbar instead?
This Tom Jones monster hit released in 1968 is a power ballad about a man driven wild by his jealousy.
She stood there laughing I felt the knife in my hand and she laughed no more My, my, my, Delilah Why, why, why, Delilah So before they come to break down the door Forgive me Delilah, I just couldn't take anymore
Apparently, Tom just HAPPENED to be strolling by one night. With a knife. Does she sound like a nice person? No. Does she deserve to die for laughing at him? NO.
Finally, at the top of the violent, misogynistic playlist is this 1965 Beatles charmer from Rubber Soul.
Let this be a sermon I mean everything I've said Baby, I'm determined And I'd rather see you dead You better run for your life if you can, little girl Hide your head in the sand, little girl Catch you with another man That's the end, little girl
Someone in a forum called it “sinister set to a jaunty tune” and I couldn’t phrase it any better.
The fact that these songs from the 40s through the 70s are all casually gender biased AT BEST and truly heinous at worst is… yeah… Sigh.
Are any of these on your playlist? Or do you have your own songs of shame from an era or two when apparently, no one knew any better?