Lyrics you thought were profane

scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I just looked up Wild Wild Life by Talking Heads, because whenever I hear it on the radio, I hear the line "fucking cold". But he's saying "thought control".

There's a lot of these. Probably the most blatant is Steely Dan's FM, which repeatedly says "give her some funked up music". Then there's the ever baffling Highway to Hell by AC/DC, where it sounds like "sees a n-gger on a one way ride", but it's actually "season ticket".

What's your favorite "what did he just say?" song?
 

Channel98

Don't yell or hit.
Feb 2, 2019
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Da Butt by Washington DC funk band E.U. was featured in Spike Lee's movie School Daze and went to number one on the Billboard R&B chart in April 1988. Da Butt was a dance and the group was singing about "Doin' da Butt" – but the first time I heard the song, I was shocked. I thought they were singing "Do it in da butt."

 
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scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I just thought of a song that amazed me a few years ago. Fitzpleasure by Alt-J was a big hit song on new music stations, and also got mainstream airplay. I had no idea what they were singing about, until I bought the CD. The lyrics are shockingly profane, but it's sung in a kind of lazy Creole, so they get away with it.

The song is about gangbangs, and women putting broom-shaped things in their snatches. Even the title is profane; "Fitzpleasure" means "fits pleasure". Here are some actual lyrics.

In your snatch fits pleasure, broom-shaped pleasure
Deep greedy and Googling every corner.
Dead in the middle of the C-O-double M-O-N, Little did I know then
That the Mandela Boys soon become Mandela Men.
Tall woman, pull the pylons down
And wrap them around the necks
Of all the feckless men that queue to be the next.
 

IdRatherBeSkiing

Sherbert is not and never will be ice cream
Oct 11, 2008
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Workin' on our night moves
Trying' to make the front page driving in the nude

Not too profane but came to mind last night at the concert.
 

scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I wasn't sure if this was profane; I just didn't know wtf it was. In the well-known song Brass In Pocket by The Pretenders, there's this line:

Got rhythm I can't miss a beat
Got new skank it's so reet

For years, I'd hear this song, and go "what?", then forget about it. Well the other day, I remembered to look it up. So there you go.
 
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Channel98

Don't yell or hit.
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Jamaican-born Desmond Dekker had a top-ten pop hit in 1969 with Israelites. One line says, "My wife and my kids they pack up and leave me." I had a friend who insisted Dekker was singing "they f**k off and leave me." He refused to believe otherwise.

 
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scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I had Indie 1.0 playing in the house, and my very progressive mid-20s daughter looked put-off by Pulp's Common People. "What are they singing about? It sounds like 'colored people' - 'I want to live like colored people, I want to do whatever colored people do". I wonder if the William Shatner version would've been better.
 
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scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I never heard those lyrics that way before.
Now I think it may be the only way that I hear them......
That sucks....
Haha! That reminds me of this absolute airhead girl in our high-school "gang" who thought that the chorus of Peter Gabriel's Games Without Frontiers was "She's so POP-u-lar; She's so POP-u-lar", when it was really (sung by Kate Bush) "Jeux Sans Frontieres" (french for Games Without Frontiers, duh). Anyway, to this day, I can't listen to that song anymore, and not hear those asinine lyrics.
 

IdRatherBeSkiing

Sherbert is not and never will be ice cream
Oct 11, 2008
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Haha! That reminds me of this absolute airhead girl in our high-school "gang" who thought that the chorus of Peter Gabriel's Games Without Frontiers was "She's so POP-u-lar; She's so POP-u-lar", when it was really (sung by Kate Bush) "Jeux Sans Frontieres" (french for Games Without Frontiers, duh). Anyway, to this day, I can't listen to that song anymore, and not hear those asinine lyrics.
I think that is how I heard those lyrics too. I had no idea the song had french in it.
 

HecticArt

Administrator
Oct 19, 2008
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There was a kid in high school that sang Don Henleys Last Worthless Evening as Last Worthless Hebrew. That pops into my head every now and again. Not that there was much to ruin on that song, but he accomplished it.

The Cranberries Linger came on the radio one night while a bunch of us were working way into the morning hours in studio. It was silent except for the radio until I sang along very loudly with Delores “Did ya have to, did ya have to, did ya have to use your finger!?!?

I ruined that song for 6 or 7 people that night.
 
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Channel98

Don't yell or hit.
Feb 2, 2019
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I have the original 1957 version of Louie Louie by Richard Berry (who also wrote the song). Amid the controversy over the Kingsmen's supposedly profane version of the song and an FBI investigation that concluded the lyrics are "unintelligible," Berry told Esquire magazine that Jack Ely sang the lyrics exactly as written. Indeed he did – but millions of people were positive they heard dirty lyrics anyway. For example, they heard "I smell the rose in her hair" and thought it was "I felt my bone in her hair." Dummies!

 

scotchandcigar

arrogant bastard
Feb 13, 2009
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I heard Elton John's Island Girl this morning, and I thought "Man, they wouldn't get away with that today!"

I see your teeth flash, Jamaican honey so sweet
Down where Lexington cross 47th Street
She's a big girl, she's standing six foot three
Turning tricks for the dudes in the big city

Island girl
What you wanting with the white man's world
Island girl
Black boy want you in his island world
He want to take you from the racket boss
He want to save you but the cause is lost
Island girl, island girl, island girl
Tell me what you wanting with the white man's world

She's black as coal but she burn like a fire
And she wrap herself around you like a well worn tire
You feel her nail scratch your back just like a rake
He one more gone, he one more John who make the mistake