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Post Famous Lyrics that are OK but not great. Clunkers too!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Blackbird, Apr 7, 2006.


  1. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    As some of you may know, I'm working on writing better lyrics.

    One of the things psyching me out is that I compare the stuff I write with people who are disgustingly good. The thing to remember is that the majority of lyric writer are not geniuses (genii?), but they write all the time and they come up with adequate words for their songs. Some practice so much they become extremely good, which means that it's a skill that can be learned.

    My new role model in the lyric dept. is Tony Asher, probably the most famous adequate lyricist in history. For those who don't know, he wrote the lyrics to the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds album.

    Here's a sample of his work:

    Yes, it's a great song (McCartney's favorive, apparently), but the lyrics aren't extremely deep and poetic. With all due respect, they're just adequate and serviceable, and that's what I'll be aiming toward. Forget Dylan.

    Feel free to post other adequate but not great lyrics. Don't forget the posting guidelines.
     
  2. ahaTFJ

    ahaTFJ Guest

    Apr 2, 2006
    Chicago
    The lyrics to "Tom Sawyer" by Rush are kinda... weird.
     
  3. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Interesting. Post them here.

    ...although Neil Peart is far from average in the lyric department.

    Being a Beatles fan, I have to put this one up:

    John Lennon wrote it...and hated it.
     
  4. ahaTFJ

    ahaTFJ Guest

    Apr 2, 2006
    Chicago
    :meh:
     
  5. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Blackbird

    One band that I play with - The Tom Martin Band - plays (mainly) all original stuff by my very good friend... you guessed it... Tom Martin.

    I really like Tom's lyrics as they are very "observational". He kinds of tells mini-stories in his songs without passing comment and leaves you to think about them for yourself. I'd be interested in your views on these because I've always considered them very McCartneyish for that reason. If you PM me your address I'd like to send you our most recent CD.
     
  6. How about Jim Croce?

     
  7. HiFi

    HiFi

    Apr 20, 2002
    Southern California
    Cheesy but adequate from B.T.O.:

    You get up every morning
    From your alarm clock's warning
    Take the 8:15 into the city
    There's a whistle up above
    And people pushin', people shovin'
    And the girls who try to look pretty

    And if your train's on time
    You can get to work by nine
    And start your slaving job to get your pay
    If you ever get annoyed
    Look at me I'm self-employed
    I love to work at nothing all day

    And I'll be...
    Taking care of business every day
    Taking care of business every way
    I've been taking care of business, it's all mine
    Taking care of business and working overtime
    Work out!

    If it were easy as fishin'
    You could be a musician
    If you could make sounds loud or mellow
    Get a second-hand guitar
    Chances are you'll go far
    If you get in with the right bunch of fellows

    People see you having fun
    Just a-lying in the sun
    Tell them that you like it this way
    It's the work that we avoid
    And we're all self-employed
    We love to work at nothing all day

    And we be...

    Take good care of my business
    When I'm away, every day whoo!
     
  8. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    I like this one a lot. Not a clunker at all and just 18 words!
    There's a lesson here, IMO.
     
  9. AxtoOx

    AxtoOx

    Nov 12, 2005
    Duncan, Okla.
    As I listen to them on the classic rock station, I fall back on my usual clunker, ANYTHING BY THE DOORS.
    I never found him to be "The Great American Poet".

    Don't know if that helps, but it makes me feel better.:smug:
     
  10. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Post a lyric.:)
     
  11. AxtoOx

    AxtoOx

    Nov 12, 2005
    Duncan, Okla.
    "I woke up this morning and I got my self a beer":meh:
     
  12. ras1983

    ras1983

    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    holy crap, i was going to post the exact same thing!!:)

    maybe it was all the acid.

    blackbird, they have a song called 'The End'.

    i'm not one to understand most lyrics, but here are some example of the song's lyrics:

    "Ride the snake... to the ancient lake".
    "This is the end, my only friend, the end".

    great music, weird lyrics.
     
  13. dharma

    dharma Srubby wubbly

    Oct 14, 2005
    Monroe, Louisiana
    "Gonna go to the roadhouse and have myself a reeeeaaaallll ... good time"
     
  14. ras1983

    ras1983

    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    here's one from queen's bohemian raphsody (the title itself is silly):

    "thunderbolts and lightning, very very frightening me, Galileo...Galileo..."
    and so on and so forth.

    i felt bad about this one because the song is a classic.
     
  15. Here are 2 songs that hit #1 on the some charts due to something other than the quality of the lyrics

    This one is so bad that I would love to have the money it made, but I would be embarrassed as hell to put my name on it.
    Achy Breaky Heart by Don Von Tress
    You can tell the world you never was my girl
    You can burn my clothes when I'm gone
    Or you can tell your friends just what a fool I've been
    And laugh and joke about me on the phone

    You can tell my arms to go back on the farm
    You can tell my feet to hit the floor
    Or you can tell my lips to tell my fingertips
    They won't be reaching out for you no more

    But don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    I just don't think it'd understand
    And if you tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    He might blow up and kill this man
    Ooo

    You can tell your ma I moved to Arkansas
    Or you can tell your dog to bite my leg
    Or tell your brother Cliff who's fist can tell my lips
    He never really liked me anyway

    Oh tell your Aunt Louise, tell anything you please
    Myself already knows that I'm okay
    Oh you can tell my eyes to watch out for my mind
    It might be walking out on me today

    But don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    I just don't think it'd understand
    And if you tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    He might blow up and kill this man
    Ooo

    But don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    I just don't think it'd understand
    And if you tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    He might blow up and kill this man
    Ooo

    Don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    He might blow up and kill this man
    Ooo

    Don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart
    He might blow up and kill this man
    Ooo

    This second one is very appropriate for this forum. It is just plain fun, but really, the lyrics are terrible.
    Mr. Bass Man by Johnny Cymbal
    Mister bass man
    You got that certain something
    Mister bass man
    You set the music thumping
    To you it's easy
    When you go one two three
    Ba ba ba ba ba ba

    "Yeah"
    Mister bass man
    You're on all the song
    With the bu bu bu bun bun
    And di di di bun bun bon
    Hey mister bass man
    You're head and king of rock and roll
    Ba ba ba ba ba ba

    "Yeah"
    Oh it don't mean a thing
    When the leader's singing
    Or when he goes
    Ei-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi
    Hey mister bass man
    I'm asking just one thing
    Will you teach me
    Woo yeah the way you sing
    'cause mister bass man
    I want to be a bass man
    Too ba ba ba ba ba ba
    "Ah"
    Mister bass man
    I really think I'm with the
    Bu bu bu bu boom boom
    And the du du du du du du du du
    Come on mister bass man
    Now I'm a bass man
    Too du ba ba ba ba ba
     
  16. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Ras: I'm familiar with the Doors and that song. It's just that I wanted to be able to read the lyric on the thread.

    Aaron, did you hear "Hey Mr. Bassman" on a Muppett Show album when you were a kid too? I did. It is a nice little number. Very Vaudeville.:D
     
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    This one. Or anything else by Barry Manilow.

    Ready To Take A Chance Again

    You remind me I live in a shell,
    Safe from the past,
    and doing' okay,
    but not very well.
    No jolts, no surprises,
    No crisis arises:
    My life goes along as it should,
    it's all very nice,
    but not very good.
    And I'm Ready To Take A Chance Again,
    Ready to put my love on the line with you.
    Been living with nothing to show for it;
    You get what you get when you go for it,
    And I'm ready to take chance again with you.
    When she left me in all my despair,
    I just held on,
    My hopes were all gone.
    Then I found you there.
    And I'm Ready To Take A Chance Again
    Ready To Take A Chance Again with you,
    With you.
     
  18. Could this be considered "adequate"?

    Sick of Myself by
    Matthew Sweet

    You don't know how you move me
    deconstruct me and consume me
    I'm all used up, I'm out of luck I am star struck
    By something in your eyes
    that is keeping my hope alive
    But I'm sick of myself when I look at you
    something is beautiful and true
    World that's ugly and a lie
    it's hard to even want to try
    I'm beginning to think
    maybe you don't know.
    I'll take a leave, the room to breathe
    The choice to leave it
    I'll throw away a chance at greatness just to make this
    dream come into play
    I don't know if I'll find a way
    'Cause I'm sick of myself when I look at you
    something is beautiful and true.
    World that's ugly and a lie
    it's hard to even want to try.
    I'm beginning to think
    maybe you don't know.
    I'm beginning to think
    maybe you don't know.
    Something in your eyes
    that is keeping my hope alive.
    But I'm sick of myself when I look at you
    something is beautiful and true.
    World that's ugly and a lie
    it's hard to even want to try.
    I'm beginning to think
    maybe you don't know.
    I'm beginning to think
    maybe you don't know.
     
  19. Actually, I remember it from high school. That and "Ba, ba, ba, ba, Babra Ann". The spoof I liked best on "Hey, Mr. Bassman" was one by the Holy Modal Rounders called "Hey, Mr. Spaceman" in which they go, "Beep, Beep, Beep" in a high squeaky voice like the Sputnik audio that scared the hell out of us in the late '50s.
     
  20. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    Mana Mana (Muppets)

    Sex and Violence (The Exploited)

    I like Short Songs (DK)
     

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