A friend on Facebook posted recently that her husband had never heard of the band Bread.
I graduated from high school in 1972. You better believe I’d heard of Bread. I suspect that if I went back and looked at the yearbooks, I would find prom photos with Bread song titles as the backdrop – although more likely “If” than “Make It with You.”
Some banter ensued on my friend’s post over the silly love songs – several of which were huge hits – the band recorded.
And I created a Bread channel on Pandora.
I’ve been listening as I work in the evenings, in part because I wind up getting a lot of tunes that cross that high school/college era, music I don’t normally hear, and in part because it’s not distracting.
I find that I’m a little more critical of songs now than I was 40 years (yikes!) ago. I still appreciate Jim Croce – and his outstanding lead guitarist Maury Muehleisen even more when they pop up. The Eagles’ early songs hold up well. (Duh.).
But recently I heard “Please Come to Boston,” a song I loved in my late teens. Now, I wondered whether the friends in Boston were aware he was inviting his girlfriend to live with him – they do have lots of room – or if he’d thought through just how economically unstable an arrangement he was suggesting: She could sell paintings on the sidewalk and he was hoping for a job at a café. Winter in Boston much? Oh, and he’s changed his mind by the second verse and is headed for Denver. No word about the employment situation. And how does he get to L.A., and why does he think she’ll see that move as “forever,” given his history?
But all that went away when I heard dumber lyrics, from the Bee Gees’ confessional “I Started a Joke”:
"And I fell out of bed/Hurting my head/From things that I’d said."
So because I was finished with work, I threw that lyric up on Facebook to see what my witty friends would suggest to rival it.
The first reply, by my co-worker Alice, is almost sacrilegious, being about a song by REO Speedwagon: “throw away the oar, come crashing through the door, crawl across the floor. . .baby I can't fight this feeling anymore. . .”
Bruce, a former News-Gazette colleague, offered: “ ‘But if this ever changing world in which we live in’? Syntactical nails on a blackboard.”
Lynnette suggested, from Guns N' Roses’ Sweet Child of Mine: “her hair reminds me of a warm, safe place where as a child I'd hide.”
My college buddy David went with MacArthur Park. “Besides the cake stuff, how about this verse: 'Between the parted pages/And we're pressed in love's hot fevered iron/Like a striped pair of pants.’”
Fortunately, there are so many terrible song lyrics that we have only scratched the surface.
Anyone else? You can join in by leaving a comment here.
(All photos from album-cover-art.org)