As it turns out, one of the sweetest love ballads of the mid-noughties, You’re Beautiful, is much darker than we ever imagined. Songwriter James Blunt told the Huffington Post, “I’ve been labeled, ‘Oh, James Blunt! Isn’t that just a romantic in love?” Screw it. It’s not. You’re Beautiful is not a tender and romantic song. It’s about a young man who’s high as a kite chasing someone else’s girl on the subway, and at that very moment, her boyfriend shows up right in front of him. He should be locked up or put in jail for his perversity.”
Blunt’s revelations got us thinking: what other songs have we been dancing to, utterly oblivious to their meaning? Below you’ll find a list. Be prepared to be significantly (or not so much) surprised. And if you are looking for other entertainment, then casino bonus India might appeal to you.
For example, have you ever listened to a test of the song Hey Ya by Outkast? Listened?
The most famous examples
- Sunny (known as Boney M., written earlier) is not a fun song about the sun but a memorial song. It is a sad autobiographical track about loss and trying to cope with it. It is recorded with wild pain by Bobby Hebb two days after his older brother was strangled outside a nightclub. Bobby was also profoundly affected by the Kennedy assassination in those same days. In the song, he sings about his pain and trying to overcome it.
- The Winner Takes it All – Abba. Divorce track. “The Winner Takes It All” – was written by Bjorn Ulvaeus right after a difficult divorce, with their two children staying with their spouse (the actual singer of the track) by court order. By the way, if you listen attentively, Happy new year is also a depressing track, which has nothing festive (“walking on clay feet through grey everyday life… it’s easier to take it and die”). It would be under black metal. These are the songs of the heavy period of the band’s internal rift over personal relationships.
- Every breath you take – Sting in Police. It’s not about love and comfort at all. Sting recorded it after a broken marriage. He says it’s about the System, Big Brother, who’s watching everybody. Or it’s about a maniac watching his victim. “Heard one couple danced to it at a wedding – ha, guys, good luck.”
- Big in Japan, Alphaville is about a loving couple trying to recover from heroin addiction. The two of them imagine how beautiful love would be without drugs, stealing, and ice in their pupils, with real emotions and sincere words.
- Stayin Alive by the Bee Gees is not about disco fun but the desperation of surviving beggars on the streets of New York. “We’ve been denouncing how people cry out in desperation for help,” says the author, “Surviving is already a victory.” They, moreover, had a drummer die before recording.
The Beatles – Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds
The song was written during the heyday of psychedelics in The Beatles’ music and lyrics, so many believe that Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds is an ode to LSD and the power of hallucinations. How else could you create a song about a girl in the sky with diamonds? But John Lennon claims the song is based on a picture his son Julian drew in class at school: it shows his girlfriend Lucy in the sky with diamonds.
Madonna – Like A Virgin
Released in 1984, Madonna’s anthem for coming of age has become a subject of discussion – thanks to the ambiguous title and spicy delivery. But the actual meaning of the song is quite touching.
Billy Steinberg wrote the lyrics, and he was writing about his relationship problems. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, he explained the situation: “I was talking about. Yes, I can’t be a virgin – like many people, I’ve had emotional turmoil in my life – but I’m starting a new relationship, and I feel so good that all the wounds are healed. I feel like nothing like this has ever happened to me before. Because this new feeling is so much deeper and stronger than anything that came before.”
Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)
At first glance, the song introducing Kendrick Lamar to a broad audience seems like just another dance track about what it’s like to be constantly stumped and killed. But dig a little deeper, and you’ll see that this song is about melancholy, public pressure, and alcohol abuse. In the lyrics, the author says he “grew up with people who didn’t break away from the bottle”; some drank simply because they liked it, others because they wanted to kill their grief. “Some wanted to fit in – that’s my problem,” the lyrics say.
Johnny Cash – You Are My Sunshine
This song is mistakenly categorized as a children’s, probably clinging to its “sunshine” part. But it’s Johnny Cash’s sentimental ballad about loss and longing. It’s pretty sad if you listen.
While parents worldwide put down the song’s sad moments, the full version of Cash’s piece is a desperate plea for the other half who no longer has the same feelings.
Outkast – Hey Ya.
The Outkast hit that blew up the charts has to be one of the most upbeat songs of all time, right?
One only has to listen, and it’s clear that Andre 3000 wrote a touching song about a failed relationship: “If they say, ‘Nothing lasts forever,’ – why should love be the exception?” Or, “Why are we so reluctant to admit that we’re unhappy here?”
Because of the raucous chorus and the hilarious video, we missed all the misery in the lyrics. And it’s a fact that Andre points out in the song, “You don’t want to hear me, you only want to dance.”
It is strong.