During my recent guest blogging stint for Ta-Nehisi Coates’ excellent Atlantic Monthly blog, one of the things I wrote about was listening to the Doobie Brothers’ “What a Fool Believes” and making the mistake of looking up the lyrics. To me, it just made me appreciate the song less knowing how frickin’ awkward the actual lyrics are and how McDonald croons/crams them into an otherwise very hook-y melody.
I had that same feeling listening to that awesome DJ Jazzy Jeff Do-Over mix the other day when he slipped on this song:
Carl Thomas: I Wish
From Emotional (Bad Boy, 2000)
I always liked this song back in the day – super-duper catchy piano riff – and Thomas has got decent pipes. But in listening to it again, I can’t help but be slightly mystified as to why the songwriting isn’t better? The real offending verse is the second one where he rhymes “she wants to be with me” with “she cannot be with me” with “be a family” with “what about me?” Sorry but that just strikes me as really…lazy. Considering the number of things that rhyme with just “me” you’d think he could have switched it up a bit. (I also have beef with him singing, “for the children” which is a hard line to pull off since “children” is a tough word to sing at the end of a line (it’s just not a phonetically “pretty” word). Anyways, I’m sure I seem hella petty but I just can’t help but be bugged by this every time I hear the song now.
Any songs you otherwise really like that get marred by poorly executed lyrics? (There’s no shortage of these, I’m sure).