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Big Fun! Survey Says: Worst. Lyrics. Ever.

I know we've done this before, but I am in serious need of something fun around here, so humor me. Some obscure British magazine surveyed people to find the worst song ever. Being British, they came up with a very Brit-centric list, consisting of a lot of songs I've never heard of before (Fog on the Tyne? What the hell is that?). However, they did have the good taste to call The Beatle's "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" the top of the worst, as it were. Now, there are an awful lot of bad songs out there, this we know. But let's try to keep this to songs that are god awful just for the lyrics alone. I've already explained why I think Def Leppard's "Pour Some Sugar on Me" is one of the worst lyrical experiences in rock music. And we all know that Muskrat Love is terrible, but let's keep it to rock music specifically and weed out any novelty songs like The Streak. In fact, let's make it worst lyrics ever rather than worst songs, just to make it a wee bit different than other things I've done here. This way, no one can chime in with Sum 41 songs just on the basis that they suck. To recap the rules: Really bad lyrics, rock music only, no Muskrat Love. I know I should put this on this site, but I need to change the black karma floating around these pages and this will do nicely.

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» I'm a Fan... from The Daily Brief: We Love the Smell of Schadenfreude In The Morning!!
Michele over at A Small Victory is holding a Survey that fits in with our own down below but this time she's looking for Worst Lyrics Ever in a Rock Song. She's been a bit blue due to post election moonbats invading her comments and email. Go help ... [Read More]

» Now this will be fun from The LLama Butchers
Michele wants the worst rock lyrics of all time. I'm not sure about worst, but I was convinced that in the song "Gigantic" by The Pixies, Kim Deal was singing the following passage: Brett Farve, Brett Farve, Brett Farve Salad... [Read More]

» Worst. Lyrics. Ever. from Ace of Spades HQ
...are being debated over at A Small Victory. 90% of the lyrics the commenters mention are good lyrics. They may read a little dumb written out, but they work well in the song. "Get it On" has bad lyrics? No... [Read More]

» What are the worst lyrics ever? (a small victory) from Dummocrats.com
What are the worst lyrics ever? (a small victory) [Read More]

Comments

Black Hole Sun by Soundgarden.
I like the song, I just can't bear to listen too closely.

I hate to say it, but this GRATES: The lyric "This world in which we live in" in Live and Let Die.
As for worst song in general, I'll have to think about it for a while....

Da do do do, da dah dah dah, is all I want to say to you...

U2, "One"

Did I ask too much
More than a lot
You gave me nothing
Now it's all I got

So offensive, I actually remember the exact stretch of freeway I was driving down the first time I ever heard the lyric. It's burned into my mind. Burned I tell you.

Hotel California:

Mirrors on the ceiling
Pink champagne on ice
And she said
We are all just prisoners here
Of our own device
And in the master's chambers
They gathered for the feast
They stab it with their steely knives
But they just can't kill the beast
Last thing I remember
I was running for the door
I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
Relax said the nightman
We are programed to recieve
You can check out any time you like
But you can never leave

#2 for me is Oasis' "Wonderwall." WTF is a "Wonderwall"?

"Once bitten, twice shy babe."

1) The inflection in "babe"
2) The repetition, babe. The repetition, babe. The repetition, babe.

Googoo dolls, Iris. Just terrible..and not really very rockin'

And I'd give up forever to touch you
'Cause I know that you feel me somehow
You're the closest to heaven that I'll ever be
And I don't want to go home right now
And all I can taste is this moment
And all I can breathe is your life
....
it goes on...

And you can't fight the tears that ain't coming
Or the moment of truth in your lies
When everything feels like the movies
And you bleed just to know you're alive

"Mr. Roboto" by Styx -- gotta be some of the worst lyrics and one of the dumbest songs ever.

From Ultravox's "All Stood Still"

The turbine cracked up
The buildings froze up
The system choked up
What can we do?

Please remember to mention me
In tapes you leave behind

We stood still
We all stood still
Still stood still
We're standing still

The lyrics from Ultravox's "We Came To Dance" are also pretty bad. We used to change them around in college and sing "We Came From France" instead.

I really love your peaches
Want to shake your tree
Lovey-dovey, lovey-dovey, lovey-dovey all the time
Ooo-eee baby, I'll sure show you a good time

any linkin park song. But that dry your eyes mate song is pretty bleedn awful.

My Nominiation for the worst song ever: It's gotta be "Kung Fu Fighting"

More from Steve Miller:

"Billy Mack is a detective down in Texas

clap clap clap clap clap

"And no one knows just exactly what the facts is"

{Simpsons-esque shudder}

That's a novelty song, Ed. While you are correct in that it's a bad song, it doesn't count here!

everybody have fun tonight/
everybody wang chung tonight

not only is it nonsensical, but it started the obnoxious trend of eponymous lyric-writing ... as if these people weren't already narcissistic enough, now we have to listen to them singing about themselves in the third person. suck.

I know I'm going to incur some wrath here, but come on...

Inna Godda Da Vida...Okay, heard the story about "In the Garden of Eden" bullshit, that doesn't make any more sense. Bad lyrics ruining a relatively decent jam.

Dave Barry nominates "Escape" in this category. Perhaps better known as the Pina Colada Song.

The company that I used to work for piped in the easy-listening station ("Sunny! 99 point oooone"). I had to listen to "if you like pina colaadaas" every damn day for the first two years of my career. So I second that nomination. And I hope someone breaks into 99.1 FM's DJ booth and forces the DJ to play a workday's worth of the most offensively loud music they can find (Rammstein and Ministry sound good to me).

Grrr!

From the dictionary-in-a-cousinart school of lyric writing:

With the lights out it’s less dangerous
Here we are now
Entertain us
I feel stupid and contagious
Here we are now
Entertain us
A mulatto
An albino
A mosquito
My libido
Yea

I'm sure that makes perfect sense after mainlining a heaping spoonful of black tarry goodness, but I'm still working on it.

More recently, I'll just do the honors:

Well somebody told me
You had a boyfriend
Who looks like a girlfriend
That I had in February of last year
It's not confidential
I've got potential
A rushin', a rushin' around

I could post the entire songe, since none of it makes a damn bit of sense, but who doesn't have it memorized yet.

Rock songs only? Shoot. I was going to nominate the L.A. Style techno song my husband refuses to purge from our existence which consists of what seems like seventy-eight minutes of some guy going "Ba-loony-loon!" against a generic techno beat.

That said, I'm glad I can't understand a word Eddie Vedder growls unless I read along, because the lyrics to "Evenflow" are absolutely incoherent even typed.

"Freezin’, rests his head on a pillow made of concrete,again
Oh, feelin’ maybe he’ll see a little better set a days, ooh yeah
Oh, hand out, faces that he sees time again ain’t that familiar, ooh yeah
Oh, dark grin, he can’t help, when he’s happy looks insane, oh yeah

Even flow, thoughts arrive like butterflies
Oh, he don’t know, so he chases them away, yeah...ooh...
Oh, someday yet, he’ll begin his life again...life again...life again...

Kneelin’, looking through the paper though he doesn’t know to read, ooh yeah
Oh, prayin’, now to something that has never showed him anything
Oh, feelin’, understands the weather of the winters on it’s way
Oh, ceilings, few and far between all the legal halls of shame, yeah..."

Hungry Like the Wolf

except for the babe moaning at the end.

What is sooooooo sad... I like most of these songs....but then again when I am hearing them, I'm drunk at a bar.

'cuz i got one hand in my pocket and another one is :
a) holding a cigarette
b) giving a peace sign
c) hittin' the eject button on this stupid goddamn cd

Blinded by the light. Wrapped up like a douche another runner in the night.
(not enough weed in the world for me to ever understand that line)

You are all way the hell off. Worst song lyrics ever:

WE BUILT THIS CITY - STARSHIP

...so freaking stupid it took four people to write, including Bernie Taupin.

I can't even reproduce a single line here in print or we'd all die.

Anything by Train, but I've always hated this little verse from "Drops of Jupiter."

Can you imagine no love, pride, deep-fried chicken
Your best friend always sticking up for you even when I know you're wrong

The guy rhymes "deep-fried chicken" with "your best friend always sticking." There could be nothing worse.

The Micheal Jackson song on the Free Willy soundtrack.....thas just cruel and inhumane.
other then that...hmmm..I got it Len's "steal my sunshine" thats 98 or 99, give or take a few months.

Apparently I am the song trivia nut, becuase I know what many of these bad lyrics refer to.

john, Mr. Roboto is part of a kinda sorta rock opera, the song is an ironic 'thank you' from the hero to the robot whose shell he used as a getaway disguise. Not Styx's finest work (that would have to be Paradise Theater) but not bad in context with the rest of the album.

SLK, wang chung (according to an old source) refers to Yellow Bell, or perfect harmony in Chinese (but was chosen for its resembance to the sound of a strummed guitar, originally Huang Chung). The lyric is implying getting in harmony with the group, kind of a get into the groove thing. But yes it is annoying to reference the bands name in their own lyrics.

Midgard, the last four lines of 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' are like one of those 'a is to b as x is to y' questions from high school. A mulatto has dark skin, an albino has extremely white skin, a mosquito is very small, the anonymous teens libido is therefore very large (typical for a teen).

Labrat, "Evenflow" is about a mentally disturbed homeless man, hence the scattered images in the verses. 'Aqualung' by Jethro Tull did this much better though.

And Tomcat, its "wrapped up like a deuce" like the card in a game. Not sure quite what Manfred Mann was referring to there, but its hardly as screwed up as what people think they're hearing.

Now I'm off to watch Lost.

I think the worst line ever is actually by Bob Dylan, and its on one of the best albums ever:

She walks along with a parrot that talks
And hunts him down by the waterfront docks

What on earth is she doing with a talking parrot??? I like the way he rhymed talks and docks though.

Signs by the Five Man Electrical Band. The chorus is bad enough:

Sign, sign, everywhere a sign
Blockin' out the scenery, breakin' my mind
Do this, don't do that, can't you read the sign?

But's it's the last verse that puts this song head and shoulders above the rest:

And the sign said, "Everybody welcome. Come in, kneel down and pray"
But when they passed around the plate at the end of it all
I didn't have a penny to pay
So I got me a pen and a paper and I made up my own little sign
I said, "Thank you, Lord, for thinkin' 'bout me, I'm alive and doin' fine"

Agressively bad on soooooo many levels . . .

This couplet, from the Rolling Stones' "Monkey Man":

I'm a cold Italian pizza
I could use a lemon squeezer

Jagger really dropped the ball on a great riff.

I'd also like to second the motion on the Train song from Rob A, and the Morrissette song from Tomcat.

(PS: It's "revved up like a deuce", as in a deuce coupe hotrod, if I'm not mistaken)

I absolutely love the Bangles, but Walk Like an Egyptian. Just plain dumb.

And MMM MMM MMM MMM by Crash Test Dummies.

Johnny Walker, you appear to be correct, I checked online lyrics and it shows up as your version. I swear though I remember reading it on an album cover as 'wrapped up.'

Gah, I'm getting old.

Holy crap. I can't even comment. That cover is insane.
So crappy songs huh? Nickelback! What? Oh all of 'em. I have a links list dedicated to these wastes.
Somebody mentioned OASIS. How about their tune from that benefit album "No Boundaries: A Benefit for the Kosovar Refugees" The song is called "Take me away"

So take me away
Just for today
Cos I'm sad here on my own
I'd like to be
Under the sea
Where they'd probaly need a phone
I could be you
If I wanted to
But I've never got the time
You could be me
And pretty soon you will be
But you're gonna need a line

Need a line
Need a line
Need a line


Is this a cell phone add?

_____________________________________

Jethro Tull - Flyingdale Flyer from 'A'

Mike Oldfield - Tubular Bells - 'recitation of the instruments' section

Genesis - Paper Late

Mike and the Mechanics - the song with the 'I'm in the High Command' crap

Manfred Mann - Runner

Man, I'm drawing blanks on this. It should be too easy. I'll punt and nominate 65 Love Affair by Paul Davis. One snippet just to make the case...
Well I acted like a dum-dum You were bad with your pom-poms
You said ooh wah go team ooh wah go
Ooh-ee baby I want you to know

"Imagine no possessions..."

From a man who bought a whole apartment just to store his fur coats.

Other than that, any beautifully produced piece of 70's soft rock where some 30+ hairy horrible sang about his legal jailbait.

"You're 16, you're beautiful and you're mine...."

Unskinny Bop by Poison - what the heck!?

Unskinny bop
Just blows me away
Unskinny bop, bop
All night and day
Unskinny bop, bop, bop, bop
She just loves to play
Unskinny bop, nothin' more to say

Oh, and Cherry Bomb by the Runaways, later remade just as badly by solo Joan Jett. And my bit of Rock trivia: Michael Steele was fired from the Runaways for saying that Cherry Bomb was stupid. Yet she agreed to Walk Like and Egyptian in the Bangles... Ugh, I just made that connection...

Strokin'

With the taste of your lips
I'm on a ride
You're toxic I'm slippin' under (Ohh Ohh)
With a taste of the poison paradise
I'm addicted to you
Don't you know that you're toxic?
And I love what you do
Don't you know that you're toxic?

Bleah.

You guys are all so young!! Worst of all time was Chubby Checker's Twist

I can't believe no one's mentioned Emerson, Lake, and Palmer's "Still... you turn me on."

Every day I get a litte madder
a little sadder
somebody get me a ladder

Jeremiah was a bullfrog
Was a good friend of mine
I never understood a single word he said
But I helped him a-drink his wine
And he always had some mighty fine wine
Singin'...
Joy to the world
All the boys and girls now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me ...

argh...now it's looping in my brain....!!

Bad lyrics: "Let 'Em In" by Paul Mccartney.

I like REM but the lyrics of one of my favorites, Drive, are either bad or deeper than my mind can dig.

I like a lot of Yes songs... until I look at the lyrics. Then I get a funny taste in my mouth, my ears ring, and I get the sudden urge to climb a bell-tower with a rifle. Some sample lyrics from "Roundabout" (a song I like) to give an example:

In and around the lake
Mountains come out of the sky and they stand there
One mile over we'll be there and we'll see you
Ten true summers we'll be there and laughing too
Twenty four before my love you'll see I'll be there with you

-----

I'm sure it means something... (reaching for the rifle)

Okay...okay...I know it's rock music so I have another nominee after this one but the notion of WORST SONG EVER entered one ear and...STARLAND VOCAL BAND playing Afternoon Delight flew out there.

Worst ROCK lyric ever...T-Rex...Bang a gong...

Well you're dirty and sweet, clad in black
Don't look back and I love you
You're dirty and sweet, oh yeah
Well you're slim and you're weak
You've got the teeth of a hydra upon you
You're dirty sweet and you're my girl.

Chorus:
Get it on, bang the gong , get it on
Get it on, bang the gong, get it on

Absolutely. Hate. That. Song.

The reason I can't listen to "Classic Rock" stations: Their sick need to play, at least once every couple of hours, "A Horse With No Name." Best line?

There were plants and birds and rocks and things

And things????

Second best line:

'Cause there ain't no one for to give you no pain

What is that, a triple negative?

Got mashed potatos.
Ain't got no t-bone. No t-bo-oh-oh-oh-one.

- Neil Young
"T-Bone", Re-ac-tor

I've been torturing Steve H with that song since 1982 or so.

I'll second Wind Rider on

Da do do do, da dah dah dah, is all I want to say to you...

WiskeyTangoFoxtrot? Actually, I'll go ahead and nominate anything Sting ever had a hand in writing.

Worst song lyrics - "Bicycle Race"

Bonus best song lyrics - Guns and Roses "Used to Love Her"

"Bicycle Race" is by Queen of course

Belize042,

triple negative, gotta tell ya a languages joke. can't help myself.

A linguistics prof is lecturing his class about negative structures. He says "many languages have a double negative context, and in them a negative and a negative resolve to a negative.

In some a negative and a positive really mean a negative. And in some others, a negative and a positive correlate to a positive.

But there is no language, living or dead, where two positives resolve to the negative.

And a student in the back says "yeah. right".

The cringe-inducing lyrics of Sting's song "Russians" are about the most shallow and pretentious that I have heard. Here they are:

Russians

In Europe and America, there's a growing feeling of hysteria
Conditioned to respond to all the threats
In the rhetorical speeches of the Soviets
Mr. Krushchev said we will bury you
I don't subscribe to this point of view
It would be such an ignorant thing to do
If the Russains love their children too

How can I save my little boy from Oppenheimer's deadly toy
There is no monopoly of common sense
On either side of the political fence
We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

There is no historical precedent
To put words in the mouth of the president
There's no such thing as a winnable war
It's a lie we don't believe anymore
Mr. Reagan says we will protect you
I don't subscribe to this point of view
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
What might save us me and you
Is that the Russians love their children too

Steal My Sunshine, how could I forget Steal My Sunshine? I'll cop to actually liking it- its brainless cheerfulness is enough to keep me from breaking my mind trying to comprehend it- but those are some nonsensical lyrics.

"i was lying on the grass on sunday morning of last week
indulging in my self defeats
my mind was thugged, all laced and bugged, all twisted round and beat
uncomfortable three feet deep
now the fuzzy stare from not being there on a confusing morning week
impaired my tribal lunar-speak
and of course you can't become if you only say what you would have done
so i missed a million miles of fun"

If you can explain that song, John Irving, I'll acknowledge you as god of music. ;)

Ok, top these!

Paul McCartney's "Pretty Love Songs"

and WAY worse:

Ram Jam's "Black Betty"

Whoa oh, Black Betty
bam-ba-lam
Black Betty had a child
bam-ba-lam
damn thing gone wild
bam-ba-lam

I can't go on.

I forgot the immortal Shakira:

As every voice is hanging from the silence
Lamps are hanging from the ceiling
Like a lady tied to her manners
I'm tied up to this feeling
Underneath Your Clothes
There's an endless story
There's the man I chose
There's my territory
And all the things I deserve
For being such a good girl honey

Two are tied in my book:

"I Got You, Babe"

McArthur Park

{shudder}

The cover of "Down with the Sickness" is from the Dawn of the Dead soundtrack. Strangely appropriate, if you have seen the movie.

From "Kryptonite" by 3 doors down:

"If I go crazy then will you still call me Superman ? If I'm alive and well will you be there, holding my hand ? I'll keep you by my side with my superhuman might, Kryptonite !"

(Police Negotiator: "We'll call you whatever you want - JUST PUT DOWN THE GUN !")

The absolute worst has got to be "Come Together" by the Beatles. I don't know who the guy is they're describing, but I wouldn't want to run into him in a dark alley.

Shouldn't all "Worst xxx ever" polls begin and end with Lynyrd Skynyrd?

"Ooh, that smell ... can't you smell that smell?"

For bonus badness, check the new Beasties album for high levels of ham-fistedness.

"We got a president we didn't ELECT. The Kyoto Treaty he decided to NEGLECT."

Wow, Ad Rock. Way to stretch that rhyme. Whattaya gonna do now that Bush won convincingly this time around?

If you're looking for a song with stupid, trite, repetitive lyrics, you can't go wrong with Rage Against Homework's "Killing in the Name." There are really only five lines in the whole damn song, repeated over and over. Obsoive:

"Some of those that work forces, are the same that burn crosses"

"Those who died are justified, for wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites
You justify those that died by wearing the badge, they're the chosen whites"

"And now you do what they told ya, now you're under control"

"Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me"

Repeat these stupid phrases ad nauseum, then end with the following pithy turn of phrase:

"Motherfucker!
Uggh!"

No contest. "The Final Countdown" by Europe.

We're heading for Venus
And still we stand tall
Cause maybe they've seen us
And welcome us all
With so many light years to go
And things to be found
I'm sure that we'll all miss her so
It's the final countdown...

Oh dear, oh dear...

Gotta disagree with some of the nominations. IMHO Mike Oldfield Is God, MacArthur Park is one of the best but saddest songs in existence, etc.

For Political Rock, a great tune performed by a great band with utterly lousy lyrics, I give you - T-Rex's "Children of the Revolution"

----------
Well you can terraplane
in the fallin rain
I drive a Rolls Royce
cause it`s good for my voice

But you won`t fool the children of the revolution
No you won`t fool the children of the revolution
No, no, no!

Well you can bump and grind
and it`s good for your mind
well you can twist and shout
let it all hang out

But you won`t fool the children of the revolution
No you won`t fool the children of the revolution
No WAY!
------
Terraplane? As in Hudson Car Company?

Earlier, back in the Swinging 60's in Carnaby-Street UK, one song from "Top of the Pops" is seared, SEARED into my mind.

No, it's not a novelty song, it was mainstream then. But it was the 60's...

They're coming to take me away, ha ha

----------------
Remember when you ran away and I got on my knees and begged you not to leave because I'd go berzerk?
Well, you left me anyhow and the days got worse and worse and now you see I've gone completely out of my mind.

And They're coming to take me away Ha Ha
They're coming to take me away ho ho he he ha ha
to the funny farm where life is beautiful all the time, and I'll be happy to see those nice young men in their clean white coats
and they're coming to take me away ha ha

You thought it was joke and so you laughed, you laughed when I had said that losing you would make me flip my lid, right? You know you laughed, I heard you laugh, you laughed, you laughed and laughed and then you left, but now you know I'm utterly mad.

And they're coming to take me away Ha Ha
They're coming to take me away ho ho he he ha ha
To the happy home with trees and flowers and chirping birds and basket weavers who sit and smile and twiddle their thumbs and toes
They're coming to take me away ha ha...

I cooked your food, I cleaned your house, and this is how you paid me back for all my kind unselfish loving deeds. Huh? Well you just wait they'll find you yet, and when they do they'll put you in the ASPCA you mangy mutt.

And They're coming to take me away Ha Ha
They're coming to take me away ho ho he he ha ha
To the funny farm where life is beautiful all the time and I'll be happy to see those nice men in their clean white coats
They're coming to take me away Ha Ha
And They're coming to take me away Ha Ha
They're coming to take me away ho ho he he ha ha
To the happy home with trees and flowers and chirping birds and basket weavers who sit and smile and twiddle thier thumbs and toes
They're coming to take me away Ha Ha

Your home the one the bank foreclosed, You cried to me Monogamy is the way we both must live or you'll feel hurt. But, I see, I see there's someone new, your anxious poly-pure-bred coat was even gone at our place while I paid the rent, thanks!

And They're coming to take me away Ha Ha
They're coming to take me away ho ho he he ha ha
To the loony bin with all you can eat perscription drugs like torizine, and lithium, and electric shock eels
They're coming to take me away Ha Ha

----------------

There are worse ones still, but you must remember, I appeared on the same show as Tiny Tim in 1970...

Well, I talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about, Talk about
Talk about movin

Gotta move on
Gotta move on
Gotta move on

Won't you take me to
Funkytown
Won't you take me to
Funkytown
Won't you take me to
Funkytown
Won't you take me to
Funkytown

YEEARGH!

"Waiting for the break of day.
"Searching for something to say.
"Flashing lights against the sky.
"Giving up I close my eyes.

"Sitting cross-legged on the floor.
"Twenty five or six to four.

"Starin' blindly into space.
"Getting up to splash my face.
"Wanting just to stay awake.
"Wonderin' how much I can take.

"Should I try to do some more?
"Twenty five or six to four.

"Feeling like I ought to sleep.
"Spinning room is sinking deep.
"Waiting for the break of day.
"Searching for something to say.

"Twenty five or six to four.
"Twenty five or six to four."

What was Chicago thinking when they played that?

The benchmark of lousy lyrics shall always be "La Do Do Do, La Da Da Da, is all I want to say to you." Period.

The most obvious one that nobody mentioned was the utterly lame chorus in Soap's "Abracadabra" ...

Abra-abra-cadabra
I wanna reach out and grab ya

Leelu mentioned this one, but I thought I'd pile on: McArthur Park:

"Someone left the cake out in the rain..."

Elton John - Madman Across the Water:

"Is the nightmare black, or are the windows painted?"

I have been pondering this for 30 years, and I think I have finally decided that the windows are, indeed, painted.

Honorable mention to Steve Miller for rhyming Jesus and visas.

LabRat, I'm not entirely sure on that one, I've heard it, and it sounds like another 'Im feeling good about being wasted' song, but its hard to say.

Jason, 'That Smell' is about an alcoholic, the strong smell of liquor that lingers around them. A familiar smell in many parts of the South, where Lynyrd Skynyrd hails from, and usually a terminal condition.

MGA, 'Twenty-five or Six to Four' is definitely about an all night bender. I read a long time ago, so can't vouch 100% for it, that the lyrics are referring to someone who has taken LSD and having a bad trip. The song title of course refers to the time in the morning that he is going through this.

The song title of course refers to the time in the morning that he is going through this.

And what time would 25 or 6 to 4 be?

I think you're making this shit up as you go along.

And you're completely wrong on the Skynyrd thing. It's not about an alcholic and how he smells. It's about the smell of death, metaphorically speaking, that surrounds a self destructive addict.

Before I submit my entry, I need to prepare you mentally. Take a deep breath and picture Kevin Cronin struggling with his identity as a Midwestern rock front man. He wants so bad to be legitimate with the easy-listening crowd. So he locks himself away in his secret song writing room, picks up his pen that is really a big feather with the guts of a Bic taped to it and pours his soul out onto paper:

Heard it from a friend whooooooooo
Heard it from a friend whoooooooo
Heard it from another you been messin' around.

.........you take it on the run Babayaaaaa
if that's the way you want it Babayaaaa
Then I don't want you around.

I don't believe iyut.
Not for a miniyut.
You're under the gun
So you take it on the run.

He then weeps, forks out his boufant, then psyches himself up to talk his band mates into recording this steaming heap.

I dig you michelle and that's why I'll help you out with the Chicago song.

The band mates are high.....high, they've been up all night and one of the guys asks another "What time is it?"

The watch-wearer answers 25 or 6 to 4.

It's a marijauna induced shortening of 25 or 26 until 4. Imagine the laughter.

No (real) addition, but I'm enjoying. I have to say, the nonsense songs are bad lyrics ... but I find it infinitely worse when the songwriter THINKS they are saying something (isn't it ironic?)

You are forgetting Billy Joel's "We didn't start the fire"

I nominate "Boris the Spider" by the Who:

Look, he's crawling up my wall
Black and hairy, very small
Now he's up above my head
Hanging by a little thread

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Now he's dropped on to the floor
Heading for the bedroom door
Maybe he's as scared as me
Where's he gone now, I can't see

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

There he is wrapped in a ball
Doesn't seem to move at all
Perhaps he's dead, I'll just make sure
Pick this book up off the floor

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

He's come to a sticky end
Don't think he will ever mend
Never more will he crawl 'round
He's embedded in the ground

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Ohfercryinoutloud

Oh, hell yeah. "We Didn't Start The Fire." That and "Russians," of the two nominated so far, really place highly in the "Worst Lyrics Ever." It's not enough to have intentionally moronic lyrics; dumb cock-rock songs (or great, hilarious glam-rock songs - "Bang A Gong" is fine!) aren't intended to have deep meanings.

I'd say that "Still...You Turn Me On" by Emerson Lake & Palmer IS worthy of inclusion, however.

Anything by Nirvana.

Or, "The End" by The Doors:

Lost in a Roman...wilderness of pain
And all the children are insane
All the children are insane
Waiting for the summer rain, yeah

There's danger on the edge of town
Ride the King's highway, baby
Weird scenes inside the gold mine
Ride the highway west, baby

Reminds me of my favorite line from the movie "Almost Famous:"

"Jim Morrison? He's a drunken buffoon"

Truer words were never spoken.

michele, an alcoholic IS an addict, and the most common kind in the South.

Twenty five or six to four would be 3:34/3:35 am. Hence 'waiting for the break of day.'

And no, I'm not making it up, I used to hang out with several bar bands, and they always had tons of lyric sheets, original band interviews, and loads of what-not about their favorite songs that they covered. Thats why I go blank on more recent songs.

My friends and I used to give out worst lyrics awards on an annual basis. They were called the Sinfields, after Pete (the lyricist for, among others, King Crimson, ELP, and Celine Dion).

I have to tell you that the only recipient of the lifetime achievement Sinfield was...

Yoko Ono.

"We're all water from different rivers,
That's why it's so easy to meet.
We're all water in this vast, vast ocean;
One day we'll evaporate together."

"Why death why life?
Warm hearts, cold darts."

"There may not be much difference between Chairman Mao and Richard Nixon,
If we strip them naked.
There may not be much difference between Manson and the Pope,
If we press their smiles."

For that matter, check out pretty much anything of hers on the Some Time in NYC set.

However, another multiple Sinfielder is Ian Gillan. Check out "Mitzi Dupree" sometime.

There are too many...
All these options are very good. Please consider

"...I am the Walrus
sitting on a cornflake
waiting for the egg man..."

What. A. Load.
"No maaaaan. It's cooooool. This is gonna change the woooorld, maaaan."

Dan Patterson

Maybe not the worst lyrics in the same sense as "Pour some sugar on me", but my vote for the day is The Cult - Aphrodisiac Jacket.

Sittin' on a mountain, looking at the sun
Plastic fantastic lobster telephone

...

Aphrodisiac jacket
Napoleon machine gun
Livin on a subway, yeah yeah
From dusk till dawn, yeah

Allen E Brain - "terraplane," yes, as in the car company - it's probably an oblique reference to Robert Johnson's "Terraplane Blues."

I will defend to the death "Da Doo Doo, Da Da Da Da." The context of the song is all about his inability to express what he's feeling, so nonsense is what comes out. See also: "A Womp-bop-a-loo-bop-a-womp-bam-boom."

I've always considered "Live and Let Die" the gold standard for bad lyrics. "For in these ever troubled times in which we live in" is so wrong in so many ways.

Wings and Paul's solo work always made me think that maybe Paul really did die, and get replaced by an impostor.

I'll agree with "McArthur Park"

But last night I heard one that brought back so many bad memories:

"I've been to paradise
But I've never been to me."

The only reason I didn't think of that first was successful memory suppression.

"Am I booging you? I don't mean to boog you."

What about lyrics that are hard to understand
As in Queen's:

I just had pork loin, nobody loves me.

He just had pork loin from the pork family.

Paired with some rice and an old piece of cheese.

The thing is, I only tend to notice lyrics when they're really good, AND they're in a good song. The rest of the time, I just don't pay that much attention. The song is what matters most to me. However, acknowledging my limited awareness of bad lyrics, that Mr. Roboto song is REALLY annoying...

Domo arigato, Mr MikeR. Domo, Domo...

Was it Alice Cooper that reminded us that 'Only women bleed'?

"Girl, before I met you I was F-I-N-E fine.
Now your love's made me a prisoner,
yeah my heart's been doing time."

What It Takes, Aerosmith

Jim Morrison, again, as the drunken buffoon:

There’s a killer on the road
His brain is squirming like a toad
Take a long holiday
Let your children play
If you give this man a ride sweet family will die
Killer on the road

I’m surprised nobody has mentioned this monstrosity which EVERYONE has drunkenly sung along to on more than one occasion:

I see a little silhouetto of a man,
Scaramouche,scaramouche will you do the Fandango
Thunderbolt and lightning-very very frightening me
Galileo,Galileo,
Galileo Galileo
Galileo figaro-Magnifico
But I'm just a poor boy and nobody loves me
He's just a poor boy from a poor family
Spare him his life from this monstrosity
Easy come easy go-,will you let me go
Bismillah! No-,we will not let you go-let him go
Bismillah! We will not let you go-let him go
Bismillah! We will not let you go-let me go
Will not let you go-let me go
Will not let you go let me go
No,no,no,no,no,no,no
Mama mia,mama mia,mama mia let me go
Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me,for me,for me

I’m sure that there have been others who have done far worse in the name of “art”, I just can’t think of anyone specific at the moment.

Yummy yummy yummy
I got love in my tummy....

As I told my kids in a discussion of rap, "My generation has much to answer for."

Deep Blue Something's "Breakfast With Tiffany."

And I said, "What about 'Breakfast With Tiffany?'"
She said, "I think I remember the film.
Yes, I recall - I think - we both kind of liked it."
And I said, "Well, that's one thing we've got."

Please. Just break up with her now. Just do it. If the only thing you've got in common with this girl is that maybe you kind of liked a movie, it's time to break up. And you certainly shouldn't go writing songs about how pathetically shallow your relationship is. Break up, and then never touch a guitar ever again. Do humanity a favor.

So it's not "pork loin"

American Pie Don McClean...god I hate those lyrics. 'Stand' by REM is a close second for vomit inducing lyrics.

ALL of the above songs. Add: Free Bird, Stairway to Heaven, anything by Sting (pretentious crap, always). I could spend all day doing this.

I love you period.
Do you love me question mark?
Please, please, exclamation point!
I want to hold you (in parenthesis).

I nominate 'We Are The World' - that dreadful Live Aid dirge. P. J. O'Rourke takes it apart forensically in 'Give War a Chance'. It's solipsistic, illogical, non-rhyming touchy-feely bullshit from one end to the other; nothing more than a vapid ego trip for a bunch of has-been 'artistes'. Shudder. They'd have been better off spending the $50 million it raised on a team of mercenaries to kill every politician in sub-Saharan Africa.

And, although I love Cream, some of their songs are just plain loopy. SWLABR? WTF?

Dan Hartman:

Moving sidewalks, I don't see under my feet

Gotta Dis' old Gapin' Chapin here:

Oh, I've got something inside me,
To drive a princess blind.
There's a wild man, wizard,
He's hiding in me, illuminating my mind.

Apologies in advance, Michele...

Can't.help.myself...

Motorin',...

Johnny Walker, those Stones Monkey Man lyrics are a master stroke. They should be on the "best lyrics" list. And, Dodge, American Pie lyrics are wonderful--with the exception of "but the levy was dry." Of course it was. Stairway to Heavan is likewise undeniably excellent. Can't see why that one was mentioned at all.

And some lyrics listed here are so bad they broke past all known boundaries of badness, shredded the envelope, exploded through space and time, and came all the way back to good--like McArthur Park. You might as well call Shatner's Rocketman bad or Plan 9 From Outer Space. Anything so bad that it goes beyond bad and back to good should not be on the list.

Now these lyrics should be on the bad list:

Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.
Shake, shake, shake. Shake, shake, shake. Shake your booty. Shake your booty.

I think Van Halen wins with this lovely tidbit:

"Only time will tell if we can stand the test of time."

Sheer genius.

Gotta stick up for U2--I don't see what's wrong with "more than a lot" in One? "More than a lot" means "a whole lot" or "everything"--it's not nonsensical. Also, watch Rattle and Hum to see how "Am I Booging you?" plays live in the song Silver and Gold. Pretty impressive.

Is it just my imagination, or do a lot of you share my opinion that most of the music from the 1970s just plain sucked? With some notable exceptions like Pink Floyd, the 1970s produced some of the WORST MUSIC EVER.

"Seasons in the Sun"
"The Night Chicago Died"
99.9% of disco
Barry Freaking Manalo

I could go on except thinking of this crap makes me want to heave.

I have two. My father showed me this site because we were discussing a lyric by The Used off of their new CD. The line reads:

"I squoze so hard
I stopped your heart from beating"

Then I thought of another one by Bush. I like this band's music, but I can't stand 99% of the lyrics that Gavin Rossdale comes up with.

"I'm screaming daisies from 40 miles away
I've got my own time, I got it all today"

MGA and others,
25 or 6 to 4 is about cocaine abuse and for anyone that has been there they make absolute sense. Every lyric describes the thoughts and actions of someone on their second or third day of what we called being "on a runner". Within this context the lyrics may be trite, but they are dead on and, while they are not understandible to the public at large, don't suck like most of the other songs here.

I e-mailed caltechgirl about this, but since there was a second mention of Monsieur McCartney, the actual lyric is "this world in which we're livin'." His accent sort of leads you in the other direction, and I heard it that way for a long time, too, but that's the lyric.

michele,

You're certainly correct about 'Pour Some Sugar..' One of the funniest things I ever saw a friend reciting the 'lyrics' to that song like a poem - totally ridiculous.

I'm not sure if someone submitted this, or if it qualifies as 'rock' but the following Alanis lyrics are the worst I've ever had the misfortune to hear:

"dear matthew I like you a lot
I realize you're in a relationship with someone right now and I respect that
I would like you to know that if you're ever single in the future and you want to come visit me in california I would be open to spending time with you and finding out how old you were when you wrote your first song"

I won't post the rest. You may commence vomitting.

Beenthere,

So the widely known 3:35 or 3:34 story is just a cover?

Just to be sure, I'd better grab my albums and a couple ounces and test your theory.

Rolling Stones-

-Shattered, shadoobie

(shudder)

I have to turn on my kids Sesame Street songs to get that out of my head if it comes on the radio. 'Nuff said.

Clearly:

Well, everybody hurts,
Sometimes everybody cries
And everybody hurts sometimes
And everybody hurts sometimes
So, hold on, hold on, hold on...
(Everybody hurts... You are not alone)

Pull the plug, REM.

I'm surprised that no one as nominated Smashmouth's entire catalog. Just poorly written crap through and through. And even though I like the band, Most of The Red Hot Chili Peppers stuff is a complete f'ing mystery. Here's a snippet from Californication.
"Psychic spies from China
Try to steal your mind's elation
Little girls from Sweden
Dream of silver screen quotations
And if you want these kind of dreams
It's Californication'
I mean, WTF!!

And finally how about that Primitive Radio Gods song with the really long title. It has lyrics such as "A plane takes of from Baaltimore and touches down on Bourbon Street'. What the hell is meant by that?

So, is 25 or 6 to 4 the answer to Does Anybody Really Know What Time it is? Does anybody really care?

Toto, Africa.

"Like Kilimanjero rises like Olympus above the Serengeti."

Forced timing, trite, and a horrible comparison to boot, since Olympus isn't all that impressive in big mountain terms.

Favourite bad lyric of the 80s, from Samantha Fox's 'Naughty Girls Need Love Too':

No more fun and games with the mind!

Breaks me up every time I hear it...

2 songs sung by Ruben Studdard get my vote for sucktastic lyrics.

From “For All We Know”:
"I'll hold out my hand and my heart will be in it."

Dreamy or dreadfully disturbing? You be the judge.

From “What is Sexy”:
“I been thinking (girl) about you (girl) if this world were mine then it’s yours(girl) but the cribs and the cars and the jewels I’ma keep so I can floss with my boys on the weekends. And I’m not scared of commitment but the big man handles his business and my business is you and me ‘cause you are so SEEEEEEEEEXXXXXYYYYYY”

So ol’ Rube worries whether his girl would still love him if he didn’t have any bling to floss? Wow – my inability to comprehend those lyrics makes me feel so very, very white.

I have a special, passionate hate for the lyrics of The Crash Test Dummies. Especially "Superman".

Superman
Never made any money
Out of saving the world
From Solomon Grundy.
He has to just move on,
Forget Krypton...

Eccccccccch.

I have three songs to suggest, in three different flavors of awfulness:
-- "All Right Now," by Free
-- "Hey Fredrick" by Jefferson Airplane
-- "Incense And Peppermints" by the Strawberry Alarm Clock.

(Anyone who cracks wise about how old I must be to remember those tunes will die slowly and painfully.)

Jesus fuck dog I am going to murder you people who keep posting novelty songs and DISCO. (Also for making me take the name of the Lord in vain in a particularly vulgar way.) Did we need ALL the lyrics to "Shake Your Booty?" The woman. Said. ROCK SONGS. Nothing sung by Richard Harris or Donna Summer or KC and the Sunshine Band can ever, ever, ever rock. Not in this universe nor any alternate.

There, I feel better. I would nominate anything by John Mayer, but technically he has no balls and therefore cannot rock. That leaves--

Me and Cray-zee Janey were makin' luhhhhve in the dayirt,
Sangin' our burrrth-day sawong . . . .

I have done my best to reproduce the impossible Springsteen phonetics used to sing those lines. Bruce?--You're from JERSEY. There is no need to go all twangy like a damn hillbilly, number one. Number two, I actually even like that song, but that particular couplet comprises the two squickiest, cringe-inducing lines in the history of music ever. Number three, no phrase on earth makes my teeth grind like "makin' love." Either fuck her or don't, Bruce. It's enough to make the virginity grow back. Number four, all I can think of is how much dirt you'd wind up with in your various nether crevices by the end of it and THAT IS NOT A PLEASING VISUAL. At all. And finally, number five, what the fuck is this birthday song shit? No, never mind. You've told me too much already, Bruce. Way, way more than ever I wanted to know. Some boss you turned out to be.

Francis WP:

I remember the 'clock. But, come on, incense & peppermints did serve a useful function.

"Ssssst...... what is it, fish?"

Note to cretins - "irony" is nothing like any of the following:
a) rain on your wedding day;
b) a free ride when you've already paid; or
c) the good advice that you just didn't take.

That is all.

Thanks Craig.

I have to go with anything by Nirvana or Alanis as the worst. Damn, these are the songs I'll have to hear at every high school reunion. Blecch. Another reason not to go.

Also, "Abracadabra" is by the Steve Miller Band. Really. I swear.

Laid Back's "White horse"

If you wanna ride, Don´t ride the white horse
If you wanna ride, Don´t ride the white horse
White horse, Don´t ride the white horse
White horse, Don´t ride the white horse.

If you wanna be rich, You got to be a bitch
You got to be a bitch, I said rich, rich you bitch

If you wanna ride, Ride the white pony
Ride, ride the white pony
White pony, white pony

Need I say more? Over. And. Over. And. Over.

Worst? Probably not. Most discordant? Maybe. Neil Young's "Ohio":

"Soldiers are gunning us down.
Should have been done long ago."

I might agree with the sentiment, but I don't think it was really what he intended to say.

Just taken back in time tonight on the ride home;

"......and my head didn't know just who I was and I went spinning back in time, and I am high, high on the altar, I am high, high on the altar, I am high......."

yes, crobsy and nash, from the initial CSN album, circa 1977.

just saying, ya know.

Two words: McArthur Park.

Red State--that's not on the CSN album; I've never heard those lyrics.

Anyway:
Neil Diamond.

I am, I said.
To no one there.
And no one heard at all
Not even the chair.

This is a man who talks to chairs. Need I say more?

How can people leave out "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen. Whenit comes on the radioi, I can't hit the button, any button, fast enough.

"We Are the World" is the worst pop song ever conceived, but it was music by committee so it gets a pass.

"Russians" wins hands down - for sheer pretentiousness alone. Sting has unleashed some truly horrendous verse on the world.

'Never seen no military solution
that didn't always end up as something worse'

Tell that to Adolf Hitler.

But don't blame Manfred Mann for "Blinded by the Light" that's a Springsteen song - with even more inane verses on the original version.

As an aging boomer, congratulations on getting "Incense and Peppermints" and "In aggada da vida" but you really need "Crimson and Clover" by Tommy James to hit the phony psychedelic trifecta.

Richard Cheese rules! Lounge out cats... :)

How about Five Not Blonds:

And I said heeyy-yaay-yayyy what's going on..

Twenty five years and my life is still, trying to get up that great big hill,

And I say, what's going on...

PS...

If anybody can figure out what the hell Stevie Nicks was trying to say in her songs, could you please let me know so she can be so dishonored on this list?

GAH!

Ebony and Ivory
Live together in perfect harmony
Side by side on my piano keyboard
Oh Lord, why don't we ?

We all know that people are the same
wherever you go
There's good and bad in everyone
We learn to live, we learn to give each other
What we need to survive
Together alive

Ebony and Ivory
Live together in perfect harmony
Side by side on my piano keyboard
Oh Lord, why don't we ?

Ebony, Ivory, living in perfect harmony
Ebony, Ivory, ooh

UGH and Ugh, again!

I can't fly across any room fast enough to turn off this damn song ...
(okay, it is NOT rock)

Wildfire

She comes down from Yellow Mountain
On a dark, flat land she rides
On a pony she named Wildfire
With a whirlwind by her side
On a cold Nebraska night

Oh, they say she died one winter
When there came a killing frost
And the pony she named Wildfire
Busted down its stall
In a blizzard he was lost

She ran calling Wildfire [x3]
By the dark of the moon I planted
But there came an early snow
There's been a hoot-owl howling by my window now
For six nights in a row
She's coming for me, I know
And on Wildfire we're both gonna go

We'll be riding Wildfire [x3]

On Wildfire we're gonna ride
Gonna leave sodbustin' behind
Get these hard times right on out of our minds
Riding Wildfire

See the tree, how big its grown...

and anything else by Glen Campbell.
I know, its not rock, but it got played on rock stations in the 60's & 70's

Also really surprised no one has mentioned "Louie, Louie...."

Truly inspired, provocative lyrics in that one

-Pansy from TN

I had a next door neighbor (in an apartment with thin walls) who'd play Smashing Pumkins "DISARM" really loud over and over.

I used to be a little boy
So old in my shoes
And what I choose is my choice
What’s a boy supposed to do?
The killer in me is the killer in you
My love
I send this smile over to you

Disarm you with a smile
And leave you like they left me here
To wither in denial
The bitterness of one who’s left alone
Ooh, the years burn
Ooh, the years burn, burn, burn

--------

Yeah those bad lyrics burn burn burn burn

It's up there with "Watching Scotty Grow", "The Night Chicago Died" and "Seasons in the Sun" in my book, though I suppose only "The Night Chicago Died" counts as anything close to rock.

Who can ever forget "Horse with no name"?

As someone noted: You're in the bleepin desert, nothing much to do, name that freakin horse!
------------------
And the unforgettable: "The night the lights went out in Georgia"
------------------
BTW some people kinda like "We built this city".

"For Those About to Rock" - AC/DC

Oh, and GRG: I heard a comedian riffing on "Horse With No Name" awhile back. I wish I could remember and credit him.

He was like: "Neil, if you're stuck in the desert for three days--with nothing to do but ride--take that opportunity to NAME THE F*****G HORSE!"

EightPrecious
Check out the song "Cathedral" (number 6 on the CD, last song first side of the album...yes I am that old).

This is easy.

"Taxi" by Harry Chapin

It sums up everything that was wrong with the Seventies folk-rock story song. And because it is a story song, pick and choose the "worst" lyric/verse.

Every time I hear it I have an honest-to-god Clockwork Orange moment where I don't know whether to fold up into a fetal position or cause a lot of property damage.

Jonathan: That comedian was Dave Barry. He had an entire book on the worst songs ever, and that was one his the top ranking worst songs.

Even better, Greg, get a copy of the Rock Bottom Remainders videotape. That was the 'musical group' formed by Dave Barry and Stephen King and a bunch of other writers to perform at ABA events for charity. Nothing is scarier than King singing "Last Kiss".

The tape ends with a public reading of the lyrics to "Louie, Louie", as transcribed by the FBI.

May I nominate "Tusk", by Fleetwood Mac? "Knocking on My Backdoor", by Deep Purple? That one even used the 'cunning linguist' line. "November Rain" by GnR? Nearly all the self-consciously arty folk-rock girl groups? Sarah MacLachlan, this means you. "Tonight's the Night", by Rod Stewart? "Lonely Boy", by Andrew Gold?

"Magic Man", by Heart, always made me think of pregnant teenagers.

I believe yesterday was the anniversary of the sinking of the "Edmund Fitzgerald", by the way.

Ooh, I forgot these: "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me", by Elton John. 'Rolling around the basement floor'? "The Air That I Breathe" by the Hollies. I spent a couple of weeks in Boy Scout camp with those two infesting the radio waves.

Later on, I joked that somebody should do a porn version of that Elton John song, replacing 'the Sun' with 'My Son'.

"Captain Jack", by Billy Joel. Call the suicide hotline, folks.

Michele, it's too bad XM Radio closed down its "Special X" station last year; Richard Cheese was very popular on that channel. So was "Hayseed Dixie"; its C&W version of "Walk This Way" was quite amusing. But they're bringing it back for the Christmas season.

"Mickey Mouse has grown up a cow\
Dave said it once, I'll say it again. . "

Get your own damn song!
Shoulda called themselves ASS.

I nominate Led Zeppelin's "The Lemon Song", as the progenitor of a plague of bad double-entendre rock songs that continues to this day. Generally I still like Led Zep, but it seemed to be a rule that each of their albums had to have one absolute turkey on it.

BTW, don't go around blaming Daltrey and Townshend for "Boris the Spider". John Entwhistle wrote that one. Great bass player, but as a songwriter...

And I can't believe everyone here has forgotten Sweet's "Ballroom Blitz"...

In the 80s, I used to be a fan of Adam Ant, but he's responsible for some lyrics that don't quite hold up:

"Antmusic for sexpeople.
Sexmusic for antpeople.
You may not like it now but you will."

I think the name of the song is "Antmusic."

Some people have mentioned Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody," but on the same album is "The Prophet's Song." At one point, the music stops, and you just hear "now I know" repeated a capella several times, followed by "listen to the man" repeated several times. Also on the same album is the song "I'm in Love with my Car":

"I'm in love with my car
got a feel for my automobile."

Elsewhere:

"Told my girl
I have to forget her.
Got to buy me a new carburetor."

America ~ Ventura Highway
"’cause the free wind is blowin’ through your hair
And the days surround your daylight there
Seasons crying no despair
Alligator lizards in the air, in the air"

Alligator lizards in the air?" WTF?

But America did manage to top that with "Muskrat Love.
Muskrat susie, muskrat sam
Do the jitterbug out in muskrat land
And they shimmy
And sammy’s so skinny"
Shoot me, please!

Alan E Brain: There's no way you can ever convince me that "They're Coming to Take Me Away" was ever intended to be a pop song... I will go to my grave believing that it was a prank that got out of control by someone with a Bode frequency shifter and waaay too much time on their hands. (I hope that wasn't you...)

For those of you fortunates who have never been exposed to this crime against humanity: Imagine a tomtom pounding out a fairly quick 12/8 such that it sounds like: buh-BUM, buh-BUM, etc. Constantly except for short pauses at the ends of the verses. No other music (other than some cheesy siren sounds). Now, imagine the lyrics being recited (not sung) with exactly the same beat and accent as the tom-tom, in total disregard of either poetic meter or normal speech patterns. Refer to Alan's quoted lyrics above, enunciate each syllable distinctly, and recite to yourself (be sure to sound like a peeved English professor while doing so):

i COOKED, your FOOD, i CLEANED, your HOUSE, and THIS, is HOW, you PAID, me BACK, for ALL, my KIND, unSELF, ish LOV, ing DEEDS. (pause) HUHHHhhhhh? (tape slapback echo) (Pause) Well YOU, just WAIT, they'll FIND, you YET, and WHEN, they DO, they'll PUT, you IN, the A, s P, c A, you MANG, y MUTT. (pause) ANDddddddd...

The best bit was when the used the frequency shifter to munchkinize the voice in the chorus. An outstanding total waste of an effects unit that cost as much as a mid-size car in 1967.

This is why I didn't take up music as a career. I could never come up with something this bad in a million lifetimes of trying. Wasn't the "group" that did this named Napoleon The 18th or some such? And BTW, Alan, where did you find that last verse? The recorded version I remember didn't have that.

D'Oh...
I got so wound up in lousy lyrics I broke the "no muskrat love" rule. Forgive me.
But don't forgive Phil Collins for Sussudio. That was awful.

I dare you to top this inanity:

"Life is a highway.
I want to ride it all night long.
If you're goin' my way,
I want to drive it all night long."

Because, don't you see? Life is like... A HIGHWAY!

"...But don't blame Manfred Mann for 'Blinded by the Light'..."

Didn't he perpetrate Quinn the Eskimo? Sufficient unto the day...

Several have woofed about MacArthur Park, but I'll agree with those who believe that it transcends awfulness. However, there is absolutely no excuse for trying to do it again on a sequel album! Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: The Yard Went On Forever:

all the Women of Bombay,
  and the Nagasaki Housewives

If somebody else can list The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia, then I can certainly get away with Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves, and similar Cher stuff.

Anybody here ever heard Nancy Sinatra's cover of Up Up and Away? Stupefying!

Wasn't Muskrat Love originally Captain and Tenille?

More about that silly They're Coming to Take Me Away: The "b" side of the single was the same thing recorded backwards. The label was reversed, too. Yes, I own a copy. No, it's not for sale.

...and isn't it: "Armageddon isn't in the air..." ?

Napoleon the 18th was in effect the performer/songwriter's name. Same fellow also patented the roach clip which looked like a key so you could carry it discretely on your keyring until it got scorched and tarstained.

Worst rock lyric ever would have to be something obscure. My nomination is off Big Brother's first album:

I've got a horse and he lives in a tree
He watches Huckleberry Hound on his TV
But Easy Rider
Don't you deny my name.

You'll never believe where I found "They're coming to take me away ha ha" lyrics.

From the COVER VERSION by Lard. The Horror... The Horror...

Wait: If we're going to do novelty songs, I have a nominee:

----

I have a sad story to tell you.
It may hurt your feelings a bit.
last night, when I walked in my bathroom,
I stepped in a pile of...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean!
Shave every day, and you'll always look keen.

I think I'll break up with my girlfriend.
Her antics are queer, I'll admit.
Each time I say "Darling, I love you,"
She tells me that I'm full of...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean!
Shave every day, and you'll always look keen.

A baby fell out of the window.
You'd think that her head would be split.
But good luck was with her that morning.
She fell in a barrel of...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean!
Shave every day, and you'll always look keen.

When I was in France with the Army,
One day I looked into my kit.
I thought I would find me a sandwich,
But the darn thing was loaded with...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean!
Shave every day, and you'll always look keen.

And now, folks, my story is ended.
I think it is time I should quit.
If any of you feel offended,
Stick your head in a barrel of...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean!
Shave every day, and you'll always look keen.

("Shaving Cream," by Benny Bell)

A few things first.

"Muskrat Love" was Captain and Tenille.

"Drive" was The Cars.

"For All We Know" was NOT a Ruben Stoddard song; it has been around since the 1930s.

The Mike+The Mechanics song referenced by Bumper Stickerist is entitled "Silent Running", and the lyrics make MUCH more sense if you are familiar with the 1972 movie of the same name, on which the lyrics are based. (I also believe it is the inspiration for Wind Rider's blog.)

My nominee for worst ROCK lyrics:

"Stand", by REM

GAAAAAHHHH. Every time I hear that song and Michael Stipe's whiny voice, I have to overcome the urge to puncture my eardrums with a screwdriver. It's infuriating bilge.

I skimmed and it didn't look like anybody brought up any Hart songs, and that would be a travesty.

Shoot at the walls of heartache
Bang bang
I am the warrior
I am the warrior

Can't quite remember the one where Nancy picks up a hitchhiker so he can knock her up. Anybody?? That one is the absolute WORST. Bueller?

Ok, I'm gonna go get sick now.

The Warrior is by Scandal, not Heart. The hitchhiker one is All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You. And don't blame Manfred Mann for The Mighty Quinn either. Blame Bob Dylan.

More recently, Lenny Kravitz. You can't top, for horrible inanity anything in 'I want to get away'. Think about it -

I want to fly like a dragonfly,
so very high

or

Let's see the stars, the milky way
or even Mars.

I mean, really. That's so bad it makes me scream with pain and wrath.

I'm not aware of too many things
I know what I know if you know what I mean

Philosophy, is the talk on a cereal box
Religion, is a smile on a dog
I'm not aware of too many things
i know what I know if you know what I mean

Choke me in the shallow water
Before I get too deep

What I am is what I am are you what you are or what
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what

Oh I'm not aware of too many things
I know what I know if you know what I mean

Philosophy, is a walk on the slippery rocks
Religion, is a light in the fog
I'm not aware of too many things
I know what I know if you know what I mean
Do do ya

Choke me in the shallow water
Before I get too deep
Chuck me in the shallow water
Before I get too deep

What I am is what I am are you what you are or what
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what you are
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what

Da da da da
I say I say I say I do hey hey hey hey hey hey

Choke me in the shallow water
Before I get too deep
Chuck me in the shallow water
Before I get too deep

Choke me in the shallow water before I get too deep
Choke me in the shallow water before I get too deep
Choke me in the shallow water before I get too deep

Don't let me get too deep
Don't let me get too deep
Don't let me get too deep
Don't let me get too deep

What I am is what I am are you what you are or what
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what you are
What I am is what I am are you what you are or what

Or what you are oh
Or what you are oh oh oh
Say what I am

drugs are bad mmmkay ?

Can't believe I read all the way through this and nobody defended "I Am the Walrus." Gotta know the backstory: John got a letter from a school-girl fan who told him that they studied some Beatles lyrics in class. "I Am the Walrus" was his reaction. (Lots of other stuff layered in there. "Eggman" is a reference to another rocker's sexual habits, for example.)

I also nominate Sting's Russia song. I swear at one point he changes the lyric to:

We share the same biology
Regardless of our geology

Actually, it's Shove me in the shallow water...

We used to call that the Popeye Song, What I am is what I am...

Rob

Alone again, naturally.

Pteh, pteh, pteh. Ppppp.

MacArthur Park is melting in the dark
All the sweet green icing flowing down
Someone left the cake out in the rain
I don't think that I can take it
Cause it took so long to bake it
And I'll never have that recipe again
Oh, no!

Oh, no! doesn't even begin to describe it. Oy vey.

"Muskrat Love" was America (of "Horse with No Name" fame) before Captain and Tenille got hold of it. But at least America's version didn't include stupid sound effects...

Oh, and ANY Steve Miller song qualifies as "worst lyrics".

Abra, abra cadabra
I wanna reach out and grab ya

Some people call me "Maurice"
'Cause I speak of the Pompatus of Love
(Popmatus??? WTF????)

[barf]

Another entry: "Bueck Dich" ("Bend over") by Rammstein. (Maybe Arafa***t liked it ;-))

Translation of the German lyrics:

Bend over, I command you
turn your face away from me
your face means nothing to me
bend down

A human on all fours
I take him on a walk
ambling along the corridor
I am disappointed

etc. etc.

my nominations are
1) "run joey run"

"daddy, please don't/it wasn't his fault/
he means so much to me/
daddy please don't/we're gonna get ma...rried/
(ahhh ahhhh ahhh ahhhh)
run joey run/joey run

and 2)
Lena Zavaroni's
"momma, he's making eyes at me"

Timekeeper: Yes, the Cars did 'Drive,' but the R.E.M. song referenced is also called 'Drive,' and features such nonsense as "Oly, oly, oly oly oly, oly oly outs in free, maybey."

Lauraw: 'The Warrior' was by Scandal, not Heart. And yes, it was horrible.

Oh, and the hitchhiker tune, which is Heart, is "All I Want to Do."

Gah, why is it that I only seem to know about the bad songs around here?

Two tracks from the 90's alt-rock boomlet:

Dizz Knee Land by Dada
Push th' Little Daisies by Ween

Both incredibly stupid.

Then there's Runaway by Del Shannon. (Wah-wah-wah-wah-wonder) I'm convinced he committed suicide after listening to his song one too many times.

I always get in on the tail end of these things, write something insightful and brilliant and check back later only to find that nothing ever follows my post.

But! can't help myself...

Was it Toto? something like:
Meet you all the way!
Rose aaaannnaaaaa yeah
hate the hell out of that.

And stevie wonder:
I just called to say I love you
[repeat until death]

Lots of stuff people have been complaining about are poetic damn license and should not be on this list.
In fact much of the "good" songs given as examples sound fine sung and don't read worth a crap. Tis the nature of the art.

Good examples already given that all should agree with:

We built this city
pour some sugar on me
Mr. roboto (just hate the entire song)
McArthur Park
Sussudio (?)
Sting

Great stuff that should not be bad mouthed, so retract and keep your filthy tongues off of Muskrat Love!

thank you.

"And Tomcat, its 'wrapped up like a deuce' like the card in a game. Not sure quite what Manfred Mann was referring to there, but its hardly as screwed up as what people think they're hearing."

At least in Bruce Springsteen's recorded version he says "cut loose like a deuce." The "deuce" is clearly enunciated thus avoiding a possibly ambiguous reference to a feminine hygiene product.

Eighteen visions tower of snakes
I love Eighteen Visions but the lyrics to this song are just RETARDED
"You told me...
No appologies...
But Im sorry just couldnt cut the mustard.
and its obserd...
Are you running away from me are you running away from you"
WTF....No one should ever say mustard in any song