Song Lyric Sunday: I’m not dumb but I can’t understand

Jim Adams is the host for SLS. This week’s theme: Hidden Gems – great songs that missed the top of the charts suggested by Amy aka E.M. The song should reference the prompt in the title or lyrics. If it doesn’t, please explain why you chose it.


Triple whammy today, three songs (yes, three!) from the Kinks failed to make it to number one in the UK. What gives?

In 1964, Baby Love by The Supremes stopped All Day and All of the Night from topping the charts. This one I can forgive. But…

In 1967, The Tremeloes, with Silence is Golden, kept Waterloo Sunset at bay. There is no justice in this world.

Point proved in 1970 when Lola was pipped to the post by Elvis Presley’s The Wonder of You. Sorry, mate, not your finest hour!

No lyrics this week, but here are links to all three runners-up.

Song Lyric Sunday: Animals Strike Curious Poses

Jim Adams is the host for Song Lyric Sunday. This week’s theme: Amaze, Astonish, Curious, Shock, Surprise, Wonder suggested by Melanie aka Sparky. The song should reference the prompt in the title or lyrics. If it doesn’t, please explain why you chose it.


When Doves Cry by Prince, released in 1984, was written by Prince for the film Purple Rain, which starred Prince (duh!). Having never seen the film, I can’t comment on it, but this song is a gorgeous paean to love, relationships, tragedy, optimism and hope. As well as being sexy as hell!

So, without further ado, sit back and enjoy watching Prince in his bathtub and writhing around with a sultry young lady. Make sure you have a bucket of cold water on hand if it all gets a bit too steamy!

Dig if you will the picture
Of you and I engaged in a kiss
The sweat of your body covers me
Can you, my darling
Can you picture this?

Dream, if you can, a courtyard
An ocean of violets in bloom
Animals strike curious poses
They feel the heat
The heat between me and you

How can you just leave me standing
Alone in a world that’s so cold? (So cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding
Maybe I’m just like my father, too bold
Maybe you’re just like my mother
She’s never satisfied (she’s never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other?
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry

Touch if you will my stomach
Feel how it trembles inside
You’ve got the butterflies all tied up
Don’t make me chase you
Even doves have pride

How could you just leave me standing
Alone in a world so cold? (World so cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding
Maybe I’m just like my father, too bold
Maybe you’re just like my mother
She’s never satisfied (she’s never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other?
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry

How can you just leave me standing
Alone in a world that’s so cold? (A world that’s so cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding (maybe, maybe I’m like my father)
Maybe I’m just like my father too bold (you know he’s too bold)
Maybe you’re just like my mother (maybe you’re just like my mother)
She’s never satisfied (she’s never, never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other? (Why do we scream, why)
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry
When doves cry (doves cry, doves cry)
When doves cry (doves cry, doves cry)

Don’t cry (don’t cry)

Songwriters: Prince Rogers Nelson
© Universal Music Publishing Group

Song Lyric Sunday: Shake it Like a Polaroid Picture

Jim Adams is the host for SLS. This week’s theme: Appearance, Image, Likeness, Object, Picture, Photograph. The song should reference the prompt in the title or lyrics. If it doesn’t, please explain why you chose it.


Going back to 2003 today, with Hey Ya! by Outkast because this song has it all!

The music magazine, Blender, described it as an electro/folk-rock/funk/power pop/hip-hop/neo-soul/kitchen sink rave-up. They’re not wrong, and the video is a joy to watch as well.

A nostalgia stuffed four minutes with a cheeky nod to the British Invasion of the American charts in the mid-60s. Not to mention singer/songwriter André 3000 playing eight different characters.

I like this song: A lot.

Hope you do too…

One, two, three, uh

My baby don’t mess around
Because she loves me so
And this I know fo sho (uh)
But does she really wanna
But can’t stand to see me walk out the door? (Ah)
Don’t try to fight the feeling
Because the thought alone is killin’ me right now (uh)
Thank God for Mom and Dad
For sticking two together
‘Cause we don’t know how (c’mon)

Hey ya! Hey ya!
Hey ya! Hey ya!
Hey ya! Hey ya!
Hey ya! Hey ya!

You think you’ve got it
Oh, you think you’ve got it
But got it just don’t get it ’til there’s nothin’ at all
We get together
Oh, we get together
But separate’s always better when there’s feelings involved
If what they say is
“Nothing is forever”
Then what makes, then what makes
Then what makes, then what makes (what makes, what makes)
Love the exception?
So why, oh, why, oh
Why, oh, why, oh, why, oh
Are we so in denial when we know we’re not happy here?
(Y’all don’t want to hear me, you just want to dance)

Hey ya! (Uh oh) Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Don’t want to meet your daddy
Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Just want you in my Caddy (Uh oh)
Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Don’t want to meet your mama
Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Just want to make you cum-a (Uh oh)
Hey ya! (Uh oh)
I’m, I’m, I’m just being honest (Uh oh)
I’m just being honest

Hey! Alright now
Alright now, fellas (Yeah?)
Now, what cooler than being cool? (Ice cold!)
I can’t hear you
I say what’s, what’s cooler than being cool? (Ice cold!)

Alright, alright, alright, alright, alright
Alright, alright, alright, alright, alright
Alright, alright, alright, alright

Okay, now ladies (Yeah?)
Now, we gon’ break this thang down in just a few seconds
Now, don’t have me break this thang down for nothin’
Now, I want to see y’all on y’all baddest behaviour
Lend me some sugar, I am your neighbour
Ah! Here we go

Shake it, shake, shake it, shake it, shake, shake it (Uh oh)
Shake it, shake, shake it, shake it, shake it (Uh oh)
Shake it like a Polaroid picture, hey ya!

Shake it, shake, shake it, shake it, shake, shake it
Shake it, shake it, shake it, sugar
Shake it like a Polaroid picture

Now, all Beyonce’s, and Lucy Liu’s
And baby dolls
Get on the floor

Get on the floor, you know what to do
You know what to do
You know what to do

Hey ya! (Uh oh) Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Hey ya! (Uh oh) Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Hey ya! (Uh oh) Hey ya! (Uh oh)
Hey ya! (Uh oh) Hey ya! (Uh oh)

Songwriter: Andre Benjamin
© BMG Rights Management, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

Song Lyric Sunday: Gold and Silver Shine

Jim Adams is the host for SLS. This week’s theme: Money, Gold, Silver, Rich suggested by Paula of Light Motifs II. The song should reference the prompt in the title or lyrics. If it doesn’t, please explain why you chose it.


This week’s choice, pop pickers, is Shiny Happy People by R.E.M. with guest vocalist Kate Pierson of the B-52s. I had such a girl crush on her back in the day!

Bit of a contentious choice, because for all their astounding back catalogue of some truly remarkable music, the band will be primarily remembered for this bubbly three-minute pop song. Lead singer, Michael Stipe is quoted as saying:

“It’s a fruity pop song written for children … If there was one song that was sent into outer space to represent R.E.M. for the rest of time, I would not want it to be ‘Shiny Happy People.”

But there is an edge to the song. The phrase “shiny happy people holding hands” derives from a Chinese propaganda poster used after the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.

However, it’s hard to remember the message when the music starts. If this doesn’t lift your mood, then it’s time to call the undertakers in.

And here’s a version of the song in rehearsal for a show. Sorry, no idea from which show, but to make up here’s a link to R.E.M. on Sesame Street singing Happy Furry Monsters. I kid you not.

Shiny happy people laughing

Meet me in the crowd, people, people
Throw your love around, love me, love me
Take it into town, happy, happy
Put it in the ground where the flowers grow
Gold and silver shine

Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people laughing

Everyone around, love them, love them
Put it in your hands, take it, take it
There’s no time to cry, happy, happy
Put it in your heart where tomorrow shines
Gold and silver shine

Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people laughing

Whoa, here we go

Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people laughing

Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people laughing

Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people holding hands
Shiny happy people laughing

Shiny happy people holding hands (people, happy people)
Shiny happy people holding hands (people, happy people)
Shiny happy people holding hands (people, happy people)

Songwriters: Michael Stipe / Mike Mills / Peter Buck / William Berry
© Universal Music Publishing Group

Song Lyric Sunday: The Baffled King Composing

Jim Adams is the host for SLS. This week’s theme: Head, Hat, Hair, Scarf suggested by Paula of Light Motifs II. The song should reference the prompt in the title or lyrics. If it doesn’t, please explain why you chose it.


Written by Leonard Cohen in 1984, Hallelujah must be the most poignant and painful pop song ever composed. But what do you expect from a singer-songwriter and poet whose work explored religion, politics, mental health, sexuality, death, and romantic relationships?

There are oodles of versions out there, but my favourite is the stripped back one from Jeff Buckley. His take puts you through an emotional wringer and then hangs you out to dry. Unlike Alexandra Burke’s attempt.

In 2008, she won British X-Factor, and some idiot decided Hallelujah would be perfect for her debut single. This so outraged fans of Jeff and Len that they started a campaign to get Jeff’s version to the number one spot. Unfortunately, the power of the people wasn’t enough; Ms Burke got to the top spot with Bucky-Boy at number two.

By 2009, the people were ready and willing to take down the next X-Factor winner after years of pap hogging the coveted Christmas number one spot. The song of mass destruction selected for this task was Killing in the Name by Rage Against the Machine. This time, it worked. The song took number one, and the band were so chuffed they performed a free concert in London as a thank you to their fans.

But enough of the waffle, time for an assault on your senses, which will be as cathartic as it is beautiful.

I heard there was a secret chord
That David played and it pleased the Lord
But you don’t really care for music, do you?
Well it goes like this the fourth, the fifth
The minor fall and the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
She tied you to her kitchen chair
She broke your throne and she cut your hair
And from your lips, she drew the Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Baby, I’ve been here before
I’ve seen this room and I’ve walked this floor
You know, I used to live alone before I knew you
And I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
And Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Well, there was a time when you let me know
What’s really going on below
But now you never show that to me, do you?
But remember, when I moved in you
And the holy dove was moving too
And every breath, we drew was Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Maybe there’s a God above
But, all I’ve ever learned from love
Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you?
And it’s not a cry, that you hear at night
It’s not somebody, who’s seen the light
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah [repeat to fade]

Songwriter: Leonard Cohen
© Sony/ATV Songs LLC