19 Examples of Terrible Lyrics

I have a couple of biases when it comes to song lyrics.

  1. “Sin” should never be rhymed with “gin.” That’s lazy.
  2. I’m not a big fan where the third verse is the same as the first. What, you couldn’t come up with a few more couplets?
  3. When artists try too hard to be clever. Example: “He starts to shake, he starts to cough / Just like the old man in that famous book by Nabokov” from “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” by the Police. We get it, Sting, You read Lolita.
  4. That horrible line in Steve Miller’s “Take the Money and Run”: “Billy Mack is a detective down in Texas / You know he knows exactly what the facts is.”
  5. Wings’ “Live and Let Die.” Great song, but what the hell is Macca saying when he sings “In this ever changing world in which we live in”?
  6.  The entirety of “MacArthur Park.”

HooksAndHarmony.com has come up wiht their list of the worst song lyrics in pop and rock. Here are the first three:

  1. Sometimes When We Touch” – Dan Hill. Sometimes when we touch / the honesty’s too much / and I have to close my eyes and hide / I wanna hold you till I die / Till we both break down and cry / I wanna hold you till the fear in me subsides. So, sometimes when you touch, you have to close your eyes and hide, but then other times, if you hold someone too long you’ll cry, or die, or the fear in you will subside. That’s like playing Russian roulette.
  2. “The Reflex” – Duran Duran. The reflex is an only child, he’s waiting in the park / The reflex is in charge of finding treasure in the dark / And watching over lucky clover isn’t that bizarre / Every little thing the reflex does / Leaves you answered with a question mark. There are lots of questions marks here. Why is a reflex a child? Who leaves a child in charge of finding treasure in the dark? And who’s watching over this clover? Yes it is bizarre.
  3. “Here I Go Again” – Whitesnake. ‘Cause I know what it means / To walk along the lonely street of dreams.

Read the remaining ten tortured lyrics here. What would you include?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

4 thoughts on “19 Examples of Terrible Lyrics

  • August 25, 2015 at 10:27 am
    Permalink

    I’ve already posted New Order lyrics a few times. I’m just going to allude to those crimes.

    Reply
  • August 25, 2015 at 1:35 pm
    Permalink

    What Horse With No Name didn’t make the list? Probably the worst lyrics ever written.

    Reply
    • August 25, 2015 at 11:35 pm
      Permalink

      Thank you. “The heat was hot” was the first lyric to come to mind.

      Reply
  • August 26, 2015 at 3:15 pm
    Permalink

    The Ramones’ “Judy Is a Punk” goes against everything about this article.

    Jackie is a punk
    Judy is a runt
    They both went down to Berlin, joined the Ice Capades
    And oh, I don’t know why
    Oh, I don’t know why
    Perhaps they’ll die, oh yeah [x4]

    Second verse, same as the first
    [Repeat first verse]

    Third verse, different from the first
    Jackie is a punk
    Judy is a runt
    They both went down to Frisco, joined the SLA
    And oh, I don’t know why
    Oh, I don’t know why
    Perhaps they’ll die, oh yeah [x4]

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.