Okay, I feel a little guilty about this post. Song lyrics? Really? But, then I couldn’t kick the idea and it just sat there. Memes are annoying like that. So, here we go.
Song’s fascinate me. The lyrics generally tell a story, in fantastically few words. It’s not so amazing upon initial inspection, because, well, there are just so many songs and so many people write lyrics.
Except… (See, there had to be something otherwise, this wouldn’t be worth anyone’s time.) When writing, I tend to write a lot. Then trim things down. Songs are the absolute meat. By being so short, they can’t afford to be anything else.
Artist: Linkin Park, Song: New Divide
- I remembered black skies, the lightning all around me
- I remembered each flash as time began to blur
Thoughts: I always wanted that last line to say “time began to burn”. It’s the science fiction fan in me. I love the idea that time can burn, even though time is not a physical manifestation of anything.
Artist: The Hurts, Song: Somebody to Die For
- When I’m standing in the fire
- I will look him in the eye
- And I will let the devil know that
- I was brave enough to die
- And there’s no hell that he can show me
- That’s deeper than my pride
Thoughts: Really, I don’t believe in changing this verse. I didn’t misunderstand any lyrics. But the imagery presented here is so vivid, so powerful that it paints an irrepressible vision. That’s what I want in a song. To invoke the story and emotions. If you are going to listen to a version though I would suggest finding Nightcore’s cover.
Artist: Woodkid, Song: The Golden Age
- Boy we’re family, no matter what they say
- But boys are meant to flee
- And run away, one day
Thoughts: I always thought the line should be “But, we are family, no matter what they say.” Changing that simple line alters the entire implication of the verse, though. By changing the “boy” to “but” it creates a contrast and conflict. Additionally, no longer is the meaning limited to one gender, but opens up other possibilities. I’d also like to know that by relieving the line of the contraction “we’re” it allows the emphasis to be placed on “are”. I know that I have railed against “to be” verbs, however, in this case, I feel that the permanent nature actually adds depth.
Overall Thoughts: Man, maybe I’m over thinking this. Luckily, that’s what I get to do because I didn’t write the songs or sing them. I’m not saying that these are my favorite songs of all time, but these are some of my absolute favorite lyrics.
In reality, most my favorite songs don’t have any lyrics whatsoever. They are just instrumentals. Someday, I’d like to go over the psychology and influence that lyrics and music have and why, possibly, they have such a great effect on writing when we’re listening. But that’s a topic for another day.