Songs have a way of worming themselves into our brains and lives in subtle ways, without us giving a single thought to how they arrived in our ears. And as it turns out, most songs have really interesting histories.
So we asked our plasticians to come up with fascinating facts about well-known songs, that you can worm into your brain alongside that catchy melody. Here’s what they came up with:
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Here’s a post a friend of mine on here sent me. She describes herself as a cranky, jaded introvert.
But I agree with her on many of these points. I ran into a woman I haven’t seen in probably two years. She looked healthy but seemed exactly the same as she was when I met her over five years ago. Fifteen minutes into the conversation I was already bored. Without the distraction of other people at a bar or the excitement of attending an event, she seemed dull. I’ve come to realize how rampant mental illness is in today’s world.
I believe as we age we need to continually evolve to be better. But I think we can all agree that during this pandemic we really found out who our real friends are.
Anyway… Take it away, Donna!
I used to be one of those girls who was absolutely desperate to be popular, have friends, and be around people.
As I get older, I’ve realized that I’ve turned into a grumpy, crotchety lady who really doesn’t want to be around people.
“Generally, people become more emotionally stable, agreeable, and conscientious as they leave their youth behind,” says Jenn Granneman, author of The Secret Lives of Introverts, “They also become quieter and more self-contained, needing less socializing and excitement to be happy.”
To a point, it’s becoming more of an introvert is a natural process that can’t be helped.
Here’s why you become more introverted and start to hate everyone as you get old — and why I’m OK with turning into a misanthrope.
1. The older you get, the more often people have let you down.
All those Disney songs about having friends who never disappoint you or bail on you clearly haven’t taken into account the majority of the human race.
By the time that you’re 20, you’ve probably been dealt major blows by people you never thought would hurt you, and that makes you really jaded toward people.
2. As you age, the fun of being around people begins to disappear.
Popularity stops being cool when you realize how much money it costs to be popular, and how much of a time-waster it is.
3. You learn over time that people ruin the coolest things.
Ever notice how it only takes one stupid person’s actions to ruin a good thing? Ever notice how many good things get ruined this way?
This is why we can’t have awesome things: stupid people!
4. You find that most people you meet are boring as hell.
Their entire lives revolve around things that aren’t important. They don’t really make you think about anything in particular. They are boring, and there’s a certain point where boring becomes a reason not to talk to them.
If I do hang out with people, I want them to have a real spark inside them, and that just doesn’t really happen too often.
5. You discover that ninety-nine percent of the people you meet are fake.
I hate the fact that most people I’ve met can’t talk about how they really feel, what they’re really going through, or what they honestly think about you.
At the end of the day, most people will sugarcoat things that shouldn’t be sugarcoated, and most people won’t tell you the full truth, even if it’s an absolute necessity.
6. You realize that dealing with people’s drama is exhausting.
I’d rather watch TV.
The drama is more entertaining and it won’t negatively affect me.
7. You find that most get-togethers quickly become incredibly boring.
Let’s face it: most people don’t want to go to those tired dinner parties thrown by their bosses anyway.
8. As years pass, your tolerance for people judging you and telling you what to do shrinks to zero.
People always love to get angry when you don’t live the way they want you to live.
I’m too old to have people judge me, try to control me, or tell me how to live my life. Shouldn’t others be more worried about their lives instead?
9. The longer you’ve been alive, the worse people treat you in general.
When you’re a kid, everyone coos at you and coddles you. When you’re a teenager, everyone hates you. When you’re an adult, everyone hates you and expects you to do stuff for them.
I don’t recall signing up for this BS.
10. By the time you’re 30, you realize that your pets are more mature than the people you regularly talk to.
That might be why I prefer to drink wine with my cats.
11. There’s a certain point where you can’t deal with people’s shallow behavior.
If I was 300 pounds, I could guarantee that men wouldn’t want anything to do with me and that people, in general, would make mean comments about my weight.
Knowing this made me really worn out when it came to talking to people. I don’t want to bother with people who would discard me based on how much I weigh, what I wear, or how I look.
12. People have really messed up expectations about how others should treat them, versus how they treat others.
With most people, manners have gone the way of the dodo, but they have no problem expecting others to be nice to them.
I’m so over it.
13. When push comes to shove, getting older also means that you realize that most people aren’t worth it.
This makes the few people who are worth talking to all the more precious.
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If you were like me in the 1970’s you listened to top 40 radio most of the time. You heard a lot of great songs and instant classics. But among them were many unforgettable songs that were just weird or strange. I’ve tried from memory to remember the ones that stand out in my mind.
For weird reasons they became hits. They either made no sense or having any musical merit. Just a bizarre era of story songs.
Of course, this stuff is all pretty subjective but I did have a few criteria for what should be here. I decided to include a song if it:
made me sick without even listening to it again
made me want to break my radio
made my stomach turn
brought out violent thoughts of hatred, revenge, etc.
reminded me how lame the radio and record companies are
could make me want to break my stereo
would make me leave a bar or club if they started playing it
would make me boo a band who started playing it
suspended my belief in a divine force that governs the universe
I’m not saying that there weren’t ANY good songs during the 70s but there was just a truck-load of waste back then. If anybody’s stupid enough to think that ALL disco sucks, remember that it’s just a bastard son of rhythm & blues just like rock’n’roll is- so they’re related, see? Also, the 1970’s definitely didn’t have a monopoly on shitty music- there was tons of crap unleashed on us in the decade before and after and now also (there’s a future article there somewhere). Clothes-pin anyone?
The 70’s was an interesting time for music. There was a lot of experimentation and creativity from that decade, but there was also plenty of crap as well. Here is my list of the worst and most irritating songs of the 70’s.
Feelings – Morris Albert – 1975
Thankfully, Morris Albert has no incredibly sad story and famous offspring that will make you regret listening to his song. He’s just the singer of an incredibly, stunningly crappy song. “Feelings” has been mocked and reviled for a good 45 years, largely for the lack of specificity in the lyrics. What kind of feelings is Morris singing about? It’s clearly a love song, but it’s hard to think of a more vague term than “feelings” to describe, um, feelings. Albert maintains a following in his native Brazil, but he hasn’t had much success in America since he shared his “Feelings” with us back in 1975. If you wonder why punk had to happen, listen to this song.
It’s about a noun. It could have been written by a suicidal 14-year-old submitting to her high-school literary magazine in a last-ditch attempt to garner sympathy from the would-be lover who spurned her in front of everyone in the cafeteria. Feelings? Whoa whoa whoa, feelings.
I think we all felt the nausea of this song in 1975. I remember one of the neighbor’s girls said the following words to my sister. “Let’s sing…Feelings.” My sister quietly declined the offer because she had just eaten.
I remember when the song would come on a friend of mine would mock the lyrics. “Fuelings… Mid-Air… Refuelings.”
Excuse me… I have to go throw up in a bucket.
Seasons In The Sun – Terry Jacks – 1974
I really have it out for mid-1970s soft rock. This one is another song about a tragedy. “Billy Don’t Be A Hero” is about a woman begging her boyfriend to be safe while fighting the Civil War, and Terry Jacks’ 1974 mega-hit is about a dying person saying goodbye to his loved ones. The song was written by poet Rod McKuen in the early 1960s and first made a hit by Belgian singer Jacques Brel in 1961. The version by Terry Jacks hit Number One around the world in 1974, but Jacks largely retired from music just a few years later.
Terry Jacks “Seasons in the Sun” hit #1 for three weeks in 1974, making 1974 perhaps the worst year ever for popular music. In fact, out of all of the songs on this list, 12 of them peaked in airplay during 1974, 10 of which reached the #1 spot on the Billboard chart. 1974 was such a hideous year for music that popular radio station WLS in Chicago dropped their weekly ranking of their 40 top songs down to a weekly ranking of only 15 records per week. Still, even with only 15 records, most of them were virtually unlistenable, as in this example.
Ugh… this song makes me want to eat a bullet.
The Streak – Ray Stevens – 1974
Ray Stevens was actually a talented songwriter, producer, and music executive with a dark side. In spite of his obvious talent, he insisted on writing and recording distinctly offensive or idiotic low-brow novelty songs for most of his career, including “Ahab the Arab” (“humorously” pronounced “Aay-rabb”—get it?), “Guitarzan,” and “Harry The Hairy Ape.” In 1969, Stevens became a regular on The Andy Williams Show, and in the summer of 1970, he got his own summer replacement show, The Ray Stevens Show. “The Streak” played on the 1970s prank of running naked through a public place. Released in late March 1974, the song hit #1 on the Billboard charts for three weeks in May 1974, and its insidious presence was all but inescapable for most of the American public.
I’m ashamed of all popular radio in the 70s at this point.
Have You Never Been Mellow – Olivia Newton-John – 1975
I couldn’t decide between this song and her other horrible hits of the ’70s (“I Honestly Love You,” “Hopelessly Devoted to You,” and “With a Little More Love”), but in the end, the title question itself is what put it over the top.
I’ve always loved ONJ as a woman and as a songbird. I probably only like the actress Susan George because she reminds me of ONJ. She always had such a lovely light feminine voice. Who can forget her enormous hit, Physical? I bought that album. I loved her then and I love her now. But this stuff from her early career is just so sugary, I need an insulin shot after listening to any of them.
Escape (Pina Colada Song) – Rupert Holmes – 1979
This is the one song on the list that some people might actually appreciate on some level. Holmes was inspired to write “Escape (The Pina Colada Song)” when he saw a want ad in the paper. He wondered what would happen if he responded to it, only to discover it had been placed by his own wife. The lyrics originally went “If you like Humphrey Bogart,” at the last minute he changed it to “Pina Coladas,” a drink he didn’t even particularly enjoy. The couple in the song both agree to meet at O’Malleys Bar and don’t seem all that miffed to discover they were both trying to cheat on each other. Instead, they discover they both love Pina Coladas, being caught in the rain, and making love at midnight. It’s like a modern-day, O. Henry story. Maybe those should be called O’Malley stories now. Holmes had another hit in 1980 with “Him,” but after that, his pop career pretty much went into the trash. He’s had far more success in recent years as a playwright.
I love his wardrobe choice for this video. Really dude? You had nothing else to wear? It looks like you just came from Sunday brunch. His stage presence is awful. I saw better choreography during the Lee Harvey Oswald prison transfer.
But I digress…
It’s also fun to watch him gingerly descend the stairs on set.
You Light Up My Life – Debby Boone- 1977
How many weddings in the late ’70s was this steaming pile of garbage played at? (All of them?)
You don’t hear it much these days, but “You Light Up My Life” was actually the single biggest song of the 1970s. It spent 10 weeks at Number One, a record not beaten until 1991 when Boyz II Men stayed on top for 13 weeks in 1991. The song was written as a love song, but Pat Boone’s daughter Debby always interpreted it as a song about her devotion to God. The song was written by Joe Brooks, who was arrested in 2009 on charges that he lured 11 women to his apartment with the promise of a movie audition, and then sexually assaulted them.He committed suicide before the case went to trial.Around the same time, this was all going down, his son Nicholas was arrested for murdering his girlfriend. The New York tabloids had a field day with the two cases. Knowing all that, it’s hard to listen to the song in quite the same way. It just goes to show that you can write the biggest hit of the 70s and still go out and do some vile stuff.
We already hate the song, and now because of what I wrote above, we can all hate it even more!
The Morning After – Maureen McGovern – 1972
This was featured as a song on the doomed ocean liner in the film The Poseidon Adventure, Maureen McGovern’s schlocktacular effort (penned by 20th Century Fox songwriting hacks Al Kasha and Joel Hirschhorn) was released a year after the film and climbed to #1 for two weeks in August 1974. The song won best original song Academy Award and led the trio to team up again for another Oscar-winning debacle, “We May Never Love Like This Again,” in 1974’s The Towering Inferno. Few efforts better encapsulate the way that musical expression and creativity were cynically packaged for commercial consumption throughout most of the 1970s.
Kill me now!
Me and You and a dog named Boo – Lobo – 1971
This is the 1971 debut single by Lobo. Written by Lobo under his real name Kent LaVoie, it appears on the Introducing Lobo album.
The single peaked at #5 on the Hot 100 and was the first of four of his songs to hit #1 on the Easy Listening chart, where it had a two-week stay at that top spot in May 1971. The song also reached #4 in the UK Singles Chart in July 1971 and spent four weeks at #1 in New Zealand.
Internationally, “Me and You and a Dog Named Boo” was Lobo’s second most successful song among more than 15 single releases, surpassed only by “I’d Love You to Want Me” the following year. (More trash)
Like Bobby Goldsboro, Lobo has the same ridiculous haircut. It’s just awful. Hair helmet! It doesn’t even look real!
I’d knock over an elderly lady in a walker to get to the radio to turn this crap off. England Dan and John Ford Coley, I’m not.
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If you’re an older millennial, you grew up watching Liv Tyler on your screen. Whether it was in a music video or in your favorite movie (like, say, Armageddon) she had some impact on your life in terms of pop culture back then. And now, she’s a happy mother living the family life with her very famous family.
In case you’ve lived under a rock your entire life, you know exactly who Steven Tyler is. He’s the frontman for Aerosmith and has been a famous rock icon for decades. While the rock star world/Hollywood world always seemed a little puzzling for outsiders, it’s been comforting knowing that while the Tyler family has its quarks, they’re still extremely close-knit.
Here are 20 things you never knew about Liv Tyler and Steven’s father/daughter relationship.
Liv Had No Idea Steven Was Her Father For 10 Years
We’ve heard this story before and if you haven’t, you’re in for a WHOA. Liv Tyler was basically raised by her mother, model Bebe Buell, her grandmother, and her aunt. For years, her mother harbored this secret from Liv until years later, when she was FINALLY told that Aerosmith frontman was the man who helped give her life.
Singer Todd Rundgren Was The One She Thought Was Her Father
A man DID sign her birth certificate under “father,” however, and that man was famous rock n’ roll artist Todd Rundgren. Tyler even had Rundgren’s last name for the longest time. “Todd basically decided when I was born that I needed a father so he signed my birth certificate,” Liv said. “He knew that there was a chance I might not be his but…”
And He Was An Excellent Father To Her
In interviews when asked about Todd Rundgren’s influence on her life, Liv always gushes over her stepfather, even though she didn’t see him too often. He was the first man there for her when no other man was, and she cherishes that. “Todd was my father,” she said. “He completely supported me and put me through amazing private schools.”
She Adored Steven Before She Knew
At the delicate age of eight, her mother took her to one of step father’s concerts and Steven Tyler happened to be backstage so her mom introduced them. She felt a strange connection with him and even had his poster up on her bedroom wall. She started to suspect that he was her father when she got older and her mom finally confirmed it.
Her Mother Kept It From Liv Because Steven Was In A Dark Place
When she finally found out about who her real father was, she started to resent her mother for keeping the truth from her. But, it was all for a good reason. Buell kept the secret from Liv because Steven was reeling heavily from substance abuse at the time. He didn’t try to connect with his daughter until after he came out of rehab.
Steven Hit On Liv’s Friend Cameron Diaz When They Were Young
Liv has always gossiped about some embarrassing things that her father did when she was younger, and one was apparently hitting on her young friends around her. He apparently asked out actress Cameron Diaz right in front of Liv, who quickly put a stop to the conversation. “Daddy, you’re hitting on my best girlfriend!” she exclaimed.
Steven’s Absence From Liv’s Life Made A Lasting Impact On Her Personal Relationships
Even though Rundgren was in her life, she rarely saw him and was basically raised by strong, female figures like her mom and grandmother. There were strings of men in and out of her life, but she never really had a definitive father figure in her life until her teens and she believes that had a negative effect on her personal relationships with me.
She Had A Hard Time Growing Up With Famous Parents
Any child who was raised in the public eye will tell you that they had a difficult time growing up. When your parents are super famous, it’s awkward for you because everyone already knows who you are and personal details about your life, so it’s no wonder that Liv revealed she had a difficult time growing up with famous parents.
Liv Starred In Aerosmith’s Music Video “Crazy” When She Was 16
She had only known her father to be her actual father for a few short years before she starred in his famous Aerosmith music video “Crazy” along with Alicia Silverstone. Both young teenagers bonded together when they were shooting and became fast friends. Liv even still looks basically the same as she did when she was 16.
…And No One Who Worked On The Video Knew She Was His Daughter
Another crazy thing about Liv being cast in that particular music video back in the 90s is that absolutely no one (other than Steven and Liv) knew that Liv was actually Steven’s daughter. There was a hullabaloo when it was finally revealed because Liv acted very provocatively in the video so some were shocked to learn the news.
She’s Close With Steven Now
If you’ve been paying attention to their relationship over the past few decades, they wasted no time forming a really tight father/daughter bond in order to make up for the missed time. Through the years, they’re constantly supporting each other through major achievements in both their careers and have a dang good relationship.
…Even When She’s Embarrassed By Him
Recently, Liv Tyler went on the record and spoke about what actually he does that embarrassed her or continues to embarrass her after all these years (that don’t include him hitting on any of her close girlfriends). Apparently, she HATES it when he gyrates his body on his microphone and has cringed and said “stop it, dad!” to him.
Liv Was Thrilled When She Found Out She Had A Sister
When she found out that Steven Tyler was her real dad, not only was she over the moon about it, she was also thrilled to find out that she had a sister as well, Steven’s other daughter Mia. Liv was raised an only child and always longed to have siblings, so when she and Mia met, it was an instant connection that was missing.
Steven Was With Liv When She Gave Birth To Her Son
Liv has said when she was pregnant with her second child, a son named Sailor, she went into premature delivery. When she was rushed to the hospital, she called up her sister Mia to meet her there, and Mia ended up bringing Steven as well, They arrived minutes before she delivered her son and Steven cut the umbilical cord.
Is He A Good Grandfather?
If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the years about Steven Tyler, it’s that he’s an insanely attentive grandfather to all his grandchildren, especially Liv’s kids. If you head over to her Instagram, you’ll see pictures of him playing around with the kids and him just completely doting on all of them in fantastic ways.
Was He The Reason She Picked Up Smoking At Age 14?
Liv has revealed that she picked up the nasty habit of smoking when she was only 14-years-old, and if we look back at both her parents, we can see why. Both were avid smokers at a young age so Liv probably learned the habit from them. She’s very self-aware of it being a bad habit now and hopes her kids don’t do it.
Liv Says Steven Is “Like A Unicorn”
Liv has gone on the record and spoke out how much both her father and her step-father mean to her in multiple interviews. “They are like unicorns or wizards,” she once said of both. “They are musicians through and through. The way they think is just different. Their eccentricities have made me more practical and more normal, in a way.”
She Has A Lot Of Embarrassing Stories About Him
When your father is in the spotlight, you’re bound to have stories about him (a few of which we’ve already listed before. When she goes on talk shows, they usually ask her the same thing: “What has Steven Tyler done to embarrass you?” and she always bursts out laughing. This particular story she told on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen.
Her Instagram Feed Reveals That They’re Still Close
It’s not just grandfather pictures Liv posts on her Instagram feed whenever Steven is around. Her pictures have shown an intimate side of her father – one who travels the world with her and her family, one who spends an abundance of time with her. They’ve even done an Instagram video of the two of them singing together.
He’s Proud Of The Mother She’s Become
In interviews he’s done, Steven always gushes about his children and grandchildren, especially when it comes to Liv. He remarks about what kind of mother she is to her children and that he’s happy to be included so much in their lives. It’s wonderful to watch the two of them just love each other through the media.
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