I have ALWAYS been a lyrics person. Seriously. Ride in the car with me. I sing along with EVERYTHING!!! Most of the time, by the time it gets to the end of a new song, I've heard enough to be singing along.
I'm pretty sure this "talent" (that's what we'll call it for now, though I'll appreciate it more if one day it lands me a cashload on something like "Don't Forget the Lyrics") comes from my dad. He, like me, forgets many important things about daily life (like my name, for instance), but he can tell you some of the most obscure facts and lyrics from eons ago.
We always bonded over music and we still share the ridiculous passion for quoting stupid stuff to each other (lyrics, quotes from television - mostly Friends, etc.). He'll tell you that the most vivid memories of my lyric-knowledge always happened about 10 seconds before the curtain opened on me singing something live when I would look at him wide-eyed and say, "What's the first line? I can't remember it. If you can tell me how it starts, I know I'll know the rest!" (It happened more than once, for sure.)
However, the older I get and the more I listen to music, the more I learn that many of the lyrics I learned as a child while listening to the radio, were... well, just flat-out wrong!
We all know some of the standard wrong lyrics that EVERYONE sings.
"'Scuse me while I kiss this guy!"
"There's a bathroom on the right."
My favorite one that I learned all kinds of wrong (because I was too young to understand the concept being discussed, thus could not make sense of any words here) is "The Way You Make Me Feel" by Michael Jackson. I ALWAYS thought (seriously, until I was probably in my 20s) thought he was saying, "Wait a minute, Ms. Beal! You really turn me on!" The most ridiculous part of that one is that I sang it incorrect for so long that when it comes on the radio, I still catch myself serenading the ever-mysterious Ms. Beal sometimes.
A friend from high school spent many of his middle school years being TERRIFIED of kissing a girl because of the song "I... I just died in your arms tonight! It must've been some kind of kiss..." He always thought that meant that a good enough kiss could TRULY kill you.
And then, of course, there are the Dylan-esque lyrics that we all sing from time to time. You know the ones. It's a song where no matter how much you listen, you can't make hyde nor hair of any of it, but you FEEL the song, so you just sing syllables that sound kind of like the syllables in the song? Hey, Bob Dylan did it to his OWN songs. Why can't we do it too?
"Well, I bi da bi blah, bi da bi doop wa me out! Hey, YOU, get off of my cloud!"
But here's the conclusion to which I've come. (You like that amazing, though not culturally-acceptable grammatical correctness there? That's what an English degree will do for you.)
Know the lyrics? GREAT!
Don't know the lyrics? Who cares?!?
If singing makes you happy, DO IT!!! If you have to go all Bob Dylan, no one REALLY cares. I mean, he made MILLIONS not singing the lyrics, right?!?
So tell me. I promise I won't laugh (to your face anyway). What lyrics did YOU always hear incorrectly?
Love & Shipoopies,