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Old 08-02-2019, 10:40 AM
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Song lyrics that mention famous people in passing


The Annoying Drummer Boy:
But here we are at 3 a.m.
With Ringo Starr of Bethlehem

Frank Mills:
He resembles George Harrison
Of The Beatles

American Pie:
When the jester sang for the king and queen
In a coat he borrowed from James Dean
  #2  
Old 08-02-2019, 10:42 AM
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Sweet Home Alabama:
I hope Neil Young will remember,
Southern Man don't need him around anyhow.
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Old 08-02-2019, 10:44 AM
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Al Stewart, Flying sorcery:

With your photographs of Kitty Hawk
And the biplanes on your wall
You were always Amy Johnson
From the time that you were small



Al Stewart, Year of the cat:

On a morning from a Bogart movie
In a country where they turn back time
You go strolling through the crowd like Peter Lorre
Contemplating a crime

Last edited by Art Rock; 08-02-2019 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 08-02-2019, 10:44 AM
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Long Tall Glasses by Leo Sayer:
Before you can eat you gotta dance like Fred Astaire.
  #5  
Old 08-02-2019, 10:48 AM
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Simon and Garfunkel - Mrs. Robinson:

Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio
Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you, uh uh uh
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  #6  
Old 08-02-2019, 10:52 AM
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Are we including songs that are almost nothing but mentioning famous people in passing, like The Beatles' "Dig It" and Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start The Fire"?
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Old 08-02-2019, 10:55 AM
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I was looking for mentions in passing, not lists of people.
  #8  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:03 AM
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Freeze Tag by Suzanne Vega:

You stand
With your hand
In your pocket
And lean against the wall
You will be Bogart
And I will be
Bacall


The Friends of Mr. Cairo:

She came, as in the book, Mickey Spillane

and

Media became television Give me Cagney anyday
Or Jimmy Stewart for President
Or Edward 'G' and all those guys
Who always shoot between the eyes
  #9  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:13 AM
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Killer Queen has three in the first verse.

She keeps her Moet et Chandon
In her pretty cabinet
"Let them eat cake", she says
Just like Marie Antoinette
A built-in remedy
For Kruschev and Kennedy
At anytime an invitation
You can't decline
  #10  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:15 AM
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The Grateful Dead's "Ramble On Rose" namechecks a bunch of people, both real and fictional.

Billy Sunday, Mary Shelley, Wolfman Jack, Jack the Ripper, Frankenstein...
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Old 08-02-2019, 11:19 AM
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"Hey Nineteen, that's Aretha Franklin..............."
  #12  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Royal Nonesutch View Post
The Grateful Dead's "Ramble On Rose" namechecks a bunch of people, both real and fictional.

Billy Sunday, Mary Shelley, Wolfman Jack, Jack the Ripper, Frankenstein...
Argh, that's the one I was going to mention.
Ok then, US Blues:

Shake the hand
That shook the hand
Of P.T. Barnum
And Charlie Chan.
  #13  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:27 AM
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McCartney & Wings : “Rock Show”

“Who’s that man up upon the stage?
It looks a like the one used by Jimmy Page!”
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Which is crazier? To the hear the
Voice of God when it's really only
thunder? Or to hear only thunder
when it's really the Voice of God?
  #14  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:34 AM
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Coincidentally, I'm listening to Pink Floyd today.

Does anybody here remember Vera Lynn?
  #15  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:35 AM
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Argh, that's the one I was going to mention.
Ok then, US Blues:

Shake the hand
That shook the hand
Of P.T. Barnum
And Charlie Chan.
Well, if Biblical figures count, the Dead also have "Greatest Story Ever Told" which mentions Moses and "My Brother Esau" which includes Jacob.

(Robert Hunter is an incredibly literate guy, but again far too many people assume that a 1960's band called the "Grateful Dead" can't have insightful, brilliantly crafted lyrics. Garcia was right, the moniker Grateful Dead was a non-starter for a lot of people)
  #16  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:39 AM
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The opening line of Van Morrison's haunting "St. Dominic's Preview"

"Chamois cleaning all the windows, singing songs about Edith Piaf's soul..."
  #17  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:39 AM
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From Tonight, Tonight by Hot Chelle Rae*:

I woke up with a strange tattoo
Not sure how I got it, not a dollar in my pocket
And it kinda looks just like you
Mixed with Zach Galifianakis

*Technically, I'm only familiar with the song via the Kidz Bop version
  #18  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:44 AM
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Eminem's Lose Yourself:

"Cause man, these goddamn food stamps don't buy diapers
And there's no movie, there's no Mekhi Phifer, this is my life."
  #19  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:46 AM
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We went searching through thrift store jungles
Found Geronimo's rifle, Marilyn's shampoo
And Benny Goodman's corset and pen
Well, okay, I made this up

Sheryl Crow - If it Makes You Happy
  #20  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:47 AM
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"Come on Eileen" - Dexys Midnight Runners

Poor old Johnnie Ray
Sounded sad upon the radio
But he moved a million hearts in mono
Our mothers cried, sang along, who'd blame them
  #21  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:48 AM
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Tal Bachman - She's So High:
'Cause she's so high
High above me, she's so lovely
She's so high
Like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc, or Aphrodite
  #22  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:52 AM
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Smithereens- Behind the Wall of Sleep

She had hair like Jeannie Shrimpton back in 1965
She had legs that never ended
I was halfway paralyzed

Well she held a bass guitar and she was playing in a band
And she stood just like Bill Wyman
Now I am her biggest fan

Last edited by Paintcharge; 08-02-2019 at 11:52 AM.
  #23  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:01 PM
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Liz Phair's Stratford on Guy name drops both a band and a famous celeb in one verse.

"And I was pretending that I was in a Galaxie 500 video
The stewardess came back and checked on my drink
In the last strings of sunlight, a Brigitte Bardot"
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"He was shortish. And oldish. And brownish. And mossy. And he spoke with a voice that was sharpish and bossy."
  #24  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephe96 View Post
McCartney & Wings : “Rock Show”

“Who’s that man up upon the stage?
It looks a like the one used by Jimmy Page!”
He's also mentioned in Neil Young's (together with Pearl Jam) Downtown (just like Jimi Hendrix):

Jimi's playin' in the back room
Led Zeppelin on stage
There's a mirror ball twirlin'
And a note from Page
Like a water-washed diamond
In a river of sin
Goin' down like a whirlpool
When you get sucked in
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  #25  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:21 PM
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"It's the End of the World as We Know It", REM

That's great, it starts with an earthquake
Birds and snakes, and aeroplanes
And Lenny Bruce is not afraid


...

"Don't Stand So Close to Me", The Police

It's no use
He sees her
He starts to shake he starts to cough
Just like the old man in
That book by Nabakov


...

"My My, Hey Hey (Out Of The Blue)", Neil Young

The king is gone
but he's not forgotten
This is the story
of Johnny Rotten

Last edited by bordelond; 08-02-2019 at 12:21 PM.
  #26  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:22 PM
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Jimmy Page seems like a popular subject. He's also mentioned in moe.'s Threw It All Away:

Crouched in the corner of your filthy cage
Lookin' like a rocker just like Jimmy Page.
  #27  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:24 PM
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Jimmy Page seems like a popular subject. He's also mentioned in moe.'s Threw It All Away:

Crouched in the corner of your filthy cage
Lookin' like a rocker just like Jimmy Page.
"The New Style", Beastie Boys

If I played guitar I'd be Jimmy Page
The girlie's I like are underage (Check it!)


... and ...

Down with Adrock and Mike D. and you ain't
And I got more juice than Picasso got paint
  #28  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markn+ View Post
Jimmy Page seems like a popular subject. He's also mentioned in moe.'s Threw It All Away:



Crouched in the corner of your filthy cage

Lookin' like a rocker just like Jimmy Page.


Beastie Boys, “New Style”

If I played guitar I’d be Jimmy Page
The girlies I like are underage
  #29  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:32 PM
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Slow Turning by John Hiatt.

Now I'm in my car
I got the radio down
An' I'm a'yellin' at the kids in the back
'Cause they're bangin' like'a Charlie Watts
  #30  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:44 PM
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Electric Light Orchestra, "Rockaria":

She's sweet on Wagner
I think she'd die for Beethoven
She loves the way Puccini lays down a tune
And Verdi's always creeping from her room

Murray Head, "One Night in Bangkok":

The creme de la creme of
The chess world in a show
With everything
But Yul Brynner

and...

Tea Girls
Warm and sweet
Some are set up in the Somerset Maugham suite

Last edited by kenobi 65; 08-02-2019 at 12:48 PM.
  #31  
Old 08-02-2019, 12:55 PM
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So "Say Hey" Willie, tell the Cobb, and Joe DiMaggio

Centerfield by John Fogerty
  #32  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:00 PM
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Thunder Road - Springsteen

“Roy Orbison singing for the lonely...”
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Which is crazier? To the hear the
Voice of God when it's really only
thunder? Or to hear only thunder
when it's really the Voice of God?
  #33  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:01 PM
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Tal Bachman - She's So High:
'Cause she's so high
High above me, she's so lovely
She's so high
Like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc, or Aphrodite
I love that song!

The Pretenders, "Message of Love":

When love walks in the room
Everybody stand up
Oh it's good, good, good
Like Brigitte Bardot
  #34  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:11 PM
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"Radar Love" -- Golden Earring:

"Peggy Lee's comin' on strong."
  #35  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:12 PM
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Celebrity-Brad Paisley

I'll get to cry to Barbara Walters when things don't go my way
And I'll get community service no matter which law I break


I Lost On Jeopardy-Weird Al

Art Fleming gave the answers,
Oh, but I couldn't get the questions right-ight-ight

Well, I'm givin' up. Don Pardo,
Just tell me now what I didn't win,
  #36  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
I love that song!

The Pretenders, "Message of Love":

When love walks in the room
Everybody stand up
Oh it's good, good, good
Like Brigitte Bardot
Another Brigitte Bardot reference (and a whole lot others):

Bob Dylan - I Shall Be Free

Well, my telephone rang it would not stop
It’s President Kennedy callin’ me up
He said, “My friend, Bob, what do we need to make the country grow?”
I said, “My friend, John, Brigitte Bardot
Anita Ekberg
Sophia Loren”
(Put ’em all in the same room with Ernest Borgnine!)


[...]

[IOh, set me down on a television floor
I’ll flip the channel to number four
Out of the shower comes a football man
With a bottle of oil in his hand
Greasy kid stuff
What I want to know, Mr. Football Man, is
What do you do about Willy Mays
Martin Luther King
Olatunji
[/I]

[...]

Well, they ask me why I’m drunk all the time
It levels my head and eases my mind
I just walk along and stroll and sing
I see better days and I do better things
I catch dinosaurs
Make love to Elizabeth Taylor
Catch hell from Richard Burton)


And there are tons more of Dylan songs to mention famous people, as well as Van Morrison's.
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Last edited by EinsteinsHund; 08-02-2019 at 01:19 PM.
  #37  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:22 PM
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Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon mentions “Lon Chaney walking with the queen”, and in some versions seeing “Jack Nicholson drinking a pina colada at Trader Vic’s”. His hair was perfect.
  #38  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund View Post
Another Brigitte Bardot reference
Heck, there are a lot of them. There's one in the Bad Examples song "She Smiles Like Richard Nixon" ("She smiles like Richard Nixon / Walks like Brigitte Bardot")
  #39  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:25 PM
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Sorry, fucked that quote up, I foolishly copied the lyrics from the official Boby Dylan website, and this is the most unreliable source for Dylan lyrics you will find, ironically. Here's how it's sung on "Freewheelin'":

Well, my telephone rang, it would not stop
It’s President Kennedy calling me up
He said, “My friend, Bob
What do we need to make the country grow?”
I said, “My friend, John, Brigitte Bardot
Anita Ekberg
Sophia Loren”
Country'll grow
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  #40  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:36 PM
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Counting Crows "Mr. Jones" mentions Bob Dylan and Picasso.
  #41  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:39 PM
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Key Largo-Bertie Higgins

We had it all
Just like Bogie and Bacall
Starring in our old late, late show
Sailing away to Key Largo
  #42  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy Lendervedder View Post
Eminem's Lose Yourself:

"Cause man, these goddamn food stamps don't buy diapers
And there's no movie, there's no Mekhi Phifer, this is my life."
Nothing to add other than I'm listening to my playlist and this exact lyric played in my ear just as I scrolled to your post.
  #43  
Old 08-02-2019, 01:58 PM
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Coincidentally, I'm listening to Pink Floyd today.

Does anybody here remember Vera Lynn?
Speaking of Pink Floyd, “The Fletcher Memorial Home.”

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome, Reagan and Haig,
Mr. Begin and friend, Mrs. Thatcher, and Paisly,
Hello Maggie!
Mr. Brezhnev and party.
Who's the bald chap?
The ghost of McCarthy,
The memories of Nixon.
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I've decided to spend more time criticizing things I don't understand. - Dogbert
  #44  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:03 PM
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Kind of obscure, but it got radio play in the late 80s
Red Blue Jeans by John Kilzer

"She got Stalin on the wall, Beatles in her box
flags in the hall, Lennon in a locket."

Last edited by xizor; 08-02-2019 at 02:03 PM.
  #45  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:44 PM
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Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go by Wham!
You make the day shine brighter than Doris Day
  #46  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Personal View Post
"Radar Love" -- Golden Earring:

"Peggy Lee's comin' on strong."
It is actually Brenda Lee.
  #47  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:51 PM
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I saw Matt Dillon in black and white, there ain't no colour in memories
He rode his brother's Harley across the TV while I was laughing at Dom DeLuise...


--After The Fire by Roger Daltrey

Last edited by blondebear; 08-02-2019 at 02:52 PM.
  #48  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:54 PM
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Shut Up by Joe Walsh mentions his fellow Eagles.

Hey Joe, how ya doin', how's your album, how's your tour
How's Don Henley, how's Glenn Frey,
And who, what where and when and why
  #49  
Old 08-02-2019, 02:58 PM
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The Beatles "Taxman" mentions "Mr. [Harold] Wilson" and "Mr. [Edward] Heath", the British party leaders of the day.
  #50  
Old 08-02-2019, 03:14 PM
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Bertie Higgins' soft rock masterpiece "Key Largo" ?

We had it all
just like Bogie* and Bacall**
starring in out own late late show
sailing away to Key Largo


*Humphrey Bogart
** Lauren Bacall
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