Easter Eggs In Music--don't know what else to call them!

Yeah, it doesn’t necessarily have to be A=verse and B=chorus and C=bridge. The A, B, and C (and you can go up the alphabet as needed) just represents different sections of the song. But cjepson’s example is one way it can be (and the most likely way it would show up in a pop song.)

So true about Bonham. I just listened to “For Your Life”; a great example of Bonhams’ “mix it up” style.

More a lyrical variation than a musical one, but the closing sentence of Bob Dylan’s “The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll”. When Zanzinger is given an absurdly lenient sentence, the recurring line Take the rag away from your face/Now ain’t the time for your tears is changed to Bury the rag deep in your face/For now’s the time for your tears. So powerful.

I’ve always loved that line - I see it as a little bit of Eliza’s original accent peeking through, or else she’s intentionally putting it on in order to be sarcastic. Plus, y’know, it rhymes. :wink:

THis isn’t quite the same thing, but… Every time the term “simultaneous release” is used in “Dani California,” it means something slightly different: Sexual release, release from prison, a suicide pact the narrator wussed out on, etc.

How about Hall & Oates’ “You Make My Dreams”? The clever thing is that the title is taken from the backup vocal rather than the lead (i.e., while the lead vocal is “You make my dreams come true”, the backup vocal does not include the words “come true”). And at the very end of the song, to emphasize this point, the lead vocal drops out, while the background vocals sing the title one last time.

So this tune is in a very select category of hit songs named after the backing vocal part, including “The Shoop Shoop Song” and “Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo”.

One of my favorite is Ringo Starr in “Ticket to Ride” where in the first verse, the tom beats are syncopated and stuttery, but in the next go at the verse, they “straighten up” into eighth notes. I actually somehow never realized that until I was playing along to it.

Yes. The “hard syncopation” gives way to something less wrenching and more conventional.

Also, Ringo does a roll fill after “-i-i-ide” each time, except in the last iteration, when he does a flam instead. It somehow conveys “we’re getting to the end here.”

Ah, yes, I do remember that as well. I think I also recall the roll fills subtlely changing throughout the song.


In some cases it may be “playing around” as described in the OP, especially in live performances. But studio recordings are nearly always very carefully orchestrated in great detail and this kind of thing doesn’t just slip in. It’s usually in there to prevent monotony.

I think it’s what pro musicians do to make songs interesting. There would be too many examples of it to count. Songs would be boring without it, or at least not up to producers standard.

I like Smokey Robinsons Ooh Baby Baby. Each verse comes in with a different attack and the third, last one is aided in that by coming off the middle part. Really great.

Box of Rain by the Dead has different chord changes for each verse. Really striking and effective.

I don’t hear it. It has more prominent horns and female background singers in support, and he times it a hair different, all of these because it’s later in the song, for emphasis. That’s all I hear.

To answer this general question, basically, that’s pretty much it. I’m not sure it’s saving the “best” for last, but it’s that many/most songs have an emotional build. Of course, not all follow the same pattern, but a typical arrangement would be to start low-to-medium on the musical intensity scale and gradually ramp up, so towards the end, you reach a high point emotionally and musically (and then you might end on that, or you might have an diminuendo, there’s a lot of ways to do thing.) It’s kind of like a story or an orgasm, you have a build-up, a climax, a release. It’s just one of the natural ways to structure a song.

Same song, different “egg” . . . I don’t know the proper way to describe it but late in the song his voice gets a bit, I don’t know - gritty when he sings “she’s got a ticket to riiiiddddddde”.

I was just listening to my IPod and was reminded of a couple. On Taylor Swift’s Shake if Off, she sings the line “I go on too many dates” and then she does this sort of giggle and it encompasses her whole attitude toward the people that are judging her. You can hear the quotation marks around it and her total eye rolling, fucko off attitude.

In Deep Purple’s Knocking at Your Back Door in the first verse when Mr. Gillan is singing about Miss Lucy, when he gets to the line “the log was in my pocket” - and I may be totally imaging this, or it may be so intentional that you might say “duh, that’s exactly what he’s trying to convey” - anyway, I always hear, and in turn mimic it when I sing along (which is always!) a sort of change in his vocals that is . . . smug. Like he’s telling the story to his mates and his tone changes to indicate " I got it, if you know what I mean". Sorry, I didn’t describe that well, but if anyone else who loves this song knows what I’m talking about I’d love to hear it.

Same song, in the second verse, when he’s talking about miss Nancy (who was so fancy), when he’s singing about the "members that she toyed with in her city club. . . " there’s (to me) a distinct mock posh tone that, again, I have to adapt also and it just brings a little more joy to an awesome song.

Going way back to when I was a dumbass teen girl with a love for Journey and a crush on Mr. Steve Perry, on the song Open Arms, toward then end he sings “now that you’ve come back . . .” and he adds a bit of schmaltz that I totally ate up.