The most obvious candidate here is “Every Breath you Take” by the Police. Too many people have interpreted this as a love song, when it’s clearly a song of obsession and stalking.
A few more: James Blunt’s “You’re beautiful.” I’ve heard this coming out of women’s cell phones too many times to count, and people want it played at their weddings, even though the last two lines are “But it’s time to face the truth/I will never be with you.”
Same thing with U2’s “One.” How on earth can people think this is a wedding song? They’re only hearing what they choose to hear and leaving out all the lines of bitterness.
Isn’t there an Avril Levigne song where she threatens to kick a guy’s ass? That one’s always disturbed me, since from the rest of the lyrics that there was at least some very heavy mutual flirting going on at some earlier point in the story.
Question: Do you mean songs that aren’t intended to be love songs, but are kind of put out there ironically–or do you mean songs that were theoretically supposed to be love songs but miss the mark completely?
(Don’t mind me, I’m just stalling… I’ll think of something…)
Okay, I just thought of one (kind of obscure.) In the movie Evita there’s a song called mumble mumble mumble in which Eva sings to Juan Peron:
It seems crazy, but you must believe
There’s nothing calculated, nothing planned
Please forgive me if I seem naive
I would never want to force your hand
But you must understand I’d be good for you
I’d be surprisingly good for you…
I’m not talking of a hurried night
A frantic tumble then a shy goodbye
Creeping home before it gets too light
That’s not the reason that I caught your eye
Which has to imply I’d be good for you
I’d be suprisingly good for you, etc.
On the surface it sounds pretty, but if you’re engrossed enough in the plot of the film it’s crystal clear she is indeed suggesting a lifetime commitment–but not out of concern for a loving relationship–only because it would be mutually beneficial to both of their careers. And the delivery, this over-the-top manipulative kind of sweetness, is spot-on.
I think the Dave Matthews song “Crash” is about a peeping tom.
My mom and I were going over songs like this this weekend - she was looking for 10 songs to suggest to be played at my brother’s wedding (as requested by the bride). I told her “make sure you don’t choose ‘Every Breath You Take’ and ‘Crash’”
this doesn’t quite fit (because it does seem to want very much to be a love song,) but I always have to snicker when people call in to radio stations to request “I will always love you” for a current SO. I know it would make my heart beat faster if my sweetie reqested a break up song for me. :rolleyes:
There’s a song by Andrew Ratchin called Happy Endings (Romeo and Juliet) that contains one of my favorite verses of all time.
Maybe a lover comes along,
Maybe in story or in song.
Maybe the heart is really strong,
A million lemmings can’t be wrong.
I don’t know if anyone has ever mistaken it for a straight-up love song (I don’t know if anyone but me has even heard it). It’s about the classic love story of all time, but with an underlying message that true love is just not as easy as everyone makes it sound.
From Wiki: The song itself asks the person to whom it is addressed to show love through “more than words.” Given its context as a song on Pornograffitti, a concept album about a decadent and corrupt society, it could be interpreted as a cynical plea for sex, though most listeners interpret it as being about emotional intimacy.
I missed the edit window while looking up a cite. I have to correct myself: he commited suicide before the case went to trial. I was a member of the Sarah M mailing list at the time it was happening. Everyone was piling on this guy and he certainly read all the vitrol he was receiving. My theory is that he woke up to the pain he was causing Sarah and felt so bad he offed himself.
I don’t think people, or at least the people I used to know, ever listened to the lyrics at the end of Paradise By the Dashboard Light by Meatloaf - not a “love” song, but still misinterpreted :
I couldn’t take it any longer
Lord I was crazed
And when the feeling came upon me
Like a tidal wave
I started swearing to my god and on my mother’s grave
That I would love you to the end of time
I swore that I would love you to the end of time!
So now I’m praying for the end of time
To hurry up and arrive
Cause if I gotta spend another minute with you
I don’t think that I can really survive
I’ll never break my promise or forget my vow
But God only knows what I can do right now
I’m praying for the end of time
It’s all that I can do
Praying for the end of time, so I can end my time with you!!!
It was long ago and it was far away
and it was so much better than it is today