Songs that refer to themselves

How many songs can we think of that refer to themselves in the lyrics? (Not by name, necessarily.)

The most obvious example I can think of is “Your Song,” by Elton John and Bernie Taupin:

And I had the idea for this thread while listening to the New Pornographers’ “Slow Descent into Alcoholism”:

I refuse to believe there aren’t more examples out there, but my sluggish brain has crapped out at two. Anyone else?

Belle and Sebastian, “This is Just a Modern Rock Song”.

Although I’m still not exactly sure if they are referring to the song itself or mocking “modern rock” songs (Belle and Sebastian had five boys and two girls at that time).

“This Song” by Geoge Harrison, done as a sort of response of his losing the “My Sweet Lord” lawsuit.

“Something Changed” by Pulp.

I wrote the song two hours before we met.
I didn’t know your name or what you looked like yet.
Oh I could have stayed at home and gone to bed.
I could have gone to see a film instead.
You might have changed your mind and seen your friends
Life could have been very different then but something changed.

There’s You’re so Vain by Carly Simon, which has the chorus:

There’s also Fire and Rain, by James Taylor has a line:

That should have been “I wrote this song…”

Weird Al’s parody of George Harrison’s cover of “I’ve got my mind set on you” entitled “This song is just six words long.”

“Number Three” by They Might Be Giants is all about writing the song itself:

This Song’s Just Six Words Long, by “Weird Al” Yankovic.

You Know the Rest by Steve Earle

Last verse:
“Well this song ain’t got no reason
Hell this song barely rhymes
Well it come to me when I was asleep
And it wakes me up sometimes
I can’t get no rest
You know the rest”

McCartney’s “Silly Love Songs” at least implies a self-reference:

Everything is Right is Wrong Again, by They Might Be Giants contains the line: ‘And now this song is over now’ (actuall, its halfway through the song)

Too Young to Die, by the Divine Comedy, begins: ‘Too young to die but too old to survive/ I’ve spent too long trying to write this song/ The tune is okay but the words are all wrong’ (how’s that for self-referentiality?)

Singer Must Die, by Leonard Cohen says: ‘Your vision is right/ My vision is wrong/ I’m sorry for smudging the air with my song’

Tragically, the first thing that came to my mind was Avril Lavigne’s “Sk8er Boi.”

To make up for that somewhat, the next thing I thought of was “Art is Hard” by Cursive.

These aren’t quite as obvious as the other ones posted, but I think they count.

How do songs like “Judy is a Punk” by the Ramones:

or “Prove My Love” by Violent Femmes:

figure into this?

And Steve Goodman’s “You Never Even Called Me By My Name,” as recorded by David Allen Coe about “the perfect country & western song” includes:

King Crimson’s “Happy With What You Have To Be Happy With”:

*And when I have some words
This is the way I’ll sing
To our distortion box
To make the mother sing

I gonna have to write a chorus
We’re gonna need to have a chorus
And this is as good as any other place to sing until I’m blue in the face


I guess we’ll repeat the chorus
We’re gonna repeat the chorus
I guess we’ll repeat the chorus
We’re gonna repeat the chorus

From 1972
by Edward Bear
This is the “Last Song” I’ll ever write for you.

"Here’s a little song I wrote,
you might want to sing it, note for note…

Don’t worry, be happy…"

PIL’s This Is Not a Love Song
Matchbox 20’s This Is Not a Love Song
Juliana Theory’s This Is Not a Love Song

Note : fixed link coding - Euty

The show Garry Shandling did on cable some years ago had a theme song with the lyrics (if memory serves):

*This is the theme to Garry’s show
The opening theme to Garry’s show
Garry called me up and asked if I could write his theme song
I’m almost halfway finished
How do you like it so far?
How do you like the theme to Garry’s show?

This is the theme to Garry’s show
The opening theme to Garry’s show
This is the music that you hear
While you watch the credits
We’re almost to the part
Where I start to whistle
This is the theme to Garry Shandling’s Show.

(Whistling of melody)

This is the theme to Garry Shandling’s Show!*