Rhyme Crime: The 20 Worst Rhymes In Pop Music History

When Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder managed to rhyme public and subject in Tears of a Clown, it was sheer genius. Getting that perfect coupling of words and phrases is what makes for a brilliant song. Then there are musicians who just write down words because they rhyme, or because they think they rhyme, and hope that we won t notice that the lyrics don't make any sense. Sometimes the songs are so good that we don t notice. Then there are these examples.ÂÂ


Ashley Simpson, "La La"

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You make me wanna la la,
In the kitchen on the floor,
I'll be a french maid,
Where I'll meet you at the door.

While we're sure it's easier to lip synch simple words, we're a little confused about what la la actually means. Swiffer maybe?ÂÂ

Jadakiss and Kanye West, "Gettin' It In"

Don't try to treat me like I ain t famous,
My apologies, are you into astrology?
Cause I'm, I'm tryin to make it to Uranus.
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Have you ever looked at a horoscope, Kanye? Do you see Uranus there? This song reminds us of another star sign -- Feces.

Styx, "Mr. Roboto"

Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto,
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto.

The motherlode of the inane rhyme. Styx -- what a couple of...er& what rhymes with Styx?

The Police, "Walking on the Moon"

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Giant steps are what you take,
Walking on the moon,
I hope my legs don't break,
Walking on the moon.

Sting phones it in again. Are limb injuries a big concern for astronauts? Really? Wouldn't an injury be less likely in the diminished gravity? It s one giant leap for man, it s one, ouch, my ankle!

Foreigner, "Hot Blooded"

That's why I'm hot blooded, check it and see,
I got a fever of a hundred and three.
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We've certainly noticed that nothing attracts women at a club more than sweaty, feverish foreigners with mullets.

Rod Stewart, "Every Picture Tells a Story"

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On the Peking ferry I was feeling merry,
Sailing on my way back here,
I fell in love with a slit eyed lady,
By the light of an eastern moon,
Shangai Lil never used the pill.

You have to love this verse from what is actually a great song. It has it all cultural insensitivity, geographic fallacies, clichés and of course really bad rhymes. Shanghai Lil sounds like a Sino-Germanic hooker from a 1930s movie.
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Steve Miller Band, "The Last Wombat in Mecca"

There are few things I won't find,
Some are better left alone,
Like that bulldog in the bathroom,
Like that wombat on the phone.

This is the same guy who calls himself the midnight toker? Really? We're shocked.

Steely Dan, "Josie"

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Jo would you love to scrapple
She'll never say no
Shine up the battle apple

Would Josie like a glass of Snapple, perhapple?

King Crimson, "Ladies of the Road"

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High diving Chinese trender
Black hair and black suspender
Said, Please me no surrender
Just love to feel your Fender

Yes the guitarist wrote this. Wonder what gave that away? As you might guess from the above picture, King Crimson were never the sort of band to get the chicks, unless you count those really earnest ones in beads and tie-dies who want to talk about mellotron relooping and off-time chord progressions.
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Michael Bolton, "Love is a Wonderful Thing"

The only thing a river knows,
Is runnin' to the sea,
And every spring when a flower grows,
It happens naturally.

Where is our Gravol? Bolton makes Lionel Ritchie read like John Keats.

Jimmy Buffett, "Margaritaville"

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I blew out my flip flop,
Stepped on a pop top.

The song originally appeared on an album titled Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes, possibly the worst rhyming album title of all time. After the above line, Jimmy asks if a woman is to blame. For what? A song that sounds like it was written by a drunk seven year-old?

Peter Gunz, "Deja Vu"

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"Niggas in the Bronx,
Call me Lex cause I push a Lex,
And I rock a Rolex,
And I lounge on Lex',
And I love sex.
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If Borat wrote a hip hop song, this is what it would sound like. Mr. Gunz, you were ahead of your time. Wait, you weren t kidding?

Ram Jam, "Black Betty"

Whoa, black betty,
Ram a lam, whoa, black betty,
Black Betty had a child,
Ram a lam, the damn thing gone wild,
She said, I'm worryin' outta mind,
The damn thing gone blind.

From the Hall of Fame of Dumbass Lyrics, this song is also famous for having the worst guitar solo of all time.
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Red Hot Chili Peppers, "Snow"

Hey oh... listen what I say oh
I got your hey oh, now listen what I say oh

These lines were almost definitely written while under the influence of the titular substance. If only they had been watching Scarface when they wrote this, they might have come up with another slang term for cocaine that rhymes with say oh.

The Smiths, "Reel Around the Fountain"

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But take me to the haven of your bed,
was something that you never said,
two lumps, please,
you're the bee's knees.

This song is about gay sex. Or bees. Or tea. We re not sure, but we feel completely miserable now.

Keith Urban, "You ll Think of Me"

And take your cap and leave my sweater
Cause we got nothing left to weather
In fact I'll feel a whole lot better.

Sweater? As an Aussie, shouldn t that be jumper? Aside from the irony of a country singer being named Urban, does anyone else feel uneasy with his faux southern twang?
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Jungle Brothers, "Candy

After a little hanky panky,
We make the room smell stanky, frankly,
But I m a man, I don t give a damn. So what s up?
You wanna rub up horny, as I lay back in the cut?"

And then things start getting really raunchy in this song from the funky Jungle Brothers. But at least they were being frank.

Emerson Lake and Palmer, "Karn Evil 9. Second Part."

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Performing on a stool,
We've a sight to make you drool,
Seven virgins and a mule,
Keep it cool. Keep it cool.

Because Karn Evils 1 through 8 left so much to be desired. It should also be noted that ELP have a live album called Welcome Back My Friends to the Show That Never Ends. And at three hours long it might be the most aptly named album in rock history.

Mariah Carey, "Don t Stop"

I'm like a bowl of gumbo,
You ain't hotter than this,
I'm what they play in the clubo.
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All right, making fun of Mariah Carey is like making fun of the kid with the helmet on the short bus, but c mon, this line deserves some recognition. But then again, Carey is like gumbo lumpy, thick and of indeterminate ethnicity.

(Ed Note: Thanks to user CentralTheme for pointing out that the offending gumbo/clubo rhyme is rapped by Mystikal, not sung by Mariah. For more Mystikal related hilarity, check back tomorrow our Cliffs Notes on Mystikal's "Pussy Crook.")

Bob Dylan, "Ballad of a Thin Man"

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You have many contacts
Among the lumberjacks
To get you facts
When someone attacks your imagination
But nobody has any respect
Anyway they already expect you
To just give a check
To tax-deductible charity organizations

And top prize for worst rhyming goes to his Bobness, naturally. Sure, he is a poet and the voice of a generation, but at some point during the '60s he realized that he could write anything he wanted and, as long as it rhymed, Rolling Stone would think it was important commentary on Vietnam. So, like any artist who isn't being challenged, he got lazy, and started alternating actual poetry with nonsensical jibberish about "having contacts among the lumberjacks."

When he's not writing for CRACKED, Kevin Hill can be found insulting musicians over at PlayOnLyrics.com