4 Mysterious Song Titles With Perfectly Stupid Explanations
Sometimes a snappy title can be the difference between a hit song and a classic. "Stairway to Heaven" might not have been quite as memorable if it had been titled "Ed's Garage," for example.
Often it seems like musicians just pulled a cool combination of words out of a hat, and that's fine -- artists are allowed to be abstract and weird. It just kind of blows when you find out that the cool combination of words actually does mean something, and it is something really simple ... or even just kind of stupid.
"Hair of the Dog" by Nazareth
If you don't think you've ever heard this song, it's only because you've always thought it was called, "Now you're messin' with a SON OF A BITCH!!!"
And yes, "Son of a Bitch" was Nazareth's intended title for both the song and the album. The record company said (fuck) no, so they just made a bad pun on their title. "Hair (Heir) of the Dog." Get it?
"I Am the Walrus" by the Beatles
Yes, the Beatles (especially John Lennon) were irreverent lads, and yes, the lyrics to "I Am the Walrus" are gibberish. But the title is actually not -- Lennon was referencing the Lewis Carroll poem "The Walrus and the Carpenter," positing himself as the poem's hero. That will be pretty obvious once you watch the video (provided you've ingested a ton of drugs) ...
What John remembered (too late) was that the Walrus was actually the villain of the poem, and that he probably should have called it "I Am the Carpenter." That, however, might very well have been taken as a reference to Jesus, so maybe subconsciously John was just in no hurry to step in that pile of shit again.
"Badge" by Cream
"Badge"?!? Why "Badge"? There are no references to badges in this song, or cops, or even badgers!
Here's why: George Harrison had sloppy handwriting (those silly Beatles!). He helped Eric Clapton write the tune, and wrote the word "bridge" too sloppily for Clapton to read. They had a laugh, the title stuck, Cream rocked.
"25 or 6 to 4" by Chicago
And our winner has lyrics almost as cryptic as its title, but boy does this song rock balls.
It's got some damn crazy lyrics, though. For example ...
Waiting for the break of day
Searching for something to say
Flashing lights against the sky
Giving up, I close my eyes
Holy shit, did that guy just kill himself? Relax: Turns out he's just singing about writing a song ... and failing. A process that Chicago guitarist Robert Lamm (finally) completed at about 3:34 or 3:35 in the morning... or, 25 or (2)6 to 4.
Failure hasn't sounded nearly as awesome before or since.