The Most Misunderstood Songs in Rock History

More

How it feels to find out that your favorite karaoke song is really about oral sex or emotional abuse

karaokebannerCROP.jpg

Most erudite and music-savvy readers are no doubt familiar with the concept of a mondegreen—it's a song lyric that's frequently misunderstood, often with hilarious results (like the all time classic, "Excuse me while I kiss this guy," from Jimi Hendrix's "Purple Haze"). But what about entire songs that are misunderstood?

These can be even more amusing and/or squirm-inducing, so we thought we'd round up a few classics of the genre. If you've ever had the mildly embarrassing feeling of having to explain a joke to someone who just doesn't quite get it, then imagine how the songwriters feel.

This post also appears on Flavorpill, an Atlantic partner site.

Image credit: Reuters

Jump to comments
Presented by

Tom Hawking is an editor at Flavorpill.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What Do You See When You Look in the Mirror?

In a series of candid video interviews, women talk about self-image, self-judgment, and what it means to love their bodies


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

Just In