I’m not really a “music fan.” I mean, I like music as much as the next guy, unless that guy has purchased an album at some point in the last decade, but what really gets me down are the songs. As soon as you start jamming lyrics where they don’t belong, any piece of music becomes a boring sadfest.
Show me a songwriter and I’ll show you a manic-depressive who spends their extra energy trying to figure out how to be sadder.
It seems like a lot of readers have love on the brain this month, so let’s open up the mailbag and learn why love songs are all heart-stoppingly sad:
Bryan D. of Portland, Maine says “I Want You Back” by The Jackson 5 always makes him “move [his] feet!”
Bryan, the only thing sadder than the eventual fate of every member of the Jackson 5 is the lyrical content of their groovin’, danceable, delightful music. Imagine a song that takes the side of the ex-lover in Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It).” Nobody would make that song, you say? Not only would they, they did. In 1973. And probably every year since then, but in this case, the narrator doesn’t even like the girl. He just doesn’t like seeing her happy with someone else. He’s like an animal and a child who can’t decide which of them should get to enjoy a chew toy.
“I’ll Make Love to You” by Boyz II Men, submitted by L. Dudas
L, I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt here and say that nostalgia is coloring your view of this song, but let’s try a little experiment. Find yourself a copy of the lyrics online. Now track down a couple of m4www ads on craigslist. Read a few lines of each to a stranger, and see if they can tell which one won a Grammy. Yikes.
From the twitter, @theIslandFish says, “’Love Will Keep Us Together’ by the Captain and Tennille! Lolol!”
Too soon, Island Fish, too soon.
Rick J. of Ontario, CA writes, “The Beatles, man. The Beatles’ ‘She Loves You.’ That’s not sad because she loves you!!”
Well, I suppose the Beatles are okay–if you like boy bands–but I think you could have made a better choice here, Rick. This is another song about an abusive boyfriend. At best, the chorus is being sung sarcastically. Taken at face value, this is about a woman who’s going back to a man who needs to apologize for hurting her so badly “she almost lost her mind.” We’re going to have to recalibrate the sadnometer after testing this one!
Whew! I wouldn’t be surprised if we’re still looking at love songs here until Christmas! After all, 90% of songs are about love, and 100% of them are sad! If you think you can name one–just one!–happy song, then give it your best, at SongsAreSad@thehiggsweldon.com. Until then, keep on humming a happy tune!
The Higgs Weldon is a humor website with funny stories, articles, cartoons, and one liners. It was started by the Los Angeles stand-up comedy community, but takes submissions from everybody. Please read and enjoy our jokes!