5 Famous Songs Who’s Meanings You’ve Definitely Misunderstood

April 12th, 2017

Have you ever been in the unfortunate position of realizing that you’ve got the lyrics of your favorite song all wrong? Like when you realize that the lyrics of Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Purple Rain’ isn’t ‘Scuse me, while I kiss this guy’ but ‘Scuse me, while I kiss the sky?’ It’s a shitty feeling and the discovery makes you question your belief in everything, like “Did Wolverine really die?” (Sorry about the spoiler) and “will Ed Sheeran really make a cameo in GOT season 7?” (Sorry about the spoiler again.) Now, imagine if you realize that the meaning of the song is entirely different from what you thought it was. Wouldn’t that be a real bummer? Well, we’re here to help make things right. Here are some songs whose meanings are completely different from what, we’re sure, you thought they were!

Blackbird – The Beatles

Although most of us are quite sure this song isn’t really dedicated to a blackbird (Paul McCartney was no bird-lover,) we do think it’s about freedom, that the singer is telling us to seize the day and assert our independence. The song actually has a much deeper meaning. Inspired by the civil rights movement in America, particularly a desegregation move in an Arkansas school, Paul McCartney wrote this song to inspire African-American people to fight for their rights. ‘Blackbird’ then was a symbol for a black person.

We heart it


Image courtesy: We Heart It

Hotel California – Eagles

This is probably one of the most controversial rock songs of our time. While some are convinced this song is about black magic or the devil, many others are just as convinced that the song actually has no meaning. What’s evident though is that the song is incredibly tactile, with every line appealing to one sense or the other. Lead singer and writer of the song Don Healy, however, says that the song is about “the dark underbelly of the American Dream, and about excess in America.” It’s also a covert take on the nature of the music industry, in which self-destruction and greed seems to abound.



Image courtesy: Zero Hedge

Imagine – John Lennon

This song is filled with optimistic lyrics that speak of a better tomorrow, a utopia in which happiness, contentment, love and harmony abound. The singer seems to be asking us to work towards this dream, so that we all can ‘live as one.’ However, according to President Jimmy Carter, the song has some serious Communist underpinnings. John Lennon himself called the song “virtually the Communist manifesto.”

John Lennon

Born in the USA – Bruce Springsteen

Thanks to the song’s catchy rock and roll rhythm and its assertive chorus, it quickly became an often-played political anthem, loved by politicians and the public alike. However, the song was actually about the devastating effects of the Vietnam War. The song’s protagonist, who is a war veteran, is left with no family, no government support and not a very good life. He did so much for his country and yet, is left with nothing.

Big Think


Image courtesy: Big Think

Paper Planes – MIA

This song made a quick appearance in the movie Slumdog Millionaire but the impact it has had on music lovers and critics has been long-lasting. On first listen, one gets the feeling that the singer is promoting criminal activities and violence. The chorus even features the sounds of gunshots and the ‘ka-ching’ of a cash register. The singer, however, says the song is about something entirely different. According to her, the song is a sarcastic take on the stereotypes surrounding minorities and the dark nexus that exists between the state and arms dealers! Maybe you want to listen to the song again, eh?



Comments are closed.