Saturday, January 14, 2012

List of the Month - Lyrics Quiz

A simple enough challenge this week: name the song, the writer, and the artist most associated with it.

Easy-peasy, lemon-squeezee!

Except that not many people have such unduly retentive memories as I do for such trivial things as lyrics. And not many people have such quirkily diverse musical tastes. Or... do you??

Let me know how you fare down in the comments. I'll post the answers there in a week or so. Good luck!

Froog's Song Lyric Quiz

God sends his spaceships to America - The Beautiful.
They land at six o'clock, and there we are - the dutiful:
Eating from TV trays, tuned in to 'Happy Days',
Waiting for World War Three while Jesus slaves...

I got wild staring eyes
And I got a strong urge to fly,
But I got nowhere to fly to...

Since I was eight I've loved you.
Through garden gates I've shoved you.

My new purple shoes been amazing the people next door,
And my rock-and-roll 45s been enraging the folks on the lower floor.

He gives the kids free samples
Because he knows full well
That today's young innocent faces
Will be tomorrow's clientele.

With the fingers of a potter
And the laughing tale of the fool,
The arranger of disorder
With your strange and simple rules

I'm so tired of playing,
Playing with this bow and arrow.
Gonna give my heart away,
Leave it to the other girls to play.

Well, it's true that I stole your lighter,
And it's also true that I lost the map,
But when you said I wasn't worth talking to,
I had to take your word on that.

Friday night, they'll be dressed to kill
Down at Dino's Bar & Grill.

Oh, I'm so nervous,
I don't know what to do.
I light a cigarette.
I only smoke when I'm with you.
What the hell do I do that for?

Still, I could think of a lot of worse places to be -
Like out on the streets, or down in the sewer,
Or even on the end of a skewer!

Feeling like a paper cup
Floatin' down a storm drain;
Got myself a silk umbrella,
But I can't afford a drop o'rain.


Tony said...

At first I felt ashamed, having recognised only The Old Dope Pedlar when I am word-perfect in the lyrics of hundreds of songs I heard over the last seventy years. Then, on looking at the standard of the others, I was comforted to reflect that I had never known any of them and had not missed anything that was any good.

Tony said...

Retentive memory for lyrics you may have, like me, but "quirkily diverse musical taste"? Most of your choices sound much of a muchness to me: nearly all fairly recent pop; nothing from opera, no Schubert or Dowland; hardly quirky or diverse.

Froog said...

Yes, sorry, I should have added a warning banner saying 'Not for Tony'.

But I did throw in the Lehrer just for you.

If you only know Lehrer and Lieder, your taste isn't really very "diverse".

It seemed unnecessary, within the context, to emphasise that the selection was only drawn from within the rock/pop field. But within that - very broad and populous, if not, in your view, very good - category, it does cover a lot of ground: folk, blues, trip-hop, comedy; and a timespan of nearly 50 years. Not all "fairly recent" at all - unless you're taking a very long-term view of things.

I was thinking of doing a second quiz on show tunes in a month or two. That might favour you rather more.

Froog said...

And the point of a quiz like this is to tease people's memories (if this is the kind of music they have listened to; which most of us have, willingly or not, since it has been the dominant strain of popular culture for the last half-century or more).

I wasn't looking for the 'best' lyrics, but for ones that are, for one reason or another, particularly memorable.

John said...

A lyrics quiz on opera, now there's a challenge! Pick a line from a three minute song or one from a 30 minute oratorio!

Gary said...

Tough quiz!

Good on that 'tease' factor, I guess. I got what is probably the most recent song in the list. And Floyd - after blanking on it a long time. Four or five others are jangling in my head, really feel I ought to know them.

Froog said...

Good to hear from you again, Gary.

You only got two? Oh dear, maybe I did make it a bit too hard.

Tony said...

You don't really think I only know Lehrer and Schubert, do you? Out of the 2500 songs I liked enough to put on my PC or keep on CD, only around 40 are by Lehrer and 540 are by Schubert. The remainder are a very diverse bunch.

But you are quite right to say that I have missed out on all except a couple of dozen of the songs of the last two or three decades and by chance you didn't select any of tho ones that I know. Sorry if I was sniffy about those you did choose.

Cedra Wood said...

I lost a bet with myself, only recognizing one off the top of my (Portis)head!

Froog said...

Gosh, I stumped you as well, C?

Sorry - I guess my tastes are bit too quirky and diverse!

How many did you bet yourself you were going to get?

Froog said...

Ah, sorry - this had slipped my mind for a while.


1) Lawyers In Love by Jackson Browne, from the 1983 album of the same name

2) Nobody Home by Roger Waters (a mark for nearly everyone, I thought!), from Pink Floyd's 1979 album The Wall

3) Reflections In A Flat by Nigel Blackwell, from Back In The DHSS, the 1985 debut album from great British comedy band Half Man Half Biscuit.

4)Tenement Funster by Roger Taylor, from Queen's 1974 breakthrough album (and arguably their best; certainly pretty damn close) Sheer Heart Attack

5) The Old Dope Peddler by Tom Lehrer, which (if memory serves) appeared on his 1959 live album An Evening Wasted With Tom Lehrer

6) Gypsy by Suzanne Vega, which appeared on her second album, Solitude Standing, in 1987 - although I believe she had written it some ten years earlier, when she was still a teenager

7) Glory Box by Portishead (collective writing credit for the band on all their stuff, I think), from their great debut album in 1994, Dummy

8) Divorce Song by Liz Phair, from her 1993 debut (possibly the best debut album by any artist ever) Exile In Guyville

9) The Boys Are Back In Town by Phil Lynott (another mark for everyone!) from Thin Lizzy's great 1976 album Jailbreak

10) I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked, husky-voiced Norwegian rock chick Ida Maria's infectious shoutalong lust song, from her 2008 album (the only "fairly recent" one, Tony) Fortress Round My Heart

11) Peaches by Hugh Cornwell and Jean-Jacques Burnel (another gimme), from The Stranglers' 1977 debut Rattus Norvegicus

12) Downpayment Blues by Bon Scott, my favourite AC/DC song - from their 1978 album (their best, I think) PowerAge