Songs That We Sing Wrong

Last week, my youngest sister sent a text to me and my middle sister in a frenzy asking, “What’s the name of the person in Michael Jackson’s song Smooth Criminal?”  I immediately sent a text back saying “Annie.” She was gobsmacked. It turns out she’s been singing “Eddie are you OK?” for the past 30 odd years and only discovered it was wrong after her husband challenged her mid chorus on a car journey.

We’ve all been there haven’t we? We’ve all been singing at the tops of our voices only for a friend to single us out for singing the wrong words to the lyrics.

My mum still laughs at the fact that back in 1984 (Yes I appreciate that many of you weren’t even born yet), I was 9 and used to sing along to Howard Jones “What is love in a washing bin.” I have no idea why and when I listen back to it, I can’t see how I could possibly fit those lyrics in. The correct words are “What is love in anyway.”

Perhaps one of the best case of misheard lyrics is from a friend of my sister. At university she was shocked to discover that D.I.S.C.O by Ottawan wasn’t actually singing the lyrics “We are Eskimos.” I still think about this even when I hear this song now!

One of my oldest friends still refuses to sing the correct lyrics – “Begging You” by Madcon and instead prefers her own version. “Peggy Sue.”

We have another friend that was caught and ridiculed for singing “Tonight I sellotape my glove to you,” instead of “Tonight I celebrate my love for you.”


Songs that My Kids Have Got Wrong

Daisy, Daisy

It seems it’s not just us that end up singing the wrong lyrics to songs. Our kids are just as bad too! When my eldest, Alice was 3, I overheard her singing the following lines:

Daisy, Daisy give me your arm so blue.

I’m off crazy, it won’t be long for you.

It won’t be a tired marriage.

I can’t accept a carriage.

A bowl of sweets, a bowl of sweets for a bicycle made for you.

I still think this is brilliant, especially the bit about it “not being long” for you and not having a “tired marriage”!

Join The Celebration

Every Christmas since she was 2, my youngest daughter Eva sings this: “Hump and join the celebration,” instead of “Come and join the celebration,” which she apparently learnt at her pre-school. It was a little embarrassing when last year she sang these lyrics out at the top of her voice at the pre-school Christmas nativity play and we did get some funny looks.  It has become a bit of a standing joke with everyone joining in with the wrong lyrics every Christmas. (As an aside, I have a cute video of Eva singing this song with her special lyrics from when she was 2 which I can’t seem to upload into WordPress. If you have any ideas, please let me know in the comments!)



NME’s Top Choices for Misheard Lyrics

Last year, NME did a top 40 of the most misheard song lyrics and you can see their list here.

Here’s the top 10:

1. “Money for nothin’ and chips for free”. Correct lyric: “Money for nothin’ and your chicks for free” from Dire Straits’ ‘Money For Nothing’

2. “Every time you go away, you take a piece of meat with you”. Correct lyric: “Every time you go away take a piece of me with you” from Paul Young’s ‘Every Time You Go Away’.

3. “Sue Lawley”. Correct lyric: “So lonely” from The Police’s ‘So Lonely’.

4. “We built this city on sausage rolls”. Correct lyric: “We built this city on rock ‘n’ roll” from Starship’s ‘We Built This City’.

5. “Saving his life from this warm sausage tea”. Correct lyric: “Spare him his life from this monstrosity” from Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

6. “See that girl, watch her scream, kicking the dancing queen”. Correct lyric: “See that girl, watch that scene, dig in the dancing queen” from ABBA’s ‘Dancing Queen’.

7. “Excuse me while I kiss this guy”. Correct lyric: “Excuse me while I kiss the sky” from Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Purple Haze’.

8. “Dancing queen, feel the beat from the tangerine”. Correct lyric: “Dancing queen, feel the beat from the tambourine” from ABBA’s ‘Dancing Queen’.

9. “Sweet dreams are made of cheese”. Correct lyric: “Sweet dreams are made of these” from The Eurythmics’ ‘Sweet Dreams (are made of this)’.

10. “Calling Jamaica”. Correct lyric: “Call me when you try to wake her” from REM’s ‘The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite’.


I love number 4 and 5!

Who knows how many songs we are all singing along to with completely the wrong lyrics! Let me know if you have any others that you know of, or a favourite from this list!

31 thoughts on “Songs That We Sing Wrong

  1. Love this! Have shared. Especially love Alice’s ‘Daisy’ lyrics! And now an admission: I thought it was ‘Eddie’ are you OK? as well! Really surprised. Are you sure???! x

    1. Hah!! Yes I’m sure (I did have to double check on Google!). The kids’ versions are funny, mostly because they’re so adamant that they’re right! Thanks for sharing. Xx

  2. “You might as well face it you’re a dick with a glove” (instead of addicted to love).
    And the most famous one “Ohhh, ohhh, me ears are alight” (instead of The Israelites)
    “There’s a bathroom on the right” (instead of There’s a bad moon on the rise)

  3. And way back in time there was a song called Poetry in Motion by Johnny Tillotson.

    We always thought it was Oh! A tree in motion!

    Nothing changes!


  4. This is awesome! My other half is always laughing at me because I get all the lyrics wrong to songs!! I was totally with your sister on the Eddie thing!! When I was a 17yr old girl racer i used to sing out “I am a builder” to the song by `the original’ called ‘I love you baby’ total lyric fail! (the clue was in the title) Nicky x #bigpinklink
    mums’ army recently posted…Are you enjoying your children yet?My Profile

  5. HAHA! This made me chuckle. I though it was obviously Annie but perhaps not. I also love bohemian rhapsody so I forget that people may not know all the lyrics. I do like the alternative though!

    1. I thought it was obviously Annie too, but it seems like there’s a lot of people out there thinking Eddie!!! X

    1. Hah!!! I’ve never heard this cover! I will check it out and tell my sister she wasn’t completely wrong after all!! X

  6. Lol my husband is the worst for this, always making up alternative lyrics to songs, drives me mad! Apparently Dolly Parton was begging Jolene not to take her ‘jam’… #BigPinkLink

  7. Ha ha, I love it when lyrics are sung wrong, and love your list. My friend used to sing ‘Israeli men’ rather than ‘its raining men’, she was really convinced we were wrong when we told her the real words (I suppose raining men is actually more obscure!). #coolmumclub
    Kate recently posted…Cheat’s mango meringue messMy Profile

    1. Thanks Hun! Glad you liked it, I enjoyed writing it and remembering all the mistakes I’ve heard over the years! Xx

  8. Okay I’m going slightly off piste here but my Hubby thought in Church, ‘Peace be with you’ was ‘Pleased to meet you’, and ‘Our father who art in heaven’ was ‘Our Father who Aint in heaven’…. hilarious…
    I know me and my BFF had some corkers growing up too – no doubt i’ll be back when I can remember them!
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub
    MMT recently posted…#coolmumclub Linky week 65My Profile

    1. Not at all! I’m loving hearing any misheard lyrics or sayings! Your Hubby did well! Thanks for hosting. X

  9. These are brilliant! I love your daughters’ versions. Hubby and often use H’s early language often using “my” or “my’s” one we love is “my do that now” – is one she still says and I don’t want her to stop, she suddenly stopped saying so many I hope I’ve caught them on video. #coolmumclub
    New Mummy Blog recently posted…My H&M Maternity favourites | Pregnancy StyleMy Profile

    1. It’s good to record them or get them down somewhere so you can look back and remind yourself how funny they were!

  10. I saw someone (can’t remember who now) on Instagram post that they thought the lyrics to Anne Maries song were “shower the horse” and I can’t hear anything else when its on!!
    It didn’t help that I didn’t know the actual words at the time of seeing said post.
    Ciao adios…shower the horse…. much better than the original I think!
    keepmum recently posted…Makeup: Do I Consider it Childs Play?My Profile

  11. Oh my good grief I nearly wet myself (which when you were much older than ‘just’ 9 in 1984 happens quite a lot these days). SUE LAWLEY!! If she was on Twitter you could let her know. I howled. The sellotape. The whole thing. And erm…the Madcon song…I always thought it was ‘Baby’ instead of begging which explains why I’ve never been able to find this song. Thanks for such a laugh. My fave post of yours! #coolmumclub
    absolutely prabulous recently posted…What Happened to the BiBs17 Awards? Doesn’t The Writing Matter Anymore?My Profile

    1. Hah!! Sorry to make you nearly lose control of your bladder! I wish Sue Lawley was on Twitter! And glad we’ve cleared up the Madcon song. Thanks Prabs. Xx

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