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My Dad told my sister and I that he made up the jingle for Pepsodent toothpaste....."You'll wonder where the yellow went when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent." We believed it for years and so did all our friends.
When I was a kid I was a big fan of the Rolling Stones. I thought the song Mother's Little Helper was about a kid that helped his Mom. I always told my Mom I was her little helper, and of course they didn't tell me the true meaning of the song. It wasn't until I was in High School that I figured it out.
When I was growing up we never played rock and roll in the house, only classical music. The first time I ever heard rock and roll I couldn't make out the words clearly, and I thought the singer was singing nonsense words. I concluded that rock and roll was ALWAYS nonsense words, and I believed that for a long time..
I used to think that music was recorded by many, many tape recorders when the artists were playing their songs. If it was a really popular album, the artist had to do this over and over again because there were not as many tape recorders as tapes.
When people talked about dentist's office music, I heard it as "Dennis Stoffers music." I thought that Dennis Stoffers was a musician who made very boring music that nobody liked.
I remember walking to school singing The Doors song "Light my Fire." I thought it was about a guy who went camping, forgot matches, and was singing to a female camper who was walking by....you know, "Come on baby light my fire..."
I could see him on his knees next to his camp fire, pleading for matches "Try to set the night on fire...!"
When the Cindy Laupher song She Bop came out when I was seven years old I thought it was about dancing. As I heard pop songs from the 50's and 60's in which the word "bop" was used for dancing for a long time I had just thought the song was about getting in trouble for dancing ( sort of like in the Footloose movie). It wasn't until I was nineteen I discovered from an older friend what She Bop actually meant, and I blushed so many shades of red. LOL.
I used to have a tape that I played over and over until everybody was sick of it. It was one of those silly song tapeswith goofy kids songs. There was a song that mentioned several types of food and had something that rhymed with it. It was crazy. One of the verses went like this:
Oh it's meat, meat, meat that knocks you of your feet.
So one day after playing that tape, we were having dinner. I was scared to death to take a bite of the meat. We were sitting in the floor around a coffee table in front of the TV, and I thought if I ate the meat, I would be lifted through the air and thrown to the other side of the room. My mom got so agravated trying to get me to understand that the people on the tape were not serious. I didn't like meat anyway, so when this happened, she thought it was because of the tape.
For a long time I thought that Elton John was a former member of the band, The Rolling Stones. That belief came from his song "Philadelphia Freedom", whose first line is "I used to be a rolling stone."
When I was around seven years old, Queen came out with "Bohemian Rhapsody." I figured out that it was about a murderer condemned to die. I asked my mother how they would kill him. She told me that they would put him in a large box and close the lid, and he would proceed to suffocate and die. To this day, when I hear the gong struck at the end of the song, I picture two flaps closing on a really big cardboard box.
I believed that all songs just existed. I never imagined anyone could write one even though I knew about writing poetry. "New" songs (hits) were just songs someone had found and decided to sing and make popular.
When I first heard as a child the song, "What Child Is This?", with its line "Whom angels greet with anthems sweet", I thought that anthems were some kind of flowers.
i always wondered why people sent plums to the queen, in the anthem "send her victorias"
When I heard the line about "figgy pudding" in the "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" song. it grossed me out. For some reason I assumed that figgy pudding was made of ground-up pigs, simply because figgy rhymes with piggy.
My uncle had an song book with "Home on the Range" in it. I'd never come across the word "seldom" before, so when it came to the line "where seldom is heard a discouraging word" I thought this meant that there was this rural idyll "where the deer and the antelope play" but someone kept coming along and spoiling it by saying "seldom", which was "a discouraging word" (perhaps because no one knew what it meant.
When songs came on the radio, adults would say, 'Oh, that's by so-and-so.' I was amazed they knew so much, and scared that knowing who sang what songs was something you were forced to memorize in school.
I used to believe that conductors batons had a slit cut down them and if you waved them about hard enough music would come out. Yes, I did try. No, it didn't work.
I once was terrified of the Christmas song "Deck the Halls" because I was certain that the line, "troll the ancient yuletide carol" referred to a big mean troll tending to a fireplace.
Part of the reason I'm so rebellious in ways you can't imagine could be from this Sesame Street song called "It's Hip To Be A Square" that would play a lot back when I watched it. I took it to mean a square was considered a cool person.
In the last verse of Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the Fire, he says "homeless vets". Up until recently, I thought Billy Joel was saying "homo sex".