“Thunder Only Happens…”

If you have been listening to popular music for the last 50 years or so then you know the rest of that lyric is

…when it’s raining.
Players only love you when they’re playing

Dreams – Fleetwood Mac – Rumours – 1977 – Stephanie Nicks

This post isn’t going to be some deep philosophical analysis of that lyric, the lyrics of that song, or even how that song was somehow influential in my life. No, I’m just going to throw out some lyrics from songs that I like that I think are clever, maybe meaningful, or, mostly, just plain cool…and few quick thoughts.

“Thunder only happens…” is not a clever turn of phrase even, it’s just the way she sings it I guess that I find cool.

I’m a fleabit peanut monkey
And all my friends are junkies
That’s not really true

Monkey Man – Rolling Stones – Let It Bleed – 1969 – Keith Richards / Mick Jagger

I think this lyric just reminds me of how we used to talk when we were kids and just f’ing around with friends and goofing off. It kinda sounds nonsensical and yet…it makes total sense.

And I’m just trying to un-fight my way back in your heart

Come To Me (Peace) – Mary J. Blige – Growing Pains – 2007 – Mary J. Blige, Tricky Stewart & The-Dream

I love the way she sings this entire song…strong, with conviction, but not some over dramatic and formulaic heart tugging blaring. And this line just got to me the first time I heard it. It speaks to the situation she’s singing about – sometimes you need to make up a word or two to get your meaning through.

But you are gone, not for good but for now
Gone for now, feels a lot like gone for good

Happiness – The Fray – The Fray – 2009 – Ben Wysocki / Dave Welsh / Isaac Slade / Joe King

How I felt on the passing of my Dad…and then my Mom…how I still feel about it.

As she locks up your arm in hers
And you follow till your sense of direction
Completely disappears

Year of the Cat – Al Stewart – Year of the Cat – 1976 – Al Stweart / Peter Wood

This actually happened to me. It happened at the State Fair of Texas when I was 12…she was older (probably 16) and I’m sure she was just teasing/playing with me. But it happened…and it was pretty cool when it did.

Everybody’s got something to hide
Except for me and my monkey

Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except for Me and My Monkey – The Beatles – The White Album – 1968 – John Lennon / Paul McCartney

I wish I had a monkey. We would definitely have something to hide…nothing big or life changing…it’s just what you’d do if you had a monkey…at least I think so.

She’s got electric boots, a mohair suit
You know I read it in a magazine…

Bennie and the Jets – Elton John – Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – 1973 – Bernie Taupin / Elton John

So when I was 7 years old my cousin Timmy (who is 5 years older than me) convinced me that the lyric was “She’s got electric BOOBS”. Now that’s just good stuff!

Those who wish to be
Must put aside the alienation
Get on with the fascination
The real relation
The underlying theme

Limelight – Rush – Moving Pictures – 1981 – Neil Peart / Alex Lifeson / Geddy Lee

For me, this lyric was kind of a call to unity and reconciliation. You can’t be at odds with the world, with other people, if you expect to be content in this life. You have to at least listen to the other side and try to find common ground, and even if you don’t find that common ground, sometimes the effort to get there at least makes it easier to live with the other side…without killing them.

In the days of my youth
I was told what it means to be a man
And now I’ve reached that age
I’ve tried to do all those things
The best I can

Good Times Bad Times – Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin – 1969 – Jimmy Page / John Bonham / John Paul Jones

yes…yes I have.