Can listening to songs help your English?

Here in Italy, I have heard many people say they listen to song lyrics (the words) to learn new vocabulary. If you believe it helps you, then it’s a good idea, but it’s possible the words you ‘hear’ aren’t the words the singer intended!

Research has shown (many times) that millions of people hear and sing the wrong words to songs, even famous songs, including Abba’s ‘Dancing Queen’ and Dire Strait’s ‘Money For Nothing’.

So, to help you avoid embarrasment, and maybe for a little fun, here is a list of some of the most commonly misheard song lyrics…..

Misheard Lyrics

  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, diggin’ the Dancing Queen’ from ABBA’s ‘Dancing Queen’.
  7. Just let me staple the vicar‘. Correct lyric: ‘Just let me state for the record’ from Sister Sledge’s ‘We are family’.
  8. Sweet dreams are made of cheese‘. Correct lyric: ‘Sweet dreams are made of these’ from The Eurythmics’ ‘Sweet Dreams (are made of this)’.
  9. Calling Jamaica‘. Correct lyric: ‘Call me when you try to wake her’ from R.E.M.’s ‘The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite’.
  10. Or should I just keep chasing penguins‘. Correct lyric: ‘Or should I just keep chasing pavements’ from Adele’s ‘Chasing Pavements’.
  11. All the lonely Starbucks lovers‘. Correct lyric: ‘Got a long list of ex-lovers’ from Taylor Swift’s ‘Blank Space’.
  12. I’m begging you for bird seed‘. Correct lyric: ‘I’m begging you for mercy’ from Duffy’s ‘Mercy’.
  13. Gimme Gimme Gimme a man after midnight, take me to the doctors at the break of the day‘. Correct lyric: ‘Take me through the darkness to the break of the day’ from ABBA’s ‘Gimme Gimme Gimme’.
  14. Your burgers are the best‘. Correct lyric: ‘Your burdens I bear bare’ from Michael Jackson‘s, ‘You are not alone.’
  15. It doesn’t make a difference if we’re naked or not‘. Correct lyric: ‘It doesn’t make a difference if we make it or not’ from Bon Jovi’s ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’.
  16. I believe that the hot dogs go on‘. Correct lyric: ‘I believe that the heart does go on’ from Celine Dion’s ‘Heart will go on’.
  17. Then I saw her face, now I’m gonna leave her‘. Correct lyric: ‘Then I saw her face, now I’m a believer’ from The Monkees’ ‘I’m a Believer’.
  18. Every time I think of it I piss myself‘. Correct lyric: ‘Every time I think of it I pinch myself’ from Babyface‘s, ‘Every time I close my eyes’
  19. Kicking your cat all over the place‘. Correct lyric: ‘Kicking your can all over the place’ from Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’.
  20. Dyslexics on fire‘. Correct lyric: ‘Your sex is on fire’ from Kings of Leon’s ‘Sex on Fire’.
  21. Here we are now, in containers‘. Correct lyric: ‘Here we are now, entertain us’ from Nirvana’s ‘Smells like teen spirit’.
  22. Let’s pee in the corner, let’s pee in the spotlight“. Correct lyric: “That’s me in the corner, that’s me in the spotlight” from R.E.M.’s ‘Losing my religion’.
  23. Bald-headed woman… bald-headed woman to me‘. Correct lyric: ‘More than a woman… more than a woman to me’ from the Bee Gees’ ‘More than a woman’.
  24. I remove umbilicals‘. Correct lyric: ‘I believe in miracles’ from Hot Chocolate’s ‘You Sexy Thing’.
  25. A year has passed since I broke my nose‘. Correct lyric: ‘A year has passed since I wrote my note’ from The Police’s ‘Message In A Bottle’.
  26. Kick a chicken with it‘. Correct lyric: ‘Gettin’ jiggy with it’ from Will Smith’s ‘Gettin’ jiggy with it’.
  27. Take your teeth out, tell me what’s wrong‘. Correct lyric: ‘Chiquitita, tell me what’s wrong’ from ABBA’s ‘Chiquitita’.
  28. I can’t believe you kiss your cock at night‘. Correct lyric: ‘I can’t believe you kiss your car good night’ from Shania Twain’s ‘That Don’t Impress me Much’.
  29. There’s an old man sitting next to me, making love to his tiny cat jim‘. Correct lyric: ‘There’s an old man sitting next to me, making love to his tonic and gin’ from Billy Joel’s ‘Piano man’.

Watch the video below of the English comedian Peter Kay, who featured some of these lyrics during a live stage performance.

Questo articolo è stato pubblicato da….

Questo articolo è stato creato da me, Brian, uno degli insegnanti di MilanoInglese. Sono un insegnante di inglese madrelingua, e tengo corsi di inglese preso varie società multinazionali e nel mio domicilio a Saronno. Insegno inglese in italia dal 2006, quando mi sono trasferito in Italia. Insegno inglese a Milano in diverse società multinazionali durante la settimana, pero la maggior parte dei corsi li tengo a Saronno, preso il mio domicilio, e in aziende a Origgio, Caronno Pertusella e Gerenzano.

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