Monday, June 15, 2009

Top 5: Songs about "Taboo" Subjects

I don't know why I thought of this topic. Just go with me here:

1. Suicide: "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam - This one has San Diego ties.

2. Abortion: "Brick" by Ben Folds Five - My friends and I debated for hours whether this song was about AIDS or abortion. Ahhh, the innocence of youth.

3. Masturbation: "Longview" by Green Day - My now uber Mormon friend and I used to sing this song while playing foosball in her garage. Seriously, good times.

4. Heroin/Crippling Depression: "Hurt" by Nine Inch Nails - I kinda like the Johnny Cash version better.

5. Mass Murder: "Nebraska" by Bruce Springsteen - Springsteen recounts the story of Charles Starkweather and his teenage girlfriend and their killing spree across the US in late 50's. The song is kinda creepy...just like the true story, which inspired Oliver Stone's Natural Born Killers.

So, what do you think? Agree? Disagree? Am I creepy for even imagining this post? You know what? Don't answer that last one...


The Vegetable Assassin said...

I think it's a pretty cool idea for a post actually. Plus I never knew "Jeremy" was about suicide. I barely remember the video but I always thought the kid pulled out a gun and killed his school mates, but I think you're probably right, it was himself. My memory's totally blurry.

Malcolm said...

I don't think this post is weird at all. Since I had never listened too closely to the lyrics, I only recently learned the meaning of "Longview". The line "Take me away to paradise" now makes perfect sense.

By the way, the Charles Starkweather story also inspired an earlier film (the 1973 movie Badlands starring Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek).

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

What about "Hey man, nice shot" by Filter when thinking on the suicide topic?

Oh, and "Me and a Gun" about being raped.

Hmmm...I think I'm too familiar with "taboo" songs.

red said...

Cool. I'm glad I'm not a weirdo.

And Malcolm, I almost said Badlands, but I figured more people would be familiar with NBK. Badlands is great movie, though. Good call.

Some Guy said...

While I understand that this is about taboo subjects, I think it's unfortunate that something joyous like masturbation gets lumped in with the other four.

The Imaginary Reviewer said...

Yes! This is a great idea for a post. It took me a good few years to get the meaning of Brick; I originally thought it was just about two people who knew their relationship was on the way out. As you say, the innocence of youth.

I've been trying to think of other taboo subjects and their songs:

Cross dressing: Lola by The Kinks (though I prefer Thee Raincoats' version)
Bestiality: Tie me Kangaroo Down, Sport by Rolf Harris (possibly)

red said...

Some Guy: Agreed. I originally thought to include "Date Rape" by Sublime, but then I forgot about it.

TIR: There's a song about bestiality?! I must check this out!

lancer383 said...

My pick for masturbation would be either "Pictures of Lily" by The Who or "Blister in the Sun" by the Violent Femmes.

words...words...words... said...

I agree, this list is not weird at all. (Either that or we're ALL weird.) And as soon as I saw the title, I KNEW "Brick" was going to be on it. Love that song.

I was thinking of "Cop Killer". But is that taboo or just shocking?

Garney said...

Runner-up for masturbation: Blister in the Sun.

BeckEye said...

Yay! Pearl Jam is #1!! I really don't care what the list is, it just warms my heart.

Veggie - The "Jeremy" video is the reason PJ stopped making videos. I guess a lot of people had very specific ideas of what that song was about and then complained that the video ruined it for them. Buncha grungy whiners. Eddie took it to heart because he's so wonderfully sensitive.