Category: Everything Else
This article is a partner piece to The Most Depressing Songs article. There are some songs that make you smile. There are other songs that are so happy and optimistic that it makes you want to get a picture of the results of a natural disaster and shove it in the singer’s face, screaming: “What’s so fun about this?! HUH?!” Those are the songs that are dangerously happy. Dangerously happy songs are ridiculously optimistic and prevent you from being sad no matter what. Based upon a ranking of 1 (the uncontrollable giggle of kid in response to a lame “Knock-knock” joke) to 5 (the brightness of five adjacent suns), let us look at these giddy little ditties.
Hey Ya by Outkast
Offending Lyrics: Shake it, sh-shake it, / Shake it like a Polaroid picture
While this song is specifically about the futility of pursuing true and eternal love since “nothing lasts forever” so love can’t be “the exception”, the tempo is so upbeat and the chorus so fun that you can’t call this a sad love song by any means. It’s a classic of our generation and deservedly so.
Jump Around by House of Pain
Offending Lyrics:I came to get down (2x) / So get out your seat and jump around
Anyone who can listen to this song and retain a bad mood is superhuman. Aside from being confusing (if you came to get down why would you want to jump?), the lyrics get pretty violent in a few parts of the song. All the same the crazy high-pitched whining and jaunty beat make you want to jump around.
All You Need is Love by The Beatles
Offending Lyrics: Love, love, love / Love, love, love
Any song that uses the word “Love” that many times is just going for the obvious. There’s no subtlety involved and frankly, it’s exclusive. What if you feel unloved? What if no one likes you? Then what do you have? How can you relate to the song? HUH? HUUUUH, Beatles?!
Another Day by Jamie Lidell
Offending Lyrics: Another day, another way / For me to open up to you
Watch the video, it’s sickening how happy they are.
Don’t Worry Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin
Offending Lyrics:The landlord say your rent is late / He may have to litigate / Don’t worry,be happy.
Sorry, that should be the point at which you begin to worry. Hate to burst your bubble of happiness and fairytales. You should begin to worry. At least this song admits that bad things do happen. It just tells you to ignore them.
Everyday by Dave Matthews’ Band
Offending Lyrics:All you need is / All you want is / All you need is love.
Check this video out, it has so much joy in it, it’s enough to make you hurl. Sappy. What? I’m not crying, I’m fine, it’s just allergies. Leave me alone and just watch the dumb video!
I Can See Clearly Now by Johnny Nash
Offending Lyrics:Look all around, nothing but blue skies / Look straight ahead, nothing but blue skies!
Hang on… This seems familiar…
br>Here’s the video:
I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers
Offending Lyrics:But I would walk 500 miles / And I would walk 500 more / Just to be the man who walks a thousand miles / To fall down at your door
This optimism is not only crazy but also a bit creepy: If she’s a 500 miles away from you, she probably likes it that way. Don’t be a creep.
Always Look On The Bright Side of Life by Monty Python
Offending Lyrics:So always look on the bright side of death!/Just before you draw your terminal breath.
This optimism is verging on the insane. The guy singing even admits to the wretchedness of life. However his solution is to whistle. That is like a doctor telling a terminally ill patient that a good dosage of rainbows might suffice to fight off the disease. Although, based on the “Double Rainbow” guy, maybe the virtues of rainbows have been under-researched.
Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen
Offending Lyrics: I’m burning through the sky yea / Two hundred degrees that’s why they call me Mr. Fahrenheit / I’m travelling at the speed of light / I wanna make a supersonic man out of you!
Okay, who gave Freddy all that sugar? He’ll never get to sleep now!
I Feel Good by James Brown
Offending Lyrics:I feel nice, like sugar and spice.
…How do you know how sugar and spice feel James?
Put A Smile on Your Face by Vitamin C feat. Lady Saw
Offending Lyrics: Put a smile on your face / Make the world a better place / Put a smile on your face / (Whatcha gonna do, say, whatcha gonna do)
Ugh. This chorus is one of the best things to happen to misanthropy. Gawd.
Three Little Birds by Bob Marley
Offending Lyrics: Rise up this mornin’; smiled with the risin’ sun. / Three little birds pitch by my doorstep / Singin’ sweet songs of melodies pure and true; saying, / “This is my message to you-ou-ou.” / Singin’: “Don’t worry about a thing, ‘cause ev-ry little thing gonna be all right.” / Sayin’: “Don’t worry about a thing, ‘cause ev-ry little thing gonna be all right!”
All right, Bob. We all know you like the good stuff, but when birds start talking to you and giving you life advice, you should probably lay off.
Walking on Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves
Offending Lyrics:I’m walking on sunshine, woh, oh
Especially that: “Woh oh”. It just rubs me the wrong way.
What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
Offending Lyrics:The colors of the rainbow… so pretty in the sky / Are also on the faces… of people going by / I see friends shaking hands…. sayin’ “how do you do?” / They’re really sayin’ “I love you”
Okay, let’s check out the era (1968) when Louis Armstrong wrote this lovely number: oh yeah, that’s right, Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. To be fair, the song was released in January and the assassination took place in April. All the same, I can’t imagine how the Civil Rights struggle would have inspired this peaceful little tune. “I have to protest in order to be treated like a human being, what a wonderful world, la, la, la…”
So, to sum it all up, most happy songs make reference to nature, which is great, no harm done. However, the danger comes in when these songs allow you to forget the importance of being responsible. Worrying and sadness also serve a purpose, if we all went around negotiating life’s problems away in our heads by looking to nature for beauty and reassurance, we would not be where we are today as a race. So get rid of that sappy smile and grow up.