Rock's Most Politically Incorrect Songs

A list of Rock's Most Politically Incorrect Songs includes "Brown Sugar" by the Rolling Stones, "Sweet Little Sixteen" by Chuck Berry, and "Turning Japanese" by the Vapors.

 

 

 We all have those songs we love, even though the lyrics seem a little sketchy.  And that's been going on for a long time.  Here's a list of Rock's Most Politically Incorrect Songs, going back 60 years . . .

 

 

1958:  "Sweet Little Sixteen", Chuck Berry.  Chuck was in his 30s when he wrote this song about the title character's "tight dresses and lipstick" and "high heel shoes."

 

 

1960:  "You're Sixteen", Johnny Burnette.  It was bad enough the first time, but then a 34-year-old Ringo Starr remade it into a #1 hit in 1973.

 

 

1962:  "Ahab the Arab", Ray Stevens.  The turban, the scimitar, and the camel named Clyde are bad enough . . . but the Middle Eastern ululations put this one over the top.

 

 

1965:  "Run for Your Life", The Beatles.  The message is pretty simple:  If I catch you with another man, I'll kill you.  The first line, "I'd rather see you dead, little girl / Than to be with another man", was actually lifted from Elvis Presley's "Baby Let's Play House".

 

 

1967:  "Hey Joe", The Jimi Hendrix Experience.  This is basically "Run for Your Life" REALIZED.  Man catches woman cheating, shoots her dead, gets ready to flee to Mexico. 

 

 

1970:  "Timothy", The Buoys.  Possibly the only Top 20 hit about CANNIBALISM.  Three guys get trapped when a mine caves in.  When they're rescued, there's only two left.  What happened to Timothy?  Hey, you do what you gotta do.

 

 

1971:  "Aqualung", Jethro Tull.  The story of a charming old derelict who spends his day "eyeing little girls with bad intent" and "watching as the frilly panties run."

 

 

1971:  "Brown Sugar", The Rolling Stones.  It's pretty shocking that this song became such a hit, and even MORE shocking that it remains a radio staple.  It's about a plantation owner taking advantage of his female slaves.

 

 

1980:  "Turning Japanese", The Vapors.  This one's about self-love, which is no big deal by today's standards.  But the metaphor is that you squint your eyes while you're doing it, which makes you look Asian.

 

 

1988:  "One in a Million", Guns N' Roses.  Calling himself a "small-town white boy" trying to make it in L.A., Axl Rose rails against black people, whom he calls the N-word . . . and gays, whom he refers to by a homophobic slur.  He also rants against immigrants and cops.

 

 

(There are several more on the list.  Check 'em all out and listen to the songs here.)

Originally posted on March 27th, 2018

Drew

Drew

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