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Music that hasn’t aged well…

Becksworth

Aging Hipster Dragon Dad
So this weekend I thought to myself “I haven’t listened to Ben Folds in years, and I got this free Spotify trial from XBox Game Pass”, so one thing led to another and…

Let’s start with the main elephant in the room with Brick. Even ignoring how it was used as pro-life propaganda to make their argument seem hip with young impressionable millennials and how that probably wasn’t Ben Fold’s intention, it’s still a very male-centered song about abortion that barely delves into how the girlfriend feels.

Listening to more of that album, there is the other main single, an angry screed at an ex that includes gendered slurs, a song about an angry dwarf that doesn’t really delve into the experience of being a little person and could very easily just be a stand in for Ben’s own childhood vindictiveness. At this point I’m getting the feeling this is less the fun goofball, occasionally poignant music I remember and more subtlety (and in some cases overtly) angry misogynistic music masquerading and fun goofball, occasionally poignant music.

Then I remember Ben Folds covered “Bitches Ain’t Shit” and decided that was enough Ben Folds for the day. At least “The Theme From Dr. Pyser” is an instrumental, so that’s still enjoyable.

Anywho, share some of your music you liked when you were younger that made you go “oof” when you last listened to it.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
The… entire last third of so of Parents Just Don’t Understand really makes it hard to appreciate a goofy song about dorky parents
 
Anthem by Rush has got to be near the top of my list. Yes Neil Peart, we get it... you love objectivism. Not everyone is so thrilled with that half-baked, self-serving philosophy. I hope you got a hernia lifting those Ayn Rand books.

Some songs end up sounding kind of, uh, rapey in retrospect? Like Stay the Night from Chicago.

I want you to know one thing is certain
I truly love your company
I won't take no if that's your answer
At least, that's my philosophy


I say that's an even worse philosophy than objectivism.
 

muteKi

Women want fish fear meme
The… entire last third of so of Parents Just Don’t Understand really makes it hard to appreciate a goofy song about dorky parents

Yeah I can appreciate a good weird swerve at the end of a rap song but usually the stuff that I enjoy is the stuff that's just complaining about some dude's food for a verse and a half
 

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
i guess what i'm saying is that for me a lot of stuff is less The Lyrical Content Is Problematic In Retrospect and more The Internet And Social Media Has Made Me More Aware Of What The Shitty Garbage People A Lot Of Artists Are And That Makes Their Music Problematic For Me
 

Tegan

dirtbag lesbian
(She/Her)
I listened to the entire Weird Al discography while cleaning the apartment over the past few weekends, and there is a window there where the narratives of the songs included background characters, and none of those characters are really okay to do anymore. Talk Soup is probably the most enlightening example because there's just so many of them.
I'm just a cross-dressin', alcoholic, neo-nazi porno star, as you may have guessed
and I'm really gonna feel a whole lot better if you let me get this thing off my chest
 
The Divine Comedy's Casanova has some pretty cringy semi-ironic sexism of the kind that afflicted a lot of nineties UK pop culture. Neil Hannon is an immensely talented and perceptive songwriter and not a bad person by any means, but the persona he assumed on this album...ehh, let's just say it probably seemed like a good idea at the time.

Probably the most problematic is the song "Becoming More Like Alfie", inspired by the sixties Michael Caine film about a womanising philanderer, which features the lyric

Once there was a time
When my mind lay on higher things
And once there was a time
I could find pretty words to sing
But now, well now I find
It saves time to say what you mean
I know it seems so unrefined
But it's time to let off some steam
Oh come on!

Everybody knows that No means Yes
Just like glasses come free on the N.H.S.
But the more I look through them the more I see
I'm becoming more like Alfie


That first line of the chorus it's own, yikes.

Damn catchy tune, though.

 
Low hanging fruit, but oh man is R Kelly music just completely impossible to separate the music from the man. His music slaps so hard, but when most of his music is about romancin', and you realize he's basically singing about his underage sex exploits it's time to just chuck that whole discography into the waste bin of history.
 

John

(he/him)
Same with Marilyn Manson. As an antisocial teen I liked Antichrist Superstar and Mechanical Animals a ton, but not much beyond there. I still think Antichrist is a very well produced album, which tapped right into teenage angst and anger. It was the angry counterpart to NIN's The Downward Spiral sad teen music. It's no surprise that Manson is also a shitty person, he is good friends with Johnny Depp after all. I'm fine with leaving those albums and memories in the past.
 

Mightyblue

aggro table, shmaggro table
(He/Him/His)
Eric Clapton's solo content is mostly okay-to-good, which is why the only album I own that he contributes to is the Derek and the Dominos sole album. I don't really feel too bad about that.
 

Issun

My way, soon
The… entire last third of so of Parents Just Don’t Understand really makes it hard to appreciate a goofy song about dorky parents

Just googled the lyrics and wow that is a journey.


Most popular songs have not aged well, though. The prevalent use of the term "little girl" in songs from the 60s and 70s is icky enough without the fact that most male rock stars were taking girls as young as 13 (maybe younger)back to their hotel rooms and often doing things to them that would traumatize a grown adult.

It almost makes the obsession with age 17 by The Beatles, The Cars and Joan Jett seem quaint by comparison. Almost.
 

Paul le Fou

Pickle Bus Owns Tulip Town
(He)
Ben Folds might not be the worst example, but he's definitely the first one that sprang to mind when I saw the thread title.
 

Ixo

"This is not my beautiful forum!" - David Byrne
(Hi Guy)
Not that it was good out of the gate, but...

*just gestures at Sublime’s The Wrong Way*
 

Lady

something something robble
Listened to some Depeche Mode recently, and boy "Enjoy the Silence" used to have a different connotation.
 
On the subject of canon classic songs, I was just listening to "This Guy's In Love With You" (Sammy Davis Jnr really knocks it out of the park with his take), which basically reads like This Guy is basically pressuring This Girl into reciprocating his feelings by threatening to kill himself, which doesn't really sound like the basis of a healthy relationship.
 

Beowulf

Son of The Answer Man
(He/Him)
I had not quite realized, back in the day, how much Goldfinger's "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" is an incel anthem.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
It was pretty recently when the Aquabats performed "Captain Hampton and the [[Little Person]] Pirates" live during their concert where the did all of the The Fury of the Aquabats songs.
 
I had not quite realized, back in the day, how much Goldfinger's "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" is an incel anthem.
You must mean Joe Jackson's "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" :)

And er, yes. It is pretty much. But Jackson also wrote Different For Girls and Steppin' Out so he's alright with me.
 

Becksworth

Aging Hipster Dragon Dad
So “Ashes to Ashes”, was that not an ethnic slur at the time of that song being written, or am I giving somebody who once went by The Thin White Duke too much credit here?
 
Er...no? I'm not sure it was being employed in any other sense other than that related to funerals.

Forgive my ignorance but is Ashes To Ashes considered a slur now? I've never heard it used in that context.
 
Presumably the question is about this line:

Pictures of Jap girls

It was an ethnic slur during WWII and very common in dehumanizing, racist propaganda, so of course it was one at the time of that song.

That being said, I think that, like the common colloquial term for Romani people, it's one that a lot of people are not aware of as a slur or did not consciously think of as a slur until fairly recently. The level of awareness was quite low. People used it very casually on earlier incarnations of this board, for example, not thinking of it as anything other than an abbreviation for "Japan." (I remember because I tried to discourage people from using it...)

So, I would say that the song has aged badly, but not as badly as the video game forum Talking Time.
 
Last edited:
Presumably the question is about this line:

Pictures of Jap girls

It was an ethnic slur during WWII and very common in dehumanizing, racist propaganda, so of course it was one at the time of that song.

That being said, I think that, like the common colloquial term for Romani people, it's one that a lot of people are not aware of as a slur or did not consciously think of as a slur until fairly recently. The level of awareness was quite low. People used it very casually on earlier incarnations of this board, for example, not thinking of it as anything other than an abbreviation for "Japan." (I remember because I tried to discourage people from using it...)
Oh yes, that makes more sense.

Bowie was a huge fanboi for Japanese art and culture for most of his life (I guess you could call him an early weeaboo), so I guess he wouldn't have intended that line as a slur, it's just unfortunately become more offensive with the passage of time.
 

Issun

My way, soon
Not that it was good out of the gate, but...

*just gestures at Sublime’s The Wrong Way*
And both Sublime and A Tribe Called Quest have songs about date rape that, well...

If you're a guy maybe just don't write a song about that?
 

muteKi

Women want fish fear meme
You must mean Joe Jackson's "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" :)

And er, yes. It is pretty much. But Jackson also wrote Different For Girls and Steppin' Out so he's alright with me.

It's hard not to look at that song and think there's subtext going on, but at the same time when he's got Real Men right there why even bother
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Oh yes, that makes more sense.

Bowie was a huge fanboi for Japanese art and culture for most of his life (I guess you could call him an early weeaboo), so I guess he wouldn't have intended that line as a slur, it's just unfortunately become more offensive with the passage of time.
Not the only example in Bowie’s work either; Run and Gun Blues in particular.

And my gut says “Little China Girl” as well, but I don’t recall the lyrics right off the top of my head to confirm that
 
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