Grammatically correct song lyrics #7

double negative

noun

  1. a syntactic construction, often considered ungrammatical in standard Modern English, in which two negative words are used where one is needed

Definition from Dictionary.com


“Another Brick In The Wall (Part II)”, Pink Floyd

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teachers leave them kids alone

 

Original lyrics sourced here.

 

As above, the double negatives reverse the intended meaning, i.e. “We do not need no education” becomes “We need an education”, and “We do not need no thought control” becomes “We need thought control”.

I chuckle at the irony of the first line.


“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”, The Rolling Stones

I can’t get no satisfaction
I can’t get no satisfaction
‘Cause I try and I try and I try and I try
I can’t get no, I can’t get no

Original lyrics sourced here.

 

 

Same as above. “I cannot get no satisfaction” becomes “I can get satisfaction”, reversing the intended meaning.


“Hound Dog”, Elvis Presley

You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog
cryin’ all the time.
You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog
cryin’ all the time.
Well, you ain’t never caught a rabbit
and you ain’t no friend of mine.

Original lyrics sourced here.

 

Again, same as above, where the double negative reverses the intended meaning. “You are not nothing but a hound dog” becomes “You are everything but a hound dog” and “you have not never caught a rabbit” becomes “you have caught a rabbit”.


 

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Grammatically correct song lyrics #6

“Hungry Eyes”, Eric Carmen

With these hungry eyes
One look at you and I 
cannot disguise
I have hungry eyes
I feel the magic between you and
me

 

 

Original lyrics sourced here.

Contractions should not be present in a proper context, which forces “can’t” to become “cannot”. Again, “got” is not a nice word and can be replaced in almost every context, so “I have” is more appropriate. Finally, the pronoun should be “me”, not “I”, because you cannot feel the magic between I, but you can feel it between me.


“Bad Romance”, Lady Gaga

I want your love and
I want your revenge
You and 
I could write a bad romance
(Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh)
I want your love and
All
 of your lover’s revenge
You and 
could write a bad romance

Original lyrics sourced here.

Featuring in this song is the opposite of the above error. Gaga should have said “You and I”, because I can write a bad romance, but me cannot write a bad romance. Also, the second last line needs an “of”.


“You & I”, One Direction

You and me
We
do not want to be like them
We can make it
until the end
Nothing can come between
You and 
me 
Not even the gods above
Could separate the two of us
No nothing can come between
You and 
me

Original lyrics sourced here.

Well. These songs are just a jumble of confused pronouns. This song in particular should be “you and me”, because nothing can come between I, but something can come between me. Also thrown in there is the incorrect shortening of “until” to “till”, which is a completely different word and not a contraction.


 

Grammatically correct song lyrics #5

ain’t

[eynt]

contraction

  1. am not, is not, are not, have not, or has not

As a substitute for am not, is not, and are not in declarative sentences, ain’t is more common in uneducated speech than in educated.

Dictionary.com


“This Ain’t a Scene it’s an Arms Race”, Fall Out Boy

This is not a scene, it is a goddamned arms race
This is not a scene, it is a goddamned arms race
This is not a scene, it is a goddamned arms race

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


“This Ain’t a Love Song”, Bon Jovi

If the love that I have for you is gone
If the river I cried is not that long
Then I am wrong, yeah I am wrong, this is not a love song

 

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


“Ain’t No Sunshine”, Bill Withers

There is no sunshine when she is gone
It is not warm when she is away.
There is no sunshine when she is gone
And she is always gone too long
Anytime she goes away

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


 

Grammatically correct song lyrics #4

“Candy Shop”, 50 Cent feat. Olivia

I’ll break it down for you now, baby it is simple
If you
will be a nympho, I will be a nympho
In the hotel, or in the back of the rental
On the beach or in the park,
it is whatever you are into
I have the magic stick, I am the love doctor

 

Original lyrics sourced here.

A rule of thumb is to not use contractions. The second line needs appropriate parallel sentence structure, which is achieved by inserting “will” in the first instance. “Got” is an ugly, unnecessary word that can almost always be replaced by a better word, so I replaced this instance with “I have” in the last line.


“This Is Why I’m Hot”, Mims

This is why I am hot
How I
have to rap
I can sell a
million saying nothing on a track
I represent New York
I
have it on my back

 

Original lyrics sourced here.

Again, do not use contraction and slang, like in the first and third lines, i.e. “mill” is not an appropriate shortening of “million”. And again, “got” is an ugly word that can almost always be replaced, like in the second and last lines.


“Give Me Everything”, Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, Afrojack, Nayer

Me, not working hard?
Yeah, right! Picture that with a Kodak
Or, better yet, go to Times Square
Take a picture of me with a Kodak
I took my life from negative to positive
I just want
you all to know that

 

Original lyrics sourced here.

I am not a fan of “ya’ll”, especially when it is used as a redundant redundancy, i.e. “all ya’ll”. Fortunately Pitbull hasn’t used this. A pronoun needs to start the fifth line, otherwise what or who took his life from negative to positive?


 

Grammatically correct song lyrics #3

“Rich Girl”, Gwen Stefani feat. Eve

If I were a rich girl
Na (repeat 15 times)
See, I would have all of the money in the world, if I were a wealthy girl
No man could test me or impress me, and my cash flow would never ever end

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


“Jesus Walks”, Kanye West

Yo, we are at war
We are at war with terrorism, racism, and most of all we are at war with ourselves
(Jesus walks)
god show me the way because the Devil is trying to break me down
(Jesus walk with me)

Original lyrics sourced here.


“Single Ladies”, Beyoncé

I have gloss on my lips and a man on my hips
He holds me tighter than my Dereon jeans
I am acting up, and I have a drink in my cup
I could care less what you think
I do not need permission, did I mention
Do not pay him any attention
Because you had your turn

Original lyrics sourced here.


 

Grammatically correct song lyrics #2

“The Way I Am*”, Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson, D.O.E.

I don’t have any money
I don’t have a car to take you on a date

I cannot even buy you flowers
But together we can be the perfect soul mates
Talk to me girl

 

Original lyrics soured here.


“Friday”, Rebecca Black

Seven a.m., waking up in the morning
Have to be fresh, have to go downstairs
Have to have my bowl, have to have cereal
Seeing everything, the time is going

 

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


“Problem”, Ariana Grande feat. Iggy Azalea

I know you’re never going to wake up
I have to give up
But it is you
I know I should not ever call back
Or let you come back
But it is you

 

Original lyrics soured here.


 

Grammatically correct song lyrics #1

“Rock and Roll all Night*”, Kiss

You show us everything you have
You keep on dancing and the room becomes hot
You drive us wild, we will drive you crazy

 

 

Original song lyrics sourced here.


“Man in the Mirror”, Michael Jackson

I am going to make a change
For once in my life
It is going to feel really good
Going to make a difference
Going to make it right

 

Original lyrics sourced here.


“When a Man Loves a Woman”, Percy Sledge

When a man loves a woman
He cannot keep his mind on anything else
He will change the world
For the good thing he has found

 

 

Original lyrics sourced here.