What song has an upbeat tune but dark lyrics?

  1. The Macarena. Here's a nice happy song for little kids to dance to! But fully translated, the song's about a girl cheating on her army conscript boyfriend with his two best friends while he's away.

  2. I Don't Like Mondays by the Boomtown Rats. Upbeat melody, catchy tune - then you realize it's about a school shooting.

  3. I was going to suggest this one, too! It's a super catchy and energetic with a title that pretty much everyone but Day[9] can relate to, but ends up shocking you when you actually pay attention to the lyrics.

  4. Yep. Adding on to this, Electric Avenue is in Brixton (a part of London) and is home to part of Brixton market. In 1981, there was a riot in Brixton, which is the one that you were talking about.

  5. God this was my ANTHEM when I worked in the automotive industry. I fucking hated every minute of that job and blasted that song every single day on my drive in. "It's enough to drive you crazy if you let it." I let it, Dolly. I let it drive me crazy.

  6. If you imagine it played on a honky tonk piano in a minor key and sung by Tom Waites, "Still in dress she used to wear Faded feathers in her hair" is the saddest line ever.

  7. I’m glad this is finally catching on when this question comes up. It should absolutely be the top answer.

  8. Fucking love me some steely dan. Saw them live in Austin a couple of years ago. Was fucking transcendent. Bunch of 23 year olds high af surrounded by old people

  9. It was written about the Cold War. Same band also wrote “Mad World” which if you haven’t heard the original, I cannot recommend it enough. It’s, uh, unnervingly synth-pop.

  10. Born in the USA. A young man sent off to war against his will, went through hell, and came home to a country that doesn't care about him.

  11. lot of Springsteen's songs are like that, he deals with themes such as class struggle, war, death, coming to terms with his father, love etc...

  12. I'm ashamed I didnt think of this sooner. Btw the song is "at least it was here" by the 88's. Fun fact, the song was written in an afternoon especially for the show, dan Harmon (I think) also chose the band cause he liked the band at the time

  13. Paul McCartney drove the other Beatles insane with that song during recording to the point where they hated it, and it's easy to see why.

  14. Especially the line “All I can do is read a book to stay awake, and it rips my life away but it’s a great escape”

  15. I got to hang out with Shannon and the guys from Blind Melon quite a bit when they were blowing up in 1993. We had mutual friends, and they treated me like a friend from the moment I met them. I still listen to their music when I'm feeling really good, and it makes me cry every damned time.

  16. That's actually the entire point of the song. They wanted to put the most upbeat music possible to some of the darkest lyrics they could come up with.

  17. It is kind of dark, but as I've gotten older I have started to see it as the beginning of someone starting to get clean. The main singer is reflecting on how all the drugs and sex and partying still leaves him feeling pretty empty. Things like sand between his toes bring him peace, though. I like to think it's the story of a guy moving from a precontempltative phase to a contemplative one and that after the song things get better for them. Just my take.

  18. Around the time that "The Lazy Song" by Bruno Mars was popular, a radio station in my hometown played "Semi-Charmed Life" and "The Lazy Song" during different music blocks.

  19. After Laughter as a whole had some sad lyrics considering it dealt heavy with depression but had happy upbeat music. I would add Caught in the Middle as sad lyrics with “No I don’t need no help, I can sabotage me by myself”

  20. Can't believe I had to scroll this far to find this! The whole album is like this - except for, you know, 26 and Tell Me Why, which are sad in both ways.

  21. Bad Moon Rising by CCR. Songs is about death, destruction, and the end of the world but is as upbeat as can be.

  22. This song happened to be playing on the radio when I got in the car to go to the hospital to have my first child. We laughed like “that can’t be a good sign!” 15 years and one week later we hop in the car to go to the hospital to have our last child and it’s playing again. If my kids team up to cause the end of the world I’ll let you guys know!

  23. All of Sublime's discography. Topics include incest, rape, murder, addiction, riots, poverty, STIs, absent parents, gang violence, Nazism, adultery, and a host of other sad subjects. Tone is unanimously upbeat ska, punk, and reggae.

  24. Wrong way by Sublime just gives me the creeps. It was one of my coworkers favorites and I asked him if he’d ever really listened to the lyrics as I was surprised he (as the father of a young girl) liked it. I mean the singer talks about having sex with a 12 year old.

  25. This is really the quintessential answer to this question, particularly because of how massively misunderstood the song is.

  26. There's a reason Springsteen refused to let Reagan use this for his re-election campaign, and not just because of the political differences. This song is not patriotic in the slightest.

  27. I love the music video to this too! It’s filled with girls screaming over the words, showing how little we pay attention to why he’s saying. Then he puts a freaking coffin in the middle of the stage and we still don’t notice that there’s something else going on.

  28. I had a friend say that the thousand covers featuring a white dude with an acoustic guitar was better because it fit the lyrics, completely disregarding the song is about a dysfunctional couple who pretends to be happy

  29. Songs like clementine, and you are my sunshine are folksongs from the 18th century with roots in irish origins, and for this time period this was a very common thing, a happy tune and horrible lyrics. Tom Lehrer created a great example in his ‘irish song’ and Billy Connollys old material where he sings songs while playing a guitar, he sang a lot of those great songs.

  30. The Killers went “We’re going to make a song about how paranoia and low self worth makes you self sabotage to the detriment to your personal relationships and mental health” and we all went “yes king we’ll keep it in the top 100 forever”

  31. Turn It Off from The Book of Mormon is really dark. It's fun to listen to, but it's about suppressing any kind of negative emotion or experience (like child abuse or a sibling dying of cancer) because of your religion.

  32. People play it at weddings, because they only really seem to hear the first two lines of the chorus. But the song is about a woman begging a man to just pretend to love her because she can't bear to be without him. It's really depressing.

  33. Can’t believe no ones said Little Talks by Of Men & Monsters. Such an upbeat tune then you realise it’s about a woman whose partner has died & she’s falling apart without him & he’s speaking to her from beyond the grave.

  34. This song came out right after my dad died and it was fucking EVERYWHERE. What a bummer. I don't hate the song by itself (actually I kind of like it) but it kept surprising me in random places - like the grocery store - and then I'd have to try not to cry over the produce.

  35. I once read that an alternative explanation for the lyrics would be if the woman started to get dementia or alzheimer's and her partner is trying to take care of her. Not sure which one fits better or which one is less sad, to be honest.

  36. Have they actually come out and said what it was about? I remember there being a bunch of theories out there, like someone with mental illness, or a dead child. But year, all were sad in their own way.

  37. If you listen to this song in context of the album and the song prior, Faith, it's heavily implied in the outro of Faith that The Weeknd overdoses and is put in an ambulance. Faith then transitions into Blinding Lights. If you look at the song from this point of view, he's dying and overdosing and blinded by the lights of the ambulance and of the Vegas lights but doesn't want to die without seeing this woman one more time or without her being beside him once more. Quite sad really.

  38. In The Night is another one, I remember hearing it on the radio all the time and it sounds all fun and upbeat, but if you pay any attention to the lyrics it’s a pretty fucking sad story about a CSA survivor’s life as a stripper. He has a lot of songs that fit this mould.

  39. Every Breath You Take by The Police. Someone redid the song in a minor key and changed up the instruments, and it’s like a totally different song!

  40. I used to love this song when I was little (probably about 8 or so) and I remember singing it with my little sister to my friends mum when she was round one day. I couldn’t understand why my mum was trying to discreetly shush us; her friends husband had passed away on a workplace accident only a week or so before. It was innocently done but I still cringe at the memory.

  41. My mom passed away in March and I found a voice recording from when I was 4 singing this song. At the end my mom says that it was the sweetest thing she ever heard. It’s such a sad a song and my sunshine was taken away.

  42. I can’t hear this song without immediately queuing up Spacehog’s “In the Meantime”. They’re inextricably linked in my brain for no other reason than the time they were in heavy radio rotation.

  43. And if a 10 ton truck, kills the both of us, to die by your side, well the pleasure, the privilege is mine!

  44. Every time I hear it I think of a plague doctor saying they all fall down in a demonic voice when the line comes up

  45. Not really DARK lyrics per se, but definitely the song was originally darker when conceived but then later the producer made it into something more up beat.

  46. I always just thought it was about accepting death and seeing it for what it really is. This is what I found online about it.

  47. I don't know that song - but the title means "come, sweet death". How upbeat could that really be?

  48. I was just about to say that. You almost don’t realize how dark the lyrics are because you’re so focused on the visuals that are going on.

  49. I'm surprised I didn't see this any higher on the list because I feel like this encompasses most Twenty One Pilots songs (Ode to Sleep, HeavyDirtySoul, Guns for Hands, Stressed Out, Doubt, We Don't Believe What's On TV, Semi-Automatic, Johnny Boy, Air Catcher, and manyyyyy more)

  50. A bit of a guilty pleasure for me, they really can pack a punch sometimes. Glowing Eyes really has that happy tune but dark lyrics

  51. Fitzpleasure is even more disturbing. It's about gang rape and sodomy with a broom handle. I don't know if I'd call them upbeat though.

  52. First time I heard a cover of it, reflecting the tone of the lyrics. I was shook at the fact that I never even took the time to listen to the meaning of the lyrics. And how this is represented in the lyrics, such as:

  53. Everybody getting all upset about WAP forgot about A7X writing an 8 minute song about fucking a corpse.

  54. Michael Jackson's big posthumous holographic performance at the Billboard awards. He(it?) performed Slave to the Rhythm. It was catchy, rhythmic, and had great dancing. Then you go and listen to the lyrics. One of the saddest goddamn songs lol. It's not about missing someone or losing someone, it's about a woman in an abusive relationship with her husband and boss. And in the end she returns. It's too real for a lot of women

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