Rock n' roll music has not ever been known for quality enunciation. For instance, there is no more marble-mouthed singer than John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival. There is no song I have ever heard him sing where more than 50% of the lyrics were intelligible. But I am not complaining; this has led to hours of entertainment far past the music, for the lyrics I thought I heard were always better than the real ones. Example: part of Creedence's "Down On The Corner" goes like this:

Down on the corner, out in the street,
Willy and the poorboys are playin;
Bring a nickel; tap your feet.

You don't need a penny just to hang around,
But if you've got a nickel, wont you lay your money down?
Over on the corner there's a happy noise.
People come from all around to watch the magic boy.

What I hear is this:

Down on the corner, howdy in the street,
Silly and the punk boys are playin;
Bring a nick gull; happy feet.

You don't need a pinhead just to hang a row,
But if you've got a nick gull, wont you lay your money, Dow?
Ho there on the corner there's a happy goy.
Peep hole come from all around to watch the magic poi.

There are several books and websites devoted to these misheard lyrics, and they are often very amusing to read through. I was surprised and quite happy to see that so many people heard this one as I did when I was little: The Four Tops' "Bernadette" as "Burn To Death." HA HA! NICE! Oh, man, did that make me WONDER as a kid! WTF was going on out there??? Here are the lyrics, modified as I heard them then:

Burn To Death!
The Four Tops
Written by Holland- Dozier- Holland
Burn to death!, people are searchin' for
the kind of love that we possess.
Some go on searchin' their whole life through
and never find the love I've found in you.

And when I speak of you I see envy in other men's eyes,
and I'm well aware of what's on their minds.
They pretend to be my friend, when all the time
they long to persuade you from my side.
They'd give the world and all they own
for just one moment we have known.
Burn to death!, they want you because of the pride that it gives,
But burn to death!, I want you because I need you to live.
But while I live only to hold you,
Some other men, they long to control you.
But how can they control you burn to death!,
when they can not control themselves, burn to death!,
from wanting you, needing you,
But darling you belong to me.

I'll tell the world you belong to me,
I'll tell the world, you're the soul of me,
I'll tell the world you're a part of me, burn to death!

In your arms I find the kind of peace of mind
the world is searching for,
But you, you give me the joy this heart of mine
has always been longing for.

In you I have what other men long for.
All men need someone to worship and adore,
that's why I treasure you and place you high above,
for the only joy in life is to be loved.
So whatever you do, burn to death!, keep on loving me,
Burn to death!, keep on needing me,
burn to death!!
You're the soul of me, more than a dream.
You are planned to me.
And burn to death!,
You mean more to me than a woman was ever
meant to be
Burn to death!
My darling, burn to death!

Oh man oh man oh man! What the hell happened here? Did this girl really burn to death?? Did he want her to burn to death? Was it an accident? Did she not know how to stop, drop, and roll? Were there savage bands of Indians by The Four Tops? Damn! I don't think I even thought about the "burning love" kind of burn either; kids are so literal and I remember listening to the song and thinking OOOOHHHH, NOT GOOD. Ha ha.

As long as there are rock stars with mild speech impediments and listeners with substantial earwax, we shall all continue to enjoy these aural absurdities. Rock on.

Creedence Clearwater Revival -- "Down On The Corner"

The Four Tops -- "Bernadette"