I was driving down the interstate this weekend when “Sweet Home Alabama” started playing on the radio. I always stop my channel tuning and listen to this Lynard Skynard song when it’s on, just like I always stop to watch “The Shawshank Redemption” when it’s on TNT. However, there is one stanza that I didn’t understand the first few years after I’d first heard it:
Well I heard mister Young sing about her
Well, I heard ole Neil put her down
Well, I hope Neil Young will remember
A Southern man don’t need him around anyhow
I don’t always pay attention to song lyrics. It can take me 4 or 5 listens before I start to decode what a song is really about. It was only when I took a History of Rock n’ Roll class that I heard the Neil Young song, “Southern Man,” which is critical of the south and is what Lynard Skynard is referring to.
As I continued driving along, I tried to think of more songs that make reference to other songs. It sounds like a good idea for a mixed tape. I could only think of two pairs, the first being Camera Obscura’s song “Lloyd, I’m Ready to be Heartbroken” which is a response to Lloyd Cole’s, “Are You Ready to Be Heartbroken.” Then there is Tori Amos’ “In The Springtime of His Voodoo” which quotes The Eagles song, “Take it Easy” when she sings about standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona and being in the wrong song.
Can you guys think of any more songs that reference other songs? Help make my mixed tape idea a reality!