Over and Over Again
June 14, 2011 6:47 PM   Subscribe

What songs have only one line of lyrics? More specifically, songs that repeat that line (as opposed to mainly instrumental songs with one line thrown in once).

And, yes, I'm vaguely trying to recollect a specific mid-2000s indie or alt-country song, but mostly now I'm just curious!
posted by jtajta to Media & Arts (65 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
Alice's Restaurant?
posted by ceribus peribus at 6:53 PM on June 14, 2011


Akron/Family's Afford?
posted by oinopaponton at 6:54 PM on June 14, 2011


Andy Kaufman - I Trusted You
posted by Hume at 6:55 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


One of these mornings by Moby.
posted by Margalo Epps at 7:03 PM on June 14, 2011


The song I was thinking of is "Is There A Ghost" by Band of Horses. But, keep 'em coming.
posted by jtajta at 7:04 PM on June 14, 2011




The TVTropes article on Single Stanza Songs has tons of examples in a wide variety of genres.
posted by Rhaomi at 7:06 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


My favorite: Was/Not Was: Hello, Dad, I'm in Jail (it always makes me think of Liquid Television, for some reason)

Walk the Dinosaur-what?
posted by smirkette at 7:08 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Around the World by Daft Punk. As a bonus, it has the greatest music video ever!
posted by just_ducky at 7:11 PM on June 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


"Eleven O'Clock" by Morphine.
posted by Fui Non Sum at 7:11 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


"I Never Learnt to Share" by James Blake. bonus for an insane drop.
posted by raihan_ at 7:15 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


Barbra Streisand (after the initial few lines of speech)
posted by milestogo at 7:16 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


"Punk Love" by the Magnetic Fields (although it alternates between "Punk Love" and "Punk Rock Love")
posted by griphus at 7:20 PM on June 14, 2011


The chorus and the second verse of The Inbreds — Any Sense of Time each consist of a single line repeated four times: "But you don't have any sense of time" for the chorus and "You just laugh and you call him a man" for the second verse.
posted by Johnny Assay at 7:26 PM on June 14, 2011


(although it alternates between "Punk Love" and "Punk Rock Love")

I think it could be considered one line of "punk rock love punk love punk rock love love". Similarly, "Experimental Music Love" from the same album is only one line, and not even really repeated, just phase-shifted.
posted by LionIndex at 7:28 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


Totally not a mid-00s indie alt-country song, but how's Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet by Gavin Bryars.
posted by gauche at 7:30 PM on June 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


"New Day Rising" by Husker Du.
posted by notyou at 7:30 PM on June 14, 2011


"The Unwinding Hours" by Knut.
posted by biochemist at 7:36 PM on June 14, 2011


My girlfriend says: "Prepare Ye (The Way of the Lord)" from Godspell.
posted by The demon that lives in the air at 7:39 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Smog - Driving
posted by hydrophonic at 7:40 PM on June 14, 2011


Os Mutantes - Bat Macumba. Lyrics and explanation (the last one, by pablostinger) are here.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:53 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Kind of a song: Barenaked Ladies - Deck the Stills (off of their holiday album).
posted by Adamsmasher at 8:11 PM on June 14, 2011


Also, not the whole song but the final chorus of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah! - Upon This Tidal Wave Of Young Blood
posted by Adamsmasher at 8:16 PM on June 14, 2011


"Two Exclamation Points" by Volcano, I'm Still Excited!! - Free download at Amazon
posted by puritycontrol at 8:18 PM on June 14, 2011


Steve Reich has a whole bunch of this stuff - check out Proverb, for example, or if you're feeling totally old school and hardcore, there's It's gonna Rain, or much of his work with Hebrew and musical rhythms of speach such as Tehillim.
posted by OrangeDrink at 8:22 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am thinking of '( )' by Sigur Ros.
posted by ovvl at 8:22 PM on June 14, 2011


I can't help thinking of George Harrison's "I've Got My Mind Set On You" and Weird Al's parody, "This Song is Just Six Words Long".

Also, if you're thinking classical, Randall Thompson's "Alleluia" repeats that one word throughout the entire song.
posted by Melismata at 9:19 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Much, much older: Billy Thorpe's Mashed Potato. Three words, if you count "yeah".
posted by Logophiliac at 9:23 PM on June 14, 2011


Dinosaur Jr., "Don't"
Love this song.
posted by Dr. Wu at 9:29 PM on June 14, 2011


The song 'Fang' by Scissorfight has one line, repeated: "The echo of my voice causes avalanches."
posted by usonian at 9:38 PM on June 14, 2011


Blur's 'We've got a file on you'.
posted by roobot at 9:41 PM on June 14, 2011


"I Like Short Songs" by the Dead Kennedys (no, it's not just that line once!)
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:56 PM on June 14, 2011


Dirty Dozen Brass Band - My Feet Can't Fail Me Now
Air - Kelly Watch the Stars
Sun Ra - Outer Spaceways Incorporated (some versions, like on the soundtrack to Space Is The Place, have vocals throughout)
posted by hydrophonic at 10:34 PM on June 14, 2011


Piper - Phish
posted by Mister Fabulous at 10:37 PM on June 14, 2011


Get Up and Boogie by Silver Convention. Complete lyrics: "Get up and boogie. That's right!" (repeat ad nauseum)
posted by Oriole Adams at 11:49 PM on June 14, 2011


The 'happy song' featured in Spaced a few times: S'il Vous Plaît by Fantastic Plastic Machine.
posted by lovedbymarylane at 11:50 PM on June 14, 2011


Ween - Tastes Good on th' Bun
posted by santaliqueur at 11:59 PM on June 14, 2011


boomtown rats - "skin on skin"
posted by bendy at 12:09 AM on June 15, 2011


Phish - Lengthwise
posted by platinum at 12:21 AM on June 15, 2011


I'm So Glad (Cream, Deep Purple) isn't just one line, but it's pretty sparse.
posted by Bruce H. at 1:22 AM on June 15, 2011


Hugh Laurie's America has three words total, repeated over and over.
posted by chiefthe at 1:40 AM on June 15, 2011




Barney and Yoko's masterpiece Number 8 from The Simpsons.
posted by Ljubljana at 3:28 AM on June 15, 2011


Tout Le Monde by Reindeer Section
posted by backwards guitar at 4:42 AM on June 15, 2011


Revolution #9 by the Beatles.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:12 AM on June 15, 2011


Nature Anthem by Granddaddy.

kinda
posted by TheOtherGuy at 5:31 AM on June 15, 2011


Jim O'Rourke, Prelude to 110 or 220

The Beatles, Why Don't We Do in the Road
posted by meadowlark lime at 6:15 AM on June 15, 2011


Shannon - Let the Music Play This always gives me an extra boost of energy, also makes me want to do the robot for some reason. What can I say, i'm a product of the 80's.
posted by udon at 6:15 AM on June 15, 2011


No one's mentioned The Beatles classic "You Know My Name (Now Look Up That Number)" yet?
posted by Gortuk at 6:51 AM on June 15, 2011


Caetano Veloso - How Beautiful Could a Being Be, with his son Moreno playing the dinner plate and a comparison of samba dancing styles from Rio and Salvador.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:11 AM on June 15, 2011


Coltrane's "Acknowledgement" from "A love Supreme"
posted by canoehead at 7:37 AM on June 15, 2011


prodigy's smack my bitch up
posted by CookieNose at 7:37 AM on June 15, 2011


Sleigh Bells A/B Machines
posted by JJtheJetPlane at 8:04 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Soft Machine's We Did it Again , Peter Blegvad's The Only Song
posted by chirico at 8:24 AM on June 15, 2011


The Pixies - Stormy Weather
posted by bobafet at 8:29 AM on June 15, 2011


Slim Cessna's Auto Club - Hold My Head

Actually, the last two thirds of the song repeat the title over and over and over.
The first third is good too, if you like songs about religious hucksters.
The repetition begins at 3:40 of the 10 minute song.
posted by Seamus at 9:25 AM on June 15, 2011


the pixies - la la love you
posted by beige at 9:39 AM on June 15, 2011


"Milk Man" by Aphex Twin.
posted by milk white peacock at 9:54 AM on June 15, 2011


"Come Around" by Sugar.
posted by usonian at 1:09 PM on June 15, 2011


Broken Social Scene - Anthems for a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl
posted by scarykarrey at 2:03 PM on June 15, 2011


Pretty much every song on Moondog 2: 1 2 3 4
posted by hydrophonic at 11:49 PM on June 15, 2011


Mike Doughty's Firetruck.
posted by togdon at 8:55 AM on June 17, 2011


Elijah and the Ebonites - Hot Grits!!!
posted by hydrophonic at 8:49 PM on June 20, 2011




Just thought of another one - can't believe I forgot it the first time:
Lou Reed's "Disco Mystic," from his truly bizarre album The Bells. Great tune.
posted by Dr. Wu at 6:03 AM on July 1, 2011


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